Bogdan Lipovšek, Former Managing Director of Union Hotels
Q: What does Conventa mean to you?
Above all, Conventa represents an extraordinary story of success that has deeply anchored MICE segment of tourism in the Central and South-Eastern European Region. The beginnings were far from easy, as at that time, the hotel industry as well as local and state institutions practically had no understanding of the Conventa’s potential and its importance. In addition, the PCOs were very sceptical. Today the situation is very different. Conventa gained the trust of both providers and consumers. I am glad I have been supportive of this initiative even in the most difficult times and I am proud of being a co-creator of this success story from the very beginning.
Q: Can you share a memorable experience from Conventa that is hard to forget?
The number of impressive experiences is so large that it is not easy to single out a specific one. The initial period was very demanding and gatherings of business partners and friends were not only professionally productive but also emotionally rewarding. It would not have been possible to go through those challenging times without an emotional charge. From this perspective, I still carry the strong impressions from the times when we had to give it all and go well beyond the call of duty to ensure the survival of the Slovenian Convention Bureau and of Conventa at the same time.
Q: Conventa is celebrating 10th jubilee in the upcoming year. What is Conventa’s message to the MICE industry?
Conventa’s main message from the very start is: the success and satisfaction of all partners in a wide spectrum of business activities is possible, when the high level of professionalism is blended with a warmth of an old-time hospitality.
Q: How do you see the impact of Conventa on the region?
Conventa has completely changed the perspective and viewpoint from which the importance of MICE industry is now being assessed. In this context, the MICE events are now seen as important not only from economic and financial perspectives but also from social and anthropological point of view, as they contribute to overcoming the individual social isolation and facilitate building of greater social harmony. In addition to facilitating diverse gatherings, MICE events are very conducive to a real encounters. Not many economic activities have this social integration dimension so clearly accentuated.
Q: If Conventa were a dish, what would it be and why?
Hmmm, a very tricky question. I think it would be something light, soft, tender with a very full flavour, a desert perhaps. Yes, a desert indeed, at the end of a good, festive lunch celebrating the tenth birthday. Happy birthday Conventa and many happy returns!