More than anything, Arizona has a unique atmosphere ideal for groups to accomplish great things over the course of a few days. The desert and cacti are not only spectacular to see, but transport visitors to another world—free from the daily grind so that attendees can think outside the box. Indeed, the desert is a natural metaphor for jumping in a sandbox and letting creativity and innovation reign supreme.
Arizona is a hot spot for meetings, and it’s easy to see why. There are more than 320 days of sunshine annually. Its metropolises are ideal for citywide and other large conventions. Other destinations provide the intimate atmosphere smaller groups seek out. Luxury resorts abound, as do budget-friendly hotels.
Our communities are proud of Arizona’s heritage. We embrace the myriad cultures that have made such a great impact. This seeps through into the cuisine, shopping, and even the architecture. A meeting in Arizona is unlike any experience planners and attendees can have elsewhere. And in today’s world, where planners are pressured to break through the norm to provide compelling reasons for groups to travel, destinations rich in unique opportunities are vital for success.
There’s a wide array of options for planners, and there’s a venue for any style of meeting:
Oh, and did we mention getting here is a breeze no matter where you’re coming from?
Read on for some venue ideas sure to inspire the best out of your attendees.
Phoenix Convention Center
In need of a big city? Look no further than Phoenix, which sports a fully developed downtown corridor well suited for getting business done in the most efficient manner possible. Phoenix Convention Center is the heart of this magnificent destination awaiting you.
The 900,000-sq.-ft. facility has more than 500,000 square feet of exhibition space. Any trade show or conference will thrive here. There are 81 breakout rooms, two carpeted ballrooms and a 200-seat lecture hall. If you didn’t want to leave the building, you wouldn’t have to. Then again, attendees have access to more than 200 restaurants and venues. Depending on the season, have your attendees check out a Diamondbacks baseball game or Coyotes hockey game.
Leave the car behind and travel by Valley Metro Rail. Of course, many convention hotels are within walking distance of the center and downtown’s amenities. Phoenix International Airport is a mere 4 miles from downtown, adding to the convenience factor.
JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa
Arizona is replete with resorts—the state has the largest collection of four- and five-star properties in North America. Few can top JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa, which impressively spans 125 acres between Mummy and Camelback mountains. As if it were not impressive enough, the JW Marriott received a $12.5 million makeover focused on its 453 casitas and suites, lobby, restaurants, and patios.
Attendees can be forgiven should they forget they are working. There are 36 holes of stellar golf ideal for company tournaments, teambuilding activities, charitable fundraisers, galas, and other special events. The on-site spa captures the healing properties of the Sonoran Desert so your group will be in the right frame of mind to collaborate. Pools add to the relaxation or make for a fun site for an evening reception or happy hour.
Again, you may feel like you are a world away, but, in reality, the resort is 9 miles from Phoenix International Airport.
Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Tucson
Tucson has the hotel brands you’re familiar with—from properties around the airport to resorts tucked into the foothills to independently owned boutique hotels. Plus, there are guest ranches and destination spas that reflect Southwestern character.
This is an opportune time to get a true sense of place. Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is one of the state’s most popular attractions—and is often listed as one of the country’s top museums. Spread across 98 acres is a plethora of can’t-miss sites for events. Highlights include:
Natural history museum
A private event at the museum is a breath of fresh air. The lush backgrounds and unusual setting will be the hit of your event’s Instagram account. This is a reminder that learning and networking do not need to be mutually exclusive.
High Country Conference Center, Flagstaff
The High Country Conference Center has 29,700 square feet of meeting space spread across three buildings. The glass structures present unbeatable views of the surrounding pine forest and majestic skies. Associations and corporations appreciate the venue’s flexibility—there are indoor and outdoor options—and top-flight staff ensure a seamless experience.Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Tucson
Mesa Convention Center
In the Phoenix suburbs lives Mesa Convention Center, an ideal venue for myriad events, including corporate gatherings, sports award ceremonies, and training sessions. Included in the 40,000 square feet of meeting space is an outdoor amphitheater seating 5,000 attendees. Delta Hotels Phoenix Mesa is located adjacent to the venue, making it easy to get to and from meetings.
The best part of meeting in Arizona is you can’t go wrong. The weather is great, the meeting spaces are extraordinary, and the culture is welcoming. See for yourself why attendees always have a sunny disposition here.