Call for Olympic host to grab C&I potential

Athens hoteliers are calling on the Greek government to embrace the conference sector in a bid to capitalise on the aftermath of the Olympics. The Athens Hotel Union is pressing the government to convert the city’s Olympic facilities for use in conferences and exhibitions and is calling for more action to help fill the city’s expanded hotel sector, which grew by 3,000 rooms in the run up to the Games. However, London’s Greek National Tourism Organisation director Panos Argyros said Athens already had a substantial conference venue in the Athens Concert Hall, and that the Metropolitan Conference Centre was due for completion in 2005. "There are plans to utilise some of the Olympic Games venues for events and conferences, as most of the Olympic Games venues are multi purpose. For example, the Weight Lifting Centre in Nikea near Pireaus," he said. Jack Morton Worldwide, the agency behind the opening and closing ceremonies, urged the Greeks to act now to maintain the momentum created by the Olympics. Managing director Laurence Croneen said: "There is now a need for a communication campaign that targets C&I effectively."

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