Known for its Gateway Arch and popular sports teams, among other features, St. Louis also offers an impressive lineup of off-site event venues for group gatherings.
The options include a historic train station, storied garden, championship-caliber ballpark, an exciting zoo, upscale bowling alley and a museum where attendees can sip cocktails under a replica of Charles Lindbergh’s iconic Spirit of Saint Louis plane.
St. Louis Union Station opened in 1894 as the world’s largest and busiest train station. Its history includes welcoming visitors for the 1904 “Meet Me in St. Louis” World’s Fair, and seeing soldiers off to both World War I and World War II.
Today, St. Louis Union Station houses the St. Louis Union Station Hotel, a member of the Curio Collection by Hilton, and the elegant Grand Hall, a standout space for events that features a barrel-vaulted ceiling ornamented with light, stained glass and statuary.
“A 65-foot-long bar and lounge seating welcome guests to linger over small plates and cocktails while 3D light and music shows dance over the surface of the Grand Hall ceiling,” said Todd Hotaling, vice president of marketing for Lodging Hospitality Management, which owns St. Louis Union Station.
St. Louis Union Station hosts meetings, tradeshows, banquets and receptions in its various spaces, including the Grand Hall, four ballrooms and The Midway, a 43,000-square-foot event space that’s located under the indoor portion of the train shed.
Group tours can be arranged all year, Hotaling added. During the holiday season the station hosts the Polar Express Train Ride on private train cars. Planners may also be interested in the scheduled 2019 opening of the St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station, which is being built in the indoor portion of the station’s train shed.
Founded in 1859, the 79-acre Missouri Botanical Garden is one of the oldest continuously operating public gardens in the U.S. Groups that visit can explore the grounds, three conservatories and the historic home of founder Henry Shaw.
According to Katie O’Sullivan, senior public information officer, group rates are available for 15 or more people for general admission and private guided walking tours. Tours can be customized by topic, including a focus on sustainability, and box lunches can be ordered for groups through Catering St. Louis.
Primary indoor locations for group events include Monsanto Hall in the Ridgway Visitors Center and Spink Pavilion, while popular outdoor spaces include Blanke Boxwood Garden and Lehmann Rose Garden.
Busch Stadium has been the home to magical moments in St. Louis history, including two World Series championships and major concerts, as well as countless meetings and corporate celebrations.