Another landmark year for Belfast after winning Best Events Destination 2019

It's been a record-breaking year for Belfast with stand-out numbers for business tourism sales and awards galore.

This year marks a special anniversary for Belfast, as Visit Belfast celebrates its 20th anniversary. It’s been a remarkable couple of decades for the city, with continued tourism growth and investment transforming Belfast into one of the world’s most vibrant events destinations.

The city has also earned a flurry of industry awards. New records have been set for business tourism sales, with 112 new conference and events secured, up 47% on last year - representing a 33% growth in delegates, 16% in economics and 13% in bed nights.

"Our members still talk about the experience in Belfast. One of the reasons why we moved the event to Belfast was the great value it represented and the great facilities on offer," said Garth Halliday, Renewable UK.

And the word is spreading. The city was recognised as the second fastest growing knowledge economy in the UK (Catalyst Inc) and the third largest growing office market in the world; an acknowledgement of the growing number of companies locating to the city. 

"We were really taken aback by how many delegates wanted to come and join us in Belfast. We exceeded our expectations - we had far more numbers than we expected," said Mark Pemberton, Association of British Orchestras.

In 2019, Belfast secured six MICE industry events, bringing more than 700 international buyers to the city. The events included the C&IT Agency Forum, and Corporate Summit, HelmsBriscoe’s EMEA conference and more.

It’s been an exceptional journey, just 20 years on from the Good Friday Agreement tourism has been the economic peace dividend for Belfast. With an investment package of £1bn announced through the Belfast Region City deal earlier in 2019, the city is gearing up for the next 20 years of transformational growth.

Standout statistics:

  • 48 hotels – with a further 17 at the planning stages

  • 5,543 rooms – with a further 2013 to be added

  • 530 direct flights per week

  • 60+ meeting venues

  • 194 destinations serviced by Belfast and Dublin

For more information please see here

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles
and free email bulletins.

Register now
Already registered?
Sign in

5 ways technology can help hotels reopen safely

5 ways technology can help hotels reopen safely

New innovations will help hotels solve the challenges of coronavirus so that guests can return, says Louisa Watson of Wyboston Lakes Resort.

Dear C&IT: Diversity should be part of the process right from the start

Dear C&IT: Diversity should be part of the process right from the start

Event planners need to challenge the diversity of their internal teams and their clients, says WRG Live's Steve Porter

LIVE UPDATES: England to relax quarantine rules for visitors from 10 July

LIVE UPDATES: England to relax quarantine rules for visitors from 10 July

Find out which countries are on partial or national lockdown, what travel restrictions are in place and what size gatherings are allowed.

'Attention to detail is key'

'Attention to detail is key'

A-List 2020: Stephanie Aviss is an account manager at Top Banana

What does the future hold for incentive travel?

What does the future hold for incentive travel?

C&IT speaks to Black Tomato's David Heron to find out why he's feeling cautiously optimistic.

5 ways the industry can recover from the crisis

5 ways the industry can recover from the crisis

Catch up on our Crisis Briefing webinar, where experts from across the global MICE industry share their latest COVID-19 recovery plans.

Case study: Android's Partner Summit in Berlin

Case study: Android's Partner Summit in Berlin

Agency Wonder brought the tech giant's new branding to life in a former techno club in the German capital.

Events industry urges UK government to set reopening date

Events industry urges UK government to set reopening date

Senior industry figures argue that the lack of confirmed date risks losing major business to international competitors.

'It's great to be involved in the planning but onsite is where you really learn'

'It's great to be involved in the planning but onsite is where you really learn'

A-List 2020: Sarah Potts is an events project manager at BI Worldwide.

Dreaming down under: the Australia incentive

While global travel is on hold, it’s a time to dream. One Australian expert discusses her ultimate incentive itinerary for first-time visitors, including flying celebrated chefs around the country and dinner under the outback stars…