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Appearing in your inbox every other week, TAKE5 gives you an update on the latest Meetings, Incentives and Business Travel related news. It contains short and to the point information on venues, people, happenings, lifestyle and general news that cannot wait to be told! BBT Online guarantees you 15 new ideas in just 3 minutes. Enjoy our 18th edition.

Fly through town...
Buy your own island

“I’ll come by airboard...”
No, this new vehicle has nothing to do with a snowboard, and it isn’t a flying board either. This is a mini hovercraft. You stand on it, and it hovers you to your destination.

By balancing your own weight you can steer the scooter, and slow your ‘flight’ down.
Good fun for team events. www.trafficontrol.nl

The Indonesian government has recently offered thousands its deserted islands for sale. So, if you are looking for your own private island, just buy one. Or lease one for a million US dollars per year on average.

And for those who wish to stay closer to home, you can also buy islands off the coast of Sweden...

A new bubbly address in Brussels
Best Belgian Chocolate of the World!

If you’re in the mood for champagne you will enjoy the ‘Champagnotheque’ situated in the splendid setting of the Galeries Saint-Hubert in the heart of Brussels.

The new splendid venue can be privatized for up to 40 people and is probably one of the few places in Brussels where you can still enjoy the unique spectacle of ‘sabrer le champagne’, the champagne cork being taken off by one slice of the sabre…an ideal place if you just want to enjoy a good glass of champagne – many vintage bottles available! – or organize a tasting or just a party

Galerie du Roi n° 6, 1000 Brussels – a bubbly address for your little black book!!

A new place to defend the truth about Belgian Chocolate: "La Maison des Maitres Chocolatiers Belges” (MMCB) on the legendary Grand Place of Brussels.

The "House" is a concept of the organisation "Best Belgian Chocolate of the World" (BBCW) and offers demonstrations of "Chocolate Workshop Discovery Craft", a private room for events and dinners and a boutique representing 10 Belgian Master chocolatiers.

For more details on moments of pure chocolate happiness, go to www.bbcw.be

De Hoge Wier – the flagship of Muiden
The Loft Boat in Brussels

Events on boats or ships are always a sure winner..by clement weather. ‘De Hoge Wier’ is one of the fastest ships of the Dutch charter fleet. It has been completely renovated, the cabins have been taken out thus creating a large deck space suitable for about 50 people.

Enjoy the sensations of being aboard a 108- year old sailing ship and discover the beautiful Dutch coast for a fun day on the water. www.hogewier.nl

On the canal in central Brussels, the Loft Boat is another recently added venue for meetings & events.

Multifunctional rooms, a lounge & loft trendy atmosphere create the perfect setting for trendy presentations or launches with a difference.
Easy access and ample parking are added positive selling points!

BBT Online readers share their top favorite restaurants, hotels, destinations, personalities, and so much more with you …..

An adventurer who discovered Asia and then came home to Belgium and found her niche in the MICE business. Elke Van Zaelen, Managing Director at Uniglobe has of course traveled extensively but has certainly taken in good tips by colleagues and friends.

These addresses have become her favorites: other than Asia, ‘other’ home, Elke is definitely a fan of Madrid and a few other fine places, time to bring out pen and paper and copy a few excellent suggestions. Click here to discover her selection.

Surf to our archive and get more tips from other BBT Online readers. Click here.

Het Godshuis - a great monument
Pampering in Antwerp!

This 19th century monastery building has kept many of its original features when it was restored: an impressive cupola, beautifully manicured gardens, high galleries and typical rooms, but also intimate vaulted cellars, all with contemporary accents that make the venue quite unique. The four function rooms with views of the gardens are perfect for all sorts of seminars and events.
The culinary experience under the able direction of Chef Frank De Wilde is another good reason to favor this venue!

The hotel has 64 luxury rooms and suites as well as since very recently a wellness centre. A great venue in the East Flanders Province! www.godshuis.be

Maison Delaneau is situated in the south of Antwerp, in the heart of the art and fashion district. Some rooms have additional features and are equipped with a jacuzzi, an open fire, a private garden or a sauna.

A visit to the spa is here a unique experience. You can undergo exquisite treatments combined with pure biological products. Find your balance and feel your mind and body regaining energy.

Maison Delaneau has varying exhibitions on display with innovative art works. Enjoy excellent drinks at the wine and champagne bar afterwards. You can also order high tea or some tasty sushi. www.maisondelaneau.com

Fort Napoleon: a unique location
Hangar 58 in Bokrijk

After a thorough restauration that lasted 5 years the old fort built in Napoleon’s time has reopened its doors, well hidden in the great dunes near Ostend.

