Finland Convention Bureau


2.9.2013

New Espoo Ambassador Appointed

Visit Espoo has appointed Tapio Lokki (pictured right) as Espoo Ambassador 2013.

Lokki works as Associate Professor at the Department of Media Technology at Aalto University, leading the virtual acoustics team jointly with Professor Lauri Savioja.

Earlier this year, Lokki and his team were presented with an International Commission for Acoustics Early Career Award in Montreal, Canada.

The Espoo Ambassador award is an annual token of recognition handed out to an active member of international scientific associations representing one’s own university and the Finnish scientific expertise and research work.

The Ambassador operates as a congress ambassador for the city of Espoo, both in Finland and abroad.

Professor Lokki is the 5th Espoo Ambassador since the award’s inception in 2009.

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News

6.2.2017

Meet Espoo News

Espoo has a lot to offer for Finland´s centenary celebration year, for example Conference hotel Hanasaari opens after renovation and Espoo hosts ICCA Scandinavian chapter meeting in March.

Espoo, the second largest city in Finland, is a vibrant city full of contrasts. In Espoo, modern architecture, large corporations and culture meet the unspoilt willderness.  This innovative environment and spirit, complemented by the main campus of Aalto University, attracts continuous interest from science and research professionals worldwide.

Large natural areas are characteristic of Espoo: seashores, the archipelago, the wilderness in nature reserves and the waterways of the lake highlands. The cultural landscapes, constructed environments and natural areas of Espoo are like Finland in miniature. This, combined to Espoo’s location, right next to capital Helsinki, creates vast opportunities to all sorts of business events. With Helsinki just a 15 minute ride away combine an event in Espoo with the Finnish capital and you have the very best of both worlds.

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24.1.2017

The 49th Congress of the International Academy of Ceramics (IAC) has been awarded to Finland

The IAC General Assembly is a well-known and highly appreciated congress in the field of ceramics. Every two years the event brings together world-class artists and actors from the ceramic world to discuss about contemporary ceramic issues and to showcase their artwork. International Academy of Ceramics has been an official partner in the cultural sector of UNESCO since 2001.

More or less 300 people from 50 different countries are estimated to attend the congress in Lapland in the autumn 2020. The preliminary theme of the congress is ”On the Edge”. For the first time in its history, the event will take place in Finland with Rovaniemi and Posio as the main venues for the conference and the exhibition programme.

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3.1.2017

International Congress of Entomology in 2020 has been awarded to Finland

The largest scientific congress of entomologists – International Congress of Entomology (ICE) will be held on 26-31 July, 2020, at Finlandia Hall in Helsinki.

The congress will be hosted by the entomological societies in Finland and the University of Helsinki.

The vision of prof. Hokkanen, who is also is the coordinator of a new UA Thematic Network on “Sustainable Production and Foraging of Natural Products in the North“, is to connect the ICE 2020 with the work and activities of the UArctic.

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2.1.2017

Finlandia Hall transfers to solar power – among the first congress centres in Europe

Solar panels will be installed on the roof of congress and event centre Finlandia Hall Ltd. by the end of 2016. Finlandia Hall
is among the first event centres in Europe to utilise solar energy for the energy needed in the premises.

A total of 150–170 solar panels were installed on the roof of Finlandia Hall. Experts have calculated the size of the system
to be 41 kW. The electricity provided by the system is estimated to cover a maximum of 20–25 percent of Finlandia Hall’s total
monthly energy consumption.
“Finlandia Hall has strongly invested in environmental and energy matters over the past few years. Five years ago we started a
development project during which the building, originally built in the 1970s, was turned into an energy efficient one. District
heating consumption has been reduced by 50% and electricity consumption by 30%. These renewals have accumulated cost
savings worth hundreds of thousands of euros. The solar panels are a natural next step in this development,” says Johanna
Tolonen, Managing Director at Finlandia Hall Ltd.
Finlandia Hall has undergone a total transformation of operating culture, and the personnel have been strongly committed to
taking environmental issues into account in all their activities. The long-term development work culminated in Finlandia Hall
receiving the ISO14001 environmental certificate last autumn. Only less than one percent of Finnish companies have received
the certificate.
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1.1.2017

Helsinki won the Innovation Award for their pioneering Greening Events project

The Global Destination Sustainability Index (GDS-Index) has released its first-ever ranking of the sustainability performance of 35 participating cities worldwide.

