French buyers discover Ostrava

Last week, Ostrava welcomed a group of 12 buyers from French agencies active in the MICE segment. Although they were in Ostrava for just one day, they enjoyed an action-packed programme showcasing the various types of congresses and events that the city can host.

Prague, Brno, Ostrava

The French delegates spent a total of three days in the Czech Republic on the fam trip. Each day was devoted to a different region with its own distinctive atmosphere and range of attractions. The buyers’ first stop was the historic Czech capital Prague. On the second day they visited industrial Ostrava, and on the final day they enjoyed the picturesque delights of South Moravia. The fam trip followed on from a B2B workshop with French buyers held in Paris last year. Among the participants at the Paris workshop was our Convention!!! office, and after the event 12 representatives of France’s biggest MICE agencies were invited to the Czech Republic.

Their programme in Ostrava included a guided tour of the historic city centre to familiarize them with the city’s history and present-day life. They then visited several hotels offering conference facilities before enjoying a classic Czech lunch of slow-braised beef with dumplings. The afternoon belonged to Lower Vítkovice, where the delegates inspected the conference facilities at the Gong, visited the Science and Technology Centre (which can be used as part of an incentive programme), and went to the top of the Bolt Tower for a bird’s-eye view of the entire city. In the late afternoon they travelled to Brno, their base for the third day of the fam trip.

And first impressions?

Asked about their reactions, they said they were very impressed with the Lower Vítkovice industrial complex, and especially the Gong. They also enjoyed the historic chateau in Zábřeh – now a boutique hotel and restaurant with its own microbrewery – which has a completely different atmosphere from nearby Vítkovice. The delegates were full of praise for the traditional Czech dessert žemlovka, which was served at their lunch.

During the visit, a number of the buyers said that they could easily imagine holding specific events in Ostrava. Now it’s up to their agencies to decide whether they want to take advantage of the unique facilities that the city and the region can offer.

*The aim of this fam trip – and of the Convention!!! project in general – is to raise awareness of Ostrava as a MICE destination and to attract more international events to the region.