Monthly Archives: January 2015

Prague is the second best meeting destination in the region

Prague has again been ranked among the best meeting destinations in the region and won another Meetings Star Award for 2014. Prague already gained this award last year when it ranked first with a total of 4.64 points. This year, it has gained the same number of points and ranked second out of 45 evaluated destinations. The best destination of 2014 is Istanbul, third place goes to Dubrovnik.

The Meetings Star Awards are presented annually by Slovenian Kongres Magazine which focuses on MICE in Central and South East Europe. When evaluating individual destinations the following criteria are taken into account: natural and cultural factors, general and transport infrastructure, tourist and meeting infrastructure and marketing buzz. The additional criterion that the editorial board of Kongres Magazine also took into account is the current ranking on the ICCA Country and City Ranking 2013 and Mercer’s global scale of quality of life in individual capitals.

The winners were awarded at the welcome reception at 2015 Conventa trade show in Ljubljana, Slovenia, on Wednesday 21 January, 2015.  The award for Prague was taken over by a representative of GUARANT International who is a member of Prague Convention Bureau, the official convention bureau of the City of Prague.

Announcing New Wi-Fi Technology at The New Tropicana Las Vegas

We’re thrilled to announce the deployment of new Wi-Fi technology at The New Tropicana Las Vegas – a DoubleTree by Hilton, including wired and wireless Internet access beginning March 2015! The enhanced Internet access will be available throughout our convention and exhibition space, including the new Trinidad Pavilion, slated for completion in March 2015, as well as in our guest rooms and suites. Once complete, our resort will provide one of the fastest Internet services available in a Las Vegas hotel.

With the rollout of upgraded infrastructure based in part on the DOCSIS 3.0 modem standard and 802.11AC Wi-Fi access points, meeting organizers and attendees will enjoy increased mobility and a substantial leap in bandwidth availability in the conference center and hotel rooms. This will allow for:

Sending/receiving large files or photos and other digital data without delay
Streaming high-definition video without jitter or latency
Downloading large business presentations
Using cloud applications
Much more!

For more information, read the press release or contact our Sales department at 888.810.8767 or

Production Associates Will Be a Sponsor at Mid-Atlantic Conference & Exposition, Hosted by Meeting Professionals International, Potomac Chapter

Reston, VA. – Production Associates will be a sponsor at the Potomac Chapter of Meeting Professionals International’s (PMPI’s) upcoming event: Mid-Atlantic Conference & Exposition to be held February 3-4 at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, DC.  Production Associates will also participate in the Flipped Marketplace, meeting one-on-one with qualified event professionals by advance appointment.

Meeting Professionals International and the Potomac Chapter are renowned for providing quality education and MACE! 2015 is the top level of learning.  The programming at MACE! 2015 will provide tools and resources to Elevate Your Game.  From the hottest technology tools to industry trends, stellar education tracks include opportunities for both event planners and suppliers.

About Production Associates

Production Associates provides audio visual management, staging and consulting services to corporate, non-profit, and government events, including association meetings and conventions. Clients include: Blackboard, Comfort Keepers, the Outdoor Industry Association, American Urological Association, American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery and the Society for Maternal Fetal Medicine. For additional information about Production Associates services, please visit our web site at or call our headquarters at (703) 476-4600.



World Marketing Group to lead business development for Destination Asia in North America

Destination Asia announces, effective 1 February 2015, World Marketing Group will lead its North American incentive travel and event business development for the Asian region. The new alliance offers customers access to highly skilled Asian operations, backed by in-market sales and marketing support and expertise.


“We are honored to have World Marketing Group represent the growing incentives and events business to Asia from North America, their specialty for over three decades,” stated Jim Reed, CEO Destination Asia Group. “Our dedicated meetings and events divisions are at the heart of the Destination Asia Group, aligning our services with the growing demand of business group travel to Asia. Our shared legacy of market knowledge and customer service in incentive travel and event management elevates our offering to effectively meet the growing customer expectations of this region.”