The Global Destination Sustainability Index (GDS-Index) has released today its first-ever ranking of the sustainability performance of 35 participating cities worldwide. The results were announced at the 2016 ICCA Congress, with the Leadership Award going to Gothenburg for attaining the highest overall score and the Innovation Award to Helsinki for their pioneering Greening Events project.

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13.12.2016

Finlandia Hall Recognised for Excellence

Finlandia Hall is the first conference and events venue in the Nordic countries to be awarded a coveted four-star Recognised for Excellence rating. European Foundation for Quality Management presented the award to Finlandia Hall on 1 December 2016 in recognition of the organisation’s commitment to a high quality approach across all its services and other operations.

“In recent years, we have engaged in a process to develop our operations and our competitiveness through joint working with our staff and partners. The Finlandia Hall team’s commitment to continuous improvement is a key contributor to our excellent achievement. We are all firm believers in continually evolving our organisation for the better and also in the inspirational power of the events we host,” Finlandia Hall Managing Director Johanna Tolonen commented.

“We scored extremely well in the international EFQM assessment for a first-timer. This recognition will spur us on to achieve even better things in future, working as a team with our staff and partners,” Quality Manager Heidi Majaranta added.

Filandia Hall’s staff recognition and incentive schemes, customer relations, commitment to sustainability and joint working practices with partners were highlighted as particular strengths by the external evaluation team.  The organisation also received praise for its leadership culture characterised by openness, inspiration, focus on learning and development and commitment to ongoing change. The assessment covered the entire organisation, including all its functions and outputs.
Finland Hall also holds the international ISO 9001 quality certificate since 2003 and the ISO 14001 environmental certificate since 2015.

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20.11.2016

Finland for Meetings, events & incentives 2/2016

Find out about high class services in stunning natural surroundings.

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22.9.2016

Scientific Conference Promoter Award 2016 to Professor Marjaana Niemi

Professor Niemi works at the University of Tampere, School of Social Sciences and Humanity. The €5,000 award is donated by the Finnish Fair Foundation and the winner is selected by the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies.

The award was presented to Professor Niemi at Messukeskus Helsinki 21-22 September 2016. Professor Niemi specialises in urban history and has organised several seminars and congresses for the field, the latest and the biggest being the 13th International Conference on Urban History in August 2016. The event gathered over 600 participants from 50 countries and was organised in cooperation with the University of Tampere and the University of Helsinki.

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13.9.2016

International Conference Gathers Plant Biology Researchers to Turku in 2018

The International Conference on Arabidopsis Research regularly brings together over 800 scientists from all corners of the world for five days to discuss all aspects of molecular plant science from research on plant growth and development to improving plant tolerance to adverse environmental conditions.

The International Conference on Arabidopsis Research is a yearly conference rotating between North America, Australasia and Europe. The conference is centered on all aspects of modern plant biology using thale cress (Arabidopsis thaliana) as a model system.

– The strong plant research community at the University of Turku together with the unique location on the Baltic coast surrounded by numerous small islands makes Turku a memorable location for a scientific conference, says Dr. Michael Wrzaczek from the University of Helsinki, Department of Biosciences.

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7.9.2016

Two New Clarion Hotels open in October

In October 2016 opens a 78 metre-high hotel building with a convention centre for 1,000 people and 427 rooms.

Clarion Hotel Helsinki will stand out from the crowd. The two window-clad towers are connected by a transparent glass footbridge. The highest of the towers will reach a full 78 metres above sea level. A vantage point is being built at the top, with a breathtaking view over Helsinki for everyone.

