The British Council of Shopping Centres has confirmed that its 2008 conference will be held in Liverpool.
The annual event, which attracts more than 3,000 delegates from across the country and is hosted by retail property organisation BCSC, will take place on 10-12 November next year and will see retailers, developers, landlords and local authority executives converge on the city.
It is one of the most important bookings so far for the Arena and Conference Centre Liverpool, which is set to open at the Kings Waterfront in January 2008.
It will be the second time the BCSC has held its conference in the region in two years, after holding it at Manchester Central, formerly GMEX, in 2006.
Martin King, director of tourism at The Mersey Partnership, said: "This is one of the biggest trade shows that has ever been to the Liverpool city region and we are delighted they have chosen to come here.
"We have already seen unprecedented demand for hotel rooms and look forward to welcoming them to the city and showing them what we have to offer during such an exciting year."