One of the features of today‘s Bratislava is the atmosphere of dynamic renovation and fast construction activities you cannot miss out during your autumn walk through the city. This is also the case of the hotel Forum and its surroundings building up its sustained nobleness. Possibly we are not aware of that at first sight any more. But we pay more and more attention to the conference services. Nowadays it is difficult to find a modern business hotel without rendering a wide range of conference services as a part of its own product. The increasing demand for these services and the statistic figures demonstrate its higher share on the whole hotel‘s turnover, thus promoting the economic benefit for the congress tourism. Next advantage of a conference taking place in a hotel using its accommodation and restaurant services is the full utilisation of capacity achieving the highest possible average price consump-tion ratio per guest, that is regarded to be one of the basic business goals. Proceeding on the assumption that the hotel is determined mainly for business tourists, the market segment of incentive tourists helps us to balance the decrease of capacity utilisation during weekends and beyond the high season. The basic information about customer‘s needs for conference services can be obtained by means of effective marketing research and naturally at every day‘s work. Hotel Forum Bratislava has rendered services since its opening as a member of hotel chain Inter-Continental Hotels & Resorts on the basis of franchising contract. The hotel chain IHC owned by the BASS Plc. that is the second biggest hotel group worldwide became the pioneer in the hotel industry during its 50 years history. Moreover it is known for its traditional reputation of its services and the customer service as well. It wants to take the same position also on the market of conference services. The strategic goal to be a pioneer also on this field was accompanied by launching of new product „the Meeting Place“ representing new approach towards the quality and the character of conference services. This project is thought to be a big challenge and inspiration for our hotel. Though the resultis presentation of six months research campaign might be very extensive, I want to call your attention to the most important factors affecting the demand and supply of this segment:
- the average number of participants is between 10 and 50 persons, smaller auditorium dominates
- approximately one third of all planned events is reserved 3 to 6 months in advance, also one third of all events is booked earlier than three months in advance
- in average 50 percent of all hotels report that 25 percent of the turnover relates to conference services
- previous experience with the product and recommendation by mouth proved to be the most effective source of information
The most requested types of companies rendering conference services according their popularity are:
1. Hotel chains
2. Independent hotels
3. Special styled hotels
The offered services and long market experience strenghten the position of hotel Forum as the market leader in the hotel industry in Slovakia, and also present the guarantee for good future prospects. Persistent innovation and launching of new products are the key elements of our marketing strategy. The recently completed reconstruction of all negotiation saloons, latest technique equipment, comfort interior and many components regulated by the client are some of the new unique features. The planned reconstruction of the convention hall with the increased capacity, installa-tion of branded technique systems and the restaurant services will help to reach the highest international standards of comfort.
Apart from the controlled features in the offer of conference services, also the basic trends, customer‘s behaviour and expectations have an enormous influence on the client‘s decision.
The real expectations of the customers are frequently pretty low and sometimes even worries turn out. On the other hand the more motivating and valuable is the satisfaction of the foreign and Slovak organisers with the conference itself. Thanks to the high quality standard and good reputation our hotel became a popular place of different conference events.