Sodexo Prestige has been awarded a £4.5m three-year contract with Conference Aston, to provide catering, housekeeping and cleaning services.

Conference Aston boasts Birmingham City centre’s premier portfolio of award winning conference, hotel and event venues; purpose built to offer choice, flexibility, quality and expert support, without compromise. The venue, a long standing member of Conference Centres of Excellence is arguably one of the most accessible city centre locations in the UK and is home to two award winning conference, meeting and training venues as well as a contemporary banqueting space and a 162 bedroom, urban chic hotel.

Sodexo Prestige will provide conference and banqueting catering, including a fulll restaurant offer from breakfast to dinner, room service to the 162 hotel bedrooms, hotel lounge drinks and bar meal and private restaurant facilities for corporate dining, weddings and social banqueting, as well as managing the housekeeping services in the hotel. The Courtyard Restaurant will present a strong identity with exciting menus focussed on seasonal produce.

The venue operates to IS14001 standards, a suite of standards on environmental management, developed by the International Standards Organisation (ISO). Conference Aston achieved certification in 2011 and Sodexo Prestige will support this through the work on their own sustainable event management system, which aims to gain BS8901 certification within the next 12 months.

David Johnson, managing director for Sodexo Prestige England and Wales says, “We are delighted to start building our venue portfolio in the Midlands, which will increase the appeal of our venue group to the event organisers and we are also proud to operate in partnership with another Conference Centres of Excellence venue’.

We will offer cuisine expertly prepared on-site, using fresh, quality seasonal produce that is underpinned by our Fairtrade, ethical and sustainable philosophy. In a highly demanding marketplace of commercial conference and events venues, we have vast expertise in meeting and exceeding the needs of conference and event organisers.

We understand the pressures of event organisers and their delegates’ expectation for fresh quality food that is skillfully prepared and presented. Our menus have been creatively designed to be nutritionally balanced. They are packed full of goodness and incorporate ‘super-foods’ and energy boosting ingredients to provide delegates and guests the opportunity to work to their optimum performance.”

Sodexo Prestige will also be providing cleaning services at the conference venues, through Sodexo’s own specialised cleaning offer, Essence. Built around a need to deliver tangible benefits to those who use the facilities we serve, Essence by Sodexo is a blend of technological expertise, robust implementation and measurement, and attention to detail at every step of the process.

Alongside all of this, Essence is an environmentally friendly offer, responding to client requests to provide a service that increases awareness of the impact of all services beyond the venue. Through working in close alliance with our suppliers, the offer uses the most up to date, environmentally friendly products and chemicals.

Fiona Foster, the Director of Conference Aston says “Conference Aston were keen to partner with a successful organisation who will not only enable consistently high quality service delivery in keeping with a premier conference venue and hotel, but who share our values and will pro-actively contribute to our mission – ‘To be recognised as the number one academic conference venue in the UK’. Sodexo Prestige demonstrated through the tender process its brand alignment with our culture and values, which will build the foundation for a true partnership relationship’.

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