BTN Europe presents an overview of business travel and MICE predictions for this year
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Heathrow”s new Terminal 5 (T5) Sofitel 600-room hotel, operated by Arora, has quickly reached the fitting out stage and is scheduled for a spring opening in 2008. The hotel, whilst part of the T5 complex, has its own exclusive entrance, dedicated parking underneath and covered access from the main terminal building.
The Sofitel marketing team say that the hotel is now fielding enquiries for meetings, incentives, conferences and events (MICE), as well as from individual business and leisure travellers.
Sofitel London Heathrow executive director, John Donaldson explains: "The Sofitel London Heathrow will be a MICE hotel like no other ” we want to be the first and last image which international delegations have of 'UK PLC'. The expanse and flexibility of the hotel will ensure that we're ready to host any kind of event. The hotel's unique location makes it the most accessible destination for both international and domestic audiences."
Costing ”180m ($360m) the Sofitel London Heathrow is set to become one of the largest luxury airport hotels and convention centres in Europe. The adjoining terminal has been built with a 30m annual passenger throughput, and perhaps the same number again of meeters and greeters.
In terms of conference facilities the Heathrow Sofitel T5 has a total capacity of 2,800 people at any one time. The property includes 41 meeting rooms, which range in size from a full-scale conference suite with a capacity of 1,700 theatre style to a presidential board room with adjoining salon priv” for 14.
The hotel layout will enable events to be zoned so that they can be held in complete privacy. Larger spaces, such as the Arora Suite, are able to accommodate anything from major product launches and ceremonies to fashion shows.
All manner of extra large items including cars and dramatic exhibits can be imported easily into the venue via a heavy goods lift. A tiered theatre/cinema/presentation suite with capacity for 117 is also provided.