Macau will flourish with opportunities brought by the newly opened City of Dreams, Macau Science Centre and L'Arc New World Hotel Macau, adding impetus to the city's meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions industry. The 462-room L'Arc New World Hotel and the 791-room Grand Hyatt will soon open and boost the city's room and meeting space inventory. L'Arc, slated to open on September 21, will aim at mid-sized Mice corporate meeting groups from 50 to 150 people. Its meeting venues will include a 462-square-metre pillarless ballroom. Other in-house Mice sites will include the poolside, suitable for evening events hosting more than 120 guests. The hotel started taking Mice bookings in July and customers who confirm their bookings before the opening date will be offered 20 per cent savings on wedding packages or 30 per cent savings on meeting packages. The Grand Hyatt Macau, situated in the City of Dreams, will open its doors on October 1 and will strive to appeal to the local and international market. It will offer more than 9,000 square metres of function space, delivering a sophisticated luxury conference venue and rooms. The pillarless eight-metre high Grand Ballroom ceiling can cater for up to 2,500 people. The signature ballroom Salao do Teatro - with its innovative open kitchen concept and natural daylight - will be a banqueting venue for up to 500 guests. Complementing the ballrooms will be eight Salon meeting rooms, a conference business centre and an outdoor pool deck for evening events. General manager Paul Kwok outlined some perks. 'We provide complimentary Wi-fi internet access for all guests. We also have built-in audio-visual equipment in all meeting facilities and provide a technology concierge service for our Mice guests.' The Macau Science Centre is expected to welcome visitors at the end of this year. It will consist of an exhibition complex, a planetarium and a conference centre - covering an area of 20,000 square metres. Bruno Sim?es, chief executive at DOC DMC, which offers services to corporate clients and organising committees that want to organise events in Macau, Hong Kong and the mainland, praised Macau as a compact city where distances between locations were short. 'For most events this is a good advantage because guests can benefit from [the use of] multiple locations making their stay richer and more dynamic.' However, he envisaged more off-site venues for special events. 'For any group with more than 200 guests Macau only has the Fisherman's Wharf and the Macau Tower as off-site venues. Macau is also short of restaurants outside hotels to host special evenings for more than 200 people.' He said the World Heritage venues were not available for private functions. 'These venues could be a great competitive advantage for Macau but so far it is not feasible to organise events in them. I believe the Macau government will tackle this strategic opportunity soon.' Hotel Royal Macau deputy general manager Kevin Chan, disagreed, saying: 'I don't think there is a shortage of Mice venues. There are many options available and they should be sufficient for the next few years. 'However, what we lack are meeting professionals who can pitch, organise, sell, manage events and make them profitable and successful to all parties. He added that 'the development of Hengqin will be key to the Mice sector and tourism in Macau'. 'A successful theme park on the mainland is looking to establish a theme park in Hengqin. The border could then be virtually lifted to allow for a free flow of traffic between Hengqin and Macau.'