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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 25th edition.

Need a Ticket?
Dubai’s strict rules

Last May a totally new ticket sales concept was launched. Building on the government’s initiative to counteract the black market for concert en festival tickets, wants to offer a platform of supply and demand.

Anybody who for whatever reason cannot use his/her ticket can now use to offer that ticket for sale in an honest way. You’ll be assured a quick sale and will get your money back fast!

Let there be cake!

Looking for that special cake that will take agendaeveryone’s breath away at your party? Take the Cake run by Antwerp born Nathalie Druyts but based in Holland will deliver a made-to-measure cake to any location in Holland or Belgium.

For those wanting to learn more about cakes, there are workshops planned in the fall of 2010. Read all about it on, it’s mouthwatering!


You read regularly stories of – sometimes fairly innocent – tourists being thrown into jail or getting fined in Dubai because of having sinned against a law they were probably not aware of.

As a popular tourism destination the Dubai government is starting up a big PR campaign stressing the rules that are in place in this Muslim country. It is known that undercover agents visit the beaches to look for unbecoming behavior such as kissing in public. A first misdemeanor will bring a warning, a second time the offenders will be prosecuted.

Other illegal points or actions that are severely frowned upon:
  • Topless sunbathing or swimming.
  • Beachwear can only be worn on the beach or in the hotel, women are encouraged to wear a bathing suit rather than a bikini.
  • On public beaches women are supposed to use the ladies beaches.
  • Short trousers (for men) and naked shoulders (for women) are seen as sinful.
  • It is considered a lack of manners to be seen eating or drinking in public during Ramadan.
  • It is absolutely forbidden to photograph Muslim women.
  • Drinking & driving a big no-no – zero tolerance! Public drunkenness will also result in incarceration.
  • Porn is illegal even ‘normal’ nudity pictures are considered pornographic.
  • Drugs are of course illegal but beware that certain European medication such as codeine is also considered a drug in Dubai!
  • Homosexuality is also against the law.
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Dublin revisited - Destination report!

BBT Online’s Frans Rombouts is pleased to revisit a city he had not been in for a number of years and is definitely pleased to discover a number of new and changed venues not in the least the new Convention Center due to open this year!

A lot is going on in Dublin, not just as one of Europe’s placed to be, but also MICE-wise. So, we couldn’t resist the urge to go and see for ourselves. For more, click here…


2 conference hotels to open shortly! In Portugal and Greece!

Greece and Portugal may be the most effected European countries by the crisis, they do open some fantastic conference hotels.

The Oitavos in Cascais has a bold design, sleek lines and elegantly simple interiors focus attention outwards – on the historical and natural elements of the grounds and the drama and romance of the Atlantic Ocean.

The 142 guestrooms of The Oitavos, includes 16 suites, with at least 64 square meters, with the two deluxe suites double that size, all with a private balcony offering ocean and views of the Oitavos Dunes golf course, recently ranked 88th on top 100 world golf courses by Golf Magazine. The hotel features a state of the art conference center for groups of up to 300 people with a separate access.

Oitavos Oitavos
Oitavos Oitavos

The Costa Navirino is the new 5-star destination at the Ionian Sea in Greece. The hotel includes a conference space up to 2,000 delegates with 766 deluxe rooms. A 4000 m thalasotherapy & spa & an
18-hole golf course designed by Bernard Langer. The hotel will be managed by Westin. The opening is on July, 1st, 2010.

Costa Navirino Costa Navirino
Costa Navirino Costa Navirino
2 new hotels – style Bohemian Chic

Tim and Kit Kep, perennial darlings of the London hotel world, have recently opened the Crosby StreetHotel in New York their first American venture. The impressive 11-story construction is located in bbt favoritedowntown New York, right in the heart of SoHo, famed epicentre of Manhattan chic.

The interior look is classic Kit Kemp – elegant and quirky yet entirely cosy. 86 individually designed rooms and suites, 360-degree skyline views. Further highlights include a leafy courtyard garden, ground-floor bar and restaurant, well-appointed gym, guest-only drawing room and several private event spaces, all impeccably designed and peppered with art works. Definitely another trendy design hotel to visit in the Big Apple.



The Story Hotel has been voted best place from where to start a designer shopping break in Stockholm. Situated on the borders of the affluent central Östermalm district and seconds away from the Stureplan Square with its designer restaurants & bars, the Story offers a smart and stylish new address in Stockholm for today’s (business) traveler.

story hotel

Mandarin Oriental Marrakech, prominent set for Sex and the City 2

We suspect that the cast of Sex and the City 2 may have been more interested in the shopping than the history of the medina, a World Heritage Site, when they filmed in Marrakech last autumn. And of course, when it came to fashion-friendly digs they were so ahead of the game they stayed at a hotel that wasn’t open yet.

Jaouad Kadiri, owner of the Mandarin Oriental Jnan Rahma, hosted the cast at his home in the extensive grounds of the palace that will open this summer at the 161-room hotel. Located in the Palmeraie, it promises to be as glamorous as the film’s stars.


