With a record number of participants, ICCA Iberian Chapter held its 10th Annual Assembly and 4th Client-Supplier Workshop in the Algarve (Portugal) from 15-18 April. The event was attended by 82 Spanish and Portuguese MICE professionals, not only members of ICCA but also non-members interested in getting to know the advantages of belonging to the association and, at the same time, making the most of the event’s networking opportunities, which took place at the convention centre of the Epic Sana Hotel in Albufiera.
The varied programme of the Education Forum covered topics such as the keys to capitalizing on new communication techniques and social media applied to the event industry. Pointers were also given on how to make the most of ICCA’s database and other technological tools, as a foretaste of the presentation about its big data project that ICCA will give at the upcoming edition of IMEX in Frankfurt. Other issues addressed in a keynote and a roundtable discussion included how to combat seasonality and the challenge of developing the MICE industry in destinations catering predominantly to conventional tourists, such as the Costa del Sol and the Algarve.
Another keynote entitled "Neuroevents and the Art of Motivating Audiences" dealt with how to use applications of neuroscience to make audiences react, motivate them and influence their behaviour.
Attendees at the 10th Assembly of ICCA Iberian Chapter
CSR and workshop
As has become a tradition at these assemblies, there was a corporate social responsibility activity consisting of a painting workshop in which the delegates and a group of people with social integration problems participated together, with the aim of designing a label for the bottles of Quinta dos Vales Winery. At the end of the workshop, as was to be expected, there was a tasting session featuring the wines produced by the winery, yet another example of the Algarve’s gastronomic offerings, which were present throughout the assembly courtesy of the restaurant of the Epic Sana Hotel (the event’s official hotel, whose excellent service was remarked upon by the delegates), as well as the Moonlight restaurant of the Salgados Palace Hotel, where the delegates were served dinner after a tour of the property’s state-of-the-art convention centre.
ICCA’s Client-Supplier Workshop – in which 10 convention organizers working for top medical societies and 10 associated companies of ICCA (convention bureau, convention centres, etc.) exchanged information with an eye to holding future conventions – was also a great success. Lastly, it was announced that the next assembly would be held in Marbella (Costa del Sol). In short, the Algarve assembly was a resounding success due to the record number of participants, the interesting education sessions, the workshop and, of course, the savoir faire of the local organizers and the hospitality shown by the hosts of the Algarve Tourism Office.