Latest issue: December 2016

In this issue

In our biggest issue ever, you'll find our Platinum Choice Award winners, which represent the industry's very best venues and convention and visitors bureaus. These winners go above and beyond to facilitate planners in putting on fantastic meetings and events.

You won't want to miss our 2017 Meetings Outlook, which reveals industry leaders' insights on the upcoming year. Caution is the name of the game this year, with some urging a "wait-and-see" attitude.

Smart Meetings is an event planning publication covering meetings, industry news, including expert opinions and interviews, topical articles, coverage of destinations and venues in the U.S and worldwide, and features stories on incentive, corporate, government and association meetings.

2016 Platinum Choice Award Winners Announced

Distinguished hotels and CVBs earn coveted recognition from Smart Meetings After much voting and decision-making, the 13th annual Platinum Choice Award winners have been selected by Smart Meetings magazine, the meeting industry’s premier resource for meeting professionals. This highly esteemed award salutes excellence in service and amenities among meeting hotels and resorts in the United…

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Meetings Outlook: Treading Lightly in 2017

JB Duke Hotel rendering, Durham, North Carolina Uncertainty suggests a conservative year for meetings Predictions are a matter of cause and effect. Sure, there’s some guessing, some hunches. But most of the trends and happenings we expect to see take hold of the meetings industry in 2017 are the direct result of what has already…

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Bigger and Better: Associations and Citywides

As trends evolve for associations and citywides, convention venues are keeping pace As certain elements of large conventions, trade shows and meetings evolve year over year, many destinations and venues have become more proactive in helping planners make their events successful. Coordinating an event across multiple hotels plus a convention facility is not a job…

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Destinations Come Alive at IMEX America

IMEX America exhibitors found creative ways to bring their properties to life How often can you say you’ve sipped coffee in Columbia, sampled chocolate from Hershey, Pennsylvania, tasted vodka in Singapore, learned to step dance in Ireland, painted parasols in Thailand and taken a virtual hard-hat tour of a not-yet-built hotel, all without walking more…

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Melia Hotels is Building a Truly Global Portfolio

Melia Cartagena de Indias, Colombia Melia boasts more than 370 hotels in 43 countries Melia Hotels International is wrapping up a year of major expansion that saw it open a new property virtually every two weeks and significantly extend the reach of its portfolio. “International expansion has always been and will remain a fundamental basis…

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New and Renovated: Where New Meets Old

Boutique properties are accented by times gone by Union Station Hotel Nashville Once a bustling train station, historic Union Station Hotel wrapped up a property-wide, $15.5 million transformation in October. The new design is seamlessly woven into the building’s distinguished architecture that dates to 1900. For example, while the lavish grand lobby features commissioned art…

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’Tis the Season to Be Clinking

The annual holiday gathering is a chance to get to know colleagues better and celebrate the end of a successful year. Instead of serving humdrum wine and beer, ring in the holidays with a festive selection of seasonal cocktails. From gingerbread molasses to creamy eggnog, hotels and restaurants are spreading holiday cheer with a few…

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Power Players: Meeting Professionals Making Strides

The lure of British Columbia is hard to resist. Vancouver, Canada’s West Coast hub, draws visitors from around the world for its pristine beauty, surrounded by coastal mountains overlooking a vast blue expanse of the Pacific Ocean. Amid its stunning natural setting, Vancouver is one of the most diverse cities in North America, with a…

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7 Holiday Gifts to Dazzle Attendees

Your resource for trendy treasures and gift ideas Treat attendees and VIPs to unique, thoughtful gifts they will definitely want to take home. Smart Meetings has selected an assortment of items that can make work and travel more enjoyable, and contribute to good health and well-being. Bonus: Everyone will remember your event! All About the…

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Clear Solutions to Spotty Wi-Fi

Attendees expect to post, tweet, snap and share, indoors and out Weather is no longer the biggest challenge when it comes to outdoor events: reliable Wi-Fi is. Many event planners learn this the hard way when the complaints start rolling in because of dropped signals and the inability to connect. Blame it on some basic…

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Columbus is Convention Friendly

Greater Columbus Convention Center rendering Columbus, Ohio, goes deep with major expansion and artistic flair There is no question that meetings business is important to Columbus, Ohio. Once in the shadow of Ohio State University and the Buckeyes’ college football team, the Midwestern city was not known for much else. Tailgating at Ohio Stadium (also…

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Winning Strategies from an NFL Star

Darren Woodson embraces hard change on and off the field We had the good fortune last month to have Darren Woodson as our luncheon keynote speaker for the Smart Meeting Southwest event at the Dallas Cowboys World Headquarters in Frisco, Texas. I was so inspired and felt so congruent with Woodson’s message that I am…

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Preventing a Show-Stopper: Backup Plans for Speaker Contracts

Contractual backup plans for speakers and presenters Here’s a nightmare that many meeting and event planners have surely awakened from with a shudder: One of your top executives is ready to present to the largest audience of the year, including a host of print, web and TV journalists seated in the front row. He steps…

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