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TTG associations 12 GUIDE TO Integrated resorts in Asia 19 DESTINATIONS Hong Kong The hotels proposition Lee Yuan Kun It was his first major bid and he netted the World Congresses of the International Union of Microbiological Societies (IUMS) for Singapore in one single shot and also in a year it was supposed to be held in Europe not Asia. Nothing to do with luck. Raini Hamdi talks to Lee Yuan Kun about his winning tactics JANUARY 2015 MCI (P) 085 05 2014 www.singaporeexpo.com.sg Every human is an artist We are firm believers that all human beings are artists. And that events are like beautiful works of art. That s why at Singapore EXPO Convention and Exhibition Centre we help to plan your events in creative ways. With ten exhibition halls and over 100 000 sqm of exhibition space as a canvas you can let your imagination run free. Contact us at artist singaporeexpo.com.sg to find out how we can help produce a true masterpiece. Bring out the artist in you. Singapore EXPO 1 Expo Drive 02-01 Singapore 486150 Tel 65 6403 2160 EDITORIAL Karen Yue Group Editor (karen.yue ttgasia.com) Gracia Chiang Deputy Group Editor (gracia.chiang ttgasia.com) Hannah Koh Assistant Editor TTG Asia Online (hannah.koh ttgasia.com) Paige Lee Pei Qi Assistant Editor Singapore (lee.peiqi ttgasia.com) Xinyi Liang-Pholsena Assistant Editor Thailand Indochina (liang.xinyi ttgasia.com) Kathy Neo Copy Editor (kathy.neo ttgasia.com) S Puvaneswary Editor Malaysia Brunei (puvanes ttgasia.com) Mimi Hudoyo Editor Indonesia (idmfasia cbn.net.id) Greg Lowe Thailand (ttg thegreglowe.com) Prudence Lui Hong Kong Greater China (prului yahoo.com) Shekhar Niyogi Rohit Kaul India (shekhar.niyogi ttgasia.com rohitkaul23 gmail.com) Feizal Samath Sri Lanka Maldives (feizalsam gmail.com) Marianne Carandang Rosa Ocampo The Philippines (marianne.carandang ttgasia.com rosa.ocampo gmail.com) Redmond Sia Goh Meng Yong Creative Designers Lina Tan Editorial Assistant SALES & MARKETING Michael Chow Group Publisher (michael.chow ttgasia.com) Jonathan Yap Senior Business Manager (jonathan.yap ttgasia.com) Mervin Lee Business Manager (mervin.lee ttgasia.com) Stephanie So Business Manager (Hong Kong stephanie.so ttgasia.com) Cheryl Tan Corporate Marketing Manager (cheryl.tan ttgasia.com) Stephanie Toh Marketing Executive (stephanie.toh ttgasia.com) Cheryl Lim Advertisement Administration manager (cheryl.lim ttgasia.om) Carol Cheng Asst Manager Administration & Marketing (Hong Kong carol.cheng ttgasia.com) PUBLISHING SERVICES Tony Yeo Division Manager Haze Loh Senior Creative Designer Lynn Lim Web Executive Carol Wong Senior Circulation Executive (carol.wong ttgasia.com) OFFICES Singapore TTG Asia Media Pte Ltd 1 Science Park Road 04-07 The Capricorn Singapore Science Park II Singapore 117528 Tel 65 6395 7575 fax 65 6536 0896 email contact ttgasia.com Hong Kong TTG Asia Media Pte Ltd Unit 2011 20 F Harbour Centre 25 Harbour Road Wanchai Hong Kong Tel 852 2237 7888 fax 852 2237 7227 TTG ASIA MEDIA PTE LTD Darren Ng Managing Director Raini Hamdi Senior Editor (raini.hamdi ttgasia.com) All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in whole or in part without written permission of the publisher. MCI (P) 185 05 2014 Printed by Times Printers Pte Ltd 16 Tuas Avenue 5 Singapore 639340. Why bid for an event At the time of writing this I find myself being in the shoes of a meeting planner. My life partner is turning 70 years old and I m surprising him with a party. My heart beats faster when I think of the event which is happening at Lord Jim s The Oriental Bangkok in just two days. Now this has taken three months to plan and is for just 65 pax. Contrast that to an association meeting which has a lead time of three years and involve thousands of delegates such as the World Congresses of the International Union of Microbiological Societies which Lee Yuan Kun president of the Singapore Society for Microbiology and Biotechnology bid for and won for Singapore in 2017 (read his winning tactics on page 9). Having organised my miniscule party compared to such behemoth events which are far more complex I wonder what is it that possesses busy engrossed and learned men to bid for and plan a large congress bearing the burden of not just having to co-ordinate its numerous aspects but the financial risks it poses. I realise that whether you are organising a party for 50 pax or a congress for 5 000 pax at the heart of it all is the pleasure of hosting people which brings the immense returns of goodwill the gift of friendship and the power of human interaction. This is something no amount of Facebooking can even aspire to rise to. I love this quote from Lee One of the reasons I organise or attend a conference is not so much about listening to speeches. It s when someone says something that inspires you to think Why was this not done before Why can t I do it Then you can even use other participants as a bouncing board so it becomes a discussion that stimulates the mind and the idea becomes bigger...This you cannot get from the Internet. I also love how he talks about the need to be bespoke through every step of the way from the bidding process and getting registrations to accommodating attendees different needs on everything from sightseeing to conference content. It all reminds me that the secret of any successful event has its roots in a host with the most i.e. someone who passionately cares about the guests who has an eye for details who is creative and who picks like-minded partners hotel convention centre PCO etc to help him plan and deliver the event. I ve no doubt Lee s congress will wow the delegates. As for me I can only hope that my little surprise party will also be unforgettable. Raini Hamdi Senior Editor PROFILE Lee Yuan Kun It was his first major bid and he netted the World Congresses of the International Union of Microbiological Societies (IUMS) for Singapore in one single shot and also in a year it was supposed to be held in Europe not Asia. Nothing to do with luck. Raini Hamdi talks to Lee Yuan Kun about his winning tactics 9 GUIDE TO Integrated resorts in Asia With accommodation entertainment and function space aplenty all under one roof integrated resorts might just be ideal for association events. Paige Lee Pei Qi S Puvaneswary Prudence Lui Rosa Ocampo and Greg Lowe round up the region s best 12 DESTINATIONS 19 The hotels proposition The ability to cater to varying budgets and event sizes is making Hong Kong hotels the choice of associations reports Prudence Lui 22 Sentosa shines further The attraction may be off the shores of the main Lion City island but it is drawing association events new products Paige Lee Pei Qi reports 25 Konnichiwa Tokyo The Japanese capital makes a natural choice for international associations for many reasons one of which is quality infrastructure reports Karen Yue DEPARTMENTS 1 3 6 To our readers News On the shelves 11 Gallery 18 Case study 28 How to Be open community not closed association By Paige Lee Pei Qi Associations should not get too caught up with membership numbers but should instead build communities through sound content an advice attendees took away from the inaugural IT&CM Association Day held in Singapore recently. Addressing industry players at the event Oscar Cerezales COO Asia-Pacific and global director of association services at MCI Group said The rules of engagement must change. For too long now associations have been keeping a very traditional approach towards membership and now is the time for them to relook at this model. Instead of building membership numbers associations need to get into the mindset of building a community and consider their organisations as open professional communities rather than closed membership organisations. Cerezales (left) suggests that associations have professionals to interact with the association members so that members can be engaged at a relevant level of interest that adds value personally and professionally. Fundamental to this mindset shift is the recognition that value is defined by (the new member) not by the organisation. For example (associations) will realise that many of the new members do not care if they have the right to vote or influence the association s direction they are more interested in the associa- tion s content and are willing to pay for it he elaborated. Hence Cerezales recommends that associations segment their target audiences and allow individuals (or new customer segments) to choose and apply their own perception of value to the community. He said These new rules of engagement effectively serve as an extended recruitment strategy while at the same time expand the association s outreach and member base. Herman Ng founder of Games Exchange Alliance Singapore concurred saying his 30-member strong association relies on a tiered membership system. While the paying members have voting rights the others who do not thrive instead on the networking opportunities within the gaming industry. He added Our association is driven by volunteers so we must ensure that people can see the value and can identify with the passion in this industry to keep the association going. David Chng Asia-Pacific director of CHWMEG a non-profit 270-member trade association that promotes environmental stewardship programmes said while he does not face any challenge in membership recruitment he agrees on the importance of adding value to content to sustain the association. He said We see the value of education especially in our industry because it is all about knowledge exchange so that is our selling point. News 21 Talking numbers The number of medium to large events with a total of 538 000 delegates held at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre in the last quarter. Sixteen or 76 per cent were repeat clients. represents in South Korea and the PCAAE which was formed last year. With 90 individual members KSAE wants to collaborate with ASAE and PCAAE to achieve common goals. In his presentation at the PCAAE Summit II Cho said associations and organisations in South Korea will in the future be more open transparent collaborative self-sufficient and sustainable. Currently traditional in character they are generally conservative with a single super power and are dependent on the government. Rosa Ocampo KSAE aims to help South Korean associations become less traditional THE newly formed Korea Society of Association Executives (KSAE) seeks to advance the skills of industry practitioners through training and education networking and even advocacy its secretary general Glynn Cho told TTGassociations. While South Korea has over 50 000 associations and organisations there is no system in place yet for what KSAE wants to pioneer said Cho who is also CEO of the Korea Association Management and Consulting on the sidelines of the Philippine Council for the Advancement of Association Executives (PCAAE) Summit II. KSAE has benchmarked the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) which Cho the first Asian it certified as an association executive TTGassociations January 2015 3 News Malaysia to welcome APNAT By S Puvaneswary A new association to champion barrierfree travel for people with disabilities in Asia-Pacific known as the Asia Pacific Network on Accessible Tourism (APNAT) is being registered in Malaysia. APNAT was initiated in response to recommendations from participants who attended the 1st South-east Asia Conference on Accessible Tourism in 2012. Sia Siew Chin protem committee chairman of APNAT said Through APNAT we would like to be able to reach out to governments people in the tourism industry and service providers to provide for the access needs of everyone in society in particular people with disabilities. Advisor Joseph Kwan who is also the chair for International Commission on Technology & Accessibility Rehabilitation International said Through APNAT we can encourage governments to ratify the United Nations Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. tion employment opportunities and social inclusion. In time to come we will also provide training for tour guides handling tourists with disabilities. Additionally international participants from the Asia-Pacific region who attended the recent 5th International Conference on Accessible Tourism held for the first time in Malaysia in early December agreed to set up local chapters in their respective countries and to invite government bodies and the private sector involved in tourism to become members. Saowalak Thongkuay regional coordinator for Abilis Foundation Mekong regional office based in Bangkok said APNAT gives us a strong and collective voice to negotiate with governments to include accessible tourism into their development agenda. For example under the ASEAN Economic Community accessible tourism is not discussed and included in the agenda. The 5th International Conference on Accessible Tourism Travel and full access to tourist activities services and facilities is a right enshrined in Articles 9 and 30. He added We want to make tourism destinations products and services accessible to all travellers within the Asia-Pacific region and to create awareness among the government and private sector that promoting accessible tourism contributes to the nation s tourism revenue competitiveness as a destina- Manila plays host to WTCA Manila will for the