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Thursday, February 20th 2020

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TAKE5 gives you an update on the latest Meetings, Incentives, Congress, Events and related news. It contains short and to the point information on venues, people, happenings, lifestyle and general news that cannot wait to be told!

Enjoy BBT Online's 124th Take5 edition. Our Take5 newsletter is completely advertorial free.

Invitation for a study trip to Switzerland
Liberty road show Amsterdam 2020

The Switzerland Convention & Incentive Bureau and its partners are inviting Belgian Meeting and Incentive planners (only agencies) to join a thrilling study trip to Engelberg from 13 to 15 March.

Engelberg is the largest mountain station in Central Switzerland, as well as a charming historic monastery village.

Expect a varied and exciting programme.

Click here to read the full invitation and to register yourself.

Nhow Amsterdam

The just opened Nhow Amsterdam RAI is hosting a Liberty road show on 3 February. More than 20 Liberty suppliers from all over the globe are attending, and will present you with the latest meeting & incentive updates from their respective destinations.

After the workshop, there is a nice walking dinner waiting for you on the top floor. Those who want can also go for a tour of the new hotel, or book a room for just €49 including breakfast. Sounds like a good idea.

Click here to register.
Get hosted for Meetings Africa -
Invitation for Belgian and Dutch International M&I planners
Meetings Africa Meetings Africa

BBT Online can invite ten hosted buyers (agents, corporates, associations or PCOs) to Meetings Africa 2020 in Sandton - South Africa from 23 till 29 February. They will not only be invited to the show, but will get a whole hosted famtrip as well.

Before the event, you will be taken for a tour around Johannesburg to discover its history, its people and its most famous township. Afterwards, you will fly to Cape Town on the other side of the country to visit Table Mountain and to cycle through the Winelands – tasting obviously included. Also not unpleasant: the also included helicopter flight and wildlife safari.

Interested? Mail us at Planners who attended our b2b workshops in the past have priority. Conditions: Must not have attended Meetings Africa in the past three years.

Qbic opens a venue in Brussels
Dining in a stable

Ixelles (Brussels) is the proud home of the newest Qbic Hotel. Located close to the nightlife of Flagey and the Avenue Louise boutiques, Qbic Hotel Brussels offers both design and sustainability.

Water saving showers as well as electricity saving sensors were installed, and all drinking water is filtered.

The rooms look fun, colourful and quirky, and come with their own Qbi: a cube holding the bed, from which you can operate the entire room.

Stable is a stylish new restaurant located in – who would have thought – a stables. Not just any stables though, but the ones attached to the Hof Ter Linden Castle in Edegem (close to Antwerp).

The whole place was of course cleaned up, and redesigned by the same architect who created the Tomorrowland headquarters, so expect something special. Njegos Kalicanin is in charge of the kitchen, but top chefs from all over the world will occasionally be invited to show their cooking skills.
Tournee mineral workshops
Dinner in a greenhouse
Tournee mineral

Crowne Plaza Brussels Airport organises four different Tournéé Minérale workshops in February: four Thursdays, four different topics and a lot of networking, all for free.

From the art of making mocktails (6/2) to slow coffee (13/2), tasting the best alcohol free beers (20/2) and the essence of tea for your body and soul (27/2), you’ll have a different thing to try out every week, and you’ll go home safe and sober every time.

Register by sending a mail to

Hotel Indigo City Brussels (located near Place Rogier and close to the Botanical gardens) just opened its brand new restaurant.

Serra is an impressive 750m² venue full of plants – almost like a greenhouse. The space is divided into two restaurants: a slow-food kitchen called Urban Panic in front, and a sustainable restaurant called Garden Kitchen in the back.

Sounds like a good, cosy place to get away from the winter cold for a couple of hours.
We publish much more news than you can read and see in our monthly Take5 Newsletter. Follow us on our Facebook page.
Free Sam Van Campenhout
Sam Van Campenhout

Belgian national Sam Van Campenhout – manager of the Sheraton Hotel in Algiers – was imprisoned in early December 2019.
Algerian justice accuses him of the heinous crime of sending an email to his management. According to them it contained sensitive information related to security, but this information had been published by their own national press way before the email.
Sam is risking a life sentence, which is obviously completely unfair. Sign this petition to show your support and to demand his immediate release.

