A year-round climate, good infrastructure, luxury accommodation and incentive options have established Morocco as a global mice destination, says Stephanie Ackland.
The main MICE hub of Morocco is Marrakech, in-part due to its location and its experience in the sector. The city is a popular choice for companies, attracted by the accommodation and venue options, as well as the city’s accessibility and the unique hospitality.
Marrakech’s main convention centre is the Palais des Congrès, part of the Mövenpick Mansour Eddahbi Complex, also home to the five-star Mövenpick Hotel. The Swiss group recently invested US$100m in refurbishing both venues.
Large events are well supported with a good choice of four- and five-star hotels, including La Mamounia, Four Seasons, Sofitel, Fairmont and Radisson Blu.
A short drive away, Palmeraie Golf Palace Resort, in the Palmgrove area, has a plenary for 1,500 delegates and two five-star hotels. It hosted part of the UN COP22 climate change conference.
Fingerprint Events’ Azahar Hussain says accommodation, accessibility and security are to be considered when holding events in Marrakech. “The hotels we visited were all high standard. Marrakech is surprisingly easy to get round and very welcoming. The event experience is also good, with plenty of green outdoor spaces for gala dinners and receptions. We had a memorable evening in the Agafay Desert with open fires and a horse-show. Morocco gives the client the sense of being somewhere different – and the warm weather was welcomed too,” says Hussain.
Yet Morocco is more than Marrakech. Each of the country’s MICE destinations has a distinct character:
Strong economic investment in Tangier has made it an emerging meetings destination, reaffirmed by the arrival of the first Hilton Hotels in Morocco. Other large conference venues include the Kenzi Solazur, and Royal Tulip. Tangier offers the charm of old-world Morocco, combined with new facilities.
The spiritual heart of Morocco, Fez is known for its culture and gastronomy.
The city is a popular choice for executive groups, looking for an upscale destination. Fez has private luxury hotels such as the Sahrai, and international brands including Marriott and Barcelo.
The business capital of Morocco, Casablanca is served by international chains including Hyatt, Sheraton, Sofitel and Four Seasons. Its distinct history is represented by the Medina, Habous, and Hassan II Mosque.
The sea-side town of Agadir offers a choice of outdoor activities including fishing, water-sports and golf. It has two Sofitels located beach-front, the German chain Robinsons and the new Hyatt Place.