At Helsinki-Vantaa airport opens another unique Clarion hotel. Clarion Airport offers 12 flexible meeting facilities of varying size and the largest meeting room can accommodate up to 260 participants.

 

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24.8.2016

Professor of Environmental Engineering Jaana Sorvari awarded Espoo’s Congress Ambassador 2016

Associate Professor Jaana Sorvari from Aalto University’s School of Engineering has been chosen as Espoo Ambassador 2016. Espoo Ambassador operates as a congress ambassador of Espoo in Finland and abroad. The award was presented 24th of August 2016 during the annual Espoo Ambassador event at Aalto University Design Factory. Professor Sorvari is the 8th Espoo Ambassador.

The decision was based in Sorvari’s active work in national and international scientific research groups and organizations. Even though Professor Sorvari is still a newcomer in the business of organizing international conferences, she has shown enthusiasm and courage to take up the challenge.

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11.8.2016

New boutique hotel opened in Helsinki – HotelF6

Unique boutique Hotel F6 is located at the city center of Helsinki. It is a family owned hotel with home-like feeling and customer oriented service.

Hotel F6 is situated right at the city center on a side street of well-known Esplanade. Everything is just a few minutes’ walk away. If you want peace and quiet you can find it in hotels tranquil courtyard.

There are 66 rooms in the hotel and they are refurbished elegantly and stylish, but at the same time they are very cozy and warm. Materials are high quality and not just for style but also for sustainability. This shows in all of hotels choices, for example, hotels electricity is produced with wind and water.

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28.6.2016

Germans impressed with Finland’s innovative conference expertise

German Convention Bureau (GCB), the European Association of Event Centres (EVVC) in collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO, conducted a benchmarking visit to Finland in May together with Finpro’s Finland Convention Bureau, Helsinki Convention Bureau and Visit Espoo.

As one of the leading conference countries in the world, Germany is constantly developing and renewing its activities. One of the latest innovations is the Future Meeting Space project built around the idea of a shift in conference culture and the utilisation of current development trends.

The institutions behind the project, the German Convention Bureau (GCB), the European Association of Event Centres (EVVC) in collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO, conducted a benchmarking visit to Finland in May together with Finpro’s Finland Convention Bureau, Helsinki Convention Bureau and Visit Espoo. For two days, Finns presented their expertise in eight locations. Special attention was paid to Huone Events Hotel for its original service concept and story, the Finnish Nature Centre Haltia for its exotic atmosphere, and Finlandia Hall and Helsinki Music Centre for their beautiful architecture.

“Our trip to Finland was truly an eye-opening experience. Helsinki is a great place for mapping innovations and new ideas related to conference travel. Some of the most fascinating things included focusing on new sustainable solutions and the integration of the young generation,” says Heike Mahmoud of visitBerlin Berlin Convention Office, one of the five supporting partners.

“Finland is a country full of creativity, thrilling ideas, sustainability, a content-related link between science, research and innovation for meeting spaces.”, tells Matthias Schultze, Managing Director of GCB German Convention Bureau e.V.

Finland was visited by 76,000 conference tourists last year. Finland attracts visitors particularly with its unspoilt nature, start-up culture and exotic charm.

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22.6.2016

New event facilities in Tampere Hall

Concert and Congress Centre Tampere Hall is experiencing the biggest makeover in its 25-year history. Several projects are intended to boost the Hall’s competitiveness: the new event facility extension in May 2016, revamped restaurants and lobby point in Winter 2016 and Spring 2017, and the Moomin Museum, which will open in May 2017.

Concert and Congress Centre Tampere Hall is experiencing the biggest makeover in its 25-year history and driving for an increase in revenue and visitor volume in the upcoming years. Several projects are intended to boost the Hall’s competitiveness: the new event facility extension in May 2016, revamped restaurants and lobby point in Winter 2016 and Spring 2017, and the Moomin Museum, which will open in May 2017, just in time to celebrate Finland’s 100th independence anniversary. Valued at around EUR 22 million, the overall renovation of the Hall and its services serves to increase the already-strong appeal and development of the Tampere region.

