AccessMyLibrary provides FREE access to millions of articles from top publications available through your library.
The age-old concerns about purpose-built conference centres lacking atmosphere and facilities are being addressed by a new wave of developments and refurbs. Anna Bowden reports.
Having spent the past few years enjoying an extreme makeover, purpose-built venues - once seen as the ugly sisters of the conferencing industry - are in the ascendancy. Criticised for poor catering standards and drab interiors, in the face of stiff competition from conference hotels, the sector has fought back with a range of creative and innovative venues that are currently taking the industry by storm - and stealing back market share from their competitors.
Etc Venues is among those responsible for revolutionising the sector in areas including catering, decor and service standards. The company now has a collection of six venues in central London and boasts clients from both the public and private sectors.
'Because the company was set up originally by a group of trainers to cater for their own needs, the venues have been designed very much with the client in mind,' says sales and marketing director Mary Fowell.
The company conducted research to determine client buying patterns when choosing meeting space, and found that they valued flexible space, lots of natural daylight to keep delegates awake and colourful communal areas to stimulate creativity and relaxation outside meeting sessions.
'When it comes to food …