The lobby of Novotel HICC, the CoP -11 venue, is been abuzz with activity since a few days. Core teams from various countries and organising committee members were the first to arrive.

And now with just two days to go, bookings for delegates from various participating countries are in place at various hotels with some early bird arrivals already.

“We have tied up with over 60 star and budget hotels for accommodation. We have been getting 35 — 45 queries everyday and with increasing numbers we have put accommodation options online so that delegates can book directly. We have queries for accommodation in hotels even in Abids. It is difficult to explain to foreign delegates regarding logistics from there. We have identified 28 hotels that will serve as pick up points for delegates attending the meet,” says Divya Sharma, project coordinator for CoP-11, MCI Management, the official agency to provide accommodation.

The number of delegates vary, depending on the segment they are attending — the MoP-6 (Meeting of Parties to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, October 1-5), CoP — 11 (October 8-19) and the high-level ministerial segment (October 17-19).

“The number is likely to increase along the conference with the peak occupancy at 5,000 — 6,000 delegates. The mid priced budget hotels will be preferred over star deluxe properties. Most UNEP and UNDP delegations are governed by daily sustenance allowance, based on which the delegates choose hotels. The allowance is meant to cover accommodation, food and miscellaneous expenses. NGOs have similar travel policies,” says Jaideep Khanna, General Manager, (Sales, Marketing & Distribution), Novotel, HICC. The hotel will host some of the top dignitaries attending the CoP-11.

Adding to the ‘mehmaan nawazi’, new hotels in town have advanced their inaugurals to accommodate the international delegates, one such being Avasa, near Cyber Towers. “The inaugural was slated post October but we opened it early for CoP — 11. We are expecting 80-90 per cent occupancy here as it is close to the venue and another 25 -30 per cent in Marigold,” says Mohan Krishna, Vice -President (Operations) Green Park Hotels and Resorts Limited.

“The CoP -11 means a lot to the region. Hosting the large event attended by international delegates will position the city on the world map,” adds Mr. Khanna.

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