first time host the World Trade Centers Association s (WTCA) 46th General Assembly from April 25 to 29 next year. The general assembly a rotating annual gathering and the flagship event of New York-based WTCA is a forum for World Trade Center (WTC) executives board members and international business leaders to exchange ideas share strategies and gain exposure. Nearly 300 WTC leaders from 100 countries are expected to attend the event according to Pamela Pascual senior vice president and general manager of host World Trade Center Metro Manila (WTCMM). Pascual said hosting the 46th General Assembly is an opportunity to showcase our country which is enjoying robust economic growth and to show international leaders how we do business . Hosting the event is also a feather in the cap for the Philippine MICE sector where WTCMM is one of the pioneers. With the theme Better Together Through Global Unity and Co-operation WTCMM is focusing the programme on strengthening the WTCA network identifying the best trade and investment opportunities in the Philippines and assessing the impact of politics economics and culture on doing business in the country among others. The Philippines won the bid for the 2015 edition at a second try. In the first attempt a few years ago it lost to India. Rosa Ocampo Makati skyline in Metro Manila Dubai to host ATCE 2016 The Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) has announced that its Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition (ATCE) will be held at the Dubai World Trade Centre in 2016 the first time the conference will take place in the Middle East. ATCE will run from September 2628 2016. Jeff Spath 2014 SPE president explained the choice of Dubai as the next host destination SPE s membership is dispersed globally. More than 11 000 of our professional members and 2 200 of our student members reside in the Middle East. He added Dubai s position at the crossroads of East and West makes it an ideal meeting point for our global industry. ATCE gathers around 10 000 attending engineers scientists managers and executives for networking and certification and training opportunities. The event will also see the annual general meeting of SPE members where awards and recognitions are given out to industry technical leaders. An exhibition spanning over 10 000m2 will run concurrently. Khalid Zainalabedin with Saudi Aramco has been selected as the ATCE 2016 programme chairperson. 4 TTGassociations January 2015 Australia raises bidding support Australia s business events sector received calls for support...that there is supa major boost end-November when port there. Letters of support from key the Federal Government entered into a governments and ministers are vital partnership to assist the industry in the she added especially given the growth bidding and event delivery process. potential of key Asian markets. At the Australian Export She added With the growth Awards in Sydney Minister for potential of Asian markets Trade and Investment Andrew government support and inRobb said international busivolvement is essential to ensure ness events are an integral part AACB is in the best-possible of the government s economic position to identify bid for and diplomacy agenda and unveiled win business events that align a historic framework Attracting with the national priority areas Business Events to Australia and better connect industry Lewis-Smith Role of Government Agencies. academia government and the groundbreaking The new framework is a straprivate sector. tegic collaboration between the Australia s business events Federal Government through Austrade sector is expected to reach more than and Tourism Australia and the AssociaA 16 billion (U 13.4 billion) per year by tion of Australian Convention Bureaux 2020. (AACB) as well as the business events Separately in Sydney 19 events worth sector to attract world-class events to the a total of A 150 million have been continent. secured for International Convention AACB president Lyn Lewis-Smith said Centre Sydney (ICC Sydney) following it is important for all parties to all be news of the city being selected as host on the same page with the new policy for International Chamber of Commerce development. Documentation from the World Chambers Federation World minister will go to all Austrade offices Chambers Congress in 2017. globally. They will know that when the Sydney will be the first Australian city convention bureau office from Australia to host the conference. News Koh re-elected The Singapore Furniture Industries Council (SFIC) the official representative body of the Singapore furniture industry has re-elected Ernie Koh executive director of Koda as president for a second term. With a new executive committee installed for the 2014 2016 term the council seeks to embark on a journey with the industry s top leaders to elevate the 3i Approach Improve Innovate and Integrate. Said Koh Over the next few years SFIC will actively align its activities and initiatives around this three-pronged approach to foster design-centric growth and to expand Singapore s influence within the global furniture industry. OUR BEST IDEAS TAKE FLIGHT. JOIN US at ASAE s Great Ideas in Association Management Conference a unique opportunity in the Asia-Pacific region 22-24 March 2015 Kowloon Shangri-La Hotel Hong Kong. Gain valuable ideas to help you manage your association more effectively. Build fellowship and learn from your colleagues. Share one journey to elevate the association profession in the region. 22-24 March 2015 Kowloon Shangri-La Hotel Hong Kong TTGassociations January 2015 5 Thank you to our Event Partner and conference sponsor Hong Kong Tourism Board Thank you to our Supporting Partner Aptify Thank you to the supporting organizations REGISTER TODAY AT asaecenter.org GreatIdeasAsiaPacific On the shelves Keyless simplicity now a reality at Starwood hotels Starwood Hotels & Resorts has launched SPG Keyless an initiative that transforms the guest s smartphone into a room key and enables guests to bypass the front desk when checking in. First rolled out within a week in November to 10 properties under the Aloft Element and W brands SPG Keyless will eventually be made available on 30 000 doors in 150 hotels around the globe by early 2015. Hotels today that offer this convenience include Aloft Beijing Aloft Cancun Aloft Cupertino Aloft Harlem W Doha W Hollywood W Hong Kong W New York Downtown W Singapore Sentosa Cove and Element Times Square. Available to SPG members who book a hotel room through one of Starwood s channels SPG Keyless requires SPG members to first register their phones through the SPG app and allow push notifications. Guests will receive a push notification noting that they are checked in and the app will update the guest with his her room number and Bluetooth key when the room is ready. To use guests simply have to hold their smartphone to the door lock wait for a solid green light and enter the room. Frits van Paasschen Starwood s president & CEO said Not only does SPG Keyless alleviate a perennial pain point for travellers but it also transforms the first interaction with our guests from one that is transactional to something more personal. This is just the beginning because through mobile we have the opportunity to marry high tech and high touch to transform the hotel experience in many exciting ways. Sheraton Hua Hin unveils new convention hall A new pillarless convention hall has opened at the Sheraton Hua Hin Resort and Spa. Named The Chandelier the space is said to be the largest and most modern resort conference facility in Thailand s western region. Measuring 892m2 in size and boasting a 7.6m high ceiling The Chandelier can accommodate up to 680 pax in theatre-style or 800 guests for cocktail receptions. It also comes with a spacious foyer and direct access for vehicle displays and is equipped with the latest technology. Chatchaya Glaiprayong director of sales & marketing of Sheraton Hua Hin Resort & Spa and Sheraton Hua Hin Pranburi Villas said Our associates are excited to exhibit this new facility s versatility to the public. With so many different event possibilities we are eager to host and create memorable experiences in all aspects from exclusive conferences to world-class events . The Chandelier joins three other event venues The Grand Ballroom State Room 1 and State Room 2 at the 240key Sheraton Hua Hin Resort and Spa. Outrigger gears up for business events New meeting facilities at the Outrigger Laguna Phuket Beach Resort is allowing the property to better position itself as a suitable venue for medium-sized meetings. At the centre of the resort s hardware revamp is the 716m2 Similan Ballroom which can accommodate up to 350 delegates in theatre style and 290 guests banquet style. The resort has also unveiled three meeting rooms the 158m2 Tongfah and Tawan and Talay breakout rooms at 77m2 each. Darren Edmonstone Outrigger managing director Asia-Pacific said The new Similan meeting space allows Outrigger to extend its unique passion for meetings excellence and teambuilding to event organisers around the world. Tony Pedroni general manager of the Outrigger Laguna Phuket Beach Resort said the new spaces would allow the resort to host teambuilding programmes with a uniquely Thai twist . Meetings held at the resort can benefit from high-end in-house audiovisual equipment technical support free Wi-Fi and an events and catering team. All four meeting spaces are designed to allow in natural light. Event planners are supported by a variety of outdoor spaces in the form of extensive gardens and a beachfront perfect for outdoor banquets and icebreakers. A sharper website for KL convention centre The Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre has upgraded its website (www.klccconventioncentre.com) with new features to enhance user experience and connectivity for its global clientele. New technologies have been harnessed to ease navigation and introduce new customised features for users planning an event. For instance users can now utilise an event profiler page and a product page to refine their search at the click of a button and gain instant access to content relating to the different segments i.e. Association Conventions & Conferences Banquets & Functions Corporate Meetings & Events Entertainment & Concerts Exhibitions and Small Meetings and their respective product offerings. Angeline Lue the centre s director of sales & marketing said We want the site to be both a key information touch-point for our global clientele and a marketing tool so new features such as dedicated email addresses for the sales team and individually configured to each event type mean sales enquiries can reach us in real time and prompt a faster response. All this will help us better serve our clients whilse reaffirming our world-class reputation and position as Malaysia s premier convention facility. 6 TTGassociations January 2015 Old school flaunts new allure for events Shangri-La Hotel Singapore has transformed a historical school building nestled within its lush premises into its latest events offering. Now known as The Pavilion the former Singapore s Hollandse School which operated from 1928 to 1982 has been lovingly conserved and restored to its former glory. The charming colonialstyle venue can host receptions with 120 guests or banquets for 100 people and comes with a foyer and courtyard. Due to its historical value fond memories of The Pavilion remained in the minds of guests and colleagues alike. When the plan for regular refurbishment of furniture and fixtures was confirmed the ownership decided to transform this sentimental site into a venue that will again create lasting memories for families and corporations enjoying their celebrations and events said Reto K Klauser vice president and general manager of the luxury hotel. While Klauser believes that The Pavilion s rich heritage alone will draw event planners the hotel has rolled out new initiatives to enhance the appeal of the venue. They include the Back To School meeting package a Heritage Wall that commemorates On the shelves personalities who have made an impact to the hotel and an outdoor grill experience delivered through an outdoor kitchen in the courtyard. This revolutionary outdoor grill experience is unlike any other said Klauser. Our creative chefs have designed three flexible packages for example a set dinner with Russian-style service buffet or communal (dining). The experience takes gourmet meals to a different dimension and our chefs are able to deliver unparalleled freshness directly to guests plates. These grilled dishes are also not available at any ShangriLa restaurants. Prices for an outdoor grill dinner start from S 90 (US 71) per person. Karen Yue W splashes into Beijing W Hotels Worldwide has opened its second hotel in China after W Guangzhou in the capital city of Beijing. Situated on Chang an Avenue W Beijing Chang an is close to many of Beijing s important monuments and buildings such as the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square. The hotel consists of 349 rooms and suites 1 500m2 of space for events and meetings the largest of which is the 518m2 The Great Room a spa fitness centre and a heated indoor pool. For F&B options guests can choose between X25 a lounge with DJs mixing beats and serving handcrafted cocktails YEN a Chinese