CMW’s Oliver Thomas was one of the privileged guests at the official opening of the €6m (US$6.3m) Bruges Meetings & Convention Centre. The venue is destined to propel the city known for its trade, fishing, beer and architecture heritage into the premier league for congresses.
With its port to the Northern Sea, Bruges is already a historic meetings place, where for centuries travellers have used the city as the entrance hall to the European continent. Bruges has a legacy of cultures, languages, and trade intersecting through meetings, and the new venue is a continuation of this history.
With the increased capacity to hold large scale MICE events, Bruges has now modernised its appeal to become an enticing MICE player for international organisers.
One key area of specific MICE interest to Bruges is attracting international medical events to the region. Jasmine Kestens, sales manager at Visit Bruges Convention Bureau, told CMW: “Medical is one of the economical pillars of Bruges and its region. During the presentations heard today, it can be seen that Bruges has a rich history as a medieval city. There’s the old St John’s Hospital, which is one of the first hospitals in Europe and dates back to the 12th century.”
The convention bureau hopes that this rich medical history and expertise in the region, combined with this state-of-the-art facility, can drive forward international healthcare events in the city.
Photos of the venue and the city of Bruges: