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I help run a 会話アワーというイベント at school and I'm always boggled by this simple question: How do I welcome someone inside the room? Do I say ようこそ? I know いっらしゃいませ would only be for a restaurant or shop.

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  • よく分からないけど、「いらしゃいませ」を店やレストランだけに使うって初めて聞きました。私なら「いらしゃい」や「いらしゃいませ」を使います。
    – ajsmart
    Jul 26 '17 at 20:38
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Inviting someone into a place is more about the specific place that you're inviting a party into. If you're inviting them to a general location like, say, a living room, you can use どうぞ or some variant phrase of it:

こちらへどうぞお願いします。
This way, please.

You can also use いらっしゃい when welcoming someone into a home or into a room. (Thanks ajsmart! I overlooked this.)

If the location is a shop or restaurant, and you're a part of the establishment, as you've noted, you'd use:

いらっしゃいませ!
Welcome!

If you mean to invite someone to a group or organization, you can use the phrase X(へ/に)ようこそ。 For example:

青山学院大学へようこそ。
Welcome to Aoyama Gakuin University.

On ajsmart's note, for clarity's sake, you can then say:

会話アワーイベントへようこそ。

...to welcome people to your event.

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  • I'm not sure that this answers the question, I believe that she's asking what she could say to welcome people to her event...
    – ajsmart
    Jul 26 '17 at 20:39
  • Right, but there are two components to that question. One is what she says to welcome people into the room, and also what she says to welcome people to the event. In this case, the last option is what she's looking for in the form of イベントにようこそ, whatever the name of the event is
    – psosuna
    Jul 26 '17 at 20:43
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    That makes sense, I guess it doesn't fit for me because I've had people welcome me into their homes saying 「いらしゃい」 quite often.
    – ajsmart
    Jul 26 '17 at 20:46

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