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A meeting with a difference at Fairmont Baku, Flame Towers, Azerbaijan

In the heart of the city of Baku, Azerbaijan – the land of fire – lies one of the most innovative and audacious buildings of modern times – the Flame Towers Complex.  Resembling the shape of a flame, its northernmost tower is home to Fairmont Baku, Flame Towers – a 318 room property with enviable views over the ancient city of Baku and the breathtaking sweep of the Caspian Sea.

Located close to the Government Buildings, overlooking the hustle and bustle of the city centre and harbour, Fairmont Baku, Flame Towers offers a quiet oasis to conduct prestigious meetings of any size with over 2,500 square metres (26,900 square feet) of multi-functional space.

Doing business at Fairmont Baku, Flame Towers: There are eleven meeting rooms available in total, split over two levels, offering any number of options from a private boardroom meeting for just 14 delegates to a glittering cocktail reception in the Grand Ballroom for up to 950 guests. The eleven meeting rooms are broken down into: two board rooms, seven meeting rooms as well as a Junior and Grand Ballroom.

Attendees may access the Conference Centre via its own dedicated entrance, leading directly to the Grand Ballroom or by the impressive seven story lobby with its incredible crystal glass chandelier.

All rooms have access to the 24 hour Business Centre, a number of pre-function areas and cutting edge audio visual technology including built in projectors, screens and Wi-Fi. Each function space is decorated in neutral tones to create a calm and tranquil working environment for each guest. Every room follows the theme of the Flame Towers complex with light features mimicking flames and patterned carpets representing the movement of water. To complement the space, custom made pieces of contemporary art offer a stunning contrast to the restrained décor. Fairmont Baku, Flame Towers also offers sustainable meetings for planners who want to leave as small a carbon footprint as possible.

Relaxing at Fairmont Baku, Flame Towers:  When the working day is done, any individual needs to switch off and wind down.  At the hotel, there are currently two dining options available - the elegant French-influenced Le Bistro and the curved Nur Lounge with its bar and terrace – with five more to open this winter including a live jazz venue, a steakhouse and a Cigar Divan.  Even special diets are easily catered for with Fairmont’s Lifestyle Cuisine. The newly opened spa facility - ESPA at Fairmont Baku – offers ample opportunity to work off stress or excess pounds, with personal trainers to keep fitness programmes on track, available on demand.  ESPA at Fairmont Baku is located over two floors and offers 3,500 square metres (37,674 square feet) of both active and passive space with a fully equipped gym, a black marble Hamman, a glittering indoor pool and vitality pools, nine treatment rooms and the stunning Sky Lounge where every guest can relax in style with that 360 degree view over the city.  For travellers that like to stay active but travel light, Fairmont Fit is available, a brand programme via Fairmont’s Presidents Club.  Guests may order shorts, T-shirts and athletic shoes, all delivered to the guestroom for use during their stay.

What to do, what to see in Baku:  The city of Baku is similar in feel to Paris with broad boulevards and shopping malls featuring many, easily recognisable, major luxury and high street brands. The city wraps itself around the curve of the Caspian Sea, the largest inland sea in the world and there is a broad mix of architecture on show – from the ancient, first millennium Inner City to the startlingly modernist Heydar Aliyev Cultural Center designed by Zaha Hadid to the belle époque mansions of the old oil barons and the more mundane accommodation blocks dating back to the Soviet era.  

Other ideas for delegate itineraries might include:
• Baku, Azerbaijan – an ancient city, waiting to be discovered – Situated at the crossroads of Europe, Asia and the Middle East, Baku, Azerbaijan has a long and glorious past stretching back to the first century as part of the famous Silk Route traversing the continents and providing a ‘gateway’ between ancient Asia and a mysterious, wealthy Europe.  Hidden for years behind the Soviet curtain, visitors may now rediscover the Old City or Inner City (Icheri Sheher) - a UNESCO World Heritage Site - which is within easy walking distance of Fairmont Baku, Flame Towers containing beautiful buildings that reveal the secret history of Baku, boxed in by massive soaring walls – around 30 feet high and over 10 feet wide.  Standing on the southeast corner of Baku’s Old City is the Maiden Tower – a unique structure shaped like a giant key.  The Old City’s other major attraction is the Palace of the Shirvanshahs, built by the Shirvan Kings in the 15th century.

• Fire watching - An interesting half day trip is to the Ateshgah Fire Temple located in Surakhany, 12.5 miles northeast of Baku.  It was built by Zoroastrian fire worshippers in the 17th century on the ruins of an old temple.  As well as being a sacred destination for pilgrims from Iran and India, it symbolises fire – a fitting monument for a city rich in oil and gas.  This trip can be combined with a visit to Yanar Dag otherwise known as Fire Mountain.   Around 17 miles northwest of Baku, this is where the natural gas flares up from the earth reaching up to 10 feet in height and was created by mistake when the soil ignited 50 years ago.  At night, the fiery gas can illuminate up to 330 feet away.

• Between a rock and a hard place – Another half day trip will take history buffs 40 miles south of Baku to Gobustan National Park, another UNESCO World Heritage Site.  This mountainous area is famous for its petroglyphs and rock engravings dating back tens of thousands of years.

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