Interesting eco-tours
Good stuff, less waste

Mixua offers wonderful eco-tours in Ghent, Brussels, Antwerp, Bruges, Leuven and Sint-Niklaas. On the tour, you’ll get to know the newest eco-addresses: zero-waste shops, lovely bars, fair fashion, natural personal care products and creative workshops.

You’ll receive lots of inspiration and advice to lead a more eco-friendly life, and you’ll meet lots of entrepreneurs who work in a sustainable way. Mixua’s founder Emilia also runs an eco web shop and can be booked as a speaker for events.
Good stuff

The SmartCup is a new reusable cup developed by the Belgian start-up “Goodless”. The cup is made out of polypropylene and is linked to the user’s personal account.
When it is emptied and deposed of in a so called “SmartBin”, the consumer will automatically receive the deposit. No lines, no extra staff costs and no more plastic mess on this year’s festivals and events.
Antwerp Diner
Event venue in a showroom
Antwerp Diner

“We proudly support positive people”. That is the message of the 19th edition of Antwerp Diner600 guests will dine in the completely renovated Handelsbeurs in the city centre on 9 February.

All proceeds of the evening will be donated to SENSOA, The Institute of Tropical Medicine and Tomorrow4Isibani: all organisations focused on HIV research or prevention.

Last year, more than € 100,000 was raised. New star chefs will join the kitchen team this year.

Restaurant Declercq can be found right in Brussels’ Châtelain district, and is a unique venue combining a restaurant with a bar and a car showroom – all in one original space.

The menu is creative, French and in gourmet style. The venue caters to events as well.

It can host groups from 10 to up to 150 people for parties, business meetings, seminars, dinners or cocktail receptions.

It's better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation!
Hasselt has a brand new boutique hotel
The key trends defining events in 2020

Barefood Giulia is a cosy boutique hotel in a renovated old town house in the centre of Hasselt. It comes with just seven rooms, but they are designed in a unique style.

The Barefood Bar can be found on the first floor, looking out over Leopold Square. It offers local, seasonal dishes full of tasty, healthy and nutritious food. Perfect for a relaxing and revitalising stay in the trendy capital of Belgian Limburg.
key trends

EventMB’s editor Julius Solaris published a handy and freely downloadable PDF report on the ten trends that will define the event industry in the year 2020.

From the rise of virtual meetings due to flight shaming, to the Hollywoodification of events and more collaboration instead of presentation, you’ll see all sorts of interesting predictions pass by. Great read in any case.

Download your copy here.
MICE business by design in North Brabant – Destination Report
North Brabant North Brabant

If Event Design is a buzzword for your M&I team, the Dutch province of North Brabant should be on your radar. Science and creativity are drenched in a down to earth Dutch can-do mentality and the technical university and design academy onsite are there to assure the empowerment that good education brings.

Brabant Convention Bureau organised two location tours at the crossroads of 2019 and 2020. BBT Online Journalist Monica Rijpma was there to report for you.

Click here for the full article.

BBT Online’s b2b Workshop – Save the dates for 2020
BBT b2b Workshop BBT b2b Workshop
BBT b2b Workshop
BBT b2b Workshop

Time seems to go by faster every year. It’s been almost two months since our b2b speed-date workshop at Silo in Brussels, and after a well-deserved holiday break, it’s time to take a little look back.

We posted several photo albums on our Facebook page. Check them out here, here, here, here and here.

A very cool event movie was also shot. Click here to see it.

Of course we’re already hard at work organising the next two workshops for 2020. You can now book your table or register as a planner. The events will take place on Wednesday 1 July (yes we changed the date due to EK football) and 7 December for incentive planners, and on 2 July and 8 December for corporate and association planners (a smaller version with only 20 suppliers)Send us an email at to register.


