One of Scotland’s top conference and events businesses is on track to exceed 2500 in-person delegates in a month – for the first time in nearly two years.
In what is a positive signal for the country’s crucial conference and events sector, Surgeons Quarter, the commercial arm of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh (RCSEd), has been able to see visitor numbers finally return to pre-pandemic levels.
While the challenges of foreign travel remain a limiting factor, its four venues have hosted a bumper calendar of events, including medical conferences, weddings, awards nights and diploma ceremonies.
Looking ahead, Surgeons Quarter is on track to see its 2022 bookings match 2019, with many events postponed by the pandemic set to go ahead, provided measures allow.
Scott Mitchell is the Managing Director of Surgeons Quarter, which also operates Ten Hill Place Hotel on behalf of the College.
He said: “Getting back to these numbers of visitors has been a gargantuan challenge for our committed team. We started in-person events in March, through the hosting of examinations, so we’ve been able to safely ramp up our activities while adhering to all protocols and safety measures.
“There is still a way to go, but it’s important to celebrate September’s business – and use it as a chance to reflect on the last 19 months. Business tourism is central to the local and national economy – and we want to do all we can to drive that inward investment.”
Following substantial investment before and during the pandemic, Surgeons Quarter venues offer blended technology featuring a mix of in-person and live streamed events.
Events take place throughout the entirety of the campus, from the historic Playfair building – which offers meeting rooms and event spaces accommodating from two to 250 delegates; purpose-built conference centre-Quincentenary Building which features skills labs on the lower ground and three meeting rooms on the ground floor as well as the Wolfson Hall with built in bar facilities and a spacious courtyard with clear roof marquee; the King Khalid building with a grand 158 seated auditorium; the Prince Phillip building which features the stunning Deacons suite; the Big & Wee Snug at the Ten Hill Place Hotel.
Scott added: “As we move towards the end of 2021, our events schedule is looking very positive. We’re looking forward to hopefully hosting a number of Christmas parties, as no one last year was able to celebrate in a traditional manner.
“As restrictions ease, we are also looking forward to encouraging international guests to pay us a visit. We have a dedicated travel agency which can be found via our website. It is open to the public and is designed so that guests can have all their information in the one place – taking away some of the stress of keeping up with current guidelines.”
Surgeons Quarter was recently invited to promote its wide range of meeting facilities at Eventit. The physical event at the EICC brought organisers and planners back together with suppliers to find out new developments, partnerships and innovative solutions.
Surgeons Quarter promotes, manages and sells the College’s event spaces: Playfair Building, Quincentenary Building, King Khalid Building, Prince Philip Building and its onsite 129 bedroom hotel Ten Hill Place.
Christmas party packages are available from £49pp and include a 3 course meal, private bar, DJ, photobooth as well as drinks and refreshments.