Annyeonghaseyo! Do you miss Seoul? In the new normal era, Seoul is consistently pursuing itself as a virtual platform to connect local and global MICE industries. In fact, you can “Always Connect ON Seoul” through its unique Virtual Seoul, an ultimate platform that represents Seoul and specially customised by Seoul Tourism Organization (STO) to connect everyone around the world in Seoul with a variety of virtual content for MICE industry.
On 21 July 2021, STO hosted a two-day 2021 Virtual MICE Show: SEOUL LIVE ON with the slogan “Always Connect ON Seoul” on its ultimate Virtual Seoul platform. The virtual event provided a virtual gathering space for about 155 attendees from MICE industry professionals and oversea buyers to meet with 30 exhibiting local service providers from Seoul MICE Alliance (SMA) members, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary. A range of fruitful programmes were prepared for attendees, allowing local sellers to engage in virtual business discussions with global buyers and gain access to exclusive virtual content available through Seoul’s exclusive online platform.
2021 Virtual MICE Show: SEOUL LIVE ON
After entering to the Virtual Seoul Platform, e-visitors will be greeted by a Seoul-style virtual island, which consists of five 3D venues that were carefully selected to represent the signature landmarks of Seoul, namely N Seoul Tower, Changdeokgung Palace, Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP), Seoul Botanic Park and Some Sevit. Every venue serves a different function to accommodate the specific needs of this 2021 Virtual MICE Show: SEOUL LIVE ON event. The interface was simple and easy to explore the charm of Seoul City from your home or office. Let’s have a bleisure tour on 2021 Virtual MICE Show: SEOUL LIVE ON (virtualmiceshow.or.kr).
Changdeokgung Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the most well-preserved palace that displays the beauty of the Joseon Dynasty in the heart of Seoul. By using the beautiful palace as the motif, the heritage venue serves as Conference Hall, which is a main event venue with virtual conferencing function in Virtual Seoul. Seoul LIVE Stage was hosted here, featuring opening ceremony, Seoul Brand Showcase and SMA LIVE-Commerce Sessions.
The opening ceremony was held at 14:00 (KST) on 21 July with opening remarks by Don Byun, Executive Director of the STO and followed by congratulatory remarks by Kyungjin Lee, Chair of Seoul MICE Alliance.
Followed by Seoul Brand Showcase, a virtual programme to showcase how Seoul supports MICE with a special guest, Julien Kang, through presenting sustainable future development for MICE industry in Seoul and the 2021 PLUS SEOUL support programme. The virtual programme was filmed using chromakeys to give special effects and entertain the viewers watching.
In promoting SMA members, SMA LIVE-Commerce Sessions was conducted in a Live-Commerce format with five SMA members and participating sellers. During the session, prizes were given out to the buyers and media delegates through exciting mini-events. Now, you can also review the SMA LIVE-Commerce Sessions videos of Floating Island, Hanboknam, Mayfield Hotel Seoul and Novotel Ambassador Seoul Dongdaemun on official STO Youtube channel.
Seoul MICE @ Some Sevit
Some Sevit, the world’s first floating cultural space that was built on the Hangang River at the southern end of the Banpo Bridge, shining like a jewel at night. In Virtual Seoul platform, the artificial island venue acts as a small conference room where participants can watch various workshops, forums and meetings. One of the most important part of the 2021 Virtual MICE Show, Virtual Business Meeting of Seoul MICE was held here. The virtual business meeting engaged 86 international MICE buyers and 30 sellers from Seoul MICE Alliance including tour agency (DMC), hotel, PCO, unique venue, entertainment and MICE services. The pre-scheduled appointment (PSA) system will directly determine the meeting time of the seller and the buyer to match with the desired partners beforehand.
Seoul Discovery @ Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP)
Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP) is a complex cultural space located in Dongdaemun. Since it opened in 2014, it hosted various cultural events such as exhibitions, fashion shows and conferences. Here, a range of 360-degree VR videos of hotels, unique venues and team building programmes for MICE organisers and buyers who can’t visit Seoul. MICE buyers can explore and experience the venue online without visiting Seoul in person.
