Planning prevents hotel crisis at prague nato summit
AIM had to react quickly to find accommodation for NATO Summit delegates in Prague, which had been hit by catastrophic flooding not long before the event
A NATO Summit was held in Prague at the end of November 2002, with AIM in charge of accommodation for all delegations and media participants (around 5,000 people in total). In August that year – with the event just a few months away – Prague was hit by catastrophic flooding, affecting three of the main event hotels (with 1,000 rooms between them).
AIM worked closely with the Czech Ministry of Affairs to react to the floods, and in early September an action plan was drawn up, including a contingency programme in case any of the hotels was not able to open on time. Personal contact was made with each of the delegations potentially affected, and AIM was regularly in touch with the respective national embassies as well as NATO headquarters in Brussels. Sourcing alternative accommodation meant talking not just to existing hotels, but also working with a five-star that was actually still under construction.
This approach paid dividends: one of the flood-damaged hotels couldn’t be repaired before the summit – and AIM was forced to move three official delegations, including the NATO secretariat itself. But ongoing contact meant those affected had always been aware of this possibility, and the alternative hotels were already lined up – and 60 delegates became some of the first guests in the newly-inaugurated five-star hotel.
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