5-in-one venue suits every event, reports Briony KeyBrighton Dome is an iconic complex of venues that deserves to be on the shortlist for a very wide variety of events. Its remarkable architecture, its cultural history and its continuous updating mean that, like me, everyone should re-visit the Dome.
The Grade I listed building, which over a 200-year history has been a stable block, a hospital and a roller-skating rink, is now a versatile multi-arts venue.
Located in a city known as a digital ‘hot spot’, the Dome is being kept ahead of the competition and is well set to host a Photoshop training session for 500 in July 2014 and the city’s Digital Festival in September. This is ‘a month-long celebration of digital culture’, involving organisations as well as individuals passionate about the theme.
The Dome’s facilities can cater for 50 to 1,700 delegates in elegant Grade 1 listed, inter-linked surroundings close to England’s South-Coast shore.
Imagine yourself staging an awards ceremony, conference or product launch in an ornate, Art Deco concert hall? Perhaps you’d be concerned about the acoustics? This has all been kept up-to-date, thanks to 21stC technology embedded in the walls.
The Concert Hall can accommodate 300 to 1,700 in tiered seating, with uninhibited views of the stage. The Corn Exchange is yet another of Brighton’s biggest venues, catering for up to 580-theatre style. It’s a stylish option for a gala dinner, with windows that flood the space with natural light. Conferences, exhibitions and fashion shows are regularly held here.
Those seeking a good break-out space from a bigger conference can consider the adaptable Studio Theatre. It seats up to 232 and is favoured for seminars, meetings and presentations.
Event bookers needing a smaller setting will find the Founders Room a light and flexible space, with capacity for 80 theatre-style. A popular choice for private receptions, this room can be divided into two for additional versatility.
The modern Brighton Dome Café-bar is regularly used for conference registrations and receptions for up to 800. It has direct access to Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, another popular evening venue.
The venue’s catering partners, Peyton Events, can supply a wide range of menus to suit any event or conference. The company’s chefs come from a background of Michelin-starred restaurants and 5-star hotels and boast ‘innovative food and design with impeccable service’.
Located centrally in Brighton’s famous North Lanes area, the Dome is 50-minutes journey from central London, with easy road, rail and bus access. It’s also just 10 minutes from the railway station.
Hotels surround this historic sweetheart and suit all budgets, from historic 5-star town houses to 3- and 4-star accommodation.
I stayed in the trendy 3-star Ibis, which sits almost exactly halfway between the station and the Brighton Dome and was a practical, comfortable base. There are 140 rooms, 24-hour reception and meal and drinks menu. It also benefits from free Wi-Fi throughout.
The bar and restaurant staff were welcoming, whilst the eat-as-much-as-you-like hot or cold continental buffet breakfast went down a treat – especially as it was served until noon at the weekend!