While traditionally more of a holiday than a business destination, Malta’s capital city of Valletta has plenty of reasons to place it on the corporate map.

Located in the south east of the island, Valletta is a small but perfectly-formed jewel in the heart of the Mediterranean and is popular with tourists on Malta holidays with suppliers like Thomson. However, its location means it could be the ideal place to bring together a multinational conference, or continent-wide exhibition event which would benefit from a touch of glamour.

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The success of Maltese Fashion Week in recent years is an example that proves the theory. Starting in 1999, the event has grown exponentially and is now a major attraction to fashion industry big-hitters as well as corporate sponsors such as Mercedes.

Venues and accommodation

The May event also showcased some venues which are available to host other business events and conferences throughout the year, such as the Mediterranean Conference Centre and the Ballroom Casino Maltese. The glamour of this chandelier-filled ballroom indicates why Valletta was described by 19th-century British Prime Minister Disraeli as: “Designed by gentlemen, for gentlemen.” Alternatively, for a more intimate business venue, the Hotel Phoenicia is a good choice, offering meeting rooms at very reasonable prices.

For other business-friendly accommodation at the top end of the scale, a five-star option such as the Excelsior, located right on the harbour front, offers excellent facilities. A little less luxurious, but still offering comfort and convenience, business travellers could go for the three-star Castille Hotel, which occupies a former renaissance villa right in the centre.


After a day of meetings, Valletta offers numerous options for dining out. In culinary terms, the Italian influence on Maltese eateries is hard to miss. Sitting outside at a table eating pizza with goat’s cheese and anchovies, or with a plate of delicious seafood pasta, travellers could easily feel as if they are in Naples or Palermo. However, there are plenty of Maltese specialities as well, such as fenkata – a communal meal of rabbit. Due to the city’s size, most places are within easy reach, a key consideration if time is tight.


If you have some time to yourself and want to see the highlights of Valletta’s historical and artistic legacy, a trip to the St John’s Co-Cathedral is advisable. Here you can marvel at its baroque design, and the gruesome “Beheading of St John the Baptist”, by Caravaggio. A priceless original, this is the only work signed by the enigmatic genius of Renaissance art.

For those whose business itinerary does leave time to explore Valletta’s nightlife, the liveliest area is unquestionably the Paceville district of the old town. With plenty of bars, pubs, clubs and fast-food outlets, the streets throng with locals and visitors out to enjoy themselves. To entertain corporate clients, the best option could be to buy tickets to a show at one of Europe’s oldest functioning theatres, the Manoel, which hosts a performance most nights during the year.

After a long-time in the shadow of other Mediterranean islands, Malta, and Valletta in particular, is now showcasing the advantages it has always had, and proving that it really does mean business.

This post is contributed by Thomson.