APR 2012

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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2012 Sneak Peek Directory Subscribe Advertise Contact NOR THWEST FLORIDA EDITOR'S HOT PICKS Ideal Life Popularized by the movie "The Truman Show," the iconic Truman home is available for rent in the neighborhood of Seaside. Photos on this page by Jennifer Kelly I'll See You In Seaside NORTHWEST FLORIDA abounds with coastal destinations from Pen- sacola to Panama City Beach as well as metro areas like Tallahasee—all of which are easily accessible along the Florida Panhandle. Follow up with these CVBs: Site Visit By Jennifer Kelly With so many neighborhoods to choose from in South Walton, there is sure to be a venue for every meeting. On the eastern end of South Walton is the beach community of Seaside situated on the 18 mile stretch of road known as Highway 30A. Popularized by the movie "The Truman Show," Seaside is an evolving community of cottages each with their own unique color scheme and style– right down to the white picket fences. Jon Ervin, director of public relations and marketing at Cottage Rental Agency said that "resort is a dirty word here" and itʼs easy to see why. The town center may look like a regular suburban center, but the quirkier side of the community can be seen with the cottageʼs striking yellows, cobalt blues, pinks and neon greens. From the beach to one of the many cottages or meeting spaces, the covered walkways allow for travel to anywhere in Seaside. The Lyceum Meeting room provides 1,296 square feet of meeting space for up to 125 people, theater style. The Lyceum Lawn is a grassy oasis for an outdoor event provid- ing ample space but the Lyceum Tent allows for groups of up to 100, theater style. How- ever, the lawn and tent combined can accommodate as many as 1,000. Seaside Pavilion, also outside, can offer a meeting space for 70 with the beach ever-present as an option. Itʼs clear to see that South Waltonʼs goal is to showcase its natural surroundings and offer year-round Pensacola Bay Area CVB Emerald Coast CVB, Inc. Follow up with these advertisers: Visit South Walton (800) 822-6877 meetings "White sand. Turquoise water. Excel- lent facilities. Read Your Clients' Minds and Meet in South Walton, Florida." Wild Bill's Beach Dogs in Seaside. The Boardwalk Beach Resort & Condominiums (800) 224-4853 Cottage Rental Agency Seaside, FL (855) 375-9213 opportunities for travelers. A four-story height restriction on high-rise buildings (some have been grandfa- thered in) allows for the true beauty of the Gulf to shine through. Since 40 percent of South Walton is pro- tected from development and owned by the State of Florida, the area feels more like a secluded tropical oasis rather than a vacation destination. This connection to the environment and 15 distinct neighborhoods to choose from really makes South Walton a departure from Floridaʼs busier hot spots. ■ Emerald Coast Convention Center (877) 574-5123 www.emeraldcoastconvention So What Is Biophilia? The E.O. Wilson Biophilia Center is an environmental facility in South Walton County that serves students, teachers and professional audiences. The center is nestled in the Longleaf Pine ecosystem and the perfect place to educate attendees on the importance of biodiversity and to encourage conservation, preservation and restoration. By the way, "biophilia" is a term that refers to the connec- tions that human beings subconsciously seek with the rest of life. ■ Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa (800) 367-1271 meetings Visit for more about the Northwest Florida area through our interactive Insiderʼs Guide with maps, videos & more. www.con v APRIL 2012 ConventionSouth 57

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