Bilbao and the venue



Bilbao is a cosmopolitan, open, welcoming, lively, elegant and modern city which brings together features of a unique cultural heritage, with a new aesthetic in which the avant-garde shares the streets with art to create a new balanced and remarkable urban landscape. Strategically located in the centre of the Atlantic Corridor, it boosts half of the population of the Basque Country and half of its economic activity takes place there.

Bilbao is today the result of an historic process of renovation and reinvention which was necessary to address the new challenges of the 21st century. It is worth noting that the transfor-mation started with the construction of the underground metro system, vital to the daily routine of the city’s inhabitants. But if there is one development that has secured Bilbao’s place on the international stage, it has to be the ‘Guggenheim effect’. It can’t be denied that, since its construction, it has become an icon of the new urban reality. It’s breathtaking architecture, the work of Frank Gehry, won’t fail to leave you impressed. The same can be said of its art gallery, one of the world’s most comprehensive collections of contemporary art.

Of course, Bilbao had a strong identity long before the Guggenheim was built, and you are going to love having a taste of it.  Wandering around its Casco Viejo or Old Town involves discovering the historical roots of the city and stopping to try the ‘pintxos’ (the delicious local tapas). Saying that you have been to Bilbao and you haven’t mingled with the locals to ‘txikitear’ (do a little bar-hopping) is not to have lived the true experience of the city. So make sure you include it in your gastronomic tour of the city to taste the delicious pintxos. Day or night, whether in the Casco Viejo (Plaza Nueva, Jardines Street, Calle del Perro Street and Santa María Street) or in the Ensanche district in Indautxu (García Rivero Street or Poza Street amongst others), you can live the authentic experience, with a glass of something nice to wash it down.

Bilbao is a fashionable city at the moment and a probe of this is its condition of venue for several major events in 2018. The European Rugby Champions Cup, the World’s 50 Best Restaurants Competition awards, considered the Oscar ceremony of world gastronomy, or the MTV EMA 2018, the European Music Awards of the MTV channel, are only some of them. And we cannot forget the Bilbao’s premier musical event, the BBK Live, which welcomes over 100,000 people every year at a festival that is now firmly established in the national and international music calendar.

Prize for Best Urban Practises in 2010
European Prize for Regional and Urban regeneration in 2004 and 2006
All the equipment, venues and services needed for conferences and meetings
Urban and warm character encourages any visitor to stay and feel part of the city



The ISWA 2019 Congress Venue is located in the very heart of the city and it is the main conference centre in the Basque Country. The Euskalduna Conference Centre and Concert Hall has become a reference building of the new Bilbao and can hosts every kind of events. It has received awards for its architecture and has been declared among the best in the world by the International Association of Convention Centres.

The building was designed by architects Federico Soriano and Dolores Palacios to resemble a ship under construction, because it stands on the site formerly occupied by the Euskalduna shipyard. It won the Enric Miralles award for architecture at the 6th Spanish Architecture Biennial in 2001.

The Euskalduna Conference Centre and Concert Hall hosts a wide range of economic, business, academic, political, institutional, social and cultural events. It is the home of the city’s opera season, organised by ABAO (Friends of the Opera of Bilbao), one of the most highly renowned in Spain and indeed Europe. It is also the home base of the Bilbao Symphony Orchestra (BOS), which was founded in 1920 and has been performing since 1922.

Euskalduna Conference Centre and Concert Hall
Lufthansa Group


Discounted flights with the Lufthansa Group and Iberia airlines in your flight tickets as ISWA 2019 attendee


Telephone: +(00)34 94 662 01 78

Las Mercedes, 8-1ºA
Getxo – 48930
Bizkaia (Spain)