Not just a fascinating place to visit, Fort Napoleon also offers a number of event possibilities such as Fort Labyrinth in collaboration with The Outsider Coast.

Cocktails, sit-down dinners for up to 100 participants, a reception on the roof with a view of the North Sea, it is all possible at this historical venue www.fort-napoleon.be

In the ‘Old Town’ of the Open-air Museum of Bokrijk (Limburg, Belgium) a new permanent all-seasons event hall has been erected: Hangar 58. The brand new facility offers great views via a giant glass wall of the historical buildings and market place which all together offer event possibilities for up to 10,000 people!

The building has its own entrance and private car park. The hall itself has space for 2000 delegates and has extra space for VIP rooms available.

Join BBT Online to Spain and/or Equador

G.S.A.R. Marketing has selected BBT Online as its exclusive media partner for the Belgian market. BBT Online has the privilege of inviting 10 qualified Meeting and Incentive Planners as hosted buyer from the Belgium and Dutch markets for the following 2 fairs:

- 14th edition MITM Euromed, Meetings & Incentives Market, 9 -11 June, Lloret de Mar – Spain
- 16th Edition MITM Americas, Meetings & Incentives Market, 6 – 8 October, Quito – Ecuador

G.S.A.R. marketing will pay

- your air transportation with taxes and fees to Lloret de Mar and/or Quito (up to a maximum amount of 200 euro for Lloret de Mar and 550 euro for Quito)
- up to 2 nights (Lloret de Mar) and 4 nights (Quito) accommodation in an official hotel
- ground transfers airport/hotel
- functions and meal
- pre or post MITM fam tour
- Registration fee for Lloret de Mar, 250 euro before March 20th, refunded fully after having attended the fair and completed 20 appointments with exhibitors.
- Registration fee for Ecuador, 350 euro before April 30th, refunded completely less a handling fee of 95 euro, after having attended the fair and completed 20 appointments with exhibitors.

A companion/partner/spouse can join you: 150 euro, no refundable for Lloret de Mar – sharing hotel room. Idem for Quito: 195 euro. Air transportation at own cost.

If you feel like joining our group, or want to receive more information (without any obligation) about the programme, post-tours, etc send an e-mail to karin@bbtonline.eu We give priority to those who are member of the BBT Online Club 100. Not a member yet? For 45 euro per year, you’ll receive all our newsletters and have priority on all our events. Click here for more info.

The extraordinary impact of Women in the economy!
The Culibus, an initiative of the Jeunes Restaurateurs

Following the recent revelations in The Economist that women in the US now make up over 50% of the workforce and the claim that "We did it! “, Forum JUMP has decided to change the title and programme for this year’s Forum in response.

The JUMP Forum 2010 in Brussels on the 29th of April will now focus on the extraordinary impact that an ever increasing number of women in the workforce is having on economies and businesses everywhere. Each year JUMP inspires hundreds of professional women and men across Europe with its annual Forum, featuring the most successful women and the most brilliant experts in gender diversity. www.forumjump.be

The Culibus is an initiative of the Jeunes Restaurateurs d’Europe in Holland. The plan is to take a gigantic VIP-bus annex star restaurant on the road to visit children hospitals, under privileged children etc.
The kids get a children’s menu prepared with extra care but definitely healthy and nutritious but also fun!

The Culibus can also be hired by corporate clients and proceeds can then go to a charity. The whole event started late 2009 and has a great future ahead of itself!

Wish you were here.. arguably Maastricht’s two most desirable addresses

Camille Oostwegel offers a nice collection of first-class hotels but on a visit to Maastricht & surroundings you will have great difficulty in choosing between these two gems: Chateau Neercanne and the Kruisheren Hotel….or maybe not, as one is situated outside the great little city of Maastricht surrounded by fabulous gardens and green. The Kruisheren Hotel on the other hand is slap bang in the heart of the city and therefore also the perfect departure place for a couple of days of discovering Maastricht.

Chateau Neercanne
A place to dream away in, a splendid location, first-class facilities, a gastronomic restaurant (1 Michelin star) and a wine cellar to…dream of and enjoy during your stay….enjoy the baroque gardens, situated on 4 different levels and a world heritage Unesco site, events in the rooms excavated in the mountainside ….make Chateau Neercanne an ideal venue for upmarket events.

Kruisheren Hotel Maastricht
Imagine a 15th-century cloister & church and think design..yes the two can mix beautifully and how! Super modern design has been integrated in the historical buildings and everything melts together elegantly and effortlessly.