Our venue for 1 July will be Den Berg in Londerzeel (perfectly located between Antwerp and Brussels). It’s a beautiful venue with lots parking spaces front door, has a tent and a superb terrace outside, the kitchen produces high quality dishes and on top of that it comes with 30 rooms we will book for our planners.

For more info on the venue, check the website or contact Yago Wagemans via

Real Short !!

Consult BBT Online's MICE agenda, and don't miss any event.
4 February, Mechelen: Meet in Mechelen Discovery Day. Visit and experience four exciting locations in one day. De Vleeshalle, The Cellar, The Chapel and Restaurant The Chick are all ready to welcome you with open arms. Email:
In a world of angry Greta’s; be one of the happy pack; be one of the sustainable Jelka’s. In Antwerp on February 4 Jelka Lepever gives a presenation on how to live sustainable. Click here for more information.
4 February, Brussels: Experience Brussels Differently. Join this fun networking event organised by Association Bureau. Email: to register. Places are limited.
BATM & ACTE Educational organise a forum on multinational consolidation. Date: 6 February. Location: Keizershof Hotel in Aalst. More info, click here.
13 February, Brussels: Kerala European Road Show. Discover one of India’s most magical regions on this road show at the Amigo Hotel, Brussels. Register here.
12th of March the Group Barriere will organise a workshop to get to know the hotel group and their destinations. The workshop will take place at Maison Grand Place in Brussels. Inscriptions:
18 March, Grand Café Horta, Antwerp: AVIAREPS Around the World Workshop. Meet 45 suppliers on a single evening by visiting the fourth edition of this workshop in Antwerp. Host country for 2020 is Oman. Get your invitation by mailing Evy Gordts:
2 April, Handelsbeurs, Antwerpen: Eventonline15: The Fairytale Edition. Eventonline celebrates its 15th birthday in Antwerps fanciest new venue. More info soon.
26 October, Hotel Van Der Valk, Nijvel: BTEXPO 2020. This networking event for the tourism industry takes place on two different dates and locations this year. Suppliers can book their booth as from today.
27 October, De Oude Vismijn, Ghent: BTEXPO2020. The second day of BTExpo sees the whole event move to Ghent. Contact to book your space as a supplier.
On February 6 ACC organises again the Creative Strategy Night. The jury rewards great strategic thinking, based not only on effectivity, but also on creativity, imagination and originality. The Expert Center Strategic Planning (aka APG Belgium) invites the strategic planners behind three award winning APG cases to Brussels in order to show you how creative strategic thinking can move mountains and create results. This night is a must-attend for every strategic planner. It will also inspire account managers & marketeers about the added value of creative strategy. More info: click here. Venue: De Kam in Wezembeek Oppem.

Hugo Nabais – representing the Portuguese DMC “PT Signature”, is available for three days of sales calls in Belgium. He will be in the country from 17 to 19 February. Mail Marc Lambert if you’re interested in scheduling an appointment: launched a guide to help you make your outdoor events more optimally suited to the needs of people with reduced mobility. You can download the “Handy Events Guide” in PDF format here.
Brussels is putting culture back on the menu in 2020. Many of its museums and cultural centres are presenting exciting new exhibitions. Click here for an overview.
Also on the menu in Brusselsdance in all its diversity and vitality. Brussels, dance! will once again put contemporary choreography in the spotlight.

On 16 December, a new TGV connection between Brussels and Le Mans (France) was officially opened. The train leaves from Brussels at 4:56 pm, and will arrive at its destination just 3 hours and 15 minutes later. Trains from Le Mans leave at 6.23 am. Tickets start at €44 one way.
BBT Online was present for the first arrival of the OBB Nightjet in Brussels on 20 January. This new direct train will connect Vienna, Linz, Inssbruck, Munich and Brussels twice a week.
The Brussels “Ommegang” is now on UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage. It is an integral part of the Carolus V Festival, plunging visitors back into the renaissance period.

