12 of the best hotel event-space upgrades in Asia

Grand Ballroom, Grand Hyatt Hong Kong



Pan Pacific Suzhou
In the heart of the Old City in the famed east China water town, Pan Pacific Suzhou (below) celebrated major work on its event facilities with a magnanimous gala evening in May.

The addition of large windows in the Wugong Meeting Rooms has provided natural lighting, while access leading to the Long Pan Ballroom and Foyer has also been widened to allow auto show organisers to drive vehicles directly into the space.

To celebrate the completion of the renovation work in May, the hotel staged an event themed “Embrace the Pacific”, showcasing the cuisine and culture of the 12 destinations where the hotel management company operates. The evening included theatrical, dance and opera performances.

"Meetings, incentives, conferences and events is one of the most important business segments that we cater to in Suzhou," says Pan Pacific's general manager for China.

"Along with upgrading the hardware, we also have formulated products that complement MICE activities, such as creatively themed receptions and dinner events that meet the requirements of MICE organisers."



White Swan Hotel, Guangzhou
The grand dame overlooking the colonial-style buildings of Shamian island is arguably the southern Chinese city’s most iconic hotel. Following a comprehensive three-year overhaul, the White Swan re-opened in July 2015 with enlarged meeting facilities and 520-guest rooms (it previously had 843). The renovation gave it more than 2,500 sqm of meeting and conference facilities, including a 630 sqm Grand Ballroom and the 770 sqm Hongtu Hall. Top-notch audio-visual equipment, wife and live broadcasting facilities were also added along with a fitness centre on two levels, a heated outdoor pool, spa and shopping outlets.



China World Hotel, Beijing
The 2015 opening of a new Executive Club Lounge with various meeting spaces primed the hotel, which forms a core part of China World Trade Centre’s convention complex, for the unveiling of its refurbished guest rooms in March this year. 

China World Hotel, Beijing’s refurbished conference hall, with 8 metre high ceiling, and adjoining foyer comprise more than 2,000 sqm. The main hall accommodates 1,200-pax theatre-style, and the adjacent three function rooms are suitable for smaller meetings and parties.



Grand Hyatt
Large-scale renovation took place in phases for Grand Hyatt, including work on properties in Hong Kong and Taipei.

The 853-guest room Grand Hyatt Taipei (below) saw its 13 meeting venues upgraded as part of the overhaul, which included a pillarless Grand Ballroom and the Grand Residence, a unique residential-style multi-event space.

Grand Hyatt Hong Kong recently revealed event-space upgrades that included The Residence, the Pool House and Grand Ballroom.





Swissôtel Nankai Osaka
September saw Swissôtel Nankai Osaka unveil its newly renovated grand ballroom – the largest in southern Osaka. The US$1.5 million revamping brought new wall coverings, wall-to-wall carpeting and a spruced-up ceiling.

The the 546-guest room hotel is celebrating its ballroom relaunch with a special meeting package, inclusive of lunch buffet, coffee break and more.




Millennnium Seoul Hilton
Multi-year renovation work saw the 680-guest room Millennium Seoul Hilton acquire a new medium-sized event space: The Atrium. Located on the third level, the space has natural lighting with floor-to-ceiling windows and is connected to an outdoor patio.

Besides The Atrium, the hotel has seven other function rooms, including a Grand Ballroom with capacity for 700 theatre-style.




Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur
All 13 of the Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur’s event spaces have received a makeover, including its two pillarless ballrooms. The Mandarin boasts the largest pillarless ballroom in KL (below), accommodating up to 2,400 for cocktails, and with natural lighting. The junior diamond ballroom seats 350 and both venues can be accessed via a separate street-level entrance. Renovation was also completed earlier this year at the 571-room hotel’s 11 other meeting spaces.

From now until December 29, 2017, the hotel is offering planners an “Essentials Meeting Package” to celebrate the newly refurbished spaces.




Marina Bay Sands
In 2015, Marina Bay Sands reconfigured two of its ballrooms, Roselle and Simpor, on Level 4 of the Sands Expo and Convention Centre. MBS improved its flexibility to host meeting groups of all sizes with the newly combined Roselle-Simpor Main Ballroom, which is now designed to cater to mid-size meeting groups of up to 3,000 delegates. Spanning more than 3,700 sqm, the Roselle-Simpor is now the second largest ballroom at Sands Expo after the Level 5 Sands Grand Ballroom, Southeast Asia’s biggest ballroom.



Sofitel Singapore Sentosa Resort & Spa
Reopening under the Sofitel brand at the end of last year, the resort’s meeting facilities were spruced up over the transition period. The 215-guest room property offers 15 meeting rooms, two refurbished ballrooms and various outdoor venues.




JW Marriott Bangkok
The transformation of JW Marriott Bangkok’s Grand Ballroom and nine function rooms was completed in December 2014. The prime meetings area now houses three separate zones: The Arrival Hall, suitable for receptions with a bar, lounge seating, library shelves and an art gallery; The Open Kitchen, an interactive platform that can be transformed into a venue for receptions, meeting breaks and cooking classes; and The Residential-style ballroom and Meeting Room, accommodating 700 pax.



Plaza Athénée Bangkok, A Royal Méridien Hotel
Renovations gave the hotel’s 5,600sqm of function space a modern facelift without the much-loved property losing its “Thai colonial” charm. Not only were the 5,600 sqm of meeting space upgraded, but the Plaza Athénee became the first hotel in the world to gain ISO 20121 certification for the planning and deliver of sustainable events in addition to the Five Star Asia Pacific Property Award 2015-2016 in the Best Hotel Interior Thailand catergory.

Upgrade work included the three ballrooms – the 840 sqm Grand Hall, the Crystal Hall at 1,019 sqm, and the 423 sqm Pimarn Siam Hall ­– and eight venues on the sixth-level Atheneum.




Sheraton Saigon
Following three months’ work, The Sheraton Saigon Hotel & Towers debuted its renovated meeting venues in July.

The property’s 2,500 sqm of meeting space includes a 1,080 sqm pillarless ballroom with LED lighting, projector screens and capacity for 1,200, plus 14 breakout rooms.

General manager Scott Hodgetts says: “With the Grand Ballroom’s refurbishment, Sheraton Saigon Hotel & Towers is demonstrating its commitment to upholding the high standards that have made the hotel a premier tourism and commerce landmark in Ho Chi Minh City.”


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