“Our 35 years of working with North American clients on their Asian programs aligns with Destination Asia’s superbly delivered customer experience,” said Jane Schuldt, CIS, CITE, President, World Marketing Group. We believe Destination Asia’s laser focus on Asia-only operations positions them to deliver unparalleled value to customers seeking unique experiences. We look forward to putting the force of our expertise behind their initiatives.” 


About the Destination Asia Group


Destination Asia was founded in 1996 by Jim Reed, Founder and CEO, and Addie Hirunkate, MD of Destination Asia Thailand, as a destination management company. Operations are located in 11 Asian countries, supported by 33 offices in Thailand, China, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Japan, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar (Burma).” As a network, they specialize in worldwide incentive and events business, and offer the services of more than 630 employees to their customers.


About World Marketing Group


World Marketing Group, based in Minneapolis, MN was founded in 1980 by Jane E. Schuldt, CIS, CITE, as a North American based contract sales and marketing organization to serve Asian destination management companies.  World Marketing Group is specialized in business and brand development for incentive, meeting, conference and event segments, providing representation and planning assistance to over 30 countries worldwide for North American-based third party, association and corporate clients.


The Destination Asia operating offices to be represented by World Marketing Group are Thailand, China, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar (Burma).

Buyers Confirm Demand for Increased Presence of European Suppliers at IBTM America

‘Customers are looking for that next “big idea” international incentive and meeting destination’

Regional buyers signed up to attend ibtm america ( have expressed a clear demand for an increased presence of European suppliers as they attend the show in search of the next “big idea” international incentive and meeting destination.

Joseph McKeown of ReGroup Comm comments, “As the owner of an event marketing and incentive agency, we are seeing an increased need from clients for support with international destinations and programs, specifically in the European markets. Both our multi-national clients and our American based customers are looking for that next “big idea” international incentive and meeting destination, and ibtm america can help us deliver that. We’ve always found ibtm america to be a very efficient, effective and productive show for us to see the latest International and North American destinations and support services in one place, all at the same time.”

Further regional buyers confirmed to attend the show will represent some of the leading associations across the US including; Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, International Union of Police Associations, AFL-CIO, National Air Traffic Controllers Association and National Association of African American Studies and Affiliates.

The new show format will accommodate 250 suppliers who will meet with 250 carefully selected planners in the US and international MICE industry on a 1:1 ratio.

Jaime Rosov, ibtm america Event Director commented, “The research that we conduct following each show serves as an invaluable resource for us when it comes to delivering our event the following year. We take all of the comments we receive onboard, so that we can grow the event to ensure that it continues to meet the evolving objectives of our buyers and suppliers.”

To find out more about ibtm america 2015, please visit

Hilton Minneapolis Invests in Hotel and Environment

Recent $13.5 Million Renovation Includes Eco Friendly Upgrades

Hilton Minneapolis recently finished a $13.5 million room enhancement, but the enhancements were not limited to amenity and design upgrades. The hotel took great care to include environmentally-friendly aspects to the extensive project.

“Sustainability is a priority for our hotel,” said John Luke, general manager, Hilton Minneapolis. “It’s our responsibility to serve our community and environment with initiatives that support the reduction of our carbon footprint while still providing the highest level of hospitality. In tandem with Hilton Worldwide, Hilton Minneapolis is committed to reducing output in four primary areas, which include energy consumption, CO2 emissions, waste output and water consumption; we kept this in mind when designing our new guest rooms.”

In the new design, Hilton Minneapolis has implemented the following eco-friendly upgrades
to all 821 guest rooms:

• LED lighting: replaced CFL technology with LED lighting with 6,566 fixtures converted with
an annual electrical reduction of 551,251 KWH.
• An additional electrical reduction in bathroom light fixture by converting from incandescent
to T-5 fluorescent light bulbs. The hotel replaced 1642 bulbs for an annual savings of
100,000 KWH.
• Low-flow shower heads yield an annual reduction in water consumption by 1,753,040
• All major case goods made in the U.S. (North Carolina), to include the media console, night
stands, headboard insert, soft seating and artwork.
• Resurfaced 2,500 doors with new doors. The 3M product “DiNoc” was used to resurface
existing doors, reducing the impact to waste entering a landfill by over 150 tons.
• All guest room heating systems have had the fan motors replaced with new energy efficient
motors, with more than 900 motors replaced.
• All old furniture and televisions were liquidated to be re-sold to smaller hotels and motels
around the country, reducing landfill waste by several hundred tons.

