JUN 2013

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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ALABAMA ARKANSAS FLORIDA GEORGIA KENTUCKY LOUISIANA MISSISSIPPI NORTH CAROLINA OKLAHOMA SOUTH CAROLINA TENNESSEE TEXAS VIRGINIA WEST VIRGINIA Florida's South Coast It's Not All Luxury In Palm Beach County By T. Wayne Waters When most people think of Palm Beach properties, they think luxury— Ritz-Carlton, The Breakers, Four Seasons, etc. But Palm Beach County CVB folks donʼt want the city and county to get completely boxed into even so exquisite a package as that. The county has nearly 16,000 guest rooms and they arenʼt all at luxury properties. "Those luxury oceanfront properties represent only 30 percent of Palm Beach lodging inventory," said Doug McLain, senior vice president of global sales for the Palm Beach County CVB. "The other 70 percent are great, midscale to upscale perimeter properties such as the West Palm Beach Marriott, Palm Beach Gardens Marriott, Boca Raton Marriott, Wyndham Boca Raton, Renaissance Boca Raton, to name some of the solid upscale properties that create an affordable luxury. You have a luxury destination with affordable pricing." McLain went on to note that properties such as these, many of which are along the I-95 corridor, are generally only about a mile and a half from the ocean. "In Palm Beach County, I-95 is closer to the ocean than it is anywhere else on the Eastern seaboard," said McLain. "Youʼre never more than a five-minute drive away from the oceanfront when you stay at any of our I-95-corridor hotels." ■ Whitehall & The Raymond F. Kravis Center For The Performing Arts While plenty of conventional meeting spaces are available in Palm Beach County, there are also a number of unique ones that offer both meeting space and entertainment and cultural options. Two in that category are Whitehall and The Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts. Palm Beach County CVB Whitehall was historically the winter home of Henry Flagler, Gilded-age developer who nearly single-handedly established Palm Beach as a coveted luxury vacation destination and residence city. The National Historic Landmark now serves as an opulent meeting facility and as the Flagler Museum. The property features a 4,800-square-foot Grand Hall designed in the Beaux Arts style, which features a double staircase, dome ceiling paintings, and plenty of marble and gold leaf. ■ The Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, located on 10-and-a-half acres at the highest point in West Palm Beach, includes four primary venues: the 2,195-seat Alexander W. Dreyfoos Jr. Concert Hall (pictured left), the 289-seat Rinker Playhouse, the 170-seat Helen K. Persson Hall and the outdoor Michael and Andrew Gosman Amphitheatre. Additional meeting spaces include a pavillion with a 10,500-square-foot banquet center. ■ 34 ⎜ ConventionSouth ⎜ JUNE 2013 w w w. c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m

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