Residence Inn by Marriott is a new venue in Ghent. As the first Residence Inn in the country, it is fully focused on long term stays. Each of the 105 contemporary rooms (sizes vary from 25 to 36 m²) comes with a small kitchenette. This makes them feel more like an apartment. The ground floor houses a bar, a breakfast area, a gym and a place to do the laundry.
Teddington is a new gastronomic gem in the former Printing House in Uccle, Brussels. It offers honest and tasteful dishes – which can also be shared – homebrewed beers and meat straight from the grill. All in a venue with an interesting industrial past and full of hockey memorabilia.
Van der Valk Hotel Middelburg is expanding. A new wing is added to the hotel. The wing will feature 48 rooms and suites, wellness facilities with a swimming pool and gym. It will also have 2 tennis courts and a second hotel bar.
In the province of Luxembourg you can found Chateau de Grandvoir. This beautiful venue hosed in a castle in Neufchateau combines a restaurant, a brasserie producing its own beer and several spaces for events together with 8 rooms to spend the night. The castle is surrounded by a lush green forest.
Nhow opened its first nhow property in London last January. Throughout the hotel, bold and fresh design takes inspiration from traditional British icons: such as the Royal Family, London landmarks and the underground. Punk meets high tech style, while graffiti appears alongside unconventional images of the past monarchs. 8 floors: 190 rooms in the area of Shoreditch.
The Apurva Kempinski Bali just opened its spectacular new Koral Restaurant. It will take guests to an underwater world as the first aquarium dining experience in Bali.
Atlantis 2 – open for business in Dubai in Q4 of 2020 – is a brand new complex with a €1.2 billion price tag. It comes with 795 rooms, 231 luxury apartments (€2 million for the cheapest ones), 23 restaurants (one a Heston Blumenthal signature venue) and no less than 90 swimming pools – can’t have enough of those of course. It will curiously also be home to the world’s largest jellyfish tank. Don’t fall in.
Top chef Wim Vandamme now organises dinner parties in his own home as well. Fantastic dishes in a cosy and intimate atmosphere. Check out the menu here.
Five chefs with a total of nine Michelin stars will put on a first-class culinary evening in Kempinski Hotel Grand Arena Bansko (Bulgaria) on 20 and 21 March. If you want to be part of this experience, follow this link.

The International Air Transport Association strongly opposes taxation of aircraft fuel. They state that a tax preventing people from flying will make air traffic more expensive, but does little to reduce emissions. It was pretty obvious they were going to say this of course. But they do have a slight point. Why aren’t we investing in a better European rail network? Don’t make flying more expensive, make trains more accessible.
Brussels Airport is developing a 5G-ready network together with Nokia and Belgian operator Citymesh. This will make BA one of the first European Airports with its own 5G network.

Devasting news. Michel Pauquet, Commercial Director of Hotel Verviers and faithful guest at many of our workshops; unexpectedly died in his bed on 23 of January. BBT Online would like to express its sincere condolence to Michel’s family, friends and colleagues.
Georges Janmart’s incentive agency Travel Dedicated, hired Roger Goossens to strengthen the team. Contact him via
Bert Knuts (CEO Event Masters) was elected as the new President of the ACC Expert Center Event Marketing. He will take over from Pascal Cauwelier (Fast Forward). 32 Event marketing bureaus are ACC members.
Dieter Vranckx was appointed as Brussels Airlines’ new CEO and CCO. He will take over CCO responsibilities from Christina Foerster, who will move to Lufthansa Group. She will be responsible for Customer & Corporate Responsibility, and will also become part of Lufthansa’s Management Committee.
Javier Equisoain Blanco joined the Air Belgium sales team. He previously held sales positions at KLM, SAS, US Airways and American Airlines, as well as at NH Hotels and Maritim Hotels.
Clemence Vanhille (ex Silva Hotel Spa Balmoral) started a new function in France; at Belambra Business – venues for seminars. You can contact her at;


Karin de Graauw – Editor-in-chief BBT Online
Av. Louise 279 – 1050 Brussels – Belgium
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