ExpoForum: St Petersburg’s New Convention Arena
Arguably Russia’s most fascinating city, St Petersburg’s arts and entertainment scene just got a whole lot bigger. From this October, visitors will be able to pay visits to the expansive ExpoForum Convention and Exhibition Centre for business, pleasure and everything in between.
Visitors heading to Russia’s capital now have everything they need under one roof, thanks to the opening of ExpoForum. It’s kind of like an entirely new city, packaged into one gigantic, stunningly designed complex. Catering to every possible corporate need alongside a multitude of leisure facilities, St Petersburg’s newest attraction genuinely has it all.
Combining ancient and modern
Given that St Petersburg is one of Europe’s most important trading posts, it makes sense that it was chosen as the site for this enormous international convention and arts centre – Russia’s largest. Forget any associations you might have of exhibition halls with brain-numbingly uniform designs: ExpoForum is a modern classic that contrasts nicely with the city’s architectural heritage. Wandering the halls and pathways, it’s clear just how much thought the designers have put into the ‘flow’ of the complex. Despite being such a massive site, with 30 conference halls and the capacity to hold a whopping 10,000 visitors, it’s surprisingly easy to find your way around.
Variety is the spice of life
ExpoForum will host everything from arena-scale gigs and international trade conventions to adrenaline-filled sports events and even intimate film screenings. Take in a tennis match, dance along to your favourite bands or sit back and enjoy a movie night – it’s effectively impossible to get bored here. Highlights from ExpoForum’s autumn programme include the Peterfood 2014 food fair, where you can sample local confectionery and Russian liquor (and mentally book yourself some time at the gym). In November, the quirky Zoosphere comes to town. An international celebration of pets, this Russian version of the world-famous Crufts should definitely appeal to your animal instincts.
Location, location, location
ExpoForum sits just 30 minutes south of the city centre, with regular shuttle and Metro access from St Petersburg. So after you’ve finished admiring the historic Winter Palace or have tried and failed to see all three million of the Hermitage art gallery’s artefacts, you can easily shoot on over to ExpoForum. Even better, the centre sits just ten minutes from our Park Inn Pulkovo Airport and five minutes from the Airport itself, so the location couldn’t be more convenient.
Wine and dine
Within the huge complex, ExpoForum has clearly gone to some lengths to provide ample watering holes where guests can relax between concerts or grab a bite before the ballet. There’s an elegant bar and restaurant on Level 1, but if you want to dine in style with a view to match, head for Level 7. ExpoForum’s sky-high restaurant offers an amazing view of the St Petersburg cityscape from 65m above sea level.
ExpoForum isn’t just a large-scale exhibition and conference venue; it’s all set to handle smaller events, too. Corporate visitors to St Petersburg can take advantage of the centre’s bespoke meeting rooms, catering facilities and indoor display spaces. VIP areas and seven floors of corporate accommodation complete the wow factor effect – now might be the perfect time to start dreaming up that ‘essential’ business trip.