Prevue September-October 2017 - 53

3Coastal Meetings

US Destinations for

Meetings take inspiration from the setting, whether Hilton Head
Island's evocative coastline or in the heart of charming New Orleans.
By Barbara Scofidio / Steve Grasso

D

Designing a meeting around a sense of
place is an art. It means getting to know the
setting-the special places and activities
that can't be found elsewhere-and crafting
an agenda around them. Whether meeting
under LED-lit crystal chandeliers or biking
on ocean sand, these destinations and
properties know how to put on a show.

1

LONG BEACH,
CALIFORNIA

The Long Beach
Convention &
Entertainment Center,
centrally located in the only downtown
waterfront between San Francisco and

52 | prevuemeetings.com

San Diego, held a gala opening this past
July for its latest special events venue,
The Cove. Created as part of a $60 million
renovation, the new venue is intended
to allow meeting planners to create
spectacular and memorable events at
greatly reduced prices.
The Cove is a 50,000-sf event space
with the capacity for 5,500 attendees that
occupies an area on the center's Seaside
Way underpass. Five large LED crystal
chandeliers glitter from the ceiling with light
fixtures designed to look like barnacles, and
decorative starfish and other marine motifs
create an under-the-pier fantasy scene that
can be customized with lighting schemes

to suit any planner's imagination. The space
is perfect for pre-function receptions and
allows for special catering setups and even
food truck events.
"All of the furniture and decor is owned
by our center and available to planners
without having to order items from outside
vendors, providing savings that can run into
tens of thousands of dollars," says Steve
Goodling, president and CEO for the Long
Beach CVB. "Our indoor and outdoor
turnkey venues were inspired by the TED
Conference, which Long Beach hosted for
five years. Their creative use of our spaces
sparked interest in providing that level of
creativity to all of our clients."


http://www.prevuemeetings.com

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