Taipei pushes heritage venues to drive meetings industry

TAIWAN is stepping up efforts to use conserved heritage sites and buildings as meetings venues, reports TTG Asia.

With increasing demand for out-of-the-box concepts and creative solutions, the city is recommending its more unique locations to MICE planners and overseas delegate groups.

Bureau of Foreign Trade’s business events arm MEET Taiwan has been promoting dialogue between heritage venues, hoteliers, and conference organizers.

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Event planning company GI Group assistance vice-president  Amber Chen told TTG Asia: “Taipei needs more unique spaces, such as museums or historical buildings, for companies to hold offsite gala dinners. Areas like Songshan Park are not big enough, and clients want something more exciting compared to exhibition centers.”

However, booking a heritage venue isn’t as straight-forward as booking a formal conference space. Nana Di, project manager, convention section II, Taiwan World Trade Centre Exhibition and Convention Operation Department of the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) told the publication that bookings take time to clear because of the historical and cultural value of these venues.

Venue owners might be reluctant to host large delegate groups, she added. But some that have been grabbed up for events include The Red House, Huashan 1914 Creative Park and Taiper Store House.

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On top of that, Taiwan is turning to South Asia and Southeast Asia to fill up rooms and conference spaces as numbers from China dwindle.

A separate TTG Asia article reported the Taiwanese government has introduced subsidies, administrative assistance and souvenirs for overseas delegates. The scheme was implemented to attract incentive groups from over 10 Southeast Asian nations, six South Asian nations, Australia and New Zealand.