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meetinireland meetopolis

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 43th edition. All of our take5 articles are advertorial free.

Site Belgium: Spa-Francorchamps
Fly like a bird

Forget about your office for a while, leave your files behind and don't think about annoying clients or colleagues. Join Site Belgium on their next event and discover what real speed is. Let the engines roar!

On September 8, 2011, they organize a special Agendaevent in Hotel De La Source near the Spa-Francorchamps racetrack. A dinner and an optional overnight stay are provided, but more importantly you’ll get an introduction of the track, including racing some laps with a professional driver or with your own car.

The number of participants is very limited. Mail to register.


Did you ever want to fly?

With the Jetlev Flyer, you can now soar ten meter above the water with a speed of almost 50 km/h. The machine pumps water into a jetpack, and you decide how much will be forced out again to make you fly. For € 99.000 it could be yours.

Cortijo Soto Real:
luxury and privacy for high end meetings and incentives

This 5-star boutique hotel offers 25 elegant rooms in sunny Andalusia and is close to cultural centers such as Sevilla, Jerez de la Frontera, Ronda and Marbella. Its 5000 (!) acre estate and the variety of activities on the site make it an ideal destination for MICE groups.

There’s a Spa and Wellness center, as well as 2 meeting rooms are available. The surroundings are perfect test and pleasure drives: automobile industry incentives need nothing more. The manor is owned by Bruno Van Marcke. The site has operated as a Small Luxury Hotel since 2004, the hotel can be closed for exclusive use.


ligne TAM airlines

Crowne Plaza Antwerpen: new meeting rooms and Octopus
‘t Stad – “the town” – is what Antwerp locals call their city. Rich history, culture, architecture, gastronomy and fashion: Antwerp has it all. Crowne Plaza Antwerpen brought it all together into the hotel’s interior design, decoration and services.

Fourteen newly decorated meeting rooms for up to 500 attendees are available, eight of them with floor-to-ceiling windows to enjoy the breathtaking panorama. Enjoy the Living & Bar AnnA, its endless choice of Belgian beers and its modern gastronomy with Antwerp specialties. The venue holds 262 contemporary and freshly designed rooms.

A shuttle service from/to Brussels Airport is provided as well.     

Another novelty at the hotel: Octopus – the fascination event pool. A pool in combination with a dancefloor. Octopus hosts happenings like chic soirees, inspiring seminars and sparkling parties.
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Crowne PlazaCrowne Plaza
Natural Meetings
Historical class in Mechelen
Baron’s House

Baron’s House, part of the castle park of Neerijse’s coach house, lies in the centre of the nature reserve De Doode Bemde. It combines Bed, Breakfast and Business.

The venue offers eight luxurious rooms and a meeting room. In addition, each room offers a great view on the castle and its park. It in close proximity to both Leuven and Brussels. A perfect meeting place to rent as a whole.

Baron’s House

Den Breckpot

Den Breckpot is located in an magnificent historical building, right in Mechelen’s old city centre, and dates all the way back to the 14th century. It’s been fully renovated but still breathes authenticity. Three floors can be used for events.

The wine cellar for beer of wine tastings, the first floor for receptions or seated dinners, the second floor for meetings and presentations and the lounge to relax or to look upon the city by night.

Den breckpot

Destination Report: Discover The Hague

The Hague is the beating heart of Dutch politics, and it has the embassies, royal palaces, museums and conference venues to prove it.  It’s more than past and politics though: above all it’s a lively city bursting with events.

Jonathan Ramael jumped on the Thalys for a visit, and came back with an interesting destination report. Click here to read more:

The Hague

Catering robots?
Global Meetings
RobotIn about 5 to 10 years humanoid robots will no longer be science fiction characters but pure reality. But no need to wait that long, since you can already deploy an ultra performance robot at a your seminar today!

Numerous interactions are possible with this powerful attention grabber as it fascinates young and old alike. Don’t consider it a simple toy though: the Club 100robot provides a high-tech and innovating image, can hand out flyers, business cards and greet guests. It communicates and brings your message across. Info and bookings on

Global Meetings

Are you organizing an event with at least ten participants? Then you might choose Air France & KLM as the official transport provider for your national and international events. They offer lots of benefits: discounted fares, an online communication kit, and more.

Organize all your travel logistics in just a few clicks on www.airfranceklm-globalmeetings.comMarion Shammah is the local BeLux coordinator of Air France & KLM Global Meetings. Feel free to contact her for any enquiries:
Tel + 32 (0) 2 541 42 30
Some small tips for flying and packing

Flying and packing can be a nerve-wracking business. British Airways gives you some small but helpful tips to make your travels easier.

