Throughout the Congress, we will reflect on the strength of the unique SPAR Brand built up over 90 years and look at how by remaining agile, SPAR continues to grow across the globe.
Upon arrival at Schiphol International Airport, delegates are asked to make their way to the dedicated SPAR welcome desk at the Meeting Point. SPAR colleagues are all around the airport, waiting at the Arrivals desk to guide you.
At the SPAR welcome desk, your luggage will be tagged and you will be directed to the SPAR Netherlands mini store which will be located right outside the exit from the meeting point area, where you will be welcomed in warm SPAR style!
Transfers have been arranged to the Krasnapolsky Hotel based upon arrival schedules.
The welcome dinner will be held in the hotel, giving everyone an opportunity to network. We start off the evening with welcome drinks in the Grand Ballroom at 18:30 followed by the welcome dinner.
SPAR Netherlands have developed a full-day programme of store visits ensuring delegates see a variety of store formats operated by independent retailers in the bustling capital city, Amsterdam. There will be two main groups with those leaving by bus departing at 08:30 and those first hearing a presentation gathering in the Grand Ballroom at 09:00. All delegates will meet up at the Heineken Experience before continuing the programme.
The increased focus on foodservice by the business through the partnership with the Tosti Club, which has been adopted in many of SPAR stores, will be seen. The emphasis on growing the convenience range of products to suit customers wanting to eat on-the-go or have ready-to-heat options will be visible in city and neighbourhood stores.
Tours will be both by bus and by walking. For part of the journey, we will also use the metro system. There are frequent stops and quite a bit of walking so good shoes are essential.
The evening will be free, enabling delegates to meet-up with old friends and business partners.
The business sessions will be held in the nearby convention centre, the Beurs from Berlage, approximately 5 minutes walk from the hotel. The conference agenda which will be in your welcome pack upon arrival in Amsterdam includes presentations from SPAR delegates reflecting on their company’s developments over the past twelve months and sharing insights on projects planned for the future. Keynote speakers giving updates on trends in the industry, throughout the end-to-end supply chain, the impact of legislative change on the global SPAR organisation, and the impact of economic forces will also be heard. The international strategy for the SPAR Brand will be presented, plus highlights from the 2021 SPAR Global Annual Review to round out the presentation sessions.
The dress code for the two conference days are business suit.
Complementing the Congress sessions, a diverse Expo will be included, giving participants an opportunity to see international best practice in retail fit-out and retail concepts, innovation in wholesale and in shopping experience.
Extending the access to the two days of presentations, a livestream will be available for all SPAR partners to join. The dedicated platform can be reached via the livestream tab or by using the url. SPAR partners have received log-in information to follow the livestream which can be heard in English, German, Spanish, Italian and Russian. SPAR China has the details to listen to the Mandarin language version.
On Tuesday, we will travel by boat to Amsterdam East for the evening, giving another opportunity to network within the growing SPAR family. Dress code for the evening is smart casual.
SPAR Netherlands will host the traditional Gala Dinner on Wednesday evening when we will experience modern Dutch cuisine and entertainment. Hosted in the exceptional Shipping Museum ‘Scheepvaartmuseum’ the evening will be a wonderful closure to this year’s Congress, celebrating 90 years of the SPAR brand.
Around 10:00 p.m. one delegate from each country represented by SPAR will be asked to join Tobias & John on the stage to hand over the cheque to SPAR Netherlands chosen charity, continuing our vision of leaving a legacy in each country where the Congress is held.
Dress code for the evening is black tie.
Transfers are organised each evening from the venues back to the hotel.
Tuesday 24 May
Rounding out the sight-seeing opportunities in the country’s capital city, on Tuesday 23 May, partner programme participants will combine culture with sight-seeing. The world-famous Rijksmuseum is on the agenda today, providing a real treat with its extensive exhibits. Located within walking distance of the Congress hotel, and the World Heritage canals, visiting the museum will be an enriching experience. You will also be able to take a virtual flying tour of The Netherlands at This is Holland located in the north of the city.
Bringing together the various forms of transport which are so prevalent in the city, delegates will today be traveling by boat through the canals while enjoying onboard dining, and enjoy a walking tour, seeing diverse parts of the city in one day. Comfortable walking shoes are a must for the day as participants will be walking around the museum, in the city centre and in Amsterdam North.
Wednesday 25 May
The programme on Wednesday includes a bus ride to the beautiful town of Gouda. You might think the only thing you will experience here in cheese but it’s not. Today, delegates will enjoy a workshop making another famous Dutch export product – ‘stroopwafels’ or ‘syrup wafers’ as well as some sight-seeing. The world renowned Sint Jan cathedral is one of the historical sights to take in when walking through this lovely town. Comfortable walking shoes are again a must for the day.
Today, lunch will be enjoyed in a modern restaurant housed in a protected pumping station (a network of them used to pump water out of low-lying parts of the country and were integral to Dutch heritage) where the family-owned business offers delicious Mediterranean cuisine.
We will ensure delegates are back at the hotel in plenty of time for the Gala Dinner.
Those delegates leaving today will be transferred from the Krasnapolsky hotel to Schiphol International Airport for their journey home. The schedule for transfers will be available at the SPAR hospitality desk in the hotel from Wednesday evening, based on the departure details provided.