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Cleveland skyline

Destination

ohio

The Buckeye state continues to position itself as a hotbed for Midwest meetings By George Seli

T

of Cleveland, and the he state of Ohio is hitting all availability of nearly 5,000 the right notes with meeting guestrooms in Downtown groups, and that’s not just “Since 2012, we have Cleveland and 24,000 due to the Rock & Roll Hall doubled the size of rooms in the region. The of Fame in Cleveland. Major convenwalkability of our downtown tion center developments in both our Convention Sales has helped us to attract Cleveland and Columbus, together new interest in our city as a with growing hotel portfolios, have team to handle the meetings and conventions made those cities even more attractive increased interest” destination.” to groups. Meanwhile, Cincinnati has Cleveland welcomes completed multimillion-dollar restorain Cleveland. groups to an integrated tions of two historic cultural venues —Mike Burns, Senior Vice President Convention campus that includes the that are sure to enhance the experience Sales & Services, Destination Cleveland Huntington Convention for clients of the Duke Energy ConvenCenter, Global Center tion Center. And while Akron conducts for Health Innovation, its meetings business on a relatively Cleveland Public smaller scale, attendees convening Auditorium and the Hilton Cleveland Downtown. The at the John S. Knight Center will find a surprising variety of offsite Huntington Convention Center offers 225,000 sq. ft. of exhibit space, venues, from the renovated Goodyear Theater to a 200-year-old more than 140,000 sq. ft. of meeting and event space, 30 breakout farm in the Cuyahoga Valley. rooms and a 32,00-sq.-ft. Grand Ballroom divisible into three spaces. Supporting Cleveland’s strong medical meetings business, CLEVELAND the Global Center for Health Innovation is home to the offices of 45 Cleveland’s tourism industry is going strong in recent years. of the world’s leading healthcare, health IT and medical innovation A record 18 million people visited the city in 2016, including both brands, and has its own 22,000 sq. ft. of meeting space. The entire business and leisure visitors. On the business side, Destination campus is within walking distance of nearly 4,000 hotel rooms. Cleveland has been ensuring the continued success of the city’s “Healthcare- and manufacturing-focused meetings are meetings industry this year, bringing about 250 meetings and conespecially strong industry verticals for the region,” says Burns. ventions to the region. Major 2017 events include the American Bus “Greater Cleveland is a medical capital with more than 60 hospitals, Association’s Annual Meeting and Marketplace, Experient’s including the world-renowned Cleveland Clinic and University EnVision and Content Marketing World. Hospitals, and more than 700 biomedical companies.” “Cleveland’s meeting business is growing year over year The city’s hotel inventory grew significantly last year with since 2012, with a significant increase in lead volume and definite the opening of three new downtown hotels. “With this growing bookings,” says Mike Burns, Senior Vice President Convention supply of hotel rooms, Destination Cleveland is able to further Sales & Services, Destination Cleveland. “This is due in large its collaboration with the convention center and other facilities part to the recently opened Huntington Convention Center 28 Facilities & destinations 2017 FALL / WINTER

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