The extensive investments of Tampere Hall made in 2015–2017 are the result of collaboration between its owner, City of Tampere authorities, and various regional and national partners. The first visible results of the project were revealed in May 2016, when three new meeting and event facilities – Maestro, Riffi and Duetto 1 & 2 – were opened in the renovated area.

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18.5.2016

New Scandic Hotel to open in Vaasa

Scandic Hotels, the largest hotel company in the Nordic countries, has signed a long-term lease agreement with Airaksinen Capital to take over the operation of the former Kantarellis hotel in central Vaasa from June 2016.

The hotel, which has 68 rooms today, will be expanded to include close to 140 hotel rooms at the same time as the hotel’s conference and congress facilities will be expanded. The expansion is expected to be finished at the end of 2017.

“Finland is an important growth market for Scandic and today, we are already the biggest hotel company in the Helsinki area. With Scandic Vaasa, we are further strengthening our network in the Finnish market”, says Frank Fiskers, President & CEO Scandic Hotels Group.

“Vaasa is the largest economic center in the Österbotten region and part of Finland’s fastest growing area. By opening Scandic Vaasa we will further contribute to the attractiveness of the destination”, says Aki Käyhkö, Head of Scandic Hotels Finland.

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14.4.2016

Nearly 76,000 conference tourists visited Finland in 2015

Nearly 76,000 conference tourists spent approx. EUR 124 million in Finland in 2015. Conference tourists are an important source of income for conference sites in Finland and everywhere in the world.

The competition for conference tourists is intense. Last year, the five most popular conference cities in Finland were Helsinki, Tampere, Turku, Espoo and Oulu.

Finland continued its run as an attractive conference country last year, hosting a total of 682 conferences (708 in 2014) and 75,846 delegates (79,000 in 2014). According to delegate numbers, the most popular conference cities were Helsinki, Tampere, Turku, Espoo and Oulu.

  • “Even though the number of hosted conferences decreased slightly from last year, the overall performance was good considering the global economic situation. We must continue our persistent efforts to attract conferences, because international events constitute a highly significant source of income for Finland. The many people attending the events use plenty of tourist services in different areas during their short visit,” says Mervi Toivonen of Visit Finland. Finland Convention Bureau, a part of the same organisation, is responsible for promoting the visibility of Finland as a conference country.

Nearly 76,000 conference tourists spent approx. EUR 124 million in Finland last year. The sum has increased by nearly 50% since the beginning of the decade; in 2010, conference tourists spent slightly over EUR 70 million in Finland. A conference tourist spends 4–5 times more during a visit than a regular tourist.

Helsinki by far the most attractive conference location

Helsinki attracts the most conferences and conference tourists per year. While Helsinki hosted slightly over 270 conferences with over 35,000 attendants, runner-up Tampere hosted 66 conferences with over 7,000 conference tourists.

  • “Helsinki is a relatively obvious choice as a conference site in Finland, because it is easy to reach internationally and provides many opportunities for international events. However, Tampere, Turku and Oulu, also in the top five, have managed to find their strengths and attract conferences with their novelty,” says Toivonen.

On an international level, Finland’s strong points are a good reputation and competence as a conference host as well as its novelty as an event destination. Compared with better known conference countries, Finland’s competitive edge in the race to attract conferences also includes cleanliness and an exotic quality.

  • “We invest in increasing awareness of Finland as a conference destination, particularly in the growing markets in Asia. The Asian market is viewed as a major opportunity for conference travel. In March, we hosted our first Meetings Industry market event in China. The event attracted plenty of interest and proved that Finland is an interesting destination for event organisers,” says Toivonen.

TOP 5 conference cities based on the number of conferences in 2015:

1st Helsinki 275
2nd Espoo 86
3rd Tampere 66
4th Turku 58
5th Jyväskylä 53

TOP 5 conference cities based on the number of delegates in 2015:

1st Helsinki 35,253
2nd Tampere 7,068
3rd Turku 6,011
4th Espoo 5,954
5th Oulu 4,289

 

 

 

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