Today is a momentous day for Palma, Majorca and the industry that has evolved to be known as MICE - meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions. The new Palacio de Congresos and its adjacent four-star superior Meliá Palma Bay Hotel both open.

The entire site covers an area of 57,000 square metres. When fully functioning, it will employ over 200 people. It is set to be the best convention centre in the Mediterranean, with the potential to earn Palma a place amongst the top 50 destinations for international conferences and exhibitions.

In October last year, Meliá Hotels International was chosen to manage the new Palacio (in Catalan, Palau de Congressos). In January at the Fitur travel trade fair in Madrid, Meliá's chief executive, Gabriel Escarrer committed to opening the Palacio in April.

And so today, the whole complex will begin operations in April 2017 with a "soft opening".

Designed by the renowned Spanish architect, Francisco Mangado, the centre has been designed to fit in with existing architecture along the seafront and to not overshadow the Cathedral. The idea of continuity and integration with the seafront promenade was considered in the design and construction.

There are stunning views from the foyers and corridors, which take advantage of its excellent location.

Meliá Palma Bay Hotel offers 268 rooms which have taken on the well-being philosophy of the Meliá brand. The hotel offers guests facilities to help them relax and meditate. The rooftop terrace has a swimming pool overlooking the spectacular bay in the city, and there is an indoor spa and gym.

A series of major conferences and exhibitions are already planned for this year, starting this month.