  1. Pack a Kashmir scarf. It will keep you warm as well as stylish.
  2. There are always forms, and they need filling: bring a pen.
  3. Don’t pack full bottles of shampoo: the chance of bursting is much greater.
  4. Chewing gum during take-off keeps your ears from popping.
  5. Try not to smell. Scented tissues are your friends.
  6. Nobody forgets their favorite underwear. Put your passport and other important papers on top of it to help you think of it.
  7. Mimic the moves of the most experienced business traveler at the security checkpoint. He knows how to pass fastest.
Real Short !!

September 5: BBT Online’s 4th Four Destinations Workshop.  BBT Online and four new partners: Bruges, Cuba, Morocco and a joint venture between Denmark and Greenland invite you to Castle Gravenhof for a varied and interesting mix of networking, education and fun!
September 5-9: London, ROI Week. Six different courses on how to achieve and prove the return on investment of your events, all in the beautiful Down Hall Country House Hotel just outside London.
September 10: Balloon’s Day Parade. This Brussels festival is a true tradition, attracting thousands of visitors every year. Marvel at a parade of huge helium balloons, accompanied by folkloristic groups and marching bands.
October 1: Brussels, European Job Day. A recruitment event for all types of companies and organizations, also giving practical information dealing with all aspects of European mobility. It attracts over 10.000 qualified, multilingual applicants every year.
October 1-2:  Waterloo Historic Cars. An old-timer event in the shadow of the famous Waterloo Lion. A must for everyone with a weak spot for beautiful old cars.
October 2-4: Paris, ACTE Global Education Conference 2011. The keynote speakers for this conference on identifying new and innovative approaches to managed travel have been announced. Check for more info.
October 3-4: Vienna Hofburg, Access 2011. The largest B2B trading show of the Austrian Conference Industry. Now you can register for the preconvention tour of Tirol, from September 30 to October 2.
October 4: Star Alliance Meetings and Conventions Workshop. An educational evening and networking dinner with the Star Alliance Team in the B. house on Brussels Airport. A perfect opportunity to tighten the bonds between its different members.
October 19: Sheraton Brussels Airport, tRaVeL! The Workshop. The professional workshop for group travel. From 1.30pm to 5.30pm.
November 15-18: Executives involved in organizing MICE events are invited to apply to attend as hosted buyers to MITM Americas, taking place in El Salvador.
November 16: Hergé Museum, Annual Meeting of the Switzerland Convention & Incentive Bureau and its Swiss partners. An interesting overview of the latest features of meetings and incentives in Switzerland. Contact for reservations.
January 18-19: Ljubljana, Conventa 2012. The leading meeting industry fair of South East Europe. You can now sign up for the hosted buyers programme.

Freshfield Recruitment offers regular job opportunities in the travel, tourism, airline and hospitality industry in Belgium and Luxembourg.
A year and a half after the name change to Site Belgium, is now offline. The new site can be found on From now on all e-mail addresses will have an suffix. 
According to, a dating site for married business men/women (?!), Brussels can now proudly call itself the fourth most unfaithful city in Europe, behind Paris, Milan and Barcelona. Congratulations is probably not the right word! is a website providing you with up-to-date info on Pro-Poor Tourism: tourism that results in increased net benefits for poor people. Surely worth a visit.
LinkedIn recently changed its privacy settings to use people’s name and pictures in ads. To prevent this, click on your name and go to “Settings”. In the small menu, click on “Account” and then on “Manage Social Advertising”. Remove the checkmark next to “LinkedIn may use my name & photo in social advertising”. Done and done!
A new world record was set for the most valuable bottle of white wine ever sold. The bottle of 1811 Chateau d’Yquem was sold to private collector Christian Vanneque for a total price of £75,000 and then to know that people die in the Horn of Africa.
Tenemo is a new system solution to make reputation management and a structured dialogue with customers easier. It offers individual solutions for the hotel, catering and travel sectors. For more info, check:
EMIF started announcing names of exhibitors who will attend the 2012 edition. Belgian exhibitors started registering much earlier than last year, some with increased exhibiting space. More international exhibitors are increasingly demonstrating their interest for EMIF as well.
VisitPanama has a unique offer for all foreign tourists visiting the country. During the first thirty days of their stay, tourists can claim a free travel insurance. The insurance covers almost all medical expenses and also reimburses lost or stolen passports.
Euromic recently announced that it added a new World Affiliate in Southeast Asia: CDM – Creative Destination Management of Thailand.