The design aspect of the enhancement project will offer guests a room product that reflects the hotel’s timeless design with a sophisticated urban finish. The design is thoughtful with warm colors, contemporary original art and the occasional splash of playful accents. Rich wood tones are contrasted with light neutral fabrics and blended with stone and polished metal for a sophisticated urban look. Each guest room includes 50-inch high definition televisions, in-room refrigerators, and laptop safes. The renovated guest bathrooms feature granite countertops, backlit mirrors and custom nightlight.

PCMA and SACEOS Extend Their Education and Training Collaboration

CHICAGO – The Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) and Singapore Association of Convention and Exhibition Organisers and Suppliers (SACEOS) announced a renewal of their partnership to help advance the Meetings, Incentive, Exhibition and Convention (MICE) Industry in the Asia Pacific region by enhancing their collaborating on education and certification.

In 2014, the partnership provided the opportunity for SACEOS members to participate in a face-to-face Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) training in Singapore, as well as an online program to continue the preparation for the Convention Industry Council’s (CIC) CMP exam.  In addition, PCMA and SACEOS provided a train-the-trainer program on the ground in Singapore, allowing for the existing SACEOS members who hold the designation to be able to continue providing support and training to those planning to take the exam in Singapore and the region.  Both programs are designed to educate on the most effective ways to prepare professionals for the CMP exam.

The 2014 the collaboration was so successful, both organizations have agreed to renew and enhance their efforts in the coming year. Together PCMA and SACEOS will work to expand their CMP training in the region and offer additional education opportunities and resources for MICE professionals.

“It’s fitting that we should be here in PCMA’s hometown of Chicago and at Convening Leaders to extend our agreement with SACEOS,” said Deborah Sexton, PCMA president and ceo. “Both of our open cities are ones designed with big plans for our citizens and the professionals that work in our communities. PCMA and SACEOS together are committed to providing the destination with the blueprint, tools and resources that will enhance the quality of meetings delivery in the region.”

Janet Tan-Collis, SACEOS’ president, said, “Our partnership with PCMA had been one of the core components of the accreditation efforts of the Singapore MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conventions & Exhibitions) industry. Singapore is the knowledge capital of Asia and provides thought leadership to the region. This collaborative partnership where PCMA’s content is paired with SACEOS’s regional reach will collectively further the organizational goals of both associations. As President of SACEOS, I am personally very excited about the immense potential of this partnership with PCMA and we look forward to shaping the future of our industry together with this great partner. ”

SACEOS also participated in PCMA’s 2015 Convening Leaders with over 20 industry professionals attending and providing their regional expertise for a number of educational sessions and events.

About Professional Convention Management Association

PCMA is the multi-channel professional resource and premier educator for leaders in the meetings, conventions, events and trade show industries. PCMA provides their 6,500+ members with a community of likeminded colleagues, innovative education and creative global solutions to enhance both their professional development and their organization’s face-to-face and virtual connections. Headquartered in Chicago, PCMA has 17 chapters throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico with members in more than 35 countries. For additional information, please visit the PCMA Web site at

About Singapore Association of Convention and Exhibition Organisers and Suppliers

Since 1979, SACEOS has contributed significantly in making Singapore the best event venue for Asia. Dedicated to shaping the future of Singapore’s exhibitions, conventions and meeting industry, SACEOS works closely with the Singapore Government to chart the industry’s growth path and further the island state’s position as an International Exhibition City and Regional Convention Hub in Asia.

