Atlanta is like a Russian nesting doll. On the face of it, it’s a fun and colorful city. And when opened, or explored, meeting planners will find a lineup of group-welcoming neighborhoods of varying sizes, each with its own unique features.
Downtown, Midtown, Buckhead and the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport area are the city’s four main hot spots for meetings, making this star Southern destination the perfect place for repeat business that will offer a fresh experience for groups during each visit.
Downtown, located in the heart of the city, is an ideal starting point to explore Atlanta, according to Mark Vaughan, executive vice president and chief sales officer for the Atlanta CVB.
“Atlanta’s walkable convention and entertainment district surrounds Centennial Olympic Park and offers more than 11,700 hotel rooms, 730,000 square feet of hotel meeting space and nearly 300 dining options within a one-mile radius of Georgia World Congress Center (GWCC),” he said.
The area also offers the Atlanta Convention Center at AmericasMart, group-friendly hotels including Hilton Atlanta, Omni Atlanta Hotel at CNN Center and Atlanta Marriott Marquis, and is on track to welcome this summer the Mercedes-Benz Stadium, new home of the NFL Atlanta Falcons.
“For meeting planners, Atlanta’s Downtown attractions are twice as sweet, as they double as unique, one-of-a-kind event spaces,” Vaughan added.
Among them are the Georgia Aquarium, College Football Hall of Fame, World of Coca-Cola and Center for Civil and Human Rights.
There are also several Downtown-based unique group tours that will keep attendees entertained, including Atlanta Food Walks, during which they will taste delicious Southern cuisine at several landmark eateries such as Smoke Ring for barbecue, and Atlanta Movie Tours, which features stops at famous film locations.
Known as the “Heart of the Arts,” Midtown is the seat of Atlanta’s arts and cultural community. Some of the city’s best restaurants, boutiques and nightclubs also reside in Midtown, which was named to the American Planning Association’s 2016 list of Great Places in America.
The district, according to Vaughan, offers 4,500 hotel rooms and 198,000 square feet of hotel meeting and event space for small to midsize meetings.
Four Seasons Hotel Atlanta, Crowne Plaza Atlanta Midtown and Georgia Tech Hotel and Conference Center are popular options in this neighborhood’s lineup of meetings-ready properties.
“After the meeting, attendees can enjoy extraordinary exhibits, musical performances and entertainment for all ages at award-winning venues like Woodruff Arts Center, Center for Puppetry Arts, Fox Theatre and Museum of Design Atlanta,” said Vaughan, who added, “Locals and visitors alike congregate at Piedmont Park, Atlanta’s favorite green space, for festivals and concerts.”
Also within the neighborhood’s compact layout, which allows for an array of off-session exploration, is Atlanta Botanical Garden, where groups can sign up for seasonal cooking classes.