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Edinburgh Conference - 'Survey' on suggested venue and pricing
Thread poster: Pernille Chapman

Pernille Chapman  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:32
Member (2004)
English to Danish
+ ...
May 31, 2006

Hi all,

A potential venue has been found for the Edinburgh regional conference
(scheduled for this November): the King James Thistle Hotel in central
Edinburgh.

The place looks just right for our event. It is in an excellent location
with everything we would need for the conference, and it would hold up
to 150 attendees. Also, the location is central: the King James is located
just off Princes Street--a short walk from Edinburgh Castle, Holyrood
Palace and the National and Scottish Galleries.

For more information, see: http://tinyurl.com/7k7t2

We would like your feedback on this venue. If we go with this hotel, the
early bird registration fee for members will be something like 120-130 GBP /
180-195 EUR for the two day event--although this may change as we
get a better idea of the number of attendees we can expect. That
registration fee would include lunches, coffees and the Friday
night networking dinner (with live Scottish folk music and a ceilidh!) There
may be an option to opt out of the networking dinner but this is a detail
still to be decided.

How does this venue--at that price--look to you?

Bear in mind that it is very hard to find venues for November at this
late date. We tried a number of places, and if we don't go with this
venue, it is not clear we will be able to find another.


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KSL Berlin  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 17:32
Member (2003)
German to English
+ ...
Sounds reasonable May 31, 2006

It's a bit more than the costs in Germany, but the UK is generally more expensive, so this sounds entirely reasonable. One couldn't expect more from the location.

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Fiona Grace Peterson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 18:32
Member
Italian to English
Reasonable May 31, 2006

Hi Pernille,
I don't have much experience in conference pricing, but bearing in mind the location and hotel (I know Edinburgh and the hotel location) it seems reasonable. The only thing I would expect is that special dietary requirements can be catered for if lunches and dinners are to be included in the price. Thanks for all your hard work!


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Giuliana Buscaglione  Identity Verified
Austria
Local time: 18:32
Member (2001)
German to Italian
+ ...
Close to the station? ADSL? May 31, 2006

Hi Pernille,

(BTW, your link doesn't display properly, so it can't be clicked).

I haven't done much checking, but I couldn't understand whether

- the hotel is close to the Railway station

- there is ADSL in the rooms (W-LAN or LAN)

Thanks,

Giuliana


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Rebekka Groß  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:32
English to German
2 minutes walk from the station May 31, 2006

Hi,

Thanks for these early comments.

The hotel is 2 minutes walk from the station, which is located at the East End of Princes Street.

We are looking into internet access at the moment and are going to ensure that this is availalbe.

Best regards,

Rebekka


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Rebekka Groß  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:32
English to German
link to hotel website May 31, 2006

King James Thistle: http://tinyurl.com/7k7t2

I've shortened the link on tinyurl.com and hope this is working now. I'll test immediately after posting this. Yes, it's working!


[Edited at 2006-05-31 08:28]


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Beate Petersen  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:32
English to German
+ ...
It looks like a good venue May 31, 2006

Yes, go with it. If this is the price you need to cover the cost then we just need to pay it.

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Clare Barnes  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 18:32
Swedish to English
+ ...
Reasonable May 31, 2006

As the others have said, I think this is fine given the location!

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Jerzy Czopik  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 18:32
Member (2003)
Polish to German
+ ...
This sounds reasonable May 31, 2006

And knowing how fast hotel places are booked out I would like to ask for a hotel to stay in. The Thistle one is quite expensive and on top they don´t want to give me a room for us for more than a weekend. All what I see is "venue not available"
So I checked the Holiday Inn (http://www.ichotelsgroup.com/h/d/ex/1/en/hd/edblh?irs=y) - how about that? Is it reasonable to stay in? In Oxford I booked bed&breakfast - and as many may remember, it was inacceptable.

Thank you for suggestions

Best regards
Jerzy


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Rebekka Groß  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:32
English to German
accommodation May 31, 2006

Dear Jerzy,

Thank you for your contribution. The King James does not have availability to stay in as well as hold the conference. That's why we didn't mention hotel rooms in this survey.

