September 15, 2010
The Convention Centre Dublin (CCD), Ireland's newest meeting venue — and its first purpose-built conference center — is now open for business in Dublin, it announced last week.

The world's first carbon neutral convention center, according to Irish officials, CCD features 22 meeting rooms, a 2,000-seat auditorium and over 14,000 square feet of exhibition space. Capable of hosting up to 8,000 people, it's so far booked 150 events that will generate $170.8 million in economic benefit for Dublin.

"The opening of the Convention Centre Dublin marks the beginning of a new era for convention and business tourism in Ireland," Irish Prime Minister Brian Cowan said in a statement. "Tourism is a vital export industry for Ireland and is an essential part of the government's strategy for economic recovery and job creation. One area of opportunity for us is business tourism and this center will help Ireland win a greater share of this lucrative market, which, despite the international downturn, continues to provide high-value visitors. All ministers and state agencies will be working hard to identify international events which we can attract here. Likewise, I would like to ask all private and voluntary sector organizations to actively promote the Centre as a location for international conferences so we can maximize its impact on the local economy."

Added CCD Chairman Dermod Dwyer, "The CCD is a truly outstanding building. Not only does it enhance the Dublin skyline, but because it was designed from the inside-out, it provides the optimal user experience for all visitors. This iconic landmark will allow us to demonstrate new international standards of hospitality coupled with the renowned Irish welcome. I am confident we are on track to reach our goal of being recognized as the best conference center in Europe by 2014."