TRAVEL

  IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Bratislava:

A City of Green Spaces

and Historic Places

December 15, 2023

What's on your wish list when choosing a European city for a break or business event?  Sustainable practices and activities are hopefully high on your list. But what else? Mountain views and an enchanting river? A historic old town alongside modern amenities and delightful green spaces? Maybe you focus more on the practicalities: a good public transport network and seamless connectivity that stretches across Europe and beyond.

 

This is where Bratislava shines, effortlessly checking all these boxes and more.

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Sitting in the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains in Slovakia's southwest, Slovakia's capital city straddles the Danube River and occupies the left bank of the Morava River, too.

 

While flying isn't the most eco-friendly way to travel, flights to Bratislava are plentiful. Direct flights from nearly 20 cities land at Bratislava Airport, which is around 20 minutes away by taxi or bus. In summer, there are flights from approximately 40 destinations, including Egypt and Dubai. Vienna Airport is about 40 minutes by car, opening up destinations from all over the world, and buses to Bratislava run every 30 to 60 minutes.

 

The city is also close to major motorways, but if you're bringing your own car, you must purchase a valid motorway tax sticker ('dialnicna znamka') from the border crossing or a petrol station.

 

 

IMAGE: Giuseppe Masci

Train, Bus, Boat or Bicycle: Greener Ways to Reach Bratislava

 

Bratislava offers direct connections to major cities like Prague, Budapest, Vienna, Dresden, Berlin, Hamburg, and Zürich, which in turn seamlessly connect it to a multitude of destinations across Europe and beyond. The train journey from Vienna takes just over an hour, and from Budapest, it takes around 2 hours and 30 minutes.

 

The Mlynské Nivy bus station is the main arrival and departure point for buses, and there's an hourly bus to Vienna, providing connections to many other bus services. Coach companies, including FlixBus, Regiojet and Slovak Lines, offer services from dozens of European cities.

 

You can also arrive in Bratislava by boat. The Twin City Liner is a fast catamaran service that takes 75-90 minutes. It departs from the centre of Vienna and runs up to 3 times a day depending on the season. There are also boat connections to Hainburg in Austria and the Slovak towns of Čunovo and Čilistov.

 

Or why not cycle to Bratislava (safe in the knowledge that most trains can take your bike if you change your plans)? Eurovelo 13, the 'Iron Curtain Trail', runs from the Norwegian coast right down to Bosphorus in Turkey, passing through Bratislava. Eurovelo 6 runs from the Atlantic coast near Nantes in France to Constanta in Bulgaria, on the Black Sea coast. On the way, it passes through some of Europe's key cities, including Basel, Vienna, Budapest, Novi Sad, and Bratislava.

 

 

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Welcome to Bratislava

 

Now you've arrived, how will you reach your accommodation? Kongres Magazine describes Bratislava as "a textbook example of a walkable city," pointing to the proximity of everything business visitors need: most of the city's accommodation, conference halls and special venues are all within a 2.5 km radius. In the pedestrianised city centre, only trams have access, and public transport is excellent. It's no surprise, then, that over two-thirds of residents here use a combination of walking and public transport as their primary mode of travel.

 

There are plenty of sustainable transport options for getting around the city. Dopravný Podnik Bratislava (DPB), the capital's public transport provider, is committed to reducing emissions. It runs extensive bus services, including hourly night buses. By 2022, half of DPB's buses were classified as low-emission (electric, CNG-powered and diesel-powered buses meeting the Euro 6 standard), and the company then ordered 40 hydrogen buses from Polish company Solaris Bus & Coach. In August this year, the first four of these went into operation on line 75 between Krasnany and Dolne hony. Unlike electric buses, these Urbino buses require no charging infrastructure in depots. Refuelling takes just minutes, and they have a guaranteed minimum range of 350 kilometres. Trams run from 5 am until 11.30 pm, and electric trolley buses serve some city centre and more hilly routes. You will also find electric scooters for rent and bike-sharing services: Slovnaft Bajk, offering 550 bikes and 73 docking stations, or Rekola, whose pink bikes can be found in the city and Bratislava's forests. The Bratislava CARD provides an economical way to traverse and experience the city. Available as a card or digital version, it offers unlimited use of public transport in the city and region, free admission to 27 museums and galleries, a range of discounts on shops and attractions, and a free walking tour of the historical city centre with a professional guide.

