The Slovenian capital, which has been present on the international association meetings market for more than thirty years, can be regarded as an established, yet still fresh destination that can welcome meetings with up to 2,200 delegates in the largest plenary capacity. The array of meeting facilities features two convention centres, several convention hotels and hotels with conference facilities, as well as a number of academic venues, the majority of which are in the downtown area. The “walking city” dimension of Ljubljana, which was crowned European Green Capital for 2016, is definitely one of its advantages.
Last year Ljubljana has recorded a good number of regional, European and international association congresses with an attendance between 500 and 1,200 delegates that were well visible in the city and generated important income in the destination. Surprisingly, the peak month was August, and not the traditional June, September or October. The majority of the events took place either at the GR – Ljubljana Exhibition and Convention Centre or at the CD – Cankarjev dom Congress Centre Ljubljana.
The 2014 highlights were:
▶ 14 – 16 February 2014, 18th Winter Meeting of the European Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons – ESCRS, CD Congress Centre Ljubljana, 600 delegates
▶ 11 – 15 August 2014, 40th World Scout Conference – WSC 2014, GR – Ljubljana Exhibition and Convention Centre, 1.200 delegates
▶ 26 – 29 August 2014, 14th Congress of the European Association of Agricultural Economists – EAAE, GR – Ljubljana Exhibition and Convention Centre, 680 delegates
▶ 27 – 30 August 2014, 14th International Congress of the European Association for Japanese Studies – EAJS, CD Congress Centre Ljubljana, University of Ljubljana – Faculty of Arts, 850 delegates
▶ 17 – 20 September 2014, Conference of the European Council for High Ability – ECHA, Four Points by Sheraton Ljubljana Mons, 550 delegates
▶ 18 – 20 September 2014, 26th Annual Conference of the European Association of Labour Economists – EALE, University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Economics, 500 delegates
▶ 22 – 24 September 2014, The Travel Convention 2014 (ABTA – Association of British Travel Agents), GR – Ljubljana Exhibiton and Convention Centre, 450 delegates
▶ 3 – 4 October 2014, 11th FIAPAC Conference (International Federation of Professional Abortion and Contraception Associates), CD Congress Centre Ljubljana, 500 delegates
▶ 26 – 28 October 2014, Couples for Christ Conference, GR – Ljubljana Exhibition and Convention Centre, 550 delegates
With over 1,200 delegates from 130 countries, the 40th World Scout Conference – WSC 2014, was not only the largest congress in terms of attendance last year, but also the most international event ever held in the capital and Slovenia based on the number of the delegates’ countries of origin.
The year 2015 promises to be a positive one, and although only one congress will go beyond 1,000 delegates, a series of mid-sized ones are on the calendar. A selection of the larger events in 2015 is featured below:
▶ At the CD – Cankarjev dom Congress Centre Ljubljana, a high concentration of events is visible in May and June, however also the autumn months are busy:
the 11th IEEE Conference on Automatic Face and Gesture Recognition – FG 2015 (300 delegates), Plant Health for Food Security (250 delegates), Medicine of South East Europe (600-800 delegates) , the 16th European Congress of Pediatric Surgery – EUPSA 2015 (600 delegates), the 13th Meeting of the European Neuro-Ophthalmological Society – EUNOS 2015 (300 delegates) and the 53rd Symposium of the International Society for Clinical Electrophysiology of Vision – ISCEV (200 delegates); in September, the 25th Annual Conference of Alzheimer Europe (500 delegates), the International Conference on Engineering Vibration IFToMM (300 delegates); in October, the CIVITAS Forum (500 delegates) will follow, while the last congress, organised by the Mediterranean Incontinence and Pelvic Floor Society (300 delegates), is scheduled in December.
▶ The main events at the GR – Ljubljana Exhibition and Convention Centre will instead be:
the 27th International Symposium on Lepton Photon Interactions at High Levels – LEPTON PHOTON 2015 (August, 500 delegates) and the congress of the European Society of Regional Anaesthesia & Pain Therapy – ESRA (September, 1,500 delegates). The latter has the highest extected attendance among congresses in Ljubljana (and Slovenia) in 2015 and is the second larger project run by Kenes in the destination.
The Grand Hotel Union, which offers the largest hotel convention facilities in Ljubljana, is hosting this year several conferences of international and European associations attracting between 200 and 400 delegates, the largest being in mid October 2015: the 9th International Congress on Vascular Dementia – ICVD.
Confirmed congress bookings for Ljubljana are in place for as far as the year 2018. Destination partners focusing primarily on the corporate / incentive markets are also reporting a positive outlook for business in 2015. More information at www.visitljubljana.com/meetings.
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