Prevue May-June 2014 - (Page 54)
Impressive venues help planners make the most of their meetings
BY KATE M C CLARE / JOHNALEE JOHNSTON
For the meetings and incentive industry, gaming resorts are
where the action is. They're a one-stop shop of entertainment,
recreation, shopping and dining choices. The admiration is
mutual, for the industry means business-lots of it-to cities and
regions with casino resorts.
The resorts are doing their best to make sure meetings keep
booking, with new or improved properties coming onstream in
Atlantic City, Las Vegas and other places. Here's a look at some
of what's new in gaming across the U.S.
Tourism ofﬁcials here have a million bucks that say planners
should book a meeting in their town, and they're giving groups
almost three years to do it.
The Atlantic City Alliance, a non-proﬁt promotion group
funded by local casinos, has $1 million in incentives for ﬁrst-time
conventions or those that haven't visited "AC" in several years.
Qualifying groups can earn rewards by booking through 2016 at
the Atlantic City Convention Center or individual properties.
It's a sure sign that AC ofﬁcials mean it when they say they
want group business. The segment has grown 31 percent since
2009, according to Gary Musich, vice president of convention
sales for the Atlantic City Convention & Visitors Authority.
"It's become a vital segment of business as Atlantic City matures
as a destination," Musich says. "As gaming has expanded at a
rapid pace nationwide, all of the partners in AC have put more
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resources into sustaining growth of the meetings segment."
Planners will have a second large venue next year,
when Caesars Entertainment Corp. opens its $126 million
conference center-at 250,000 sf, the largest meeting and
conference facility in the Northeast. New Jersey ofﬁcials are
banking on the center to capture more of the $16 billion
convention and meeting market in the northeast, of which
Atlantic City now gets less than 1 percent.
The conference center will offer two 50,000-sf pillarless
ballrooms, each divisible into as many as 27 separate breakout
rooms, as well as additional breakout areas, grand promenades
and dedicated banquet kitchens and support facilities. The new
facility will be located on the southwest corner of the Harrah's
Atlantic City property. Major trade shows will continue to book at
the Convention Center.
More intimate experiences await at the city's hotels.
Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa has taken the cocktail bar
28 West back to its origins as a ﬁne-dining establishment. Now
called The Dining Room at 28 West, it can host up to 120 pax for
a private dinner. "As the venue itself once served as a ﬁne-dining
restaurant at Borgata, we're thrilled to offer this option," says
Becky Schultz, vice president of food and beverage. "Guests can
choose a limited menu for tableside ordering, which frees the
event planner from having to collect choices prior to arrival."
The hotel is sweetening the dining pot with Borgata
Baking Company, opening at the end of May. Located inside
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Prevue May-June 2014
Planner’s Pick: Tucson
Fresh Meets: Trump Hotel Collection
Bureau Buzz: Meet Puerto Rico
Good Business: InterContinental Hotels
Sea Shores: Cruise Shipping Miami
The Changing Face of Luxury
SPECIAL SECTION: EUROPE
On Location: Toronto
On Location: Jamaica
On Location: Cancun Marriotts
On Location: Santa Barbara Curaçao
Checkout: SLS at Beverly Hills
Prevue May-June 2014