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Tue 23 Sep 2008 03:28 PM

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Planners competing for party venues

Middle East meeting planners are being forced to book festive parties early due to the region’s popularity as an events destination.

Middle East meeting planners are being forced to book festive parties early due to the region’s popularity as an events destination.

Learning and education coordinator at Price Waterhouse Coopers, Abu Dhabi, Sherina Philpson, is already thinking ahead to festive bookings following a struggle to find a venue.

“We were a bit stuck and we didn’t manage to get hotels organised for our October and November events,” she said.

“I’m definitely going to organise future events well in advance.”

Project manager for Professional Congress Organiser (PCO) MCI Dubai, Richard Devadasan, said the Middle East was becoming a “popular destination” due to the relocation of a number of large corporations.

“This is especially the case with Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain and Kuwait,” he said.

“The region is making a name for itself and getting a lot of attention worldwide.”

Other multi-national companies based in the region are overcoming the issue by booking parties outside the traditional party season.

PA to managing partner at Ernst & Young Middle East, Balakrishnan Pullanhodan, said, “We sometimes organise our party when the audit year ends, either in March or April.

“If we don’t have an end of year party we will have an end of season party.”

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