restaurant that serves Canton province fare and Kitchen Table which serves casual home-style food. W Beijing Chang an also has a common area the Living Room which features a LED-lit catwalk that leads to a bar and a DJ booth suspended from the ceiling. What s on offer The Mira Hong Kong New business events booked by June 30 2015 at The Mira Hong Kong which offers eight function rooms and creative indoor and outdoor spaces will enjoy a number of perks. These incentives include an upgraded sixth room for every five rooms booked a free conference package for the sixth person for every five delegates a complimentary hour-long cocktail with five kinds of canap s at Vibes or one of the Specialty Suites for bookings of at least 50 room nights and a free iPad mini for the event planner with a total minimum spend of HK 150 000 (US 1 934) net on one event inclusive of room and F&B charges. Conference packages offered at The Mira Hong Kong are priced at HK 850 and HK 700 for a full- and half-day arrangement respectively. The package includes luncheon two one thematic coffee break(s) and a full set of meeting amenities. Terms and conditions apply. Contact mice themirahotel.com and quote MICETOTHEMAX2015 to enjoy this offer. InterContinental Hong Kong The Mira Hong Kong The hotel has unveiled Hong Kong s largest hotel LED wall in its InterContinental Ballroom a product that can provide a stunning visual impact for meetings and other events. Two packages which include use of this new LED wall are now on offer. The Backdrop Package priced at HK 12 800 (US 1 648) net per event comes with a single image as the LED backdrop and an hour-long testing before the day of the event. The Event Package priced at HK 68 000 net per event includes full-day use of the venue from 08.00 to 23.59 two laptops for image video powerpoint as playback on the LED Wall one switcher between two laptops an hour-long testing before the day of the event and an engineer on hand for technical support on the actual day. Images provided by the client should be a format size of 2500 x 832. Event planners can also choose to project a live feed of the hotel s spectacular harbourview on the LED Wall for HK 5 500 net. An additional HK 8 000 net for live video filming with crew from the hotel s rooftop applies. For more information e-mail iceventshk ihg.com. TTGassociations January 2015 7 Checking in On the shelves Advertorial Five-star 333 rooms and suites Tel (86-21) 2426-8888 Email hotel pullman-shanghai-south.com Website www.pullmanhotels.com and www.accorhotels.com Pullman Shanghai South ONE MINUTE Local Associations Laud IT&CM Events First Association Day in Singapore with IT&CM Events pened at the end of April 2014 on Pubei Road Xuhui District Pullman Shanghai South should not be confused with Accor s other hotel on Dapu Road Huangpu District which was recently rebranded Pullman Shanghai Skyway and where the taxi driver first took me to. The 23-storey Pullman Shanghai South is part of Star Plaza comprising a commercial building and a four-storey shopping centre. Touted as the future centre of the new CBD of South Shanghai the hotel is close to the South Xujiahui Business Circle Caohejing High-Tech Park and is a 20-minute drive from Hongqiao International Airport. It is also a 10-minute walk to the Shanghai South Railway Station and close to Metro Lines 1 and 3. Rooms The hotel has 333 rooms and suites. My deluxe room decorated in subtle beige tones was functional and the deep blue daybed offered the right amount of contrast and splash of colour to add some character. Nothing pleases me more than adequate room lighting natural and electric. Most hotel rooms are never ever bright enough for me. This time my corner room was naturally bright by day and it could be well lit at night. Also a winner in my book was the good workstation there was a large writing desk the chair was well-designed and power points were easily accessible. Every room also has complimentary Wi-Fi. Meeting rooms Designed for upscale business events Pullman Shanghai South offers a pillarless grand ballroom and seven function rooms. The grand ballroom can accommodate a banquet for 750 guests or 1 200 pax in a theatre layout. Three of the function rooms are designed as boardrooms for 12 to 24 people while the others can take smaller groups of 18 in a Ushape set-up and up to 72 in a theatre setting. These venues are fitted with the necessary event technology such as video-conferencing equipment. 8 TTGassociations January 2015 O F&B The 206-seat Savor is the hotel s all-day dining restaurant and I enjoyed the big buffet breakfast spread of Asian and Western items. Yue is the hotel s 148-seat Chinese restaurant and Japanese restaurant Tsubasa seats 59 people. The 84-seat Lobby Lounge makes a good business meeting spot while the 124-seat 999 Live Bar is ideal for unwinding and sampling the Pullman Vinoteca wine concept featuring new and old world wines beers and spirit as well as tapas. Other facilities A 25m indoor heated swimming pool and a fitness centre housing a spa and gym with top-of-the range equipment provide guests the option of keeping fit or being pampered. Service Check-in took longer than expected as one counter was tied up sorting out the accommodation of a meeting group. When it was finally my turn the staff was apologetic and professional and did not hesitate to offer me a better room to compensate for the inconvenience. IT&CM Event s first Association Day in Singapore organised in collaboration with venue sponsor Suntec Singapore successfully drew in over 30 industry professionals and executives hailing from various industries. The half-day Association Day programme helmed by expert speakers from association management company MCI Singapore and destination Sarawak Convention Bureau scored high in knowledge delivery while providing opportunities for networking during the coffee break and hosted lunch. The two sessions touched on new approaches to membership building as well as how a united nation and the support of its government played a big part in winning the 2016 ICCA congress bid. Let s Hear From Attendees and Speakers The take-aways have re-affirmed that the strategy I would like to adopt for my association moving forward is the right one. In addition the networking opportunity has allowed me to connect with peers from associations across industries to discuss potential for collaboration. Steven Ong CEO Financial Planning Association of Singapore The IT&CM Association Day initiative is fundamental for industry engagement with the purpose of advancing the associations sector through peer-to-peer exchange. Oscar Cerezales COO Asia-Pacific Global Director Association Services MCI Singapore What I experienced here is that Singapore s association professionals are eager to learn to advance the professionalism and effectiveness of the associations they manage. Dylan Redas Noel Director of Industry Development Sarawak Convention Bureau IT&CM Events Association Days series 2015 IT&CM China Shanghai (14 and 15 April) IT&CM India Delhi (19 August) IT&CMA Bangkok Thailand (30 September and 1 October) PRICE CHECK Fizzy drink from the minibar RMB18 (US 2.90) Buffet lunch at Savor RMB251 Wi-Fi Free VERDICT This well-appointed business hotel lives up to its hardware and software brand promise. Caroline Boey Lee Yuan Kun Profile Profile Bidding tactics It was his first major bid and he netted the World Congresses of the International Union of Microbiological Societies (IUMS) for Singapore in one single shot and also in a year it was supposed to be held in Europe not Asia. Nothing to do with luck. Raini Hamdi talks to Lee Yuan Kun about his winning tactics How difficult was it to win this three-congresses-in-one event for Singapore in 2017 Singapore was not on the map of these congresses as traditionally they rotate every three years among Asia Europe and North America. Hokkaido hosted it in 2011 and Montreal this year so it s Europe s turn next. Even if it s Asia s turn countries with huge population would be the popular choice. Singapore is tiny and always seen as expensive and so far away. So when we first submitted our letter of intent to bid for the congresses it was actually not very well-received. But isn t Japan expensive as well (Laughs) Perhaps it s because Japan is more exotic. If you re from North America you probably see Singapore as another Westernised modernised cosmopolitan city. Thus we had to sell the point that Singapore is unique at one go you get to see different cultures and though it has a short history of nationbuilding Singapore s history itself is a long one. We got help from the various government agencies such as the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) to give us all the supporting materials. What s the clincher though I believe what impressed the committee was our commitment to fully sponsor 20 young (Asian) scientists to attend the conference and that s thanks to the kind support of STB. We weaved the story that Asia is up-and-coming the Asian scientific publication has shot up mainly in China and (South) Korea so it makes sense to bring the congress to Asia and how this will benefit these budding scientists who may not have the opportunity to travel to Europe to attend. Has this ever been done No that s why the bid stood out. In fact in the past little or no support for young scientists was extended whereas we went out of our way which impressed the committee. Take me through the bid process. Ah the process was long. Before making known our intention Singapore Tourism Board TTGassociations January 2015 9 Profile Yes look at the Ebola scare. Exactly the reason it spreads is because people aren t aware of hygiene and how (viruses) spread. That s why outreach is needed. So being the president I can help advance this idea further. Why do you care to bid and organise conferences We (the Singapore Society for Microbiology and Biotechnology of which he is also president) have organised conferences and received good feedback. We thought perhaps we could go for something bigger. It s not only the vision but a mission and sense of hospitality. As organisers we arrange everything and I enjoy that. Although I m a Singaporean I realise there are many places that I have never been to until I organise conferences. And so why not share those with others You make a lot of lifelong friends and even working partners. Do you find conferences being easily replaced by the Internet One of the reasons I organise or attend a conference is not so much about listening to speeches. It s when someone says something that inspires you to think Why was this not done before Why can t I do it Then you can even use other participants as a bouncing board so it becomes a discussion that stimulates the mind and the idea becomes bigger. Very often it s not a suggestion but something someone says that sparks of a train of thought. This you cannot get from the Internet. This is so important for Singapore as we are so small and in my discipline there are so few people to talk to. So how many delegates are you expecting and have you decided on a venue Around 3 000 to 6 000 pax. The Pharma Code prevents us from using venues such as Marina Bay Sands and Resorts World Sentosa so it s down to Suntec Singapore and the Singapore Expo. There aren t too many venues that can Singapore Tourism Board accommodate an event of this size. Is that the biggest challenge Finding sponsors is the biggest challenge. There are a lot more conferences and each wants sponsors. A huge conference such as this requires heavy capital investment. That s why the need to highlight why our conference is different and why it s valuefor-money for sponsorship. Knowing who our sponsors are really getting to know them is crucial. How did you choose your PCO We shortlisted six and there were two rounds of presentations. We settled on MCI. Some of the smaller PCOs were actually very impressive. But with a conference three years down the road if we use a one-person operation there is always the worry what if this person is no longer there what would happen So we prefer to work with a larger company and have the back-up of an organisation so that even if there s a personnel change there is continuity. If it were a conference this year I would go with the smaller PCO you know you ll get the personal touch you know the person would personally follow up on things quickly. Do you find it difficult to get new members into your association People are now different. They are more opinionated. In the past they look up to leaders they expect you to lead. Now they voice out their opinions and therefore we need to listen. Even if nothing can be done as long as you listen it will help. So what do they want apart from you listening It s similar to trying to sell something in the market. We need to ask what do people want But better still create a demand for people that they may not even think of. Leadership today needs to sense people s needs before they even know what they need. Lee receiving the Business Event Ambassador award organised by STB from Singapore Minister in the Prime Minister s Office S Iswaran to bid we needed to get to know the IUMS congresses the board members their philosophy work the ground basically. In an effort to get the bid I worked to get myself elected into the council so I d have inside knowledge. This