Visit Florida - (Page 18)

Ocala The vast forested tracts of Central Florida riven with placid lakes and twisting rivers lined with Spanish moss are sometimes overlooked by outof-state meeting planners. Many of the counties surrounding Orlando are home to some of the oldest tourist attractions in Florida, located around the state's many beautiful and relatively undiscovered natural parks. For example, Ocala in Marion County northwest of Orlando is attracting a growing amount of regional groups throughout the Southeast thanks to places like The Canyons- Florida's highest, fastest and longest zipline. Riverboat tours have been plying Silver Springs since 1870 across pristine water coming from one of the world's largest artesian spring formations, producing nearly 550 million gallons of crystal-clear water daily. Farm-to-table food has been the norm here since the beginning of time. Group restaurants range from upscale establishments in the city to the region's famous outlying horse farms, many offering private venue rentals. Ocala/Marion County is one of only four major thoroughbred centers in the world, with 450 horse farms that have produced six Kentucky Derby winners. For meetings and events, Ocala's inventory of venues host groups up to 4,000 pax. For more information, contact the Ocala/Marion County Visitors & Convention Bureau. group excursions, such as a dinner cruise on the Solaris yacht, dolphin/sunset cruises on the SunVenture I, chartered fishing trips, and group standup paddleboarding lessons from YOLO (You Only Live Once) Board + Beach. "Visit South Walton gives planners and attendees everything they need to know about the destination with the Perfect Beach App," says Watkins. "The free download provides information on facilities, dining, shopping, activities and much more...Our social media channels are also active with sweepstakes enticing fans to interact with us on our various platforms." South Walton's sugar white sand and turquoise waters have several new experiences to offer in 2014 such as The Pearl hotel in Rosemary Beach. Overlooking the picturesque Gulf of Mexico, the 55-room luxury boutique hotel features beautifully appointed accommodations, destination worthy cuisine, a welcoming spa, and plush meeting facilities in the heart of Northwest Florida's most exclusive seaside community. Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa recently completed a $5 million renovation involving its meeting space, accommodations and fine-dining restaurant, and it is currently in the process of a new $12.5 million capital improvement project. The project includes a complete refurbishing of all 200 Spa Tower rooms, a redesigned indoor pool and a dramatically enhanced main lobby experience, giving guests a breathtaking view of the Gulf of Mexico immediately upon arrival. ST. AUGUSTINE & PONTE VEDRA As the oldest city in the nation, St. Augustine is a draw for people of all ages because of the vibrancy with which the history is communicated. St. Augustine has over 60 historic buildings and attractions, many with year-round outdoor dining. A host of unique venues includes the world famous Fountain of Youth Archeological Park, which recently constructed an outdoor covered pavilion. The pavilion accommodates 200 while the grounds can host 1,000 people. The Colonial Quarter is a 2-acre living history museum in the heart of downtown St. Augustine, offering a lively location for private events. The attraction accommodates up to 500 guests "The business case for Florida as a meetings destination is that the Sunshine State offers a wide variety of quality property selections, ease of travel to, exceptional value year-round, sunshine and mild weather." 52 | prevue magazine 35-55_FLORIDA.indd 52 1/8/14 8:47 AM

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Visit Florida

Visit Florida

Visit Florida - (Page 1)
Visit Florida - (Page 2)
Visit Florida - (Page 3)
Visit Florida - (Page 4)
Visit Florida - (Page 5)
Visit Florida - (Page 6)
Visit Florida - (Page 7)
Visit Florida - (Page 8)
Visit Florida - (Page 9)
Visit Florida - (Page 10)
Visit Florida - (Page 11)
Visit Florida - (Page 12)
Visit Florida - (Page 13)
Visit Florida - (Page 14)
Visit Florida - (Page 15)
Visit Florida - (Page 16)
Visit Florida - (Page 17)
Visit Florida - (Page 18)
Visit Florida - (Page 19)
Visit Florida - (Page 20)