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28 / ConferenCe & Meetings World / issUe 67Advertising FeatureAntwerp which will take only 25 minutes," she adds. Brussels offers organisers more than 60 conference and meeting venues, which can host up to 10,000 delegates; 1,500 restaurants with 120 able to host groups of over 100 delegates; and 145 hotels with over 14,000 rooms. In Brussels organisers can organise memorable events in larger spaces such as the Square or Brussels Expo; or in unique hotels such as Le Plaza with its old Theatre Royal, whihc has a capacity of 400 delegates; and meeting venue Claridge with its digital wallpaper walls. Hotel Bloom was recently voted in the Top 20 Trendiest Hotels in the World and let's not forget to mention The Amigo, located just off the Grand Place."Antwerp has an array of fabulous venues such as the Hilton Antwerp and the Horta Café," says Mathews. "Currently organisers can use a variety of venues, including The Zoo, Hangar 29 and Elzenveld. "In terms of hotels there are many choices including the newly-renovated Crowne Plaza, the fabulous Les Nuits plus many others."For Ghent, organisers can use the Old Fish Mine, which has been transformed to into a trendy venue and the stunning Marriott that sits flanders: the crossroads of europeflanders offers organisers More than ChoColate, Waffles, MUssels and beer it has a range of UniqUe and Unforgettable Meeting spaCes WhiCh are gUaranteed to leave a lasting iMpression on delegateshe Belgian region of Flanders, which includes Brussels, Bruges, Ghent and Antwerp, offers a unique meetings proposition for a variety of events and all within two-three hours of most of central and western Europe. If travelling by train, Brussels, the capital city of Flanders, is less than two hours away from London, Amsterdam and Paris and just under three hours away from other major European cities. Access routes via Belgium's dense train system mean not only can event organisers transport groups of delegates around the country easily and quickly but also more sustainably, helping to add to an event's CSR programme. Most of Flanders' historic cities are within an hour from Brussels, which holds the seat to the European Parliament and is home to the NATO headquarters. With over 90 museums, several Michelin star restaurants and a rich history, the city is a melting pot in terms of culture, heritage, arts and entertainment."The region's strengths in the international meetings arena lie in the fact Flanders-Belgium is at the heart of Europe, with the EU, NATO and over 1,000 associations based in Brussels, our destination provides a perfect backdrop for events, conferences and product launches," says Meetings, Incentives and Conferences Manager for the Flanders-Brussels Convention Bureau, Sarah Mathews. "Delegates from around the world can get to Flanders easily and each city is less than an hour away from Brussels International Airport, which means that delegates have options to have events in Bruges, Brussels, Antwerp or Ghent."We have the new train route from Brussels Airport direct to T

ISSUE 67 / ConfErEnCE & MEEtIngS World / 29Advertising Featureopposite: View from water front in ghent, lier City Hall in the province of Antwerp, Centraal Station in Antwerp. Above: Brugeson the Korenlei," she adds. "And for Bruges, Oud Sint Jan and the Kempinski Hotel."The Flanders-Brussels Convention Bureau offers "organisers a range of free services such as researching the most suitable venues/locations for your event; helping you obtain quotes in a prompt fashion; co-ordinating site and familiarisation inspections; providing a dedicated Welcome Desk at Brussels Airport to welcome your delegates; providing free promotional material; keeping Interesting facts from Belgium There are more castles per square mile in Belgium than anywhere else in the world Antwerp, the world's fourth largest port, is one of the world's main centres for diamond dealing, cutting and polishing Antwerp Zoo is one of the oldest and largest in Europe, housing over 4,000 animals The Belgian railway network, with a total of 2,534 miles, is the densest in the world Christmas comes early in Belgium; St Nicolas Day, 6 December, is the first day of gift giving Tulips have been around in Belgium, longer than in Holland - the first bulbs arrived in Antwerp in 1562 German Shepherds were the first dogs trained for police work- beginning around 1900 in Ghent, Belgium The twinning link between Nottingham and Ghent was formally established in 1985 The first recorded lottery to involve buying a ticket and distribution of prize money was held in Bruges on 14 February 1466. It was held to raise money for the poor of the town The decimal system for mathematical division was invented by the Belgian mathematician Simon Stevin, who was born in Bruges Belgium produces 172,000 tons of chocolate per year in over 2,130 chocolate shops There are over 400 different types of beer in Belgium, running the gamut from white to raspberry beer. Most beers have their own glass in which only that beer may be served. Some of the most famous are made by Trappist monks Brussels has 138 restaurants per square mile Brussels is classified as Europe's first sustainable city for its environmental policy. you updated with the latest developments and trends in Flanders; and updating you about special offers from our industry partners," adds Mathews. All these services are free of charge and the bureau promises to offer an impartial service when it comes to finding the right venue or activity for an organiser. For more information contact, Sarah Mathews on +44 (0) 207 307 7734; email Sarah@visitflanders.co.uk or visit www.visitflanders.co.uk/mice