Milestone 2014 for Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre

Hosts Record Number of Events

The Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre (the Centre) celebrates its 10th year in operation on the back of a milestone 2014 with 1,759 events hosted, an 11% increase over the previous record of 1,565 in 2013. The Entertainment and TenOnCall segments saw business grow 40% and 14% respectively while Banqueting & Functions and Exhibitions both registered a 9% growth. Delegate numbers were up accordingly, to over 1.97 million against 1.96 million in 2013.

And as it approaches its 10th year, the Centre can take pride in having served more than 17.6 million delegates and visitors from 9,969 events and contributed RM5.5 billion in economic impact since opening in June 2005.

General Manager, Alan Pryor attributed the Centre’s success to date and the year’s (2014) excellent performance to a flexible and innovative outlook that supports the generation of value-add solutions to meet the different needs of a range of local and international clients and in turn, ensures the continuing delivery of quality products and services.

Looking at the year ahead, Pryor says the Centre will look to build on the momentum achieved in 2014 by “leveraging the knowledge and experience we have gained from a decade in the industry. This valuable knowhow has moulded us into the savvy and resilient team of professionals we are today.”

The Centre’s 10th anniversary tagline of ‘Focusing on perfection, always, celebrating ten enriching years’ with the accompanying message ‘Leaving you with memorable impressions is what drives us. Our motto will always be to passionately deliver excellence to make you happy’, aptly describe how the experience, knowledge and commitment to quality will hold the facility in good stead going forward.

In tandem with the (Centre’s) 10th anniversary is a host of marketing and promotional packages to thank clients and stakeholders who have contributed to the venue’s growth and success to date. These range from discounts on ancillary charges for Day Conference Packages (DCPs) and complimentary mocktails for Banquets to Exhibition Loyalty Value-Add Programme tier upgrades, and much more.

Among the many high-profile events on the Centre’s 2015 roster are the ASEAN Finance Ministers Meeting 2015, Global Food Safety Conference 2015, 18th Human Genome Meeting 2015, Global Round World Scholar Cup 2015, International Meeting on Advanced Spine Techniques (IMAST) 2015, Annual Meeting of the Asia Pacific Association of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons (APACRS) 2015, Congress of the International Society for Hemodialysis (ISHD) 2015, Congress of the Asian Pacific Society of Respirology 2015; and Asean Federation of Endocrine Society (AFES) 2015.

For more information on the special marketing and promotional packages and the latest updates on the Centre, visit

Puerto Rico Top Location for Winter Meetings

The average year-round temperature is a balmy 82º F (28º C)

San Juan, PR – Sunny and warm weather, blue skies, tropical breeze, casual attire and outdoor activities.  Sounds like the perfect location for your next meeting, right?  Being named as the top international destination by, Puerto Rico is the perfect location for Winter Season meetings.

Winter bookings show groups have already learned of Puerto Rico’s offerings byselecting this tropical island in the Caribbean for their event.  For January, 46 groups are arriving for their meeting, incentive or convention in Puerto Rico, generating a total of 19,062 hotel nights and a contribution of $10.6 million to the economy. Groups include the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association Travel Marketplace, the International Financial Cryptography Association, Public Health Law Research Conference and the  Oakley 2015 Retail Assault.

“We are on a tropical island, in the Caribbean, so we are able to welcome groups all year round. The average year-round temperature is a balmy 82º F (28º C), with mild easterly trade winds. Most days are sunny and stunning,” said Milton Segarra, president & CEO of Meet Puerto Rico (MPR-Puerto Rico Convention Bureau).  “In addition, Puerto Rico has everything to make a successful meeting or convention – including a state-of-the-art convention center, prime hotels and infrastructure. Moreover, we are part of the U.S. and so do not require a passport, use U.S. currency and work within all of the U.S. laws governing meetings and travel.”

Group experiences include trips to Old San Juan, the Bacardi Rum Factory, El Yunque Rainforest, the bio bay and zip lining, haciendas and private islands, among other offerings.