year I became the president for IUMS (a three-year term). We don t have an HQ we re a virtual kind of association our secretariat is in Netherland the treasurer is in Germany I m in Singapore and we have executive members from all over the world. That you hold the presidency must be a great advantage for the 2017 congress and IUMS Yes as president I can help shape the successful outcome of not just the conference but the association s progress. In recent years for instance we have championed an outreach programme aimed at reaching out to developing countries. The association started out (championing) cutting-edge science but the fact is it is the developing countries that need the most help with microbiology especially infectious diseases. Individual countries work on their specific needs WHO (the World Health Organization) works on health care etc but education is lacking in developing countries. SOFT-SPOKEN BUT HARD-NOSED Lee Yuan Kun is president of the Singapore Society for Microbiology and Biotechnology and the International Union of Microbiological Societies. He was instrumental in attracting the World Congresses of the International Union of Microbiological Societies 2017 a large-scale three-congresses-inone event to Singapore. Lee also contributed to the Singapore MICE 2020 Roadmap a medium-term plan jointly developed by the industry and the Singapore Tourism Board to entrench Singapore s leadership position as a MICE destination. Lee was honoured this year as Business Event Ambassador for championing Singapore s Business Events industry. In the interview Lee often mentioned the need to work the ground understand the different needs of delegates from various regions and create unique experiences for them. Customisation for 3 000 to 6 000 pax We wish him luck but if anyone can pull it off it s Lee. 10 TTGassociations January 2015 Shangri-La Hotel Singapore and TTG Travel Trade Publishing brought association buyers MICE and corporate planners Back to School on November 26 to celebrate the launch of The Pavilion a refurbished old Dutch school perfect for meetings and intimate events and the new TTGassociations magazine. Gallery Belles of Tiffany & Co British American Tobacco Singapore s Peggy Tee and Nancy Lee Singapore Grand Prix s Eric Ravina and Shamini Suppiah with Shangri-La Hotel Singapore s Christopher Kang AIA Singapore s Mary Tay Patricia Ng and Philip Teoh Shangri-La Hotel Singapore s Xavier Pougnard and TTG Travel Trade Publishing s Michael Chow share a toast to celebrate the launch of The Pavilion and TTGassociations Shangri-La Hotel Singapore s Hazel and Li Rong (right) together with their schoolmates Pacific World s Linda Low and Sharon Goi Chevron Philips Phyllis Lim and Sally Leong showing off their new textbook of the year TTGassociations TTGassociations January 2015 11 Tektronix s Helene Tan Gilbarco Veeder-Root s Serene Koh and Hach s Lynn Wong Healthway Medical s Stella Yap & Celine Kee with Shangri-La Hotel Singapore s Jacqueline Lim Spotted the best student and school hottie - James Cook University Singapore s Dolly Lim and Vinabelle Hermoso The three-tower Marina Bay Sands Singapore with its SkyPark Integrated resorts in Asia With accommodation entertainment and function space aplenty all under one roof integrated resorts might just be ideal for most associations. Paige Lee Pei Qi S Puvaneswary Prudence Lui Rosa Ocampo and Greg Lowe round up the region s offerings Guide to Marina Bay Sands SINGAPORE Marina Bay Sands Range of facilities Marina Bay Sands (MBS) houses Singapore s largest hotel which boasts 2 561 rooms a shopping mall and a host of facilities for meetings and events. Apart from the 120 000m2 Sands Expo & Convention Centre that includes South-east Asia s largest ballroom and 250 meeting rooms MBS also offers venues for cocktail receptions and after-dinner parties. These alternative spaces include the Sands SkyPark located 200m above ground celebrity chef restaurants galleries at the ArtScience Museum as well as an expansive theatre foyer at the MasterCard Theatres. Location and accessibility MBS sits along Marina Bay close to Singapore s Central Business District and 20 minutes by car from Singapore Changi Airport which services flights from key cities across the world. How it fits association events MBS extensive and flexible spaces allow events to be tailored to customers needs be it an event for 10 000 pax or a party for 10 pax or a congress plenary for 5 000 pax with 250 breakout sessions. For association events which typically consist of several activities across different venues the resort s experienced hotel team is able to leverage its property-wide offerings to arrange for dine-around tours at the restaurants retail and dining offers at The Shoppes and entry to the ArtScience Museum among others. Additionally post-event leisure programmes such as spa treatments at Banyan Tree Spa and Broadway musicals at the theatre are available as are yearround exclusive meet-and-stay packages. MBS vice president of sales Mike Lee added As we progress into our fifth year of development we continue to explore more opportunities to create sustainable meetings which are growing in importance for our clients. As an ISO 20121-certified property we have the resources to add value to clients specific green goals by providing solutions for a carbon-offset meeting or opportunities to give back to the community through volunteering programmes. Association events hosted in 2014 Royal Australasian College of Surgeons Annual Scientific Congress and the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists and Faculty of Pain Medicine Annual Scientific Meeting May 5-9 (5 000 pax) TFWA Asia Pacific Conference and Exhibition May 13-15 (2 000 pax) Global Marketing Conference July 15-18 (800 pax) 12 TTGassociations January 2015 Resorts World Sentosa Range of facilities Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) comprises six luxurious on-site hotels providing accommodation options such as beach vil- las tree-top lofts and ocean suites. Event venues include Asia s largest column-free ballroom 37 function rooms and 20 varied indoor and outdoor venues. Beyond business RWS is also home to the Universal Studios theme park SEA Aquarium a water park integrated with marine life Singapore s largest destination spa Espa dining outlets from celebrity chef restaurants to authentic hawker fare and world-class entertainment options. Location and accessibility RWS is located on Singapore s Sentosa island. It is a mere 10 minutes from Sin- AS WE PROGRESS INTO OUR FIFTH YEAR OF DEVELOPMENT WE CONTINUE TO EXPLORE MORE OPPORTUNITIES TO CREATE SUSTAINABLE MEETINGS WHICH ARE GROWING IN IMPORTANCE FOR OUR CLIENTS. Mike Lee MBS vice president of sales Guide to gapore s Central Business District and is easily accessible via buses MRT and cars. It is located 30 minutes by car from Singapore Changi Airport which offers flights from key cities in the world. How it fits association events Events at RWS are customisable to meet clients needs. Its MICE specialist team acts as a single point of contact. In terms of accommodation exclusive rates are available for MICE events and special arrangements can be made for check-in. Hospitality desks and welcome receptions can also be arranged at various venues from the Resorts World Convention Centre to after-hours events at the attractions. Venue spaces in RWS are divisible e.g. the Resorts World Ballroom which can hold a mega-dinner can also be divided into nine function halls. Associations can also accomplish more in a shorter time at the resort attending workshops and seminars in the day followed by leisure activities and networking opportunities in the evenings. The MICE team not only ensures the smooth delivery of events from planning stage to execution but also strives to meet clients special requests. For instance it had arranged for custom-made Teochew Kuey (savoury rice cake) to be served at an event held by the Teochew Association as well as transformed a particular space to fit a lavish lion dance performance. Association events hosted in 2014 4th Dynamic Positioning Asia Conference (International Marine Contractors Association) June 23-24 (150 pax) 10th Worldwide Zhongshan Association Convention August 9-10 (1 200 pax) 8th International Teochew Youth Convention September 26-28 (1 500 pax) Resorts World Sentosa inset banquet at SEA Aquarium TTGassociations January 2015 13 Resorts World Sentosa Guide to MALAYSIA Resorts World Genting Range of facilities The resort offers a plethora of facilities including more than 100 F&B and retail outlets a theme park a world-class casino an international convention centre and more than 10 000 budget to five-star rooms. There are also venues for outdoor teambuilding activities cable car rides golf and spa treatments. Location and accessibility The resort at the highland peak is 1 824m above sea level and surrounded by a 130-million-year-old rainforest. It is less than an hour s drive from Kuala Lumpur and is accessible by car coach and even helicopter. How it fits association events A possible venue for opening ceremonies is the Arena of Stars which has seating capacity for 6 000 pax banquet-style. Welcome and gala dinners may be hosted at the pillarless ballroom that can seat 2 000 pax or another smaller ballroom for 800 pax and is supported by 18 meeting rooms. Off-site venues for social events are available as are in-house performers for pre- or post-event entertainment. Associations also have the option of managing room bookings themselves or they may commission the resort s reservation team for the task. Room rates vary depending on seasonality. Additionally the resort can also as- sist associations to apply for subvention support from Malaysia Convention and Exhibition Bureau for entertainment or cultural shows held at its venues. Association event hosted in 2014 Saw Clansman Association October 15-17 (1 000 pax) Resorts World Genting Grand Ballroom THAILAND Laguna Phuket Range of facilities The 404ha mega-complex features three kilometres of beachfront more than 1 200 rooms and villas across seven resorts Angsana Laguna Phuket Best Western Allamanda Laguna Phuket Banyan Tree Phuket Dusit Thani Laguna Phuket Laguna Holiday Club Resort Outrigger Laguna Phuket Beach Resort and Outrigger Laguna Phuket Resort and Villas the 18-hole Laguna Phuket Golf Club four spas and more than 30 bars and restaurants. MICE facilities include more than 20 meeting spaces including Latitude Marquee a 1 000m2 air-conditioned concrete-based tent for 600-750 pax. Angsana offers five boardrooms and four meeting rooms plus a 358m2 ballroom Best Western Allamanda has 36m2 and 100m2 meeting rooms spaces at Banyan Tree can hold 18-80 guests at a time Dusit Thani boasts a flexible 240m2 hall Outrigger Laguna Beach offers a flexible function space for up to 100 pax in addition to the property s gardens while Outrigger s other property provides the option of using four-bedroom villas as an alternative space to host board meetings. Luxury retail outlets are located at Canal Village and Banyan Tree and Angana Gallery. Location and accessibility Located on Bang Tao bay on Phuket s north-western coast the resort is a 20-minute drive from Phuket International Airport which is well serviced by international and regional carriers and features Terminal X which handles all charter flights. How it fits association events The resorts Destination MICE and Corporate Event Team a centralised resource which provides a one-stop service for associations can tailor facilities and activities for associations. Beyond the standalone large-scale Latitude Marquee a number of smaller marquees can be relocated to other areas including the lagoon and beachfront. Quest the 4 000m2 corporate training facility located amid a forest offers a number of off-the-shelf programmes like cooking competitions as well as customised teambuilding and 14 TTGassociations January 2015 incentive activities for groups of all sizes. It also works with Laguna to develop CSR elements for associations. Delegates can enjoy pre- or post-event rounds of golf at Laguna Phuket Golf Club against a backdrop of mountains and lagoons. The clubhouse can also be hired out as an additional events space. Additionally Laguna Tours offers an extensive portfolio of activities and excursions to enhance MICE events both on-site with ATV rides or off-site with visits to the resort s Elephant Park as well as land sea and nightlife tours. Transport is provided in luxury vans and the team is experienced at organising logistics on the scale required by associations. Delegates with accompanying families can enjoy bespoke activities at Camp Quest a safe environment for eight- to 12-year-olds to learn about nature and engage in teambuilding exercises. Laguna Phuket resorts usually provide meetings packages which typically includes a 17 per cent discount on room rates. Association event hosted in 2014 Asia Pacific Knee Society and Annual Meeting of Thai Hip & Knee Society Group (800 pax) PHILIPPINES Resorts World Manila Range of facilities Resorts World Manila (RWM) has three hotels the 172-key six-star Maxims 342-key business hotel Marriott and 712key mid-range Remington Hotel. Marriott Hotel s Manila Ballroom can host up to 990 pax and there are also 10 other meeting rooms. In March 2015 the hotel will launch