March 29th: Opening of Meeting Plaza Utrecht, Seats2meet Festival Connecting Stories


Last Friday, March 29th, was the opening of the newly renovated Meeting Plaza, which was celebrated with Seats2meet Festival Connecting Stories. At the centre of the event were stories about entrepreneurship, the future of work and sustainability. More than 400 members of the ecosystem came together to learn, connect and celebrate, while also listening to the stories of people around them and sharing their own.

As you entered the festival, you were welcomed by the Seats2meet International team with an ice breaker – a hundred envelopes each included a unique question, giving a chance to get to know the people around you from a different perspective. Questions as unexpected as “What makes you shy?”, “What was your dream job as a kid?”, or “How did you get your first job?” allowed you to connect with the rest of the participant without resorting to the usual, “Hello. How have you been?”

As you walked further, you could see for yourself the way Meeting Plaza has changed since last year and enjoy the special decorations of the occasion. With more than 400 participants, there were many of the active members of Seats2meet ecosystem, including S2M co-founders Ronald Van Den Hoff and Marielle Sijgers.

As some of the event participants were enjoying informal networking over drinks and snacks and sharing their stories on the newly opened rooftop terrace, others were busy with participating in a wide variety of workshops and presentations. The topics of the workshops were varying from creating a more fulfilling career and business tips for freelance entrepreneurs to finding your unique qualities with the help of astrology, lachyoga and mindfulness workshops.

After the end of the workshops, the official opening ceremony started, with Marielle Sijgers telling her personal story, presenting her career and life path. Meeting Plaza manager, Annette Groen, told about the location values and mission and plans for the future and then commemorated the occasion with a festive champagne opening.

As an official part of the evening came to a close, Meeting Plaza’s kitchen team served an international dinner from all over the world, accompanied by fashionable cocktails. The event participants continued to connect with their old and new friends, share their newly acquired knowledge and establish a solid ground for a beneficial collaboration to the tunes of jazz music. After all, what can be a better outcome for Connecting Stories than creating the new ones?

Photos: Maria Averina