In the Seoul MICE VR Field Trip, there are 19 venues for buyers to explore and experience venues more vividly, where each venue provides 360 degrees viewing options. In the video, a location map appears as the viewer actually walks into the hotel from the entrance. You can find information about the venue from detailed specifications to size, as well as a 360 degree-view of the properties at a first glance. It is a great way to experience various places in the Seoul city without actually going there during this pandemic. Participants can share their opinions about videos by using the “LIVE Chat Box”. The online contents created with themes to represent each array of what MICE participants would have done in Seoul, as well as supported by co-marketing cities such as Gangwon, Gwangju, Gyeongnam, Gyeonggi, Jeollabuk-do and Chungcheongbuk-do to put their stories together, making Seoul to be one of your choices in selection of MICE destination for future events.
The 2020 Virtual MICE Show: Seoul LIVE ON also offers an opportunity to experience the culture of Seoul through a “ON:Tact Seoul Experience” programme. The Connect ON Cooking: Kimchi Pancake. (Kimchi Jeon) and Connect ON Making: Knotted Bracelet were the main programmes where participants can join in live. They can live-chat while cooking Kimchi pancake and making knotted bracelet. The ON:Tact Seoul Experience is the safest and a real programme for overseas buyers to enjoy the authentic K-culture.
N Seoul Tower is the all-time famous icon of Seoul where you can view the whole city from the top of Namsan Mountain, which served as a promotional booth in Virtual Seoul Platform.
Here, you can check the ongoing events on one of the display stands, such as LIVE-Commerce Session Event, Playground Winner Event, Today’s TOP 10 Buyers Event and Today’s TOP 10 Sellers Event. The top 10 participants from different categories will be rewarded with amazing gifts by completing the special missions during the event. If you are looking for MICE venues in Seoul, you can click on Venue Search that will link you to the Seoul Convention Bureau site to search your favourite venues. In addition, you can download the Seoul tourism and MICE related brochures for free, including the detailed information of 2021 PLUS SEOUL support programme, Seoul tourists guide, Seoul Bleisure guide and more.
The 2021 Virtual MICE Show also hosted events on Virtual Seoul Playground, a MICE team building game in metaverse Seoul that supports the Virtual Seoul experience and participants’ networking. It is the gamification of Seul’s unique contents in the MICE industry, offering team building programmes that could enhance solidarity and unity of MICE participants online.
In the virtual playground, participants become avatars wearing various styled hanbok and enjoy the games from Korean culture, as well as have fun time with team members or new friends. All games support simultaneous team interactions of up to 6 people. In addition, the real time communication between team members is available in various ways such as text, emoji and voice chat. The Playground offers 3 K-games, namely Gimbap game, Seoul Lantern and Yunnori. There will be event games where the participants will connect to a designated mode and play to win. Participants also have a chance to win the prize if they play the game.
Seoul Lounge @ Seoul Botanical Park
Seoul Botanical Park is one of the city’s representative parks, combined with a garden to advance urban ecology, which serves as a lounge in Virtual Seoul, where participants can come here and take a break from the events. After entering the lounge, you can communicate with other participants in real time through Zoom or a chat as this venue acted as a virtual networking space.
The Seoul Lounge is the main place for networking between buyer and seller. Here, you can check other attendees’ business card and invite them to 1:1 meetings. Buyers and sellers can also use 1:1 walk-in meetings. A new meeting appointment with each other can be set up instantly as long as they have spare time in between the pre-scheduled meetings. You can also check the on-off status of the participants on “1:1 Meetings with Delegates”, and messages can be delivered between participants by clicking on the message box. In addition, the list of sellers and buyers can be checked here and viewers can click the brochure button on the right side of the list for more detailed information. The most interesting is you can create your own “PLUS SEOUL Membership” card with Korean name, which auto translated from your English name.
At sustainable MICE events in the post COVID-19 era, the 2021 Virtual MICE Show: SEOUL LIVE ON will not only serve as a golden opportunity for Seoul MICE Alliance but also for the overseas MICE industry. Although we are not here together physically and can only meet through screens for now, STO is putting together various efforts to meet you again someday in Seoul.
Have a meaningful and fun time in “Virtual Seoul” and stay tuned on upcoming virtual events in Seoul till we meet again in the future!
More information about PLUS SEOUL and Seoul Convention Bureau is available at www.miceseoul.com.