The post has been submitted by Grapevine Event Management
With the exception of perhaps the Seychelles or somewhere of similar ilk, there is nowhere on earth that we would rather be at this time of year other than Cardiff. It is in February and March that this vibrant city becomes a frenzied hub of excitement and anticipation for the great festival that is rugby.
Cardiff on international rugby days is a sight to behold. The main thoroughfares are closed to traffic as a sea of red runs throughout the streets that all lead to the Principality Stadium – the only national stadium to be based in a city centre.
And the atmosphere that that persists throughout the six weeks of the Six Nations is something that is truly unique to Cardiff.
But of course, there is more to this great city than rugby (we perhaps shouldn’t say that out loud in case we alienate the purest rugby fans). Indeed, enter ‘Cardiff’ into Google and you will see that the Welsh capital tops a growing number of ‘Best Places’ lists.
Over the last few years, Cardiff has been ranked:
– Third best city in Europe (European Union)
– Third nest city in Europe for quality of life – ahead of Liverpool, London and Birmingham (MoneySupermarket)
– Fourth greenest city in the UK (Green Alliance)
– Best city for young adults in the UK (Legal & General)
…the list goes on.
From an event management perspective too, Cardiff has plenty of strings to its bow. Here we take a look at why the Welsh capital should be on your radar if you are planning an event during 2017.
Europe’s youngest capital city
Officially the capital of Wales since 1955, Cardiff is the youngest capital city in the UK and one of the fastest growing too.
Since the 1990s the city has been deep in the throes of one of the most ambitious regeneration projects undertaken since the end of the Second World War, and there are no signs of it slowing down.
But we love our history too!
This is a city that is proud of its industrial and shipping heritage, whilst embracing with vigour its new role as a service-led economy that have conspired to create a city which is contemporary, thriving and confident of its ability to become a leading destination of choice for meetings and events.
We pack a might punch for our size
Cardiff has found a unique way to make its relative small size – compared to many larger cities across the country – work to its advantage. There’s ease of access, with direct rail connections to Bristol (50 minutes), Birmingham (2 hours) and London Paddington (2 hours) along with the M4 and M5 – all of which make getting to and from the capital relatively stress free.
Then there is the city’s burgeoning food and drink scene, which is regarded as one of the fastest growing in the UK.
This is matched only by Cardiff’s retail sector, which has been undergoing a mini-boom since the end of the recession. Add the magnificent castle that dominates the city centre to the equation and it is easy to see why Cardiff is a great location for event organisers looking to create a unique delegate experience.
Cardiff is the gateway to the rest of Wales
While you’re here you might as well explore the rest of Wales…well, you have come all this way and it would be rude not to!
Cardiff’s close proximity to the stunning Brecon Beacons National Park (or Parc as we like to call it), historic venues and the beautiful Gower peninsula appeal to those who like the great outdoors, while the city’s culinary, sporting and entertainment facilities offer much to keep you occupied if you prefer to stay closer to home.
We have some rather good venues for events too
There is a wide choice of meeting venues, too. In the city centre, there is the iconic City Hall, which adds an air of prestige to any event. Cardiff Castle itself also doubles as a great venue and plays host to an array of outdoor events each year, with the city’s universities also providing a number of excellent facilities to suit.
We have three world-famous stadiums within the city centre, all providing excellent, varied conference and event facilities to suit all businesses.
If you’re looking for a view, the five star St David’s Hotel provides stunning views across Cardiff Bay and while you’re there why not visit the Wales Millennium Centre which Lord Lloyd-Webber calls “the best theatre built in the world in the last 50 years”.
You will get more bang for your buck in Cardiff
Cardiff provides a significant return on your event investment. Compared to its neighbours over the Bridge, venue hire in the city is very competitive and you will invariably find that the venues will help you out with anything and everything you might need.
What’s more, because the majority of venues are close to the city centre you and your guests will get the best of both worlds – the opportunity to sample Cardiff’s cultural scene without having to go too far beyond the immediate confines of your chosen venue.
Cardiff serves as the catalyst for growth here in Wales. Over the last few years the city has played host to the NATO summit, the Ashes, the Rugby World Cup with the Principality Stadium hosting the Champions League final this summer. The BBC continues to invest heavily in the city, with the likes of Doctor Who and Sherlock both produced here.
All of these things put together are boosting the profile of this vibrant capital city and with the Welsh Government pulling out all the stops to entice more and more businesses to come to Cardiff, it is easy to see why Wales’s capital city is already the seventh most popular UK conference destination. So what’s stopping you?
Grapevine are proud to be able to call Cardiff home and we can’t wait to see what is in store for Cardiff in the future. If you want to find out more about holding events in this amazing city get in contact with us!