SEP 2018

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 53 of 67

²ConventionSouth ² S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 8 w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m 54 Chattanooga Chattanooga has received multiple Readers' Choice Awards from ConventionSouth and con- tinues to top "best lists" for travel, including the 52 Places to Go in 2018 by the New York Times and Top 10 Best in the U.S. Travel Destinations for 2018 by Lonely Planet. "Chattanooga consistently ranks on top of travel lists due to the progressive and vibrant urban environment, renaissance, technology, quality of life and authentic experiences the community provides," said Barry E. White, president and CEO of the Chattanooga CVB. "Chattanooga offers all the amenities of a major city in a comfortable, easily accessible, affordable and convenient location. We are excited about all the recent tourism growth and what's coming up in 2019." Last fall, the 260-room Westin Chattanooga opened with 15,000 square feet of event space, part of an $88 million West Village district with restaurants, bars, shops and pedestrian-friendly streets for festivals and events. The Edwin Hotel, an upscale 90-room boutique hotel, opens this fall with 1,650 square feet of event space and a rooftop bar overlooking the scenic Walnut Street pedestrian bridge. The 102-room Moxy Hotel, Marriott's new millennial-focused brand, opens on the Southside this fall. Downtown's Read House Historic Inn is com- pleting a $20 million renovation of all 242 guest rooms, lobby and 13,500 square feet of meeting and event space. Now open or opening soon are an 88-room Hampton Inn near the Bass Pro Shop and a 106-room SpringHill Suites by Marriott in nearby Ooltewah, with 1,900 square feet of function space. Other hotels with meeting and event spaces in the city, according to the CVB, include 343-room Chattanooga Marriott Downtown, with 10,000 square feet of event space; The Chattanoogan, with 199 guest rooms and 25,000 square feet of function space; and DoubleTree by Hilton Downtown, which has 11,000 square feet of event space. The city's iconic Chattanooga Choo Choo complex, which offers 135 guest rooms, is under- going major renovations and has added several new venues. Songbirds Guitar Museum (featur- ing more than 500 of the rarest instruments in the world) has event space for up to 700 between the North and South Stages; a 30,000-square-foot ballroom/theater is being converted ► Pigeon Forge has always been a family-ori- ented destination and meeting attendees who bring their families to Pigeon Forge will soon have several new attractions to enjoy. In August, Dolly Parton and park offi- cials at Dollywood announced the largest expansion in the park's 32-year history, Wildwood Grove. Slated to open in 2019, the $37 million project will feature 11 thrilling experiences for guests, comprised of six unique ride attractions—including a suspended family roller coaster called The Dragonflier— the 55-foot Wildwood Tree, live entertainment, various indoor and outdoor play areas for families to enjoy and a new restaurant, Till & Harvest, which will offer a selection of Southwest fresh favorites with a Southern twist. Other new attractions include Pigeon Forge Snow, offering real snow and indoor tubing year-round in a 35,000-square-foot climate-controlled facility; Crave Golf Club, a $7 million, 36-hole golf destination with indoor, hillside and rooftop courses; and the world's largest replica of the RMS Titanic built from 56,000 LEGO bricks and on display at the Titanic Museum Attrac- tion. New and reprised entertainment op- tions are Paula Deen's Lumberjack Feud, in which guests can watch a show and then participate in safe-for-novices versions of logging events; and Celebration!, a high-flying, circus-themed dinner show. Q B R E A K O U T S P O T L I G H T : Pigeon Forge Contact: ǁǁǁƉŝŐĞŽŶĨŽƌŐĞŵĞĞƟŶŐĐŽŵ WĂƵůĂĞĞŶƐ>ƵŵďĞƌũĂĐŬ&ĞƵĚ ŽƵƌƚĞƐLJWŝŐĞŽŶ&ŽƌŐĞĞƉƚŽĨdŽƵƌŝƐŵ T E N N E S S E E Chattanooga Riverfront at night Photo courtesy Chattanooga Area CVB

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