ConventionSouth

APR 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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A P R I L 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 35 F L O R I D A also offers 4,000 square feet of event space, including a ballroom that accommodates up to 550 guests. On Pensacola Beach, several hotels have meeting space for smaller groups, including the Hampton Inn Pensacola Beach, the Holiday Inn Resort Pensacola Beach and Springhill Suites by Marriott Pensacola Beach. On Perdido Key, Eden Condominium is a beachfront property with two meeting rooms and 1,350 square feet of space that can accom- modate 200, along with audio/visual services, tennis courts, pools and a fitness facility. The area is served by Pensacola International Airport and easily accessed via Interstates 10 and 65. Destin/ Fort Walton/ Okaloosa Island Known for its sugar-white sand beaches and emerald-green waters, the area that includes Destin, Fort Walton Beach and Okaloosa Island bills itself as the "Heart of Florida's Emerald Coast" and is a great spot to blend business and pleasure. The new Emerald Coast Visitors Center, located in the Destin – Fort Walton Beach Airport (VPS) opens in early April. VPS was established as Allegiant's 14th year-round aircraft base in February, bringing with it six new direct flights to Lexington, Ky., Benton- ville, Ark., Evansville, Ind., Concord, N.C., Nashville and Raleigh-Durham, N.C. The fa- cility includes a large saltwater aquarium tank, showcasing the area's indigenous marine life. According to the Emerald Coast CVB, the air- port brings in about 915,650 vacationers every year, with the six new routes anticipated to bring more than 25,000 people to the Okaloosa County area in 2018. Other legacy carriers contributing to the total visitation Okaloosa County sees each year, include American Air- lines, Delta and United. In January, the Emerald Coast Convention Center completed a $465,000 renovation. Im- provements to its 35,000 square feet of meeting space include new carpet throughout the facil- ity, 2,000 new chairs, an equipment-charging station, new interior paint and upgraded audio/ visual equipment. The facility can host up to 2,400 people and features 12 meeting rooms as well as the 21,000-square-foot Emerald Grand Ballroom. It's also centrally located, with easy access to nearly 13,000 guest accommodations in hotels and condo units and more than 400 locally owned and operated restaurants. In other area news, ResortQuest Real Estate broke ground in February on Blu, a six-story, 47-unit gulf-front condominium project on Okaloosa Island and renovations continue at Ramada Plaza in Fort Walton Beach, which has 335 guest rooms and 14,000 square feet of meeting space. In Destin, the Pelican Beach Resort & Conference Center offers 435 suits and 5,500 square feet of event space (see breakout spotlight on page 40); the Emerald Grande, which overlooks Destin's East Pass, has a 2,000-square-foot banquet room and 280 condo ➤ City Map Location A B C D E F G H I 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Amelia Island .............................................. H2 Brooksville .................................................. G4 Cocoa Beach .............................................. H4 Coral Gables ................................................ I8 Crystal River ................................................F4 Daytona Beach H ....................................... H3 Destin ......................................................... B2 Florida Keys Islamorada .............................................. I8 Key Largo................................................ I8 Key West................................................. I8 Marathon Key.......................................... I8 Fort Lauderdale H Dania Beach ........................................... I7 Hollywood Beach .................................... I7 Fort Myers Area Captiva Island ....................................... G7 Cape Coral ............................................ G7 Estero .................................................... G7 Fort Myers ............................................. G7 Gainesville .................................................. G7 Jacksonville H ............................................ G2 Kissimmee H .............................................. H4 Lakeland ..................................................... G5 Melbourne/Palm Bay .................................... I5 Miami/Miami Beach H .................................. I8 Naples/Marco Island/Everglades ................ G7 Ocala .......................................................... G3 Orlando H ................................................... H4 Palm Beach/Palm Beach Gardens/ West Palm Beach ......................................... I6 Panama City Beach.................................... C2 Pensacola ................................................... A2 Ponte Vedra Beach .................................... H2 Port Canaveral ........................................... H4 Punta Gorda ............................................... G6 Sandestin H ............................................... B2 Sarasota ......................................................F6 St. Augustine .............................................. H3 St. Petersburg/Clearwater ..........................F5 Tallahassee ................................................ E2 Tampa/Tampa Bay ..................................... G5 Titusville...................................................... H4 Viera ........................................................... H5 H H H H H H H

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