 

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

 If you haven't booked accommodation yet, then there's a range of eco-friendly accommodation.

 

The CPI Hotels group has two hotels in Bratislava following its Pure Stay ecology programme. MaMaison Residence Sulekova offers fully-serviced apartments with kitchenettes in the city's Old Town. It has a bar, sauna, gym and concierge service. Clarion Congress Hotel Bratislava has 175 rooms and offers a restaurant, lobby bar and fitness centre. The group reduced its waste by nearly a quarter between 2019 and 2022. Rooms are only cleaned every three days unless guests request otherwise, and the group plans to be running purely on renewable energy by 2024.

 

Several Bratislava hotels are certified silver by ETIC's Ethical Hotels Standard (NEHS), which assesses hotels and resorts in the areas of Environment, Social Responsibility and Governance. The highest scorers (currently scoring 6.5 or more) are:

 

Hotel Arcadia, a luxury boutique hotel in a charming 13th-century building. It sits in the Old Town, just 50 metres away from the Main Square and the Old Town Hall. Stylish, luxurious touches include heated floors, marble bathrooms and antique furniture. It offers a spa and exercise area, restaurant, and bar.

 

Marrol's Boutique Hotel, a 5-star hotel close to the Old Town. Its Jasmine SPA is reservation-only, bookable for a minimum of two hours. There's also a terrace, restaurant, and lounge area in the lobby.

 

NH Bratislava Gate One, just 2 km from Bratislava Airport, next to the Avion Shopping Park. This hotel also holds Booking.com's highest Travel Sustainable certification, 3+. The nearby bus stop allows guests to reach the centre of the city in 20 minutes. The hotel boasts a luxurious spa area and fitness centre, and there's a good mix of Slovak and international dishes served in the hotel's restaurant and lobby bar.

 

The AC Hotel by Marriott, on the outskirts of Bratislava's historic Old Town. This hotel also holds Booking.com's Travel Sustainable Level 3 certification, and follows Marriot's 'Serve 360: Doing Good in Every Direction' social and sustainable impact strategy. It has a 24-hour fitness centre, and its AC Lounge serves Spanish tapas, wine, and cocktails.

 

The AC Hotel isn't the only chain hotel in the capital with an eco-friendly ethos. Other chain hotels within groups with robust sustainability strategies include:

 

DoubleTree by Hilton Bratislava, three miles from the city centre, has 120 rooms and a restaurant, fitness centre, sauna, and indoor pool. The Doubletree holds Booking.com's Travel Sustainable Level 3 certification and follows Travel with Purpose, the Hilton group's Environmental, Social and Governance strategy.

 

Crowne Plaza Bratislava, a 4-star hotel in the Old Town, opposite the Presidential Residence. There are 224 rooms, 15 suites, a restaurant, a bar, and a fitness centre. As part of IHG, the hotel follows its Green Engage sustainability programme. Local produce is used in its restaurant alongside herbs from its own garden.

 

Radisson Blu Carlton Bratislava, in a beautifully restored historical building in the Old Town. It offers 168 rooms and suites, plus a fitness centre, bar, and restaurant, where guests can enjoy traditional Slovak specialities alongside international dishes.

 

Park Inn by Radisson, a modern, sleek hotel on the bank of the Danube. It has 240 rooms, a fitness centre, a bar, and an Italian-style restaurant.

 

Alternatively, support a project that's all about social responsibility. Bivio Hotel, along with its restaurant and laundry, is run by the Association for People with Developmental Disabilities in the Slovak Republic. One key aim of the charity is to ensure people with these disabilities are appropriately trained for employment, helping them live a fulfilling and independent life. The BIVIO Centre, built with support from the Danish charity The Velux Foundations, offers opportunities for people to train for a variety of hospitality roles.

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Other recommended hotels in the city include:

 

Grand Hotel River Park, part of the Marriott Group, and multiple winner of Trend Top's 'Best Hotel in Bratislava' award and the World Travel Award's 'Slovakia's Leading Hotel' title. Sitting on the bank of the Danube, it claims to have the largest and most luxurious presidential suite in Slovakia! It belongs to the Marriott Group's Luxury Collection, following the Group's 'Serve 360: Doing Good in Every Direction' sustainability and impact strategy. The superb restaurant uses seasonal, local produce, and the entire 11th floor is taken up by the amazing Zion Spa, which offers a wellness centre, fitness centre and swimming pool.