its Convention Centre for up to 5 000 pax and an additional 228 hotel keys. The vestibule of Newport Performing Arts theatre is large enough to host cocktails for up to 500 pax or a sit-down gala for 200 pax. Its open-air atrium can cater for up to 200 pax. There are also 37 F&B outlets ranging from fast food to fine dining. Apart from gaming facilities entertainment venues include the 1 500-seat Newport Performing Arts theatre which regularly stages musicals and plays as well as singing talent and beauty competitions and three premium cinemas with Dolby 3D technology. For retail therapy Newport Mall offers an array of designer brands. Location and accessibility RWM is located in Newport City Complex a mere shuttle ride away from the Philippines primary gateway Ninoy Aquino International Airport and a few minutes ride to Bonifacio Global City Makati CBD and Manila Bay area. How it fits association events Marriott Hotel Manila through its director for convention sales and her team of certified events managers can help craft successful events for any group size. The team can tailor to clients needs from a personalised menu and wiredfor-business guestrooms to high-tech venues. Through its Custom Web page Marriott can create a complimentary web page where guests can find information about their event and reserve their rooms. It can even make reservations for a specific guest list. The hotel has various special rates and packages including transportation room package a senior discount of at least 15 per cent for 62 years old or older and other promotional rates. Association events hosted in 2014 Marriott Hotel Manila Retirement and Healthcare Summit Asia November 6-9 (250 pax) 29th Confederation of Medical Associations of Asia and Oceania September 24-26 (100 pax) 8th Annual Meeting and Clinical Congress of the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) with the 6th Joint Meeting of AACE and AACE Philippines August 14-16 (444 pax) systems. Other entertainment facilities include a full-service spa fitness centre nightclub and 30 to 40 high-end shops. Location and accessibility Located in Asiana Avenue in the Entertainment City along Manila Bay Solaire is minutes away from the country s main international gateway Ninoy Aquino International Airport. It s also minutes away to the Makati CBD and Bonifacio Global City. How it fits association events Solaire s event sales team can help clients plan for a full association programme from arrival to departure. Group discounts are available and so is the use of facilities such as swimming pool. Several concessions can also be availed of such as free use of LCD projector. Association events hosted in 2014 Philippine Association of Law Schools organisational board meeting and inaugural dinner January 22 Public Relations Society of the Philippines 49th Anvil Awards February 26 (400 pax) Philippine Amalgamated Supermarkets Association Q2 board meeting July 13 (nine pax) Guide to Solaire Resort and Casino Range of facilities Work-in-progress Solaire offers luxurious accommodations of 500 rooms suites and bayside villas plus a 312-key all-suite hotel tower. Meeting facilities include the main ballroom with a flexible pre-function area for 1 000 pax for table seating or 1 300 pax for reception. It can be divided into five parts for smaller events. There are also eight meeting rooms and two boardrooms along with full banquet and catering facilities. The resort has seven F&B outlets with more to open in 2015. Besides ample gaming facilities with an outdoor-themed casino and entertainment bar it has a 1 760-seat state-of-theart theatre. This performance venue boasts high-end AV and production lighting TTGassociations January 2015 15 Guide to Rolling Stones Concert 2014 at Cotai Arena MACAU The Venetian Macao Range of facilities Debuted in 2007 The Venetian MacaoResort-Hotel is Macau s first integrated resort featuring 3 000 suites 111 000m2 convention and meeting facilities as well as a 15 000-seat Cotai Arena designed for world-class sports events and various entertainment. Other facilities include the 1 800-seat luxury Venetian Theatre over 30 restaurants Taivexmalo Day Hospital & Spa an indoor playground Cube and over 300 retailers at Shoppes at Venetian. Outdoor recreational areas include swimming pools and cabanas and a mini-golf course. 28 000m gaming space in two themed gaming areas. Location and accessibility Located in the Cotai Strip both The Venetian Macao and Sands Cotai Central are just a few minutes away via the complimentary Venetian shuttle bus from Macao Taipa Ferry Terminal and Macau International Airport (MIA). By sea Cotai Water Jet operates one-hour sailings every 30 minutes from Hong Kong and Kowloon. It also provides two sailings from Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) and four to the airport. By air MIA has direct flights to Japan South Korea Thailand Singapore Philippines Malaysia Taiwan and many cities in China. A direct airport express ferry from HKIA whisks passengers to Macau within an hour bypassing Hong Kong Customs completely. By land there are two gateways available to and from China the Barrier Gate and the Cotai Frontier Post. Bus services between Macau and major cities in Guangdong Province are readily available. How it fits association events The Cotai Strip houses 9 000 four- and five-star rooms and suites across five international hotel brands all conveniently located under one roof. All rooms are well appointed and range from approximately 40 to 380m2. There are 120 000m2 flexible meeting and exhibition space including 274 breakout rooms outdoor venues for cocktail receptions and a dedicated event manager to assist in logistical matters. Additionally Cotai Travel Macau Discovery tour is a great pre- and post-tour option for associations to explore the rich cultural sights of Macau. The half-day guided tour (am pm) departs from Venetian Macao and Sands Cotai Central and takes groups to historical and modern attractions of Macau such as Macao Tower A-Ma Temple Ruins of St Paul Senado Square and Taipa Houses Museum. Tours are conducted by a licensed tour guide in English and Chinese. Association events hosted in 2014 The Venetian Macao 19th World Congress on Controversies Sands Cotai Central Range of facilities As the expansion of Venetian Macao Sands Cotai Central was inaugurated in April 2012 and is home to three hotel brands Conrad Sheraton and Holiday Inn with 6 000 rooms. In addition there is 111 000m2 retail entertainment and dining facilities as well as meetings and convention space. With over 90 retail outlets Shoppes at Cotai Central joins Shoppes at Venetian and Shoppes at Four Seasons to offer a total of over 600 luxury duty-free stores the most in any one single location in all of Macau. In terms of wellness facilities there are two spas three health clubs and 16 TTGassociations January 2015 Meeting room at Conrad Macao in Obstetrics Gynecology & Infertility February 20-23 (800 pax) 14th Asian and Oceanian Congress of Neurology March 2-5 (1 000 pax) Asian Seed Congress November 1-13 (1 000 pax) Conrad Macao 15th ASEAN Age-Group Chess Championships June 2-13 (600 pax) APAC Rep Meeting of the World Federation of the Deaf August 23-28 (200 pax) 51st General Assembly of the AsiaPacific Broadcasting Union October 22-28 (500 pax) City of Dreams Guide to City of Dreams Macau Range of facilities City of Dreams Macau boasts world-class entertainment options including the world s largest water-based The House of Dancing Water at a purpose-built 2000seat theatre the Taboo at Club Cubic the first and only cabaret experience in Asia and Dragon s Treasure a spectacular audio-visual multimedia experience. For accommodation there is a collection of world-renowned hotel brands including Crowne Plaza Grand Hyatt and Hard Rock. F&B includes Michelinstarred restaurants The Tasting Room (contemporary French) and Jade Dragon (Chinese). Other draws include a new ultrachic dining and entertainment district SOHO designer-brand luxury shopping and spacious and flexible meeting and banquet facilities including the colossal pillarless Grand Ballroom at Grand Hyatt Macau that can cater for up to 1 200 guests. Location and accessibility Located in the heart of Cotai City of Dreams Macau is a 10-minute ride from the Macau International Airport which connects with major cities in China and around the region and from Taipa Temporary Ferry Terminal. It is also just five minutes from the Hengqin border to China and 20 minutes from the Gongbei border gate via City of Dreams Lucky Express shuttle bus. In addition complimentary shuttle services are provided to and from major tourist areas in Macau including the central district of the Macau Peninsula and Taipa where the city s renowned cultural heritage and Portuguese-style architecture can be appreciated. How it fits association events Grand Hyatt Macau offers 8 000m2 versatile event venues for meetings workshops dinners and receptions of between 50 and 1 200 people. Its 1 911m2 Grand Ballroom features a Reception Foyer ideal for pre-event cocktails or exhibitions while Sal o do Teatro the first ballroom in Macau boasts a theatrestyle show kitchen. All venues occupy the second floor with adjoining breakout areas. Meanwhile the hotel s dedicated events team ensures events are meticulously planned and delivered. Each individual meeting or function is managed from start to finish by an experi- enced co-ordinator. The catering team prepares creative tailormade menus Choose Your Own Menu & Venue option gives event organisers complete freedom to customise their ideal menus from a variety of international cuisines and to choose from several unique dining venues. For memorable gala dinners or receptions there is a selection of banquet and party themes including Shanghai 1930s Opulence Ball and Modern & Chic. The 625m2 Outdoor Marquee at the pool terrace is one of Macau s most outstanding alfresco venues and is especially popular for welcome receptions and Portuguese- style banquets. For VIP delegates the Grand Club on the 37th floor of Grand Club Tower provides an exclusive space to meet and dine. Four stylishly appointed private dining rooms host intimate dinners for eight to 12 guests overlooking the Cotai skyline. The events team can also arrange exciting leisure programmes for delegates including local sightseeing teambuilding activities and evening entertainment programmes. Association events hosted in 2014 Medical Association March 15 (130 pax) Macau Deaf Association 20th Anniversary August 26 (600 pax) TTGassociations January 2015 17 Case study 99 Annual Kiwanis International Convention th Chiba Convention Bureau steps in to help resolve communication challenges between the organiser and local partners and leverages the event for destination promotion discovers S Puvaneswary he gathering of the world s third largest volunteer social service organisation in Chiba Japan this July was especially meaningful to both the organiser and the destination. The 99th Annual Kiwanis International Convention took place during the 50th anniversary of Kiwanis Asia Pacific and the 50th anniversary of Kiwanis Club of Tokyo the first Kiwanis Club to be established in Asia in 1964. The five-day convention gathered 2 000 international participants from 40 countries. Young volunteers were welcomed to help with the event in line with the organisation s motto Serving the children of the world. Chiba Convention Bureau helped facilitated this aspect by connecting Kiwanis International with international exchange volunteers and students from several high schools and colleges in the city. These young volunteers acted as interpreters and guides to convention guests and even performed in Japanese cultural programmes. For Chiba glory came in the T Event 99th Annual Kiwanis International Convention Organiser Kiwanis International Date July 16-30 2014 18 TTGassociations January 2015 TTGassociations April 2014 18 Venue Makuhari Messe and surrounding hotels No. of attendees 3 000 pax from 40 countries Challenge Communication difficulties between the meeting planner and Japanese partners due to language differences form of its ability to beat fellow convention cities Sydney Hong Kong Jeju and Singapore in the bid for the hosting rights to the 99th Annual Kiwanis International Convention. According to Yumiko Iwata deputy director conventions at Chiba Convention Bureau Chiba was chosen because of its good international air links through Narita and Haneda airports the two major gateways to Japan as well as the availability of convenient public transportation to Tokyo some 30 minutes away. Chiba also won the hearts of decision-makers at Kiwanis International with its convenient infrastructure. The event venue Makuhari Messe is surrounded by 2 800 hotel rooms within walking distance. Iwata said Sarah Hayden the meeting planner at Kiwanis International told us this was the first time that they did not need to shuttle people between the hotels and the convention centre. Hosting the event also presented an invaluable opportunity for Chiba to showcase its scenery shopping options restaurants and attractions. The execution of the convention was not without challenges though. Communications between the Indianapolis-based meeting planner and Japanese partners such as subcontractors volunteer groups and local authorities were quite