The old cloister cells and stables are now comfortable and roomy rooms, the cloister gardens offer plenty of space to relax in and the church..well, the church is a place where you go to worship…first-class cuisine and a wide selection of wines and other drinks… www.chateauhotels.nl

Barcelona : historical wellness
Hotel Fox – Copenhagen – wacky & fun!

Located in the Gothic Centre of Barcelona, Aires de Barcelona is a new Spa concept, similar to the traditional Arabic baths.

Enjoy and feel the benefits of the different water temperatures (tepidarium, caldarium and frigidarium), massages and aromatherapy in the candlelit vaulted cellars of an historical building. www.airedebarcelona.com

21 international artists from the fields of graphic design, urban art and illustration turned Hotel Fox in central Copenhagen into an exciting and creative lifestyle hotel.
61 rooms, 21 artists, 1,000 ideas. Each room is an individual piece of art. From wacky & comical styles to strict graphic design. From fantastic street art and Japanese Manga to simply spaced out fantasies. www.hotelfox.dk

Job Corner

Looking for a new challenge? @dmire is a leading licensed service company, based in Alsemberg (Beersel), that supports, develops and manages organizations in the strategic use of Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events.

@dmire operates in Belgium and worldwide and is looking on a very short time span for multi lingual project managers to ensure its further developments. Interested?

Click here for more info.

Job request
Looking for a young & dynamic & experienced (her own words!) event manager, Mélanie-Laure Conrads is your woman! Click here for full CV!

Invitation for Corporate Planners: What’s Cooking – It’s Swiss cooking !!

Once again BBT Online is proud to invite you for an exceptional event. On this occasion BBT Online has teamed up with a partner of the highest level: Switzerland, who will introduce all participants to the secrets of Swiss cuisine and the destination of course.

Tuesday March 2nd is reserved for Incentive Agencies (fully booked already) and Tuesday March 9th for Corporate Meeting & Incentive Planners where we still have some places available. So check your diary and register for a fun event.

A top event asks for a top location: B52, on Avenue Brugmann in Brussels, home of the Eric Boschman Food & Wine Academy, where his team will welcome you in the tasteful and original salons for a Swiss Cookery Course.

More info, and for registration, click here.

Real Short !!

The 18th edition of the Asia Fair takes place on February 20th and 21st. This year the host country is Sri Lanka and guest of honor is ‘Hospitaal zonder Grenzen’ (Rotary Belgium). The Asia Fair 2010 – can be found in Gemeenschapscentrum De Zandloper, Kaasmarkt 75 - 1780 Wemmel.
On February 22 & 23 Chateau du Lac in Genval welcomes the top event specialists in Belgium for the 3rd BEA Convention. Click here for further details.
The 2010 edition of the Visit USA workshop will take place at the Metropole Hotel on Place de Brouckere/Brouckereplein on March 8th.
Mark your diaries for the Belgian SITE Meet & Lunch Sessions for 2010: March 9th, May 11th, June 29th, September 21st, November 23rd and December 14th General Assembly. All events will take place at the Diamant Conference Center in Brussels – www.sitebelux.org
The 2010 MPI conference Holland will take place on March 9th in the showcase venue of the RAI Amsterdam, The Elicium – www.mpiweb.nl
ITB Berlin, March 10th – 14th 2010, organizes a MICE day on March 10th.
Treat yourself to an experience of a lifetime and celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day in Ireland on March 17th! You’ll never know what hits you but fun guaranteed! www.stpatricksfestival.ie
On March 19th, during the Brussels Meeting week, the Tourism Job Day will be organized in collaboration with BITC at Autoworld.
The Life² Health & Wellness fair for Belgium will be held at the Heysel in Brussels on March 26-27 & 28th - www.life2.be
Major industry players of the MICE Industry have confirmed their participation for IT&CM (Incentive Travel & Conventions, Meetings) China 2010. The tradeshow, aptly themed “Bridging the Global MICE Business”, will be held from 7 to 9 April at Shanghai Mart Expo – www.itcmchina.com
ALTM (Asia Luxury Travel Market), the region’s only dedicated luxury travel event, announces the event registration open for 2010 VIP Buyers and Exhibitors. To register your interest in ALTM 2010 and for further information on the event visit: www.altm.com.cn, 14 – 17th of June, Shanghai.
Meeting Brugge is proud to be hosting MPI’s first European Conference on Sustainability in the Meetings Industry, 27-29 June, 2010 – www.mpiweb.org
BTC, the Italian trade show for the meetings industry has switched to the summer – July 1& 2 - and relocated to Rimini, with a view to offering buyers and exhibitors even greater business opportunities.
The Madrid Premium Fair for luxury goods will take place from October 14th to 17th - www.premiumfair.com