 

The Sheraton Bratislava, also part of the Marriott Group. Located on the bank of the Danube, just a five-minute walk from the city centre, it's on a boulevard bristling with stores and entertainment venues. It offers 209 stylish rooms and suites, a top-class fitness suite, a breakfast brasserie and two bars. It also has eight event spaces accommodating up to 400 people.

 

Loft Hotel, which overlooks the Presidential Gardens in the Old Town. It has striking 'industrial chic' décor, with retro touches. The beer barrels repurposed as furniture are a nod to its popular attached restaurant and brewpub, Fabrika. It serves craft beers and dishes that put a contemporary spin on Slovak staples. There's also a wine bar serving over 200 Slovak wines, and the choice of more luxurious rooms in the adjoining 19th-century building, Wilson Place.

 

Devin Hotel Bratislava, overlooking the Danube. Built in 1954, this city centre hotel was chiefly designed by Emil Beluš, a prominent architect in the Slovak functionalism movement. It's a listed National Cultural Heritage landmark with a long history of famous guests. The hotel offers luxurious rooms and suites, a wellness centre, and a bar, restaurant, and patisserie.

 

Once you've unpacked, you might be ready for some refreshment.

 

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Experience the Best of Bratislava's Cuisine

 

Halušky is a type of small potato dumpling found in central and eastern Europe. Add bryndza (a creamy sheep milk cheese), and a topping of fried bacon, and you have the Slovak national dish: bryndzové halušky. You also shouldn't miss trying Bratislava's bajgle—rolls—which hold a traditional guaranteed speciality trademark (TSG). If you're visiting in autumn, you might have the chance to attend a Goose Feast. Roast goose with stewed cabbage and potato pancakes is a very popular dish.

 

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

To accompany your meal, try a local wine or slivovica, a strong alcoholic beverage made from plums. Finish with Šúľance s makom (poppy seed dumplings), slivkové knedle (sugar-dusted dumplings filled with plums), or štrúdľa (strudel) for dessert.

 

Flagship is a great place to try Slovak specialties. It is one of the largest restaurants in the Central Europe and boasts its own in-house beer production. Another, Soup Culture, sells vegan drinks and sweets, and, of course, vegetarian and vegan soups—Slovaks love their soups! Here, they're served in edible cups made of bread.

 

 

 

 

IMAGE: vvoennyy

For a quick takeaway, visit the Vegan Kiosk in the city centre, which offers street food such as burgers and wraps, sweet treats, and a different soup and international dish every day. You can also enjoy snacks and meals from various food trucks at the Street Food Park, which is open for four days a month and has a zero-waste philosophy.

 

Visitors rave about the vegan burgers and burritos from Balan's Bistro, which serves local beers, and Bemba, the first raw food and plant-based restaurant in Bratislava. It offers freshly prepared meals, salads, desserts and drinks. You can also buy fresh local produce from the food market in the Old Market Hall every Saturday.

 

Refuelled and refreshed, it's time to explore the city.

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Enjoy Bratislava's Outdoor Experiences

 

Bratislava may be a capital city, but it has plenty of green spaces. Don't miss Comenius University's Botanical Gardens—5.5 hectares of land and greenhouses close to the Danube River, with a wide array of trees, shrubs, and flowers, including tropical plants. If trees are your passion, then also visit Horský Park, the Forest City Park in the middle of the city. It's home to a wide variety of tree species and has a historical lodge, with a café and playground.

Bratislava's baroque gardens include the Bratislava Castle Gardens, designed by Empress Maria Theresa's architect, and Medicka Garden, with its café, tearooms, market stalls and food trucks, which hosts plays and concerts.

 

Grassalkovich Garden was once part of the Presidential Palace grounds, and is home to several statues, including one of Empress Maria Theresa on horseback. It's a quiet, beautiful spot, as there are no dogs or bicycles allowed. Sad Janka Kráľa, on the bank of the Danube, is the oldest public park in central Europe, famous for its towering 200-year-old plane trees, zodiac statues and Franciscan Church Tower.

 

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

For the biggest, best wide open spaces, though, go to Bratislava Forest Park at the foothills of the Small Carpathians (Malé Karpaty), just minutes away from the city. Its Partizánska Lúka area, close to the city, has a 400 m Dendrological Trail, allowing you to discover the park's trees. Within the park are two major recreation areas joined by a chairlift. Železná Studienka (The Iron Well), at the lower end, is a great spot for birdwatching. You may be lucky enough to see the very rare Red-Breasted Flycatcher here. Vydrica stream flows through the area, and there are play areas, springs, mills, and lakes where you can enjoy boating. At the top of the chairlift, which provides spectacular views over the city and the forest, lies Kamzik.