challenging due to language barriers. Iwata explained The subcontractors and local authorities tried to communicate directly with the meeting planner but often it was not smooth because of language (differences) and replies were not timely. To resolve this hitch Chiba Convention Bureau organised weekly conferences over Skype in its office allowing Japanese suppliers and volunteers to interact with the meeting planner. Questions were kept simple and I myself helped to facilitate communications said Iwata. The bureau also kept its Japanese counterparts updated with the latest information pertaining to security matters during the convention. Commenting on her experience working with the locals in Chiba Hayden said The people here have been outstanding very helpful and friendly and are just wonderful to work with. Iwata added that the wealth of experience gained from hosting this convention will come in useful when Chiba welcomes guests from abroad (during) the Olympic and Paralympic games in Tokyo in 2020 . Hong Kong boasts well-equipped hotel venues suitable for association congresses Hong Kong The hotels proposition The ability to cater to varying budgets and event sizes is making hotels the choice of associations but PCOs say more personalised services and flexibility will differentiate them further from the convention centres. Prudence Lui reports hile large-scale events are staged at convention centres the city s diverse hotel offerings are attracting association meetings of varying budgets. Some hotels have even successfully built rapport with local and international associations. The Mira Hong Kong for instance said it has gained a lot of favour with them. Its director of sales and marketing Eva Kwan said Indeed the association meetings segment is a key MICE component and definitely a lucrative one as the groups are likely to come with a volume of 200 attendees or more. However it s quite a usual practice for many associations to change destinations for their event every year. It is thus crucial for a hotel to work on a targeted association and its upcoming series with at least nine months or more booking lead time. W On the other side of Victoria Harbour Island Shangri-La hosts mainly local association lunch meetings or banquets. Director of events management Jacqueline Chan said We think the business will continue in the same way in future. We usually show flexibility in pricing by tailoring the lunch package to their needs and budget. We have several nonprofit organisations hosting fund-raising charity dinners for example. Location plays a role. The Sha Tin district in the New Territories is a cradle for various sports associations aided with government funds. Courtyard by Marriott in Sha Tin receives traffic from members of squash golf football rugby and canoeing associations. The hotel s director of marketing Chris Wong said activities such as meetings sports training and even exchanges with overseas sportsmen are common. Said Wong Association meetings are a niche segment characterised by requests like more twin-bed rooms and use of the swimming pool and gym. Sports accounts for about 10 per cent of traffic depending on the season. The booking lead time is longer about three to six months. The hotel also enjoys medical meetings which accounts for 30 to 40 per cent of its associations business. They come from a variety of sources including the likes of the Chinese University of Hong Kong the Prince of Wales Hospital and the Hospital Authority situated in Sha Tin. Wong added There is a wide range of related activities with these meetings such as demonstrations on how to use medical equipment. China is a big market with study groups comprising doctors TTGassociations January 2015 19 who usually stay for one week. Regal Airport Hotel meanwhile said it has gained the interest of the aviation IT and religious association meetings. The booking lead time is around six to 12 months. Area general manager (Hong Kong) of Regal Hotels International and general manager of the Regal Airport Hotel Meeting & Conference Centre John Girard said Managing and planning of a large group of association delegates is always a challenge. For some countries air connectivity and visa regulations continue to impact the growth of the MICE sector and of associations. The MICE business also faces keen competition from the region. Budget constraint remains one of the key issues with association meetings but hotels strive to help them cope. For instance The Mira Hong Kong offers flexible venue options regardless of group size and budget. It also offers the benefits associated with its MICE product such as the provision of handy smartphones with free IDD calls and Wi-Fi throughout the city as well as upgrading VIPs to its premium designer Specialty Suites. It works very closely with organisers and believes bespoke deliverables are more effective in adding value to events. But International Conference Consultants believes hotels can do better and offer more flexibility when it comes to the financial commitment required for blocking rooms and meeting facilities. The PCO s director Katerina Tam said Hotels need to provide more personalised services for associations so that they can experience the advantages of holding their meetings at hotels over convention centres. Doris Lam general manager of Momentous Asia which has staged meetings in hotels agreed. She said Flexibility in space options and in the minimum guarantee of number of attendees are the key to more effective meeting packages. Most conference organisers would prefer a grand venue for their opening. However if the budget is tight they may accept having the opening at a ballroom Hong Kong Sha Tin at night The district is a cradle for various sports associations but move the plenary sessions to nonballroom venues to save costs. Most hotels offer meeting packages and it will help if they can be flexible in terms of the minimum-pax guarantee. The Hong Kong Automobile Association has meeting rooms at its office but still organises two to three events mostly international meetings seminars for members and press conferences at hotels every year. The association makes bookings a month ahead and one criterion for its choice of venues is sufficient parking space given the nature of the association and members wish to drive. Location is also key and both Tsim Sha Tsui and Causeway Bay are popular picks. Still it may consider alternatives like a university venue provided these alternatives can offer the level of service and banquet performance which are comparable to a hotel. The Travel Industry Council hosts its AGM in a hotel annually. Its executive director Joseph Tung said that the council uses hotels for some seminars too but it depends on the size of the group. Our AGM draws 600 to 700 attendees so hotel venues are suitable and the booking lead time is six months in advance. But the bottomline is of course the budget. We ll scout around get quotes then wait for our board to agree to the best hotel offer. Other venue alternatives such as small meeting halls inside commercial buildings also fit our small meetings. We have tried university halls but they are always fully booked lamented Tung. At press time Meetings and Exhibitions Hong Kong has supported more than 530 MICE events in Hong Kong this year. Among the major association meetings congresses held included Jeunesse 8th Global University Incentive Event (6 500 pax) International Trademark Association 2014 Annual Meeting Confer (8 500 pax) and International Conference on Emergency Medicine (2 300 pax). 20 TTGassociations January 2015 However it s quite a usual practice for many associations to change destinations for their event every year. It is thus crucial for a hotel to work on a targeted association and its upcoming series with at least nine months or more booking lead time. Eva Kwan Director of sales and marketing The Mira Hong Kong Need to know 1 Consider a variety of venues Depending on the scale of the meetings there are various hotel venues which can cater effectively for meetings of up to 300 pax so they are a good alternative if the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre for instance is booked out. While convention centres have space to offer a lot of breakout rooms and can cater for a larger number of participants hotels can possibly offer more personalised services and more exclusive venues. 2 Get help for the nitty-gritty Appoint a good local PCO who can take care of such details as co-ordinating with the printer for production of collateral materials sourcing and arranging for the production of meeting participants souvenir items etc. They should have good contacts and solid logistical experiences within the destination. Roping them in may help to save time and cost. 3 Choose from activities aplenty There are plenty of activities in Hong Kong conducted by experienced personnel who are experts at designing sessions to build rapport or at providing cultural experiences that will wow congress delegates long after the event is over. 4 Be in the know The Hong Kong Tourism Board has rolled out a Meetings & Incentives Specialist programme a one-stop online educational tool that informs organisers including those from associations of the latest trends in Hong Kong s MICE industry. Hong Kong Pre Post Attractions within attraction Ngong Ping 360 rolled out new attractions in August. Stage 360 offers an unprecedented performance with a line-up including an array of kungfu stunts seen in Hong Kong action movies. Motion 360 features a 5D movie that showcases the stunning natural scenery and cultural heritage of Lantau Island. Contact Tel (852) 2368-7111 E-mail sales grayline.com.hk Experience the traditional life A four-hour traditional lifestyle tour is available beginning with a 60-minute slow-motion tai-chi lesson along Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront followed by a visit to Lantau Link View Point to learn how fengshui influences the city s prosperity. The journey ends up at a local teahouse for a tea-making demonstration and an etiquette session. Contact (852) 2369-9628 info skybird.com.hk A new visual treat Organised by the Hong Kong Tourism Board a new 3D projection mapping show can be enjoyed for free. Using the fa ade of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre and the Clock Tower in Tsim Sha Tsui the 15-minute show combines sound light and music and is themed around Hong Kong as a cosmopolitan city while showcasing its vibrancy. It is shown four times per evening (at 20.30 21.00 21.30 and 22.00) during three festive periods. The next session is scheduled from February 14 to March 5 2015 (except 19 February) for Chinese New Year. Contact www.DiscoverHongKong.com Do it in style View the Symphony of Lights a spectacular light and sound show staged nightly at 20.00 at Victoria Harbour in style on board the yacht Aqualuna. Dinner then follows with a 10-course traditional northern Chinese meal at Hutong in Tsim Sha Tsui. The 45-minute cruise departs at 19.30 from Tsim Sha Tsui and 19.45 from Central. Contact (852) 2116-8821 www.aqualuna.com.hk TTGassociations January 2015 21 Sentosa can be accessed via a scenic cable car ride from the main island of Singapore Singapore Sentosa shines further The attraction may be off the shores of the Lion City but it is hardly far from the MICE scene having drawn association events as a one-stop destination with new products as well as rejuvenated ones. Paige Lee Pei Qi reports S 22 TTGassociations January 2015 entosa long known among families and leisure travellers for its sun sand and sea has in recent years evolved to become a onestop destination for MICE events including association meetings and congresses. Today the rejuvenated resort island houses not only the integrated Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) but also many new hotels and restaurants. Latest hotel additions include W Singapore Sentosa Cove along with improvements made to existing meeting facilities in hotels like Shangri-La s Rasa Sentosa Resort and The Singapore Resort & Spa Sentosa. The island is now home to 14 hotels over 30 attractions and more than 100 F&B and retail outlets. RWS alone houses six hotels convention and meeting spaces the Universal Studios Singapore theme park and a wide range of quality F&B entertainment and retail outlets. The 49ha mega property boasts capacity for 35 000 guests at any one time. Its event spaces include the Resorts World Convention Centre which offers 26 function rooms and one of Asia s largest column-free ballrooms with seating capacity for 7 300 people. Distinguishing association meetings and congresses from the regular MICE events Clement Ng a spokesperson at RWS said Association events tend to be more unique as they require a higher level of customisation. Organisers also tend to prefer a self-contained destination with accommodation business F&B and leisure facilities all under one roof. Unlike leisure travellers who have the luxury of more time Ng said congress attendees are always seeking to make the best of their limited time in a destination. With event duration ranging from one to three days most networking events and after-hours social events are held within RWS. Clients enjoy the advantage of getting more (things) accomplished within a shorter time with different venues and event programming housed