The legendary La Reserve Hotel in Knokke will reopen in the middle of September, after being raised from the ground again in a 23 million-euro project.
Hospitality Belgium Consulting, founded by Thierry Vermeiren and Martin Duchateau, is a brand new consulting bureau. Its ten consultants have a combined experience of 176 years in the hotel business.
Worldhotels strengthens its presence in Eastern Europe with the addition of Mamaison Hotels to their portfolio. This will give them ten new venues in the region.
Antwerp’s hotels are now united into AHA: the Antwerp Hotel Association. The president is Didier Boehlen, GM of Radisson BLU Astrid Antwerp.
Wallonia now has two five-star hotels. Chateau du Lac in Genval  and the Crown Plaza Hotel in Liege. Flanders only has one: the Kempinski Hotel Dukes Palace in Bruges. Brussels has a staggering 16 five-star venues.
Hilton Brussels City’s Hector De La Rosa won the National Cocktail Competition held by the Union of Belgium’s Bartenders. He beat 27 other contestants to the prize with his cocktail Grincot and will now defend Belgium’s honor on the World Championships in Warsaw this November.
Hotel Lone, Design Hotels’ first member in Croatia, is now open. The 248-room property is located in the picturesque Mediterranean town of Rovinj. It is built to resemble a sleek white ocean liner floating on the hillside, and holds three restaurants, three bars, a nightclub, a wellness center and a 600-seat auditorium.
Dolce La Hulpe Brussels, situated in the heart of the Soignes Forest, will start generating its own green power by fitting the roof with more than 1,000 photovoltaic solar panels. This new project is part of an umbrella program that consists of a series of green initiatives.
The Mandarin Oriental opened in Paris, becoming the third luxury Asian hotel brand in less than 12 months to launch a venue in the French capital.

Brussels South Charleroi Airport opens a “priority lane”. This quick pass through the security check will cost only €4, which could make it interesting for frequent flyers.
British Airways is about to make your childhood dreams come true, with the announcement of its biggest pilot recruitment drive in more than ten years. The airline plans to take on more than 800 new pilots by 2016, with jobs for as many as 400 totally new recruits.
Air France will start flying directly from Brussels Airport to Nantes and Bordeaux, starting on October 2. Two flights a day will take off on weekdays.
Star Alliance refused Air India’s membership because it didn’t meet the required standards. Air India had until July 31 to meet the conditions.
Travelers within the Star Alliance network will now have access to all travel information via an iPhone app. The app includes real-time updates on flight status, the option to search for flights and city guides with suggestions of accommodation, restaurants and shopping.
As of November 15, Air Berlin will support direct flights from Dusseldorf to Curacao. This is interesting for Belgian travelers, since the city is easily accessible by car and train. There will be one weekly flight.
BATM, the Belgian Association of Travel Management, is disappointed about Elio Di Rupo’s proposal of an additional tax on business and first class airline tickets. "This is bad news for the whole travel industry, which is already under severe pressure," said Pascal Struyve, BATM’s Chairman.

Jan Wijnen is the new GM of the Conrad Brussels Hotel. His predecessor Marc de Beer leaves for China, where he’ll become the new GM of the Hilton Beijing Wanfujing.
Eric Rozenberg, President of Swantegy, was appointed as Non-Executive Chairman of Reed Travel Exhibitions global portfolio of meetings events.
Hercules Trophy International and PureC are proud to announce that Paul Cordier (Owner and Managing Director of PureC) is joining the Hercules team as Vice President Marketing for Hercules Trophy International.
Patrick Pourbaix, the current GM of Costa Cruises Benelux, was promoted to GM of Costa Cruises France.
Marcin Van Gijlswijk was appointed as new Country Manager for Benelux LOT Polish Airlines. He is now responsible for all commercial activities in the region. He has been working for LOT since 2002.
The Rixos President Astana in Kazakhstan is looking for a spa manager with 5-star spa experience. If interested, please send you CV to
Caroline Dubreucq, ex @dmire, is now Project Manager at Colloquium.
Sofia Vandaele is now General Manager at The London NYC.

BBT Online Club 100 welcomed the following new members during July:
  1. MBS – Tanja Barella
  2. Way2Events – Brigitte Van Vlierden
  3. DMC Hello Urdaibai –  Alda Wienke
  4. Hotel de la Source – Sophie Coumont
  5. Hospitality Belgium – Thierry Vermeiren
  6. Quality Track – Yvo van der Tol
If you’re interested in joining yourself, don’t hesitate any longer. You will find the conditions and the existing members behind this link Membership is linked to the person, not the company. We also created a LinkedIn group for members only.

Laughing is good for you! This funny commercial shows us what can go wrong on a romantic date.
Click here.


Karin de Graauw – Editor-in-chief BBT Online
Rue de Toulouse 49 – 1040 Brussels – Belgium
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