 

On this peak stands the TV Tower, which has even more panoramic views and houses a lobby bar, brasserie, and revolving restaurant. There are other eateries in the area, too, ranging from food stalls to cafés. Discover the trails for hikers and mountain bikers—some going further into the forested mountains and others heading downhill towards the city—and try the outdoor fitness park and treetop trail. For a quick descent back down the hill, use the toboggan run in winter or the dry bobsleigh run in summer!

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Cyclists aren't limited to the Forest Park. As well as the Eurovelo 6 and 16 routes already mentioned, Bratislava offers hundreds of kilometres of cycling routes. A brochure available from the Bratislava Tourist Board details 10 different routes from 6.7 km to 46.9 km. It's a great way to explore the city and the surrounding countryside.

 

Cyclists, hikers and birdwatchers alike can find picturesque routes along the Morava River, Devínska Kobyla Mountain (where you can spot the European Bee-Eater) or on the Danube floodplains (the water dam Hrušovská Zdrž near Čunovo is a great place to watch wintering birds).

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

If you prefer to be on the water rather than beside it, take a boat tour on the Small Danube or hire a canoe. The stretch between the villages of Hurbanova Ves and Jelka is very popular for its natural beauty and its four historic wooden mills.

 

For a more active yet still sustainable experience, try Disc Golf, played with a frisbee, at Malý Slavín, or visit one of Bratislava's golf courses or yoga classes. To really get your heart going, why not bungee jump from the Lafranconi Bridge or try white-water rafting at the Water Sports Centre in Čunovo?

 

On days when the weather is unkind, there are plenty of indoor attractions in the city as well, offering a diverse range of cultural, historical, and recreational activities to engage visitors of all ages.

 

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Soak Up Bratislava's Culture and History

 

Local wines are important here. Wine fans should take a vineyard tour in the Devin or Raca district, and the Small Carpathian Wine Route starts in Bratislava. However, you don't have to stray far to sample the best Slovak wines. The Museum of Viticulture, well worth a visit, is also home to the Slovak National Collection of Wine: the 100 top Slovak wines. You can taste 72 wines in 100 minutes!

 

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

 

 

Other cultural and historical highlights include:

 

Bratislava Castle, which dominates the city skyline. First mentioned in records in 907, it has been rebuilt and remodelled many times. It houses the Museum of History and has a 47-metre-high crown tower. Once used to house the royal coronation jewels, it provides great views over the city and neighbouring countries.

 

St. Martin's Cathedral is a 15th-century Gothic church formerly used for coronations. A gilded replica of the coronation crown sits on the top of the tower. Every summer, Bratislava celebrates its coronation history with its Coronation Days Festival.

 

The Old Town Hall now houses Slovakia's oldest museum, the Bratislava City Museum. There are great views over the Old Town from its 45-metre-high tower.

 

The Primate's Palace was built in the 18th century and is now the official seat of Bratislava's Mayor. The Peace of Pressburg was signed here after Napoleon's victory at the Battle of Austerlitz. The gallery has a unique collection of 17th-century English tapestries.

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Grassalkovich Palace is a splendid 18th-century Rococo summer palace built for the Chairman of the Hungarian Royal Chamber, Count Anton Grassalkovich. It attracted the society elite, and composer Joseph Haydn also performed here. It's now the seat of the President of the Slovak Republic.

 

The Blue Church gets its nickname from the striking pastel blue shades of its façade, interior, and roof tiles! More appropriately known as St. Elizabeth's Church, it was built at the beginning of the 20th century in the Art Nouveau style and is exquisitely decorated.

 

Slavín is the largest war memorial in Central Europe and dominates the skyline. Standing 52 metres high, it marks the burial ground of 6,845 Soviet soldiers who died during the liberation of Bratislava in World War II.

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

The UFO is a rather more modern cultural icon: an observation deck built on the pylons of the Slovak National Uprising Bridge, complete with a restaurant. Standing 95 metres high, it provides wonderful views for up to 100 km around.

