The national tourism organisation’s Business Tourism Unit (BTU) has organised the event, taking place today (12 December) complete with distinctly Scottish dishes, at London’s Connaught Hotel, to give Scottish industry partners a chance to network with representatives of the key London and South East market.
Scottish businesses attending the event include Edinburgh-based the Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa, The Balmoral, Radisson Blu Hotel and Hotel Missoni. Other attendees include Prestige Venues and Events, Fairmont St Andrews, Cameron House in Loch Lomond and Hopetoun House in South Queensferry.
"London and the South East is a key market for us," explained Mihri Miralem, account development manager at VisitScotland’s BTU, based in London. "Statistics for 2012-13 show that a third of our UK and Ireland enquiries are from London and the South East and our London events are a great way for industry partners to meet with C&I buyers from this market. The Scottish Christmas event has always proved extremely popular and we are looking forward to another productive and enjoyable afternoon."
The event rounds off a busy year for business tourism in Scotland. It has seen a number of significant developments, including a multi-million pound expansion of the Edinburgh International Conference Centre and the opening of the SSE Hydro in Glasgow – a state-of-the-art venue that will allow more events to be held at the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre (SECC).
Neil Brownlee, head of VisitScotland’s Business Tourism Unit, said: "It has been an exciting year for business tourism, which recent research has shown generates nearly £2 billion for the Scottish economy. Our attention has been turned towards 2014 for some time, when events such as the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, Homecoming and the Ryder Cup will thrust Scotland into the global spotlight."