Italian weddings!
Italian B&B charm in …Antwerp

Italy is a romantic destination, no doubt, no wonder Dutch organizer Inge van der Kraan found a niche in the wedding market by proposing the organization of weddings in Italy. As she says, Italian bureaucracy is not a doddle and trying to get all things done yourself without speaking the language is nearly impossible.
That’s where “De Italiaanse Bruiloft” comes in it’s own and starts organizing all details from flowers, hairdressers to permits for the wedding party and adapted to all budgets…

10 years of experience have learned her a lot and one can safely assume that the wedding will go off without a hitch and will be special!

B&B Casa Luca is a charming Bed & Breakfast in a Jugendstil house and is ideally situated between the historical centre, Central Station and the Antwerp Circular Road. Around the corner you can take the tramway that brings you in ten minutes to club 100the heart of the city. The Sportpaleis concert hall is also nearby.

Casa Luca has double rooms with each a unique look and feel. In the living room downstairs you can relax and enjoy your stay.

Over 25 events at BTC Show
Corso Como in Milan: a full experience
BTC Show
Corso Como

BTC, the Italian trade show for the meetings, events, conferences, incentive travel and business tourism industry to be held in Rimini 1-2 July, is set to deliver a rich and varied educational package, designed to update meetings professionals and ensure the involvement of all industry stakeholders.

The program comprises more than 25 events of different types open to all participants over the two days of the show.

Situated on the outskirts of the city of Milan, 10 Corso Como is located in the inner courtyard of a traditional Milanese palazzo. Visitors and customers move from the gallery to the bookshop; from the design store to the restaurant and café; rest in the courtyard garden or stay in the 3 rooms hotel.

Opened in 2003, "3 Rooms" is an intimate hotel that fits in perfectly with the hospitality concept of 10 Corso Como.
Some nice restaurants to discover - A tour through Belgium & Holland

Brussels – La Porte de l’Atlas
You do not have to further than the Chaussee de Wavre in Brussels to find yourself in a Moroccan atmosphere at La Porte de l’Atlas. A venue which can take up to 100 people and specializes in large gatherings, the authentic Moroccan cuisine and attractions make it into a great address for an evening of fun and good food.

Ghent - Sailing Queen
In the heart of the Ghent port lies the old clubhouse of the Royal Belgian Sailing Club of Ghent, now the venue for the Sailing Queen, a trendy restaurant on the water with a definite American Eastern Seaboard feel about it. In summertime the lounge terrace is an absolute divine place to while away a few happy hours whilst watching the boats go by….and the food is quite good as well!

Antwerp – Josphine’s Restaurant & Bar
Josephine's Restaurant & Bar is located at Antwerp Zuid. The interior is vintage chic. In the large bar Marc Mathieux serves beautiful cocktails, great champers and its close cousins, wines by the glass and a nice beer selection. Specialties of the house are "Josephine's perfumed martinis”.
Don’t miss the Jazzy Thursday’s, when the Marco Migliore Duo is playing live Jazz on piano and contrabass.


Antwerp - Glenn
In an old potato peeling factory in the trendy Zuid area of Antwerp two well-known restaurateurs recently opened Glenn’s, named after the deceased society hairdresser Glenn Gemeiner, brother of one of the founders.

The designer company who also is responsible for all Armani boutiques in Europe also saw the possibilities of the venue and created a great place that has not lost touch with its industrial origin. The menu card has a few original dishes in the level of a good brasserie.

Amsterdam – The little Buddha
After the worldwide success of the Buddha-bar Paris, its founder Raymond Visan decided to open several restaurants all over the world. It enjoys currently a successful presence in many major cities such as London, Dubai, Las Vegas, Cairo, Beirut, Kiev, Sao Paolo, Prague, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain and many more restaurants will be opening very soon.

More clubby but as wonderful as the Buddha bar, the Little Buddha with their delicious fusion foods and enchanted music make the most relaxing and enjoyable place to be. The new Little Buddha Café Amsterdam, with its restaurant, sushi bar and lounge bar is sited alongside the Pathe Cinema and Jack’s Casino inside Amsterdam’s emblematic and fully renovated City Theatre.

Hoofddorp – Vork en Mes
A futuristic complex was erected for the Floriade in 2002 called the Haarlemmermeerpaviljoen. This very ‘severe’ building recently acquired a new restaurant ‘Vork en Mes’. The great location in the forest Haarlemmermeersebos near the water invites first to a good walk followed by a sturdy meal. Vork en Mes uses fair trade products from the region and has a home delivery service for those who downed a few too many glasses...


Leiden - Woods
A unique location in an old harbor hangar along the Old Rhine near Leiden one can find the contemporary restaurant Woods. God made food, the devil the cooks said James Joyce in Ulysses but the cooks at Woods use the best of the local produce and make a meal in their restaurant a unique happening.

