Abu Dhabi’s Yas Island aims big on corporate gatherings

Yas also plans to erect massive screens for football fans to watch the Fifa World Cup as part of a drive to boost visitor numbers over the summer.
The Bubble' s Barrel ride at Yas Waterworld on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi. Pawan Singh / The National
The Bubble' s Barrel ride at Yas Waterworld on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi. Pawan Singh / The National

Yas Island expects to grow delegate numbers by as much as 30 per cent annually as it starts to put together island-wide bids to attract the very largest of global gatherings.

It follows the departure last month of thousands of Nu Skin China delegates in the largest corporate junket the country has ever seen.

“We can offer common delegate day rates, meetings at Yas Marina Circuit, golf at Yas Links, a dinner at Ferrari World and then back to the airport six minutes away and home,” said Clive Dwyer, the director of destination management at Yas Island. “My forecast is 30 per cent plus growth.”

He made the disclosure at the launch of Yas Island Cool for Summer Campaign yesterday, offering two for one deals on restaurants, Ferrari World, Yas Waterworld and other venues on the island.

Yas also plans to erect massive screens for football fans to watch the Fifa World Cup as part of a drive to boost visitor numbers over the summer.

The home of Formula One in the capital is hoping to draw fans to the island’s du arena while at the same time promoting Iftars during Ramadan, which overlaps with the football tournament that runs for a month from June 12. Ramadan is expected to start about halfway through the tournament.

“We want to take the atmosphere from the World Cup and put into the du arena,” said Mr Dwyer. “The venue is being worked through and themed during Ramadan. People will be able to come and watch the football on giant screens and have a shisha or some food.”

This year, Yas Marina Circuit expects to host 300 events, up by half on the previous year.

The Tourism and Culture Authority expects the business travel sector to contribute US$1.39 billion to the emirate by 2020. It generated $653 million in 2010.

scronin@thenational.ae

* with reporting by Sananda Sahoo

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Published: May 15, 2014 04:00 AM

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