in a single destination he explained adding that one of the more popular RWS hotels for delegates is the 364-key Hard Rock Hotel Singapore which is connected directly to Resorts World Convention Centre and provides the greatest convenience for delegates when they move between hotel rooms and conferences and meet- Singapore W Singapore Sentosa Cove Association events tend to be more unique as they require a higher level of customisation. Organisers also tend to prefer a self-contained destination with accommodation business F&B and leisure facilities all under one roof. Clement Ng Spokesperson Resorts World Sentosa ings while offering leisure activities at the same time. He added Event venues in RWS are varied and flexible and can be configured to suit different needs such as the Resorts World Ballroom which can be divided into nine function halls or combined into a single space for a megadinner. Associations can also accomplish more in a shorter time at our integrated resort a one-stop shop catering to workshops and seminars in the day as well as post-meeting leisure and networking activities in the evenings. He said the events team also strive to meet special requests that clients may have. For instance it scouted for and provided custom-made Teochew Kuay a savoury snack item unique to the dialect group for the Teochew Association s event. The number of association meetings and congresses has grown in tandem with events held in RWS since it opened in 2010 increasing by more than 30 per cent he shared. In 2013 more than 9 500 events were hosted here welcoming over two million MICE visitors. Sentosa Leisure Management senior assistant director for international and corporate sales Steven Chung said With an array of leisure hospitality and entertainment features and facilities the island is best suited to provide bespoke packages to any meetings group for an integrated and well-rounded holiday experience. From conventional hotel meeting rooms that offer many amenities tastefully decorated halls in a historical building to the outdoors on sandy beaches Sentosa has the appropriate meeting facilities for everyone. Indeed Sentosa s longest and broadest beachfront Siloso Beach is graced with an indoor event hall Sapphire Pavilion which offers an unobstructed oceanfront view. Touted as the ideal locale in Sentosa to stage any major event it can contain 1 000 guests in a banquet setting or 1 500 for a standing reception. Then over at the far eastern end of the island Tanjong Beach boasts the largest capacity to host an event on its own. It can accommodate 2 650 people for a cocktail reception or 1 550 for a banquet. Additionally the Sentosa Pavilion Sentosa Golf Club offers a cosier setting for smaller association events. This airconditioned glass pavilion which can fit 250 people for a standing reception is best suited for indoor private meetings exclusive receptions and galas. Meanwhile unintimidated by rising competition on the island Shangri-La s Rasa Sentosa Resort & Spa in Singapore last year opened a new standalone seafront event centre. Named Atmosphere by the Sea the venue measures 322m2 indoors and comes with a 120m2 covered terrace and an adjoining timber deck of 120m2. These spaces are able to accommodate up to 150 guests for a seated function. Events that require even more space can take up the lush sprawling lawn which can accommodate an additional 100 guests or more for a standing cocktail reception. And if associations just can t get enough of the island s offerings there is an alternative a mere short cable car ride away from Sentosa. Faber Peak Singapore is nestled in the relaxing surrounds of a rainforest at the top of Mount Faber. The Ballroom which opens up to magnificent views of the harbour can fit 300 people in a theatre setting and features floor-to-ceiling glass windows. The Private Dining Room situated at the highest point of Faber Peak can accommodate 100 people for a cocktail reception overlooking the city s skyline. TTGassociations January 2015 23 Need to know Singapore 1 Choose unique venues While Singapore has been known for its top convention facilities event planners can explore unorthodox venues for extraordinary expriences such as the Singapore Sports Hub. 2 Pull the tea In food paradise Singapore planners may want to inject some local flavours into their event s food offerings and let delegates try something refreshing how about hiring a teh tarik master to pull a cup of tea on-site for delegates for instance 3 Connect about connection Even though complimentary Wi-Fi is viewed as a given by many today not all hotels provide that in the rooms and premises. Planners should inform guests in advance about this potential bugbear. 4 Rush not clash not It is advisable to check the Singapore Tourism Board website and see what other events will be held in the city before the event planning. Popular events such as the F1 Grand Prix may hike rates and limit room availability. Pre Post Cosy up to the stars It is lights camera and action at the newly-opened Madame Tussauds Singapore on Sentosa Island. Delegates can join the wax-figurine stars on set to recreate some of the most iconic scenes in film history choosing from classic stars such as Marilyn Monroe and Audrey Hepburn Bollywood personalities such as Madhuri Dixit and Amitabh or Hong Kong s martial arts expert Bruce Lee. The first-ever Madame Tussauds boat ride the Spirit of Singapore will take delegates through a dreamy tropical garden. Contact (65) 6715-4000 Website http madametussauds.com Singapore Trick and treat for the eyes The Trick Eye Museum Singapore at Resorts World Sentosa opened in June as the first overseas branch of South Korea s popular attraction of the same name. Home to 90 optical illusions and amazing sculptures housed within a 800m2 space the museum invites visitors to participate in fantastical feats and to dive into new worlds from levitation to skydiving without the altophobia to transforming into a mermaid. Ticket prices start from S 20 (US 15) for children and senior citizens and S 25 for adults. Contact (65) 6577-8888 Website http www.rwsentosa.com language en-US Homepage Attractions TrickeyeMuseum Anyone can be a pilot Located at the Singapore Flyer Flight Experience is a simulator that fully replicates a commercial jet. It offers a fully immersive experience allowing participants to take to the skies controlling a Boeing 737-800 in an enclosed cockpit with full functioning avionics and photorealistic visuals. The simulator features a 180-degree wraparound screen which projects stunningly accurate visuals of scenery and terrain. Think flying into Paris in semi-darkness at dusk or viewing picturesque Rome from the air among other breathtaking sights. Contact (65) 6339-2737 Website http flightexperience.com.sg 24 TTGassociations January 2015 Watch a show by the beach Sentosa island s latest multimedia show Wings of Time promises to wow with a range of effects from robotic water fountains to pyrotechnics. It tells the tale of two teenagers Rachel and Felix who help a bird-like creature Shahbaz find its way home through time and space. Shows run daily at 19.40 and 20.40 along Siloso Beach. Premium seats are priced at S 23 (US 17.50) while standard seats cost S 18 (S 15 for local residents). Contact (65) 6736-8672 Website http wingsoftime.com.sg Busy Tokyo charms with options of serene unique venues that are perfect for association gatherings Happo-en Japanese garden pictured here Japan JNTO Konnichiwa Tokyo The Japanese capital makes a natural choice for international association events for many reasons including quality infrastructure vibrant business sectors and a government eager to win over business event planners. Karen Yue discovers t should come with little surprise that Tokyo being the capital city of Japan and a hive of commercial activities is ranked by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) as the top Japanese destination for international association meetings. According to ICCA s recent ranking of top cities worldwide for association meetings published mid-2014 Tokyo takes 26th spot for having hosted 79 events in 2013. The next Japanese city on the global chart is Kyoto coming in at a far 55th position. In terms of ranking by country Japan takes seventh spot for having hosted 342 meetings in 2013 surpassed only by western peers the US Germany Spain France the UK and Italy. Kazuko Toda director of Business Events Team with the Tokyo Convention & Visitors Bureau (TCVB) offers several reasons for Tokyo s popularity with association event planners looking to reach into Japan. Aside from the fact that Tokyo is the I capital of Japan and the city is served by two international airports that provide great access to international guests it has strength in both industrial and academic aspects said Toda adding that up to 45 Fortune Global 500 companies have their headquarters in Tokyo. She said Japan is well recognised for its industrial strength and innovation in particular robotics infrastructure energy and environment which are sectors Tokyo is strong in. Because of this strength Tokyo offers opportunities to attract more exhibitors and delegates to meetings hosted in the city. Also Tokyo is home to over 130 universities and countless R&B centres. This gives associations a wide choice of speakers and panelists for building attractive meeting programmes. Another selling point Tokyo offers according to Toda is the large membership of Japanese associations which helps to feed strong local attendance at global meetings held in the city. Infrastructure-wise Tokyo offers plenty of venues to support business events as well as hotel accommodation 96 000 guestrooms in central Tokyo alone that can meet the needs of travellers with different budgets. According to TCVB the most popular venue for association gatherings is the Tokyo International Forum the largest conference centre in central Tokyo. Conveniently located between the Marunouchi business district and the popular Ginza shopping dining area and a five-minute walk from Tokyo Station Tokyo International Forum offers eight venues ranging from multi-level theatres to flat open event spaces. The largest theatre can seat 5 012 delegates. Etsuko Sato spokesperson of Tokyo International Forum said the venue gets more national association meetings than international ones and efforts are being made to grow the latter segment. Association events are very important to us and our sales department reaches out to key decision-makers in domestic chapters and head offices of global asso- TTGassociations January 2015 25 ciations hosts site inspections for planners and participates in city promotion activities led by TCVB Sato explained. Prominent association events held at the Tokyo International Forum last year included the World Ophthalmology Congress in April the Annual Conference of the International Bar Association in October and the 78th IEC General Meeting in November. This year it will welcome the UIC 9th World Congress on High Speed Rail in July. A wide selection of unique venues is available in the capital too. The 55 000pax Tokyo Dome stadium for example makes a memorable venue for large-scale opening receptions. Association meeting planners can also deliver a tasteful networking function at the Meguro Gajoen once a bathhouse in the Edo period. This venue comprises 25 meeting rooms each with a unique decor and character and a picturesque Japanese garden. Happo-en a picturesque venue of traditionally styled buildings set in a Japanese garden dating back nearly 400 years is popular for corporate events noted Toda. It offers 14 banquet halls with flexible room layouts and the Hakuho-kan annex which houses a 240m2 banquet hall with tatami flooring. Its outdoor spaces are good for cocktail receptions. For now Happo-en is still rarely used for association gatherings. Its event and convention director Toshiro Ishiyama said the venue gets only two to three enquiries from associations each year. Last year Happo-en hosted the closing party of the Annual Conference of the International Bar Association. Meanwhile event-friendly hardware in the capital continues to evolve offering association meeting planners fresh venue and accommodation options. Located in a special zone earmarked by the Tokyo government the 52-storey Toranomon Hills is a new mixed-use building that comprises offices retail outlets and residences. The Toranomon Hills Forum conference venue opened in July while the 164-room Andaz Tokyo hotel welcomed its first guests in June and offers flexible event and meeting space. By 2018 Toranomon Hills will offer Japan Tokyo is perceived as an expensive destination but...it offers value for money. Clients who have held their events here appreciate the well-organised infrastructure efficient transportation system as well as the cleanliness and safety of the town. Shinichi Koshikawa Director of business development The Westin Tokyo even more hotels such as AMAN Tokyo Hoshinoya Tokyo The Grand Prince Hotel Akasaka and Daiwa Royal Hotel. Although corporate meetings provide the main source of business arrivals to Tokyo Toda told TTGassociations that TCVB s main focus has long been association meetings . In 2014 TCVB s chairman Kiyofumi Kamijo announced the bureau s new brand Business Events Tokyo and shared that the metropolitan government has made a commitment