Your favorite venues in the South represent some of the best facilities in the country. Congratulations to all involved for ensuring the events business continues to grow. Below, see what you and your peers selected as prime locations to do business.
Ernest N. Morial Convention Center
in New Orleans
led the way with nominations. Connect’s home in 2016 is “equipped to handle large crowds,” says Bob Carter, convention manager for Lionel Collectors Club of America
Mississippi Coast Coliseum
in Biloxi “has it all,” says Teresa Johnston, area director of sales for the Hampton Inn & Suites and the Home2 Suites by Hilton.
Music City Center
strikes the right chord for many. “It is fairly new and the space is large and well thought out,” says Cory Brooks, CMP, managing partner of Specialty Planners International.
Jekyll Island Convention Center
is a “beautiful building” with “good customer service,” says Rebecca DeShazo, CMP Director of Association Services of the Georgia Association of Realtors.
Georgia World Congress Center
is a favorite of Felice Levy, manager, global accounts, at HelmsBriscoe. She cites the facility’s size and proximity to the airport.
George R. Brown Convention Center
hosts some huge events, making it a perennial favorite.
Von Braun Center
in Huntsville, Alabama is “well run,” says Hank Isenberg, president of IronMountain Solutions.
Orange County Convention Center
in Orlando drew the support of William Blue, director of Director Potter's House International Pastoral Alliance
Also receiving votes were John Q. Hammons Convention Center Northwest Arkansas and the Alpharetta Conference Center, home of Connect Georgia 2018.
Hotel Van Zandt
in Austin, Texas, got the love from Kat Sanford, chief fun officer at Kat Sanford Events. Hilton Americas
, Omni Dallas
, Gaylord Texan
and Hilton Anatole
were also among Texas hotel favorites.
The Florence Elston Inn and Conference Center
in Sweet Briar, Virginia, feels bigger than it is due to its location on the Sweet Briar College campus, says Elizabeth Young, outside sales officer at I Hotel and Conference Center.
Westin Savannah Harbor Golf Resort & Spa
has a “great location” says Lisa Brown, events manager at CPAmerica International. DeShazo also raves about the location.
Brown also likes Four Seasons Midtown Atlanta
and The Ritz-Carlton, New Orleans
, and who could blame her?
Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort
and Augusta Marriott & Convention Center
also drew raves from DeShazo.
Susan Russell, executive director at HD Plan-IT, votes for Intercontinental Buckhead
in Atlanta, as well as The Breakers
in Palm Beach, Florida, and The Cloister
in Sea Island, Georgia.
Joy Brand-Richardson, vice president and director of training at JCC Association of North America, knows you can’t go wrong with a Rosen property. She likes Rosen Plaza
, Rosen Centre
and Rosen Shingle Creek
Claudia Hardy, program director at UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center, has few ideas where to stay in Alabama: Renaissance Ross Bridges
in Birmingham; Hyatt Regency Birmingham—the Wynfrey Hotel
and Renaissance Mobile
. Brooks also like the Ross Bridges, as well as Westin Nashville, as well as Embassy Suites Nashville SE & Conference Center
has “sweeping gulf views and multiple meeting space options perfect for your small meeting getaway,” Olivia Wells, marketing coordinator at St. Joe’s Clubs & Resorts in Panama City Beach, Florida.
Matthew Probst, vice president of conference planning at Ivy Tech, sings the praises of Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel & Spa
, JW Marriott Austin
and New Orleans Downtown Marriott New Orleans at the Convention Center
Mississippi Gulf Coast
Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, Tennessee