 

Art Galleries: Bratislava City Gallery and the Slovak National Gallery both house permanent and temporary exhibitions of art, ranging from medieval to contemporary. Nedbalka Gallery has a permanent exhibition of Slovak Modernism over four floors. The Danubiana Meulensteen Art Museum sits in a striking location in an 8,000-square-metre sculpture park on the Danube Peninsula. It's less than 20 km from the city and can be reached by road or boat. Inside, you can admire the museum of contemporary art on the ground floor, while the first floor has an exhibition of work by leading international artists, which changes regularly.

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Indulge in Some Eco-Friendly Shopping

 

You will find plenty of places to buy traditional and authentic wares. Contemporary Suvenir is a great place to find souvenirs created in collaboration with contemporary Slovak artists and designers.

 

There are also many stores here with a sustainable or socially responsible ethos. Isadore, founded by brothers and former pro-cyclists Martin and Peter Velits, makes sustainable cycling clothing. In 2019, the company produced the first cycling kit made entirely from recycled materials. They have also established the Isadore Bratislava Community Hub in the historical Pradiareň 1900 building, a former spinning mill factory. It has a café, cycling amenities, and charging points for electric vehicles, and it hosts events and weekly rides. The company is also involved in many charitable and socially responsible activities.

 

Majolika-R started life as a company in 1990, dedicated to making the traditional folk majolica (tin-glazed pottery) that is part of Slovak cultural heritage. The company began running sheltered workshops teaching people with mental and physical disabilities to produce this pottery and, in recent years, textiles. In 2021, Majolika-R became a social enterprise. Employees now work not just in textile and ceramic production, but also in the organisation's wine cellar, where visitors can enjoy Slovak gastronomy and wines, and try making or painting pottery. Majolika-R has a mobile gastro stand near Kamzík, too, which is a great place to stop for refreshments. It sells drinks, bubble waffles, baked corn dogs—and pottery!

 

 

 

 

IMAGE: Jozef Polc

Bratislava for Business Meetings and Events

 

There's a host of reasons to hold your business event in Bratislava. We've already delved into eco-friendly accommodations and eateries, alongside the great cultural and natural attractions available for break-out activities. But what about the city's sustainability credentials, its burgeoning innovative industries, and the state-of-the-art conference facilities?

 

Urban Sustainability and Mobility

 

Sustainability is a key consideration in Bratislava's urban planning and projects, both in the public and private sectors.

 

Climate-Resilient Bratislava is the umbrella initiative for pilot projects on decarbonisation, energy efficiency and sustainable rainwater management. As part of this, the Green Bratislava project focuses on sustainable rainwater management, adjustment of microclimate via rainwater bioretention, establishment of new green areas and green roofs, adding greenery to some of the city's squares, and increasing water-permeability of public areas. It also educates the public on rainwater management on their own property and awards grants to help them implement rainwater retention measures. Some of these greening measures are designed by the Metropolitan Institute of Bratislava (MIB), which works within architecture, urban planning, and city development to improve both the quality of life and public spaces.

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

The institute's other projects have included:

 

  • The replacement of asphalt in some areas with durable, environmentally friendly tiles.
  • Provision of shade and cooling near the New Market Hall, where many people wait for public transport, via the planting of five large trees of a particularly climate-resistant variety of plane.
  • Construction of a 'hide' at the Vydrica Spring, made from local timber.
  • The transformation of an unused plot of land in Karlova Ves into a multi-generation public space with greenery, playgrounds, and a skate park and parkour area designed in consultation with local skateboarding and parkour groups.
  • Improvement of accessibility and safety at the Bee Meadow near the Krasňany mining plant, which is an Urban Forests of Bratislava project, allowing it to be opened to the public.

 

A new Positive Energy District (PED): A large area of Petržalka, the largest prefabricated housing estate in Europe, is set to become a Positive Energy District (PED). Bratislava is a Fellow City of Atelier, an EU-funded Smart City project aiming to create and replicate PEDs within two Lighthouse Cities and six Fellow Cities. The project focuses on the reduction of CO2 emissions via local smart urban solutions; sustainable, secure and affordable energy systems for citizens; and collaboration and knowledge sharing between the cities involved. The city plans to design passive, zero or plus energy houses based on natural energy resources and add a tram line for green mobility and better connectivity throughout the district. Greenways are planned across the axes, which will include footpaths and cycling lanes, and connect existing playgrounds and green areas. A large park is being created, and all the new roofs will be green, helping to create a cooling effect among the existing paved areas.