to attract more business events over the next five years. These developments join the bureau s entry into the BestCities Global Alliance in April 2014. The alliance is made up of convention bureaus of premier meeting destinations such as Berlin Copenhagen and Melbourne and seeks to deliver the world s best service experience for international meeting planners. Toda said Joining the alliance is the biggest step we took to strengthen our position in the association meetings market. We hope to leverage the BestCities branding and promotion marketing opportunities in the years to come. Also since we are able to acquire more business information and knowledge through the Partner Cities programme we hope to get (in depth) contact with meeting planners around the world. The bureau has also created a new tagline Tokyo where success is measured by quality to reinforce the message that Tokyo offers a high level of service and hospitality despite its reputation for being a pricey destination when compared to its Asian neighbours. Tokyo is seen as pricey Toda admit- Tokyo is home to over 130 universities and countless R&D centres. This gives associations a wide choice of speakers and panelists for building attractive meeting programmes. Kazuko Toda Director of Business Events Team Tokyo Convention & Visitors Bureau (TCVB) ted. However the weakening yen is making it more affordable to many meeting planners. She added that associations that had hosted meetings in Tokyo had only good things to say. We received positive feedback from the secretary general of the International Ornithological Union who said everything was well organised and professional in Tokyo. Also in a delegate survey we did during the World Ophthalmology Congress 89 per cent of overseas attendees said they would visit Tokyo again she said. Shinichi Koshikawa director of business development with The Westin Tokyo too sees Tokyo as a value-formoney meetings destination. Tokyo is perceived as an expensive destination but in actual fact it offers value for money. Clients who have held their events here appreciate the well-organised infrastructure efficient transportation system as well as the cleanliness and safety of the town he said. The Westin Tokyo which hosted 22 association meetings and banquets in 2013 13 of which were national gatherings has seen rising interest from overseas clients as a result of the depreciating yen increased international flight connections at Haneda Airport and relaxed visa restrictions on Asian travellers. We expect to have more international (events) leading up to the Olympic Games in 2020 said Koshikawa. To make Tokyo even more financially viable for budget-conscious association meeting planners the Tokyo Metropolitan Government offers monetary support to international meetings. The extent of support is based on the number of visitor nights and can cover half of the venue rental fee and or travel costs of overseas delegates. Tokyo also provides nonfinancial assistance such as half-day city tours Japanese cultural performances information desks and welcome banners and flags. Going forward into 2015 TCVB intends to continue its destination promotion efforts at tradeshows and through online channels targeting overseas planners and aims to improve its rankings on the highly regarded global charts of ICCA and the Union of International Associations. 26 TTGassociations January 2015 Need to know Japan 1 Watch the high seasons The best time to visit Tokyo is from May to early June and from October to November as the temperature is moderate and humidity is low. However these are also the peak seasons for meetings and events so bookings must be made well in advance for hotel rooms and venues. 2 Reliable rail Some 40 million people travel by rail in Tokyo daily. The city s public transportation is known for its extensive network punctual- ity and cleanliness. Getting around is easy as directional signage at all stations are available in English Korean and Mandarin. 3 There s something for every belly There are more than 100 000 restaurants in Tokyo and there is something to suit any budget. Meeting delegates can dig into a cheap and quick bowl of ramen at a train station or enjoy a beautifully plated kaiseki meal in a historical restaurant. World cuisine and authentic Japanese dishes are easily available. It is also interesting to note that Tokyo has the most Michelin-star restaurants in the world. 4 Great shopping opportunities Shopping in Japan has become much more fun since October 1 when a new taxfree system was implemented for international visitors. The new system covers not only home electrical appliances handbags and apparel but also consumables such as F&B medicine and cosmetics. Travellers can enjoy tax-free purchases at shops displaying the tax-free logo. Pre Post Enjoy a traditional meal in the company of geisha A dinner function with entertainment provided by elegant geisha is an experience hard to come by in modern Japan but experienced destination management companies in the country will be able to whip up some magic. Opportunities are aplenty in Tokyo s Mukojima a historical hanamachi district that boasts 16 traditional ryotei (luxurious traditional Japanese restaurant) and a community of at least 120 geisha. A party in one of Mukojima s ryotei will see your guests partake in an exquisite kaiseki meal with geisha showcasing their talents in dance and music. Contact businessevents tcvb.or.jp Dig into a fine sushi meal Helmed by Jiro Ono recognised by Guinness World Records to be the oldest living Michelin three-star chef Sukiyabashi Jiro in Tokyo s Ginza is known for serving up top quality sushi which costs 30 000 (US 278) and up per set. It counts celebrities and politicians among its patrons and in 2014 it welcomed US president Barack Obama. Securing a seat at this revered restaurant can be a challenge though as reservations are possible only by phone. Contact Tel (81-3) 3535-3600 Take a peek into space Tokyo s latest attraction is the Space Museum TeNQ which opened in Tokyo Dome City this July. The museum comprises nine areas including the Starting Room where the wonders of the universe are told using high-tech projection mapping techniques and the Theater Sora where visitors can marvel at real-life footage of the Earth as seen from the International Space Station. Other exhibits include an interactive game area and a lab for an industry-academia collaborative research project. Contact www.tokyo-dome.co.jp tenq Retreat into Tokyo s oldest house of worship Senso-ji Temple in Asakusa is the oldest temple in Tokyo built in the seventh century. It is a sprawling complex of several halls and magnificent gates such as the Kaminarimon Gate Five-storied Pagoda Yogodo Hall and Bentendo Hall. The Main Hall with its dramatic sloping roof houses the statue of the revered Bodhisattva Kannon. A great time to visit Senso-ji Temple is from sunset till 23.00 when the main structures are illuminated most enchantingly. As one of the star attractions in the Japanese capital the temple draws more than 30 million visitors annually. Contact www.senso-ji.jp Y.Shimizu JNTO Best Western opens in Edogawa Best Western International s second hotel in Tokyo has thrown open its doors to guests offering affordable and convenient access to the commercial district and popular attractions such as Tokyo SkyTree. The 184-room Best Western Tokyo Nishikasai is located in Tokyo s Edogawa Ward minutes from the Nishi-kasai Station on the Tokyo Metro Tozai Line. Guests can enjoy free Wi-Fi a restaurant serving Japanese and international fare and meeting space for up to 80 pax. Contact www.bestwestern.com TTGassociations January 2015 27 Have a feast fit for a sumo It is hardly surprising that Kappo Yoshiba restaurant s specialty dish is chanko or sumo wrestlers stew considering how the venue used to be a sumo stable. Today the sumo ring dohyo still stands in the centre of the restaurant offering diners a ringside atmosphere. Diners can enjoy a hearty serving of the protein-rich stew for lunch and dinner. Kappo Yoshiba can seat 250 guests altogether and the second floor comprising five connecting rooms can be booked out. Contact (81-3) 3623-4480 How to Designing meetings for better delegate experience In the face of changing attitudes towards meetings and delegate expectations JPdL International points out three ways to boost the value of events today Meetings and conferences are changing. Factors such as attendee demographics and increased competitiveness among events mean that the old formula for a successful event is in need of a major update. Today s delegates want to feel involved and important and it s crucial to plan your meetings around these two needs. But how Here are three key meeting design elements that will boost the value of your event in the 21st century Technology Events that incorporate new technology into their programmes keep attendees engaged and fascinated. An integrated and customised mobile app for your delegates for instance is quickly becoming a standard at major events. By synchronising marked sessions into their schedules or downloading abstracts directly to their devices attendees value mobile apps for retrieving the information they need when and where they want it. Space set-up The way a room is set up and designed says a lot about a conference and how its organisers are in tune with attendees learning preferences. Mixing up the seating gives everyone an option whether it is to network with peers at a roundtable or to spend some alone time in the theatre-style area. An even better way of changing the status quo is organising a mobile meeting. Take attendees on the road and offer them a new and exciting learning experience. As a lead-up to the Professional Convention Management Assocation s Convening Leaders event in Boston last January JPdL International gathered 20 industry individuals on a motor coach bus for the trip down providing accredited educational sessions networking and food and beverage along the way. 28 TTGassociations July 2014 TTGassociations April 2014 28 Conference Social Responsibility the new CSR You may have heard of Corporate Social Responsibility but doing good is not only for businesses. These days more conference organisers are finding ways to leverage their events to reach out to the local community. As a bonus attendees feel the reward of helping others thus valuing your event even more. Find a local cause in your conference s host city that is relevant to your attendees and get them involved. They will feel good about contributing to something important. By incorporating the above-mentioned elements your conference will be well on its way to putting attendees first getting them involved making them feel important and in the process ensuring your conference relevance and success into the future. JPdL International is one of Canada s leading professional congress organisers with offices across Ontario and Quebec. For the last 35 years its meeting professionals have been at the helm of some of the world s most prestigious events including the World Parkinson Congress and the World Conservation Congress. The company is a member of the World PCO Alliance IAPCO and ICCA. The World PCO Alliance helps associations organise effective meetings worldwide. Representing 21 front-runner PCOs in six continents this group aims to capitalise on the efficiency of consolidating conference and event services within one network. By sharing resources knowledge technology training and best practices the alliance is associations one-stop solution for international meetings and conferences. The alliance is led by president Per Ankaer of ICS International Conference Services Denmark and vice president Kitty Wong of K&A International Taiwan. Your Vote Defines Our Industry s Excellence Soaring into our auspicious 8th year TTG China Travel Awards continues to applaud outstanding travel trade organisations in the Greater China region who have risen above the competition and delivered beyond expectations. Cast your vote for your favourite travel trade organisations that have impressed you with their relentless efforts Vote Now At www.ttgchina.com ttg-awards Voting Period 18 December 2014 till 18 February 2015 An Event by Organised by TTG Travel Trade Publishing is a business group of TTG Asia Media Supported by TTG-BTmice China TTG Asia TTG India TTGmice TTG Asia Luxury and TTGassociation Asia-Pacific s Intelligent Business Events Resource Winner of 4 PATA Gold Awards Travel Journalism - Business Article 2009 2011 2013 & 2014 July 2014 Okinawa steps up efforts to court MICE New Zealand awakens Greenview s Eric Ricaute talks about sustainable exhibitions Technology power-up spotlights a selection of convention centres in Asia that have recently invested in technology improvements to enhance event delivery and delegate experience mice July p00 cover KY.indd 1 PPS 1140 09 2012(022844) 22 8 14 5 38 pm Breathing Life to Your Perspectives on Asia-Pacific s Business Events Connecting 28 700 industry professionals across the region and beyond with our multi-dimensional channels ttgmice.com TTGmice e-Weekly TTGmice DIGITAL Subscribe now at ttgmice.com subscribe.php A Business Group of TTG Asia Media 1 Science Park Road 04-07 The Capricorn Singapore Science Park II Singapore 117528 Tel 65 6395 7575 Fax 65 6536 0896 www.ttgasiamedia.com