Yokohama. Yokohama Convention & Visitors Bureau (YCVB) recently announced the new branding of Yokohama as international convention city. “Japan’s First Port of Call” was designated as the selling message for Yokohama. The idea behind it comes from the City’s history, when 154 years ago, Yokohama was the first port that opened up to the world, after 200 years of seclusion in Japan’s history.
Kana Nomoto from YCVB explains: “Our city council currently adopts an Open Yokohama brand, and it is important that the convention brand not only supplements it, but strengthens it. Through a Brand Wheel process, we identified that one of Yokohama’s characteristics is – we are the first in many ways. From being the first Japanese port to open up, to hosting first-time-in-Asia congresses, and the first in innovation and research and development, our open, “can-do” approach has made this city Japan’s first port of call. And, for any international meeting organiser who wants to bring their event to Yokohama, the YCVB is, of course, their first port of call as we are a full service bureau.”
Two large and high profile meetings that will take place in Yokohama this year are the International Congress of Chemotherapy and Infection (2,500 attendees) and the Human Proteome Organisation Congress (2,000 attendees). Yokohama is accessible from both Haneda and Narita Airports. Boasting of more than 1,500 weekly flights from 40 countries and direct flights from over 100 cities around the world, Yokohama is a successful convention city, well known for its ability to attract large attendance number to its conventions. Pacifico Yokohama is the city’s largest all-in-one convention complex with a plenary capacity of 5,000. 13 hotels which are a 15-mins walk away from the centre, offer some 3,400 rooms.
To bring the new brand to life, a new brand identity and design have been applied. The key image captures the port of Yokohama and the main convention area of the city which is anchored by Pacifico, its flagship facility. The use of a ‘nami’ pattern which is quintessentially Japanese and representing waves, reinforces Yokohama’s status as a harbour city which is open and dynamic and at the same time offering Japanese tradition and hospitality and efficiency. Yokohama’s new branding will be rolled out across all sales collaterals, including the YCVB Convention website which is currently undergoing renewal.