Ahead of IMEX America 2019, Meetings Today content developer Kate Cripe got a sneak peek of the $375 million Caesars Forum. During a hard hat tour, she got a first hand look at how the conference center project, which is expected to open in March 2020, is progressing.

The 550,000-square-foot facility will feature the two largest pillarless ballrooms in the world, each with 110,00 square feet of meeting space. It will also include Forum Plaza, a 100,000-square-foot outdoor meeting and event space that Caesars is touting as the first of its kind in Vegas.

In early September 2019 Caesars Entertainment announced that more than $300 million in business has been secured for Caesars Forum.

[Related: Caesars Sells Rio for $516 Million]

"I am thrilled with the progress of the Caesars Forum build. Customer reception has been overwhelming, and demand is high," said Michael Massari, Caesars Entertainment chief sales officer. "Our bookings far exceed our initial projections. We thank our industry partners for all their support. We are pleased to have our operations team at CAESARS FORUM in place and that we have talent from within the Caesars Entertainment Family."

9 Caesars Forum Project Highlights

Following is a quick run-down of nine highlights and key features of the Caesars Forum:

1. Direct access to 8,500 hotel rooms at Harrah’s Las Vegas, The LINQ Hotel + Experience and Flamingo Hotels, as well as the LINQ Promenade, an entertainment, restaurant and retail complex.Feature 300,000 square feet of flexible meeting space, including two 110,000-square-foot, pillarless ballrooms, two 40,000-square-foot ballrooms and six boardrooms.

2. Forum is connected by a pedestrian bridge to LINQ Promenade and Flamingo Las Vegas.

3. 300,000 square feet of flexible meeting space, including two 110,000-square-foot, pillarless ballrooms, two 40,000-square-foot ballrooms and six state-of-the-art boardrooms.

4. It will accommodate more than 10,000 participants and offer more than 100 breakout rooms.

5. Built on one floor for convenient move-in, along with nine accessible loading docks.

6. Forum Plaza, a 100,000-square-foot outdoor space, is ideal for outdoor events, wellness breaks, opening cocktail receptions, meals or entertainment.

7. Dividable into “limitless” configurations for customers, utilizing over two miles of airwalls.

8. In 2020, the first year of operations, Caesars Forum will host the following meetings industry annual meetings: ConferenceDirect’s annual partner meeting, HelmsBriscoe ABC and CVENT Connect.

9. In 2021, MPI WEC and CVENT Connect will be at Caesars Forum.

Emphasis on Design and the Attendee Experience

Meetings Today’s Eric Andersen attended the groundbreaking in mid-2018. There, he met with various industry executives and key players on the Caesars Forum project.

Massari and President of Hospitality Bob Morse opened a group discussion on what the facility means to the meetings industry in more detail. Massari and Morse mentioned how Caesars met with some of the top large-scale meeting facilities around the world for input on the project.

They also said they reached out to numerous meeting and event planners for guidance.

Caesars Forum Construction
Caesars Forum Construction, Credit: Kate Cripe

Vice President of Catering, Conventions & Events Don Ross then joined the conversation, and talked about how the facility will be able to take advantage of Caesars’ all-star roster of celebrity chefs to create innovative banquet menus. Guy Fieri’s Lollipop Chicken Wings was an example of a menu item.

Meetings Today spoke with KGA Partner and Director of Interior Design Chelsea Lavell on the innovative design aspects of the Caesars Forum. According to Lavell, standout features of the facility include an emphasis on biophilic design and providing abundant natural lighting to improve attendee productivity.

Safety and Security a Priority at Caesars Forum

Though he mentioned it was difficult to get into specifics, Chief Sales Officer Michael Massari commented on security at the venue in a one-on-one interview.

Forum Plaza, Caesars Forum
Forum Plaza, Caesars Forum, Credit: Caesars Forum

“Planners are going to be thinking about [safety and security] wherever they hold meetings,” Massari said. “When you consider security at Las Vegas resorts relative to other types of places they’d be going to have a meeting, our security ranks high. We’ve got EMTs onsite, [former] FBI agents as heads of security, and our [safety initiatives] continue to grow and evolve. Of course, a lot has changed in the last six months as you’d imagine, and this issue has never been on my mind more than the past year.”

Based on the amount of detail put into the project so far, planners should be able to rest assured that the design and safety standards of the facility will be on par with other world-class event facilities.

Read next: New Five-Star Hotel Approved for Las Vegas Strip