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Kick Off Your Conference

Jan 30, 2008
In the UK we are passionate about football, we have 6 primary sports channels that are piped into our living rooms and local pubs, national newspapers devote a significant number of column inches to the past time, and now we can download podcasts to our phones and MP3 players.

You would be amazed therefore the pulling power of football stadiums, and in fact how good the facilities are within them. Long gone are the days when the venues catering manager was trying to do his bit to add to the clubs bottom line by doing the odd dinner or meeting, these days it's big business.

The power of football in the conference market can be seen clearly at Arsenals new ground, or to give its correct name the Emirates stadium. Since moving from its old ground just around the corner the new location has allowed them to quadruple the number of meeting rooms they have to offer. Rather then being conversions of club rooms and members lounges, these are purpose built state of the art facilities which rival any major conference venue.

Chelsea's stadium, or Stamford Bridge to give it it's correct name, re-launched its meeting facilities recently, calling them Evolution, and it has certainly evolved to be the best conference facilities in the area, exuding a sense or restrained opulence. And although not the most extensive facilities available, Manchester United has real pulling power and produced the highest number of attendees to a conference I ran, just so people could see the world's most popular team's home ground.

St James' Park in Newcastle is another great example of a stadium with exemplary facilities for conferences and meetings. The stadium has an astmosphere of gravitas and delegates that use the facilities are sure to feel a sense of awe when they enter - even if they are not Newcastle fans and even if they are not football fans. the stadium also accomodates dress up balls and is extremely popular with the local Universities.

There are many many other football grounds with fantastic conference facilities within all the divisions of the premier league, and a marketing and reservation organisation called Stadium Experience can make your life even easier, as they work with over 50 Stadiums and are a great resource for conference and event agents and corporate meetings organisers.

Even for non-football fans there is still a sense of wonderment when you visit a football stadium, the 20-40,000 seats surrounding a small patch or perfectly manicured lawn which is used probably less than once a week is incredible, it's a good job really that they have great meeting facilities otherwise they would be lonely places.
About the Author
Shaun Parker has a great deal of experience in finding conference venues for a wide range of different occasions. Why not make life easy by utilising a venue finder?
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