Top business tourism buyers from the United States were in Northern Ireland – as guests of Tourism Ireland and Wallace Travel Group, one of Ireland’s leading destination management companies. The buyers – all senior representatives of companies who organise international conferences, meetings and large-scale incentive events around the world – were here to discover more about the meeting facilities and accommodation available in Northern Ireland.
The group’s packed itinerary included the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum at Cultra, as well as the National Trust properties of Mount Stewart and Castle Ward. Activities at Castle Ward involved a special Game of Thrones theme, based on the very successful HBO TV series which is filmed on location at Castle Ward. The group also spent time looking at the meetings and conference facilities at the Culloden Hotel, Holywood; Ballywalter Park, Newtownards; and the Slieve Donard Hotel in Newcastle. During their time in Belfast, the buyers visited Titanic Belfast, the Christmas Market at the City Hall, Parliament Buildings at Stormont and the Crumlin Road Gaol.
Alison Metcalfe, Tourism Ireland’s head of North America, said: “We are delighted that so many of these influential business tourism buyers took the time out of their busy schedules to come and visit Northern Ireland. Familiarisation visits such as these are extremely worthwhile, ensuring Northern Ireland is ‘top of mind’ for the buyers when they are selecting destinations for their international conferences, meetings and incentive travel.
“Business tourism is an extremely important, high yield sector which can deliver significant economic benefits and Tourism Ireland is working hard to promote Belfast and Northern Ireland as a premier destination for meetings, conferences and events.”
American business tourism buyers at the Ulster Folk & Transport Museum, Cultra, with Marie McKown, Tourism Ireland (left); Derek Wallace, Wallace Travel Group (third left); and Caitriona Lavery, Hastings Hotels (second right).
Further media information:
Elaine Moore/Clair Balmer, Tourism Ireland
Tel: 07766 527719
Notes to Editors:
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting Northern Ireland and the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is responsible for in excess of 4.9% of GDP in Northern Ireland and supports approximately 40,000 jobs.
• In 2012, 1.55 million overseas visitors came to Northern Ireland, delivering revenue of £418 million.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is ireland.com, which is rolling out in 11 different language versions for 30+ markets around the world this year.