A real wow - amazing community response to our Open Day for the new ICC Wales
It is hard to believe that it is now two months since we opened the new International Convention Centre Wales and we have already welcomed thousands of event delegates and visitors through the doors.
While we have held a number of prestigious business events like the UK Space Conference for more than 2,000 international delegates, the one that has perhaps given us the most pleasure was the Brilliance Uncovered Open Day we held last weekend.
It was amazing to see more than 2,000 people from the local community who had accepted our invitation to come to ICC Wales and see what all the fuss is about. Many people have been following the build with interest while they have been driving past on the M4 motorway or visiting the Celtic Manor Resort, so it was a real privilege to invite everyone in to come and see the amazing facilities.
The turnout hugely exceeded our expectations and there was a fantastic buzz throughout the day as we put on some brilliant local acts to perform in the main hall and the auditorium theatre. There was also the opportunity for guests to see cookery demos from ICC Wales head chef Gavin McDonagh, and the chance to sample and buy produce from many of our wonderful Welsh suppliers. Please click on the video below to see more from the day.
Guests could also wander through the entire venue at their own pace and meet members of the ICC Wales team in the meeting rooms to ask any questions they might have. The feedback was incredible and it was great to hear our neighbours in the community express their sense of pride in what we have created on their doorstep. The people that we met were amazed by the scale and the quality of the facilities, as well as the look and feel of the place with so much natural daylight and the stunning woodland views from the meeting rooms.
The reaction has been the same from the industry professionals we have seen attend the first conferences and events in ICC Wales – including those we hosted for The Business of Events Wales in the same week as the Open Day. “Awesome” was the verdict of the event host Simon Hughes who has more than 25 years of experience in planning business events including the delivery of a range of high-profile events for the UK Government. It was an opinion shared by delegates from organisations like the Events Industry Board, VisitBritain and the Association of British Professional Professional Conference Organisers as well as our partners and stakeholders within Wales who were seeing the venue for the first time.
One of the key themes of the day was how we can all act as ambassadors to bring more business events to Wales. The Brilliance Uncovered Open Day was another reminder of this as many of the people we spoke to said that they attend annual conferences with their work and wanted to know how they can bring their next company or industry event to ICC Wales. It is very often these chance encounters that lead to important business leads and we now have an army of new ambassadors spreading the word on what a great venue we have here in Newport and Wales.
After watching performances from the likes of Only Boys Aloud in the auditorium theatre, the open day guests were also very impressed by the venue’s potential as an entertainment venue. Many took the opportunity to snap up tickets to our opening show, The Nutcracker On Ice over the festive period, and the newly-announced Whitney: Queen of the Night which will be heading our way from the West End in May.
These shows are another fantastic chance for us to welcome the local community back to ICC Wales and remind people that this is a facility for everyone. We really do appreciate all the interest and support… watch this space for more great events!