Meet Basel, City of Congresses

3rd November 2022

Basel is capable of defending its status as a congress destination in the aftermath of the pandemic too. With several top-notch specialist events being staged there this autumn, Switzerland’s third-largest city is attracting thousands of visitors.

Words Christine Waelti

While labels like city of culture, research and science location and business metropolis all accurately describe Basel, they cannot conceal the fact that the city is compact in size. Despite this, it still boasts plenty of urban flair. Art and architecture buffs will find offerings unrivalled elsewhere in Switzerland. And, apart from museums, galleries and buildings of international renown, the inhabitants of Basel also know how to enjoy life. It thus comes as no surprise to learn that the city features a highly varied gastronomic and club scene and a wealth of different events. 

Basel’s central location in Europe constitutes a major advantage for organizers, who value its good accessibility and excellent public transport network. A further argument is the infrastructure available at Messe and Congress Center Basel, right in the heart of the city. Five generously-dimensioned exhibition halls and 25 modern conference rooms offer maximum flexibility with an overall surface area of 141,000 sqm. The great versatility of the venue is evident from the packed schedule of national and international events being hosted there this autumn.

Case studies

Key figures for the Messe and Congress Center Basel: Exhibition area (square metres): 141,000 / Exhibitions (annually): 20 to 25 / Visitors at the exhibition site (annually): up to 1 million / Rooms at the Congress Center: 25 / Room capacity: 50 to 10,000 / Events (annually): 250

These include the European Congress of Pathology (ECP) which attracted just over 4,000 specialists from more than 100 countries. Attendees were particularly impressed by the fact that everything was within such easy reach in the city centre, that the rooms at the venue were so versatile and that such importance was attached to the topic of sustainability. 

This was followed from 18 to 22 September 2022 by the European Conference on Optical Communications (ECOC), regarded as the industry’s most important meeting point, with its almost 5,000 participants from 46 countries. Those in charge opted for the MCH Group locations since they are capable of accommodating an extensive exhibition in addition to the conference program. 

“We require a considerable amount of space for both, and it was quite a challenge to find a suitable location”,explains Emma Harvey, Commercial Director at ECOC. “But Messe and Congress Center Basel convinced us on all counts.”

And further exciting congresses are scheduled for the weeks to come, including the Annual Biocontrol Industry Meeting from 24 to 26 October 2022 and the Swiss Innovation Forum on 23 November 2022.

“After two difficult years, we very much appreciate the many great events that are being staged on our premises”,says Jonas Scharf, Head of MCH Venues. “For us, this is clear proof that Basel will be one of the places to be for organizers in future too.” 

More than a location


MCH Messe Schweiz (Basel) AG/ / +41 58 206 20 20

More info on Switzerland as a convention destination: /

When you hold an event in the congress centre or at Messe Basel, you are booking a great deal more than just a well-equipped location. You also benefit from the following advantages:

  • easy access thanks to the central location, proximity to the airport and good rail connections. 
  • the support of an experienced and professional team with a high-quality standard.
  • an uncomplicated stay at the venue thanks to its state-of-the-art infrastructure and immediate proximity to the city centre.
  • an inspiring atmosphere thanks to the leading position that Basel holds in the life sciences, biotechnology and medicine. 
  • a good environmental footprint, since the City of Basel generates all its electricity from renewable energy sources.
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