Destination: Chicago Meeting & Event Planning City Guide
301 East Cermak Road, Chicago, Illinois, 60616
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You know your meeting needs, and we know Chicago. So let Choose Chicago show you how our unique mix of global attractions and local charm make Chicago second to none for meetings and conventions. Whether you're hosting a small corporate meeting at a hotel or a major tradeshow at McCormick Place, the largest and most adaptable convention center in the Western Hemisphere, Choose Chicago can help you deliver a meeting to remember.
By Diana Lambdin Meyer
November 20, 2013
For more than 175 years, people have been meeting in the Windy City. Some come for a good slice of pizza, some for a laugh at Second City and still others to experience one of the most beloved and legendary baseball stadiums in the big leagues.
Chicago welcomed a record 46.4 million domestic and international visitors in 2012, and it looks like 2013 will break that record, particularly in conventions and meetings travel. It’s no wonder, considering the city hosts the largest convention center in North America—McCormick Place, boasting 2.6 million sq. ft. of exhibit space—and has direct access to two major international airports. In addition to Chicago’s modern meeting locations, the Windy City has plenty of venues that are almost as old as the city itself—or at least as old as that great fire allegedly started by Mrs. O’Leary’s cow in 1871.
But there’s nothing at all outdated, stuffy or in decay about these buildings. From awe-inspiring architectural grandeur to low-key gathering spots to venues with fabulous views of Lake Michigan or the brilliant skyline, Chicago lays out eclectic and creative meeting-planning options, all steeped in a rich, not-always-pretty history.
So step back in time for your next event and find out that old is never out of style in a city as timeless as Chicago.
Main image: Union Station, Chicago
By Jennie Nunn
April 23, 2013
Major cities around the globe, including Paris, Venice, Athens, San Francisco ae the attribute of incredible architecture. Chicago alone oarchitecture tours, mainly through the Chicago Architecture MF asing landmark buildings in styles including Greek Revival, Mitalianate and Neoclassical (for more on major architectural s, designed by legends such as Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Frank Lloyd Wright, Daniel Burnham and George Washington Maher.
By Nikki Gloudeman
November 20, 2012
At times, the destination-selection process is glamorous and exciting—especially when it involves jetting off for site visits or sifting through photos of stunning landscapes and splashy hotels.
By Josef Aukee
April 27, 2012
At the southern tip of Lake Michigan, Illinois commands a hearty presence containing the fifth largest U.S. metropolis, Chicago. Often noted as the northern epicenter for jazz and blues musical legacies that trickle down the Mississippi River, the state’s geographical location has been critical to commerce for goods shipped from the Midwest to markets at home and abroad by river and through the Great Lakes and Saint Lawrence Seaway.
By April Miller
August 02, 2010
A decade is a long commitment, but one the American Society of Clinical Oncology gladly made to the city of Chicago. In September, ASCO announced that the society would hold its annual meeting at Chicago’s McCormick Place for the next 10 years.
Learn about Chicago for Event Venues, Services & Meeting Destinations
Greater Chicago Area: Meetings, Conferences and Conventions
Number of Meetings Hotels: 380
Total Hotel Rooms: 100,000
Number of Special Events Venues: 388
Local Convention Centers: McCormick Place Convention Center
Local Airports: O'Hare International Airport (ORD), Chicago Midway International Airport (MDW)
Local CVB: Choose Chicago, Chicago's North Shore CVB, Chicago Southland CVB, Lisle CVB, St. Charles CVB
Chicago: Why Chicago is the Perfect Conference, Convention or Meeting Destination
Chicago’s skyline is a feat of architectural vision—an oasis of soaring skyscrapers crafted by the greatest minds in design. It should come as no surprise, then, that Chicago is a top choice for destination meeting planners across the country. With meeting venues and meeting room options situated in skyscrapers overlooking its impressive architecture, Chicago impresses attendees with its unconventional beauty.
Its architectural history traces back to the 1880s, after the Great Chicago Fire destroyed many of the city’s original structures and a cadre of architectural pioneers moved in to rebuild downtown. Marked by steel frames, masonry cladding and other features that broke the mold of conventional building, the distinct style was originally known as the Commercial Style but has since been dubbed Chicago School. In addition to its Chicago School designers, the city has also hosted such architectural legends as Frank Lloyd Wright, who left his indelible stamp on many of the city’s residential structures.
Attending a destination meeting or conference at the McCormick Place Convention Center is a treat for participants, who get the chance to enjoy Chicago’s vibrant arts and entertainment community as well as its fine restaurants and shopping amenities.
An ideal location for meeting planners affiliated with the arts or design, the Windy City holds many design masterpieces, including the Willis Tower—formerly known as Sears Tower and the tallest building in the U.S. (imagine the views from that meeting space!)—The Wrigley Building, the modern structures in Millennium Park and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Frederick C. Robie House and Unity Temple. For attendees who are looking to explore beyond the conference room, they can go on Chicago Architecture Foundation Tours, which allow visitors and meeting attendees to explore the city’s most striking structures via foot, bus, boat, river cruise or Segway.
Plan Your Chicago Meeting Today!
If you’re thinking of planning a meeting or corporate event in Chicago and need help finding the ideal destination meeting venue, conference room or convention center, explore our meeting planning properties in Chicago.
Smart Meetings – Your Guide to Meeting Planning in Chicago
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