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Editor’s Note: Meet Puerto Rico is a non-profit organization established in 1962 to drive meetings, conventions, trade shows and incentive groups to Puerto Rico.  With offices in San Juan, Meet Puerto Rico strengthens Puerto Rico’s competitive position in the Americas and abroad by increasing awareness of the Island’s outstanding meeting facilities and services, and produces approximately $100 million to the local economy.  Meet Puerto Rico can be reached at or at its website   Meet Puerto Rico is accredited by the Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI) as an elite destination marketing organization. DMAI is the world’s largest association of CVBs, representing more than 600 destination management organizations in more than 25 countries.

Global Spectrum at the Saint Charles Convention Center is Awarded “Employer of the Year” by the City of St. Charles

(St. Charles, MO) – Mayor Sally Faith bestowed “Employer of the Year” honors to Global Spectrum at the Saint Charles Convention Center during the May 6th general membership meeting of the Greater St. Charles County Chamber of Commerce, held at the Saint Charles Convention Center. The award, given specifically to the Convention Center for the “service” category, was one of four awards given to local businesses during the event.

“It is an honor to recognize the successful efforts of local business owners in our community,” said Mayor Faith.  “These companies make significant investments in the city of St. Charles, and as employers provide their staff a wide range of support and benefits.  In addition,” Faith added, “these local businesses have made generous commitments to paying it forward through contributions to various charitable and civic organizations.  Their strides are commendable and set an example worth emulating, which is exactly why each of these businesses is deserving of this recognition.”

“I’m proud to accept this award on behalf of Global Spectrum and the Convention Center,” stated Shura Garnett, Regional Vice President for Global Spectrum and General Manager at the Center. “However, this award is really a testament to the employees who service our events, prepare our food, clean and set the rooms, and sell and market this beautiful venue. It is because of them, along with our great partnerships with the St. Charles Convention & Visitors Bureau and St. Charles County Convention & Sports Facility Authority, that the venue continues to be so successful and a wonderful place to work.”

The St. Charles Convention Center, managed by Global Spectrum, opened in April 2005 and today employs 36 full-time and 88 part-time employees.  Global Spectrum manages one of the few convention centers in the nation that operate at a positive profit margin, and in 2013 set a notable record of their highest gross revenues ever achieved.  Global Spectrum rewards employees for quality customer service through their corporate “How You Doin” customer service program, which recognizes staff on a monthly, quarterly and annual basis.  Global Spectrum is also an active community supporter through hosting annual events such as the Kids Block Party and Touch-a-Truck Program. The Convention Center also hosts its annual Helping Hands for the Holidays event, which in 2013 offered a meal and other charitable donations, including canned food, winter clothing, and personal care items, to more than 1,400 attendees.

The Saint Charles Convention Center opened in April of 2005 and has hosted over 3,600 events since opening. Named “Best Place to Hold a Meeting”  by local businesses, the facility boasts an elegant 16,200 sq. ft. Grand Ballroom, and 27,600 sq. ft. of Exhibit Hall space expandable to 35,700 sq. ft. through the adjacent Junior Ballroom. The facility features additional meeting rooms, the Executive Board Room, and our Cyber Café.  One-stop shopping is always available as the Center features shipping through the Business and Guest Services Center as well as in-house catering, decorating, audio/visual, state-of-the-art communications, marketing, and event staffing for meetings and exhibitions.  The Saint Charles Convention Center is conveniently located on I-70 only 15 minutes from Lambert St. Louis International Airport and is attached to a 296-room Embassy Suites Hotel.
Global Spectrum® ( manages more than 115 public assembly facilities around the world. Nearly 23-million people attended more than 15,000 events in Global Spectrum venues last year. Based in Philadelphia, PA, Global Spectrum is part of Comcast-Spectacor, one of the world’s largest sports and entertainment companies. Comcast-Spectacor also owns the Philadelphia Flyers of the National Hockey League, Ovations Food Services, a food and beverage services provider, New Era Tickets, a full-service ticketing and marketing product for public assembly facilities, Paciolan, the leading provider of venue establishment ticketing, fundraising and marketing technology solutions, Front Row Marketing Services, a commercial rights sales company, and Flyers Skate Zone, a series of community ice skating rink.