 

Einpark is a LEED Zero Carbon and LEED Platinum-certified building which claims to be the greenest building in Slovakia. It has green roofs, scalable EV charging stations, an electric composter, and an energy-efficient heating and cooling system that makes use of local water resources.

 

Nová Cvernovka is a cultural and creative centre in a former chemical factory run by the Nadácia Cvernovka Foundation. It's home to a public library, 132 art and creative studios, an outdoor terrace, a stage, a community garden, a children's playground and, thanks to a novel recycling project, a public park. After reconstructing their building when they moved sites, the Foundation discovered the remaining rubble would be prohibitively expensive to send to landfill. Instead, with advice from experts, the rubble was sorted with the help of volunteers and a bicycle-powered sorting device. It was then used to provide landscaping and threshed surfaces to create a public park.

 

Nové Nivy is a building combining Nivy Mall (with over 250 shops) with a major bus terminal underground, food court, car park, automated bike storage tower, fresh food market and Nivy Tower, which is a business space. It was designed to be an energy-efficient building, and has photovoltaic panels and rainwater retention measures in place, plus 1 km of cycle paths. However, what really draws attention is its green roof, designed to be used and enjoyed rather than passive. It offers a community garden, workspaces with power and charging ports, exercise zones (including a 500 m running track and table tennis facilities), a barbecue area with bookable grills, playgrounds with trampolines and water jets, an insect hotel and plenty of greenery, including 134 trees.

 

 

 

 

IMAGE: Džoko Stach

EIT Urban Mobility works with cities across Europe to pilot innovative urban mobility solutions from startups. As part of this, Bratislava currently participates in a project from the company BitaGreen to identify locations where green and blue infrastructure can reduce air pollution and traffic noise. The winner of the Urban Mobility Hub's Startup Competition in 2022 was BikeUp, a startup based in Bratislava that hires out children's bikes. This prevents parents from having to regularly purchase new bikes as their children grow, and reduces discarded, unused bikes in sheds.

 

Urban Beekeeping is growing in popularity here. The first urban beehive in the city was set up on the roof of the Old Market Hall in 2014, organised by the Centre for Environmental and Ethical Education Živica. There are now beehives in the gardens of Bratislava's Presidential Palace, the roof of Bratislava City Hall (home to over 120,000 honeybees) and the NH Bratislava Gate One hotel, where you can visit the hives on the rooftop terrace.

 

 

 

IMAGE: nextvoyage

Circular Economy

 

OLO is Bratislava's municipal waste management company. Its Waste Energy Utilisation Facility has a steam condensing turbogenerator to turn the energy from incinerating waste into electricity. Together with the City, it founded KOLO, an award-winning 1,200 m2 reuse centre. It's a place where anyone can dispose of or discover unwanted items, whether they're still usable or in need of repair. It's also home to the HUB, an educational and creative centre focused on circular economy, and a new repair workshop and rest area have just opened. The KOLO centre cooperates with the non-profit sector and charities helping the disadvantaged, and donates any money it makes to environmental projects.

 

Textile House sorts 20,000 tons of textiles per year in its warehouse on the outskirts of Bratislava. The textiles are either donated to the homeless, sold in its 170 European stores (including 12 in Bratislava), or sent for recycling. Only 2% of the material it collects is unused.

 

Green Innovation

 

Ecocapsule is a Bratislavan firm producing the Ecocapsule—a smart, self-sustainable micro-unit, pod-like in shape, which runs on solar and wind energy, allowing you to stay in comfort in more remote places.

 

InoBat Auto is a Bratislava-based startup involved in the research, development and production of customised batteries for electric cars. They strive to ensure their batteries are "environmentally friendly and economically viable throughout their entire lifecycle."

 

The MH2 is Slovakia's first hydrogen car. It used a unique hydrogen storage technology developed by the Technical University of Kosice in Slovakia, allowing more hydrogen to be stored under much lower pressure. This increases safety and range. It has been developed by the MATADOR group in Bratislava.

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Business Background

 

Bratislava's MICE destination marketing tagline is 'Surprisingly Close, Exceptionally Smart'. The capital is in an excellent position logistically, on the border of three countries (Slovakia, Austria, and Hungary), with good access by road, rail and river. It's known as an innovation hub, and famous for its exceptional execution and engineering expertise.

 

Slovakia's automotive production sector represents 44% of its entire industry and Slovakia now has the world's highest car production per capita. Volvo are planning to build a climate-neutral plant—their first plant dedicated exclusively to producing electric vehicles—in Košice in eastern Slovakia.

