Hospitality group Macdonald Hotels and Resorts has said one of its key Highland operations has seen a “sharp upturn” in corporate bookings following a significant investment in its meetings and conference facilities.
According to the firm, the Macdonald Aviemore Resort has secured a raft of meetings, incentives, conferencing and exhibitions (MICE) orders since the start of this year, from a range of new industry sectors, including media, food and drink, pharmaceutical and technology companies.
In 2016, a multi-million-pound investment saw three of the resort’s hotels upgraded to four-star status and resulted in an increase in the size and scale of events it has since been attracting.
The company said that this year, the resort has recorded Mice business of £2.1 million, which represents a 24% increase on its 2017 figure of £1.7m. With increased confidence in the oil and gas sector a factor, it is targeting continuing growth to £2.5m next year.
Ian Peck, managing director at Macdonald Aviemore Resort, said: “We have always had a strong reputation for delivering first-class conferences and other corporate events; however, the recent investment has taken that to the next level.
“Given the long lead times typically associated with these types of bookings, it is only in the past six months that we have really seen the benefits of that investment programme – which has created a truly world-class destination here in the north of Scotland.”
With bookings coming from as far afield as China, the company said it was winning business against several key international locations
Jess Atkinson, director of sales at the resort, added: “Increasingly we are competing nationally and even globally for prestigious conference bookings, which is a clear sign of the confidence clients have in our team’s ability to deliver excellent service and attention to detail.”
Macdonald Aviemore Resort, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2016, is a collection of three hotels, 18 woodland lodges, a conference centre, a championship standard golf course and a luxury shopping outlet.
In recent years, a new clubhouse has been built for Spey Valley golf course and improvements made to the Macdonald Morlich and Macdonald Aviemore hotels.
Three dining destinations have also been created at the resort, with the launch of the Spey Burger restaurant and the refurbishment of Giovanni’s Italian Ristorante.