OCT 2017

ConventionSouth magazine is the leading resource for meeting planners who book all types of events, conventions, conferences and group travel in the south.

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Page 45 of 67

⎜ ConventionSouth ⎜ O C T O B E R 2 0 1 7 w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m 46 Kentucky E V E N T P L A N N E R ' S G U I D E T O KY C O N N E C T I N G T W O C I T I E S : Originally known as the Cincinnati-Coving- ton Bridge, the John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge spans the Ohio River between Cincinnati, Ohio and Covington, Kentucky. When the first pedestrians crossed on Dec. 1, 1866, it was the longest suspension bridge in the world at 1,057 feet main span. Today, pedestrians use the bridge to get between the sports venues in Cincinnati (Paul Brown Stadium, Great American Ball Park, and U.S. Bank Arena) and the hotels, bars, restaurants, and parking lots in Northern Kentucky. The bar and restaurant district at the foot of the bridge on the Kentucky side is known as Roebling Point. BY D. FRAN MORLEY Centrally Located & Easy To Reach The Bluegrass State of Kentucky provides planners an easy-to-access, central location, with facilities for events in major metropolitan areas or off-the-beaten path smaller towns. The state has three major airports and is crisscrossed by U.S. Interstates including north-south routes of I-65, I-75 and I-69, and east-west routes of I-24 and I-64. Louisville Louisville, Kentucky's largest city, is experi- encing a boom in new and renovated hotels and meeting spaces. Along with the Omni Louisville Downtown, scheduled to open in spring 2018 with 612 guest rooms and 70,000 square feet of event space, and major expansions at Kentucky International Convention Center, scheduled for a summer 2018 opening, three other hotels are currently under construction, according to Katie Kubitskey, marketing communications director for the Louisville CVB. "A 100-room Home2Suites is scheduled to open in the hip NULU neighborhood in Novem- ber, a TownePlace Suites + Fairfield Inn & Suites will open in December with 157 guest rooms, and an AC Hotel by Marriott with 152 rooms is scheduled to open in NULU in summer 2018." These projects join the recently opened 126-room Aloft East and a 93-room Hilton Garden Inn. Three hotels have completed or are planning renovations, according to the CVB. The 392- room Hyatt Regency Louisville Downtown com- pleted a $14 million renovation in early 2017; the 620-room Marriott Downtown is in the midst of a complete $30 million renovation; and the 1,314- room Galt House plans a renovation but to date has not released details. All three of these hotels are next to or connected to the Kentucky Inter- national Convention Center that is in the midst of a $207 million expansion and renovation that will increase exhibit space to more than 200,000 square feet. Other major hotels downtown include the his- toric Brown Hotel, with 293 guest rooms and 17 event spaces for meeting groups of up to 600, and the 321-room Seelbach Hilton, a landmark hotel since 1905, which can seat up to 400 for dinners. Additional major meeting and event space is at MeetNKY

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