 

As for the capital, automotive giants Volkswagen (producing Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche, ŠKODA and SEAT cars), Peugeot Citroën, KIA, and Jaguar Land Rover, all have plants in or around Bratislava. It's also the home of Aeromobil, makers of one of the first flying cars. The city has thriving chemical, textile, metal and electrical goods industries, too.

 

Bratislava also represents good value for money, with more affordable prices compared to other capitals offering similar services and quality. The Bratislava Convention Bureau is part of the official Destination Marketing Organization, the Bratislava Tourist Board. It provides a full range of services for the MICE sector, from initial event planning and site inspections to networking and promotional materials.

 

 

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Business Event Venues

 

There's a wealth of eco-friendly hotels with great event facilities in Bratislava. The Doubletree by Hilton Bratislava offers 8 meeting spaces, including the Hilton Ballroom, which, with a capacity for 600 people, is the largest meeting room in the destination. It features a built-in stage and provides A/V transmission to other rooms. Crowne Plaza Bratislava is the largest conference hotel in the capital, offering 14 function rooms of various sizes and layouts.

 

However, there are plenty of other venues besides hotels—some of them quite unusual. Several theatres and museums, such as the Slovak National Theatre building and Slovak National Gallery, can be used for events. The Old Market Hall can accommodate up to 1500  guests and continually introduces new green measures, such as an electric composter and a green roof.

 

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

The UFO Tower can accommodate up to 200 people, and Jurkovič Heating Plant has been refurbished as a modern event and co-working space with a restaurant and gallery. The Slovak National Collection of Wines can accommodate 55 people and offers wine-tasting and team-building activities. Universities in Bratislava also provide a range of great meeting spaces, and if you want to get the best views of the Danube, why not consider holding an event on a boat? The Harmonia is a luxury event boat that provides catering services, with a top deck capacity of 250 and a lower deck that accommodates 150 people.

 

Kulturama Bratislava is a multifunctional space that was once a large garage. After a refurbishment using sustainable materials, it's now a modern event hub. The chairs were once PVC bottles, and the tiles were made from recycled tyres. It offers a bistro space, gallery and training room, which can be hired separately or together. The entire venue can accommodate up to 130 attendees, who can enjoy a great gastronomic experience from renowned in-house caterers Soupa Bistro.

 

The Spot has a large conference area accommodating 120 people, a smaller hall for 70 people, a workshop space for 25 people, a podcast studio, and meeting rooms for 4-14 people. Its standout selling point is its panoramic terrace with amazing views. In-house catering is available, and it's also home to over 50 companies and a hub for co-working, collaboration and innovation, particularly in the area of decentralised technologies and cryptocurrency.

 

For larger events, consider Incheba Expo Bratislava, right by the Danube, where flexible spaces allow for events for 50 to 5,000 people or the A4 Studio, with its state-of-the-art lighting and sound facilities, which accommodates 3000.

 

 

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

Good for Business, Brilliant for Breaks

 

Bratislava's compact and diverse nature means that there's so much to see—and everything you need—close by. Visit to relax on the banks of the Danube and wander the lovely streets of the Old Town. Come in December to enjoy the enchanting Christmas Markets, which have adopted a Zero Waste policy. Or hold your team-building event or conference here, knowing you can accommodate, entertain and inform your delegates, all within a few square kilometres.

 

 

IMAGE: Bratislava Tourist Board

With all the charm and facilities of better known-central European capitals, but far more economical prices, Bratislava is a great choice—whatever the reason for your visit. And beyond its practical advantages and scenic beauty, Bratislava captures the heart with its blend of cultural richness and ecological mindfulness. From the gentle rustle of leaves in its verdant parks to the vibrant pulse of its bustling markets, each facet of Bratislava tells a story of a city that cherishes its past while boldly embracing the future. Whether you're indulging in the culinary delights, exploring sustainable urban innovations, or simply basking in the serene landscapes, each moment here is a step into a world where tradition and modernity harmoniously coexist. Bratislava isn't just a destination; it's an experience that stays with you, inviting you to return, time and time again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uncover the secrets of Bratislava's eco-friendly charm and plan your green meeting in the heart of Europe. For more information and to begin your journey, please visit:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Implemented with the financial support of the Ministry of Transport of the Slovak Republic.

 

 

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