MAY 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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M A Y 2 0 1 8 ⎜ ConventionSouth ⎜ w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m 69 E V E N T P L A N N E R ' S G U I D E T O VA C H E S A P E A K E B A Y L I G H T H O U S E The Old Point Comfort Lighthouse is the oldest lighthouse still in operation on the Chesapeake Bay. It was put in service in 1803 and is located south of the Jefferson Davis Memorial Park in Fort Monroe near Hampton. BY T. WAYNE WATERS A Varied Landscape, A Storied History The Commonwealth of Virginia has a varied landscape offering everything from mountains to sea, exceptional historical sites to cutting-edge technology, great wine and cider to craft breweries. The names of Virginia places and things resonate deeply for all Americans: Jamestown, Chesapeake Bay, Old Dominion, Blue Ridge Mountains, Shenandoah Valley, Thomas Jefferson, George Washington and Colonial Williamsburg to name but a few. Meeting planners can rest assured Virginia has not only its exceptional history, landscape and culturescape but also excellent meeting venues, hotels and entertainments. Virginia Beach Despite its singular name, Virginia Beach boasts three beaches with a total of 40 miles of beachfront and Atlantic Ocean. It's also home to great non-beach outdoor recreation and sev- eral top-notch museums. The Virginia Marine Aquarium & Science Center and the adjacent Adventure Park at Virginia Aquarium are per- haps Virginia Beach's most popular attractions. Work on enhancements and expansion are scheduled to begin this year. The aquarium's popular Marsh Pavilion will get outdoor learn- ing and play areas, a conservation garden, new exhibits and a veterinary wing. The Adventure Park at Virginia Aquarium will undergo an ex- pansion of the aerial park, including additional ropes courses and a view platform across Owls Creek. The biggest news for Virginia Beach, however, has to do with its lodging landscape, perhaps most prominently the reopening of the historic Cavalier Hotel. Originally built in 1927, The Cavalier became The Cavalier Virginia Beach, Autograph Collection last year and underwent a $75 million renovation. The 85-room property has three restaurants, a bourbon distillery, a spa, a resort-style pool, beach access and about 4,430 square feet of function space. Its Grand Ballroom features classic chandeliers, elegant wall coverings and gold hardware. The brand new 156-room Hyatt House Virginia Beach opened last year on the beach. The property has about 2,000 square feet of meeting space and its rooms all have balconies. There are more than 12,000 hotel rooms in the Virginia Beach area and more hotels are on the way in VB. A 120-room Residence Inn is slated for completion this autumn and a 127- room Hyatt Place should be completed by next spring. Virginia Beach Venues • Virginia Beach Convention Center: 150,000 square feet of exhibit space; 31,000-square-foot ballroom; 29,000 ► Virginia

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