Planckendael, near Mechelen, is more than the holiday resort of the animals of the famous Antwerp Zoo. It now has a huge event hall, a top location for green events! For info, contact Veerle De Bie via Tel +32(0)3-203 56 35.
Careful!! Travelers who have not filled out the online ESTA-form risk a hefty fine upon arrival in the US that can go up to 400 dollar.
Europcar Belgium launches a new tariff: “Mini Maxi for a mini-price”: get a “surprise car” for the unbeatable tariff of 42 euro per day.
After the tremendous inundations of the last weeks, the archeological site of Machu Picchu in Peru will remained closed until at least April of this year.
The 10th edition of ‘Lets’ Meet in Brussels’, the bible for all organizers looking for information on Destination Brussels , has just been published. A pdf version can be downloaded from www.brusselsinternational.be
EUROMIC officially announced that Travel Motives, South Africa, has joined the organization as a World Affiliate destination management company.
Want to organize a ‘Hole in the Wall’ evening of fun, go to www.hollandevenementengroep.nl for more information & details.
The European Travel Commission has published its latest of quarterly insight reports on the general trends in Tourism…in case you did not know them yet, go to www.etc-corporate.org
“100 x Stijlvol Logeren in België voor minder dan 75 euro” by Erwin De Decker, a book full of amazing discoveries and suggestions in Belgium...food for thought!
If you are looking for extra help when searching for new and original venues in Belgium, why not consult www.ceremony.be or www.meetingrooms.be . For 360° looks at some of the better meeting rooms, go to www.vanbelgie.be
76% of people believe that airlines should charge 'Fat Tax', according to the latest poll on leading travel site Skyscanner.
For fans of fast cars, a unique opportunity to ‘fly low’ on mythical race courses Spa-Francorchamps and Nurburgring, revv up and visit www.1000virages.com

The citizenM Amsterdam City has been elected as most trendy hotel in the world by millions of correspondents of the world traveling community TripAdvisor.
Aquamarijn, the Wellness at Relais & Chateaux La Butte aux Bois in Lanaken has recently been voted as best Wellness Center in Flanders. www.aquamarijn.be
Unfortunately the new disco Spirito Martini in the Anglican Church just off Avenue Louise has had to close its doors because of excessive noise and traffic congestion…a short lived experience!
Imagine a ‘rolling’ café at your front door!...Go to Welcome on Wheels : www.cafewelkom.be
Surprise your nearest & dearest or your colleagues with a stay at a fun hotel, give them a Charming Box! www.charmingbox.be
Cafe Theatre (of Ghent fame) opens a new restaurant in Central London. The project consists of a bar and restaurant similar to the premises in Ghent. The new project is located in Marylebone, opening is planned for spring 2010.

B-Aparthotels, market leader for apparthotels in Brussels (over 160 flats in the Belgian Capital!) announced the appointment of Filip Schlup as General Manager.
Ana Escarpenter has left the Catalunya Tourist Board in Brussels unexpectedly and is looking for a new challenge. She can be reached on ana@escarpenter.com.
Belinda De Bruyn left BTExpo to return to her former ‘love’ and will be the Business Development & Marketing manager for Midi Station & Belga Queen, the two Pinto brasseries in Brussels. She can be reached on Belinda.debruyn@midistation.eu.
Dona Spiegel of Lost & Found Recruitement Consultants in Holland is currently conducting an indepth survey of salaries in the 4 & 5 star hotels in Belgium and is looking for some more information. She can be contacted on spiegel@lostandfound-tms.com.
Colm Clarke has been appointed Managing Director of Association Global Services (to be rebranded to Congrex Belgium in 2010) with immediate effect. Colm will take charge of the establishment of the Congrex brand in Belgium. Congrex Group is one of the world’s leading meeting and congress organisers, with a turnover of more than 100 M eur and 320 full-time employees.
The Association of Corporate Travel Executives (ACTE) is pleased to announce that during a 20 January Board of Directors meeting, Belgium based Yves Galimidi, Global Travel Purchaser, IKEA was unanimously appointed to a two year term as ACTE Regional Chair, Europe.

What a great latest edition again, full of useful information and sunshine. Congratulations to the entire BBT Online Team for this 15 minutes of pure happiness that I always have when reading you.
Anne Schelfhof
– Managing Director – Tellus – Destination Management Company and Incentive & Travel Company

Laughing is good for you! In every take5 edition we publish a small funny video clip from YouTube. Get you regular dose of ‘fun vitamins’ by clicking here.

Karin de Graauw – Editor BBT Online
Rue Van Eyckstraat 29 – 1050 Brussels – Belgium