Meeting Planners Rest Easy in Seattle, WA

Meeting Planners Rest Easy in Seattle, WA

By Stella Johnson

Contrary to the popular 90s movie, “Sleepless In Seattle,” meeting planners and trade show organizers alike won’t lose any sleep when booking the popular west coast city. That’s mostly because there isn’t much for them to worry about when executing an upcoming conference or convention in this seaport city. First of all, the city is convenient – just 25 minutes from the international airport, and it has an awesome downtown with a variety of meeting-style hotels and a recently expanded convention center. More than that, the destination maintains compliance and strict adherence to all of the many social and environmental issues facing the meetings and hospitality industry today, from practicing DEI initiatives to reducing its carbon footprint upon the planet.

Add to that Seattle’s “compactability.”  It has a downtown core of more than 7,000 first class, committable hotel rooms within an 11-block radius of the recently expanded Seattle Convention Center. (The SCC’s new Summit building opened recently with more than 248,000 square feet of total exhibit space and more than 573,000 square feet of total event space—just one-and-a-half blocks from the original Arch building, which has more than 205,000 square feet of total exhibit space and 434,000 square feet of total event space.) 

That core base is then surrounded by popular restaurants, lively nightspots, various attractions and some very unique venues for offsite events. Indeed, it has been reported that in most post-meeting evaluations, attendees have nothing but glowing remarks about their overall experience in Seattle. In fact, they often take advantage of pre- or post-event options and tack on several vacation days to extend their time in “Emerald City,” as it has been officially nicknamed.

According to the city’s website, www.visitseattle.org: “While here, attendees are able to explore before, during, or after the event with a variety of activities and attractions, from renowned shops, restaurants, and bars to breathtaking outdoor sights, cultural landmarks, and museums—all within a stone’s throw of the city’s world-class hotels and meeting venues.”

Fittingly, its destination marketing organization, Visit Seattle, has been recognized for its outstanding service by meeting and event professionals and media alike. The proof is in the destination’s annual statistics which report nearly 60 percent of groups who have booked an event in the upcoming years are repeat clients. 

The DMO further reports that Visit Seattle is the go-to resource for facilitating exceptional events and meetings from beginning to end. “Our knowledgeable, qualified staff can help with all of your needs, including site selection, destination literature, local resources, and much more. Find convenient planning tools in the Meeting & Event Professional Toolkit,” it advises.

Seattle is also on board with all issues facing the meeting and hospitality industry today in that it is a city that “lives and breathes green.” In fact, it is at the forefront of the environmental movement, with forward-thinking efforts in recycling, composting, water and energy conservation, organic dining, and eco-friendly transportation. For example, all the major hotels are LEED-certified, offer locally sourced meals, have 100 percent compostable water cups, and operate hybrid buses. And, the teams at Visit Seattle and the Seattle Convention Center work with planners, tirelessly, to find more ways to lessen a meeting’s environmental impact.

Finally, Seattle has been ranked as the No. 1 city for women entrepreneurs and has received a 100% perfect score on Human Rights Watch’s Municipal Equality Index. Here, all attendees will feel welcomed, inspired to be themselves, and, most importantly, safe in Seattle.

“With open minds and hearts, it’s how Seattle meets!” they say. For more information: www.visitseattle.org

 

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