OCT 2016

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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O C T O B E R 2 0 1 6 ⎜ ConventionSouth ⎜ w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m 19 U N L O C K I N S P I R A T I O N Over 2,700 square feet of outdoor/indoor event space 187 stylish rooms and suites Within a 6 mile radius of shopping, dining and Sarasota's most popular attractions and activities Accommodating groups of 10-150 attendees Exceptional on-site dining On-site activities Luxurious, pristine beach TAKE ADVANTAGE OF INTRODUCTORY RATES & CONCESSIONS FOR 2017 MEETINGS AND EVENTS 4711 Gulf of Mexico Dr., Longboat Key 941.387.1605 OPENING DECEMBER 2016 lodging choices are growing too, with the brand- new Lighthouse Inn on the bay side, and the Courtyard by Marriott, a full-service beachfront hotel, slated to open in 2017. The Courtyard will feature 10,000 square feet of meeting facilities along with a beachside restaurant, pool and world-class bar. Padre Boulevard, the main artery for the island, is poised to undergo its own major improvements, including sidewalks and bike paths all the way to the convention center, and an extension of medians filled with lush, colorful plantings and decorative paving. "With 15 miles of new bike lanes and sidewalks, a new community park, a new community center and a newly renovated convention center, South Padre Island is on the move with exciting developments for our visitors and our growing residential community," said South Padre Island Mayor Barry Patel. "Both of the Cameron County Parks on South Padre Island are undergoing a major facelift and construction of new public amenities such as an amphitheater will further enhance the 'Tropical Padre Experience.'" All these changes are infusing new life into the already vibrant and diverse beach town, and it welcomes the increase in meeting and convention traffic. Re-Design Creates A Lighter, Brighter Facility The Plano Centre, in Plano, Texas, began a long- awaited $2.8 million renovation in July of this year and expects it to be complete by May 2017. The primary goal of the renovation is to lighten and brighten the facility. The entire interior and exterior is being repainted and new furnishings and carpet will be installed throughout. Four dramatic new chandeliers and additional lighting upgrades will increase lighting levels significantly. Sound systems throughout will be upgraded and new window shades and screens will be installed for better presentation capability. "We are creating a whole new look and feel," says Millerann Moya, marketing manager of the facility. "The Plano Centre will be poised to serve the needs of meeting planners and attendees for years to come." A 122,000-square-foot facility providing flexible function space to accommodate as many as 5,000 people, The Plano Centre includes Collinwood Hall, the principal exhibit space, with 21,600 square feet of column-free, completely carpeted space as well as a professional master stage, and high dock and street-level loading and unloading access. There are 17 individual breakout rooms, and the Centre provides in- house catering and audiovisual services as well as complimentary parking and Wi-Fi. Just across the street from the convention center is Oak Point Park & Nature Preserve, with its treetop adventure course with ziplines, rope ladders and obstacle courses providing entertainment and team-building opportunities for meeting attendees and visitors. ■

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