VICTORIA, B.C. – Our city is well known for its scenic beauty, but our mix of geography, innovation and culture also makes us a perfect destination for hosting international conferences and business meetings. That’s the message representatives from Tourism Victoria are delivering this week to some of the most influential meeting planners in Ontario.
“By virtue of its size and walkability, Victoria stimulates a deeper dimension of networking than most other destinations,” says Trina Mousseau, Chief Marketing Officer at Tourism Victoria. “Great ideas and fruitful partnerships often come outside of formal workshops — at chance encounters while enjoying the Inner Harbour or meeting up in one of our cosmopolitan cafes or seaside pubs.”
Joining Tourism Victoria delegates on the trip are about two-dozen representatives from Victoria-area hotels and the Victoria Conference Centre. Their shared goal is to boost business and provide another spark to Greater Victoria’s economy. This initiative is part the Victoria Conference Optimization Network (VCON), which brings together the Victoria Conference Centre, Tourism Victoria and seven conference hotels.
The Victoria delegation will speak on Tuesday to about 60 meeting planners in Ottawa, followed by a similar sized reception the following day in Toronto. The planners are responsible for booking conferences and meetings for government, corporations and other large organizations.
“Our goal is to showcase the business side of Victoria in its entirety, which includes being a hub of technological innovation and a city of makers, artisans and entrepreneurs against the backdrop of our built and natural beauty,” says Jocelyn Jenkyns, Deputy City Manager with the City of Victoria. “Delegates attending conferences in Victoria are as inspired by the setting as much as the event program itself.”
Through the VCON initiative, Tourism Victoria revealed the Idea Capital brand positioning in 2015 to showcase Victoria as an ideal business events destination for connecting people and stimulating ideas. The campaign has already shown results, with the Victoria Conference Centre recording an 11.62 per cent increase in room rental revenue, and a 40 per cent increase in city-wide bookings in 2015 as compared to the same period in 2014.
“Conferences are strategic opportunities for people to network and develop potential business. We are becoming more impactful because our conference hoteliers, our conference centre and ourselves, as the tourism bureau, are taking a collaborative approach,” says Paul Nursey, President and CEO of Tourism Victoria. “Our Business Events Victoria team is working to drive more visits to our destination and generate quantifiable results for businesses in our city.”