We will be looking into deals with hotels as soon as we have sorted out the conference venue. Please rest assured that we will try an offer reasonably priced accommodation with internet access for those who need it and bear with us in the meantime

Best regards,

Rebekka


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Giuliana Buscaglione  Identity Verified
Austria
Local time: 18:32
Member (2001)
German to Italian
+ ...
Stay + conference on one spot May 31, 2006

Hi Rebekka,

I see... having conference and rooms available at the same hotel for those, who would like to stay there, would be a plus.. more chances for networking, no stress... In Krakow and Berlin we had the chance to book rooms at the conference hotel and that was great.

My 2 cents,

Giuliana


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Tenten D  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:32
English to Japanese
+ ...
Novotel/Dalmahoy/Houstoun House/Ramada? May 31, 2006

I used to organise company conferences in Edinburgh/Livingston and I recall Ramada is pricewise quite reasonable as well as Dalmahoy, if it's more than certain number of people (20 or something). All others are also quite competitive and always trying to get contracts like conferences , meeting etc, so they may quote a reasonable price as well? Just my guess.
3 years ago (just before they opened the hotel in Edinburgh), though, Novotel quoted quite high...

We have Ramada Jarvis on Princes Street.

What about University conference centre?
I always check these ones to compare price and facilities.

If necessary, I could collect some more info from them, especially Ramada/HH as I have business contacts with them.

Talking about the transportation (for non-UK members),
except for Houstoun House, all very close to station etc.
(Probably for Houstoun House, I'd arrange a coach, it's a country house hotel, where people enjoy dinner/golf as well as conference?)

Nori


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Rebekka Groß  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:32
English to German
conference and accommodation in one place May 31, 2006

Giuliana Buscaglione wrote:

Hi Rebekka,

I see... having conference and rooms available at the same hotel for those, who would like to stay there, would be a plus.. more chances for networking, no stress... In Krakow and Berlin we had the chance to book rooms at the conference hotel and that was great.

My 2 cents,

Giuliana


Thank you, Giuliana.

That would have been our favourite option, too. However, after phoning numerous conference venues last week and finding that the ratio of non-availability to availability was 15:1, we realised that securing a conference venue had to be given top priority. As the King James is so central, we should manage to find hotel rooms within walking distance and will try and get as many rooms in one or two hotels as possible, so there'll be time for networking from breakfast onwards.

There should still be plenty of opportunities for networking. We're hoping to have a separate powwow on the Thursday night as well as the networking dinner on the Friday.

Regards,

Rebekka


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Rebekka Groß  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:32
English to German
alternative venues May 31, 2006

Dear Nori,

Thank you for your suggestions - we'll bear them in mind.

We have been in touch with the university conference centre whose prices were considerably higher than the King James but managed to get them to match the prices offered by the King James almost exactly. However, the uni conference centre is not quite as central and there are B&Bs in walking distance rather than hotels. As the price is the same, we would prefer the King James.

We have been in touch with many venues already but most of them were booked for our conference weekend and most of them were a lot more expensive.

Please also note that we've already negotiated a rate reduction with the King James and then took those figures and presented them to 2 other candidates, of which the uni was prepared to match the prices almost to the penny. The other venue, however, still charges a lot more for the syndicate rooms, although they have met us on the day delegate rate and price for the networking dinner.

Regards,

Rebekka


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Alicja Weikop  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:32
Member (2005)
English to Polish
+ ...
Fine with me May 31, 2006

I'd say - go ahead.

I think £60-65 a day for an international conference in a high quality venue is reasonable if not cheap.

Edinburgh is a beautiful city (so I've heard - I will be going there in June for the first time) and in high demand all year round. If we are staying there for one weekend, we may as well be in the heart of things with easy access to all the sights and entertainment.

In comparison to other European locations, UK, and places like London or Edinburgh in particular, always seem like a rip-off. I can guarantee that taxying around will not be as cheap as in Krakow, so I'd rather be in walking distance from everywhere else.

I think you have done a good job finding this venue at this price.


[Edited at 2006-05-31 11:09]


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