A great terrace along the water gives you the impression to be front row for the Henley regatta and watch the happenings on the water from the comfort of the restaurant with a good drink and an excellent meal.

Liege – Labo 4
Let’s end our culinary tour back in Belgium, more specifically in restaurant Labo 4 in the fiery city of Liège. The restaurant may be situated in an old biochemical laboratory located in the heart of a park, the dishes that come out of this kitchen are of the very edible variety.

Labo 4 is a restaurant, a terrace, a place for people of all sorts to meet, a happy place. For many visitors the Labo 4 can be a trip down memory lane, remembering the times they slaved as students over their assignments in the laboratory. Much better to come back now and enjoy a great meal!


All eyes on Malta – Invitation for Belgian Meeting, Incentives & Events Planners

BBT Online and Malta Tourism Authority are joining forces to introduce a far away, yet close by destination, ideal for Meetings, Incentives and Events and with easy access.

MarsaxlokkCorporate & Association Planners: You are kindly invited to a Maltese discovery luncheon at the stylish International Club Chateau St Anne in Auderghem, Brussels on Tuesday July 6th at 12.30. What can you expect? A short presentation on the destination, an occasion to meet with representatives of the main hotels on the island and of course a great discovery  luncheon.

Incentive Houses & Event Agencies
: You are kindly invited to a Maltese networking dinner at the stylish International Club Chateau St Anne in Auderghem, Brussels on Wednesday July 7th at 7 pm. As you are probably already well acquainted with Malta we see this evening as a networking opportunity and an occasion to meet with representatives of the island.

Would you like to participate? Click here and register quickly.

Real Short !!

The AIPC Annual Conference will take place in Liverpool on July 3-7, 2010.
The Principality of Monaco will host the first international nightlife industry gathering on the 11th, 12th and 13th November 2010 at the Grimaldi Forum.
Museum Night Fever will take place again on Saturday 26 February 2011 in about 20 Brussels Museums.
Consult BBT Online’s MICE agenda, and don’t miss any event –

For book lovers visiting Paris, go to the old house of de Montesquieu and visit the largest library in France over 100 years old …27,000m² of pure reader’s happiness!
ICCA figures for 2009 show the following top 5 for international events by associations: Vienna (160), Barcelona (135), Paris (131), Berlin (129) and Singapore (119).
Oman recently opened a brand new cruise terminal: Port Sultan Qaboos in Muscat.
The widespread disruption to European flight schedules due to the ash cloud has led to a 30 percent surge in Eurotunnel’s online bookings.
Flemish cities will now also provide digital guides that can be downloaded on iPhones, iPods, smart phones or mp3 players. The 'Automatic StoryPlay' via satellite is a unique technology by Flemish company Navitell and brings a European premiere to Flanders.

Fortified by last years‘success (over 5,000 roomnights booked) BHA (Brussels Hotel Association ) and BECI organize for the 2nd year “Brussels tonight we sleep in a hotel”: very interesting and advantageous rates for people living in Brussels to try out their hotels and become Ambassadors for their city. For reservations & rates go to
Amrath Hotels opened a new 92-room property on the Dutch-Belgian border in Hazeldonk along the A16/E19.
In February 2010 the first Marriott Resort in Oman was opened: the Salalah Beach Marriott Resort located in the South on Mirbat Beach.
After extensive renovation the Sheraton Oman Hotel in Muscat will reopen its doors in September 2010.
To kick off the soccer excitement, Design Hotels is introducing a ‘World Cup Rate’ with the chance to get half price rooms at its member hotels!

Vueling celebrates the first months of its new Brussels - Vigo route, after Barcelona, Sevilla and Valencia the 4th Spanish destination for the dynamic airline.
Jet Airways has launched a secure and user friendly mobile site, The mobile site will provide guests access to a range of information and services on Jet Airways.
As from June 12th, Alitalia flies directly from Brussels to Alghero / Sardinia.
Air France-KLM has reported a record loss of €1.56 billion in what its chief executive described as the airline’s “annus horribilis”. After a year marked by the crash of Flight 447 off the coast of Brazil, Europe’s largest airline blamed the losses on passengers shifting to low-cost carriers and downgrading from business to economy.
The recently discerned Skytrax World Airlines Awards rewarded Etihad Airlines with the Best First Class Award.

The opening of the direct flight of Air Canada, Brussels- Montreal has resulted in a new team in Brussels:
  • Philippe Durieux, new country manager.
  • Pierre-Yves Colon joined the Sales team as Sales Executive for leisure sales.
  • Luc Delys, station manager.
  • Gina Vercouter, Sales Manager Belux with focus on Corporate Travel and MICE market.

Je voulais juste vous signaler que je trouve les news que vous m’envoyez regulierement particulierement bien realises. Tant dans la forme que sur le fond.
Bravo, et surtout continuez !
Philippe Brunelli  - VP Strategic Projects  - Delhaize Group - Brussels

Laughing is good for you! In every Take5 edition we publish a small funny video from YouTube. This time: female bloopers. Click here.


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