see more

Meet Me In Greater Miami & Miami Beach

  • Share

(MIAMI) – When it comes to mixing business with pleasure, no city does it quite like Miami. Miami’s world-class meeting facilities, surrounded by a sophisticated tropical playground, draw convention and business travelers in droves each year – more than 1.3 million to be exact. Offering great business amenities and an endless array of entertainment day and night, Miami is a sure bet for meeting planners looking to build attendance and entrepreneurs looking to seal the deal.

Boasting a centrally located, state-of-the-art international airport, temperatures that average 76ºF (24 ºC) year-round, and more than 58,000 hotel rooms – from chic boutiques to the luxury beach and golf resorts -- Miami has evolved into a meetings destination for all seasons. Factor in the allure of the world-famous Art Deco District, azure ocean vistas, sparkling Biscayne Bay, and renowned dining and nightlife, and it is easy to see why many of the world's most prestigious associations and corporate meetings, conventions, and trade shows choose to meet in Miami. Plus, the family-friendly attractions, unlimited outdoor recreation, and incredible arts and culture entice many business travelers to stay and play.

Taking Care of Business

The Miami Beach Convention Center (MBCC) (www.MiamiMeetings.com) sits on a slice of paradise with spectacular beaches, world-class hotels, fine dining, exciting nightlife, diverse shopping experiences, and historic architecture making Miami one of the most sought out meetings destination in the world. Set in Miami Beach, the MBCC is owned by the City of Miami Beach and managed by Spectra Venue Management. The world-class venue plays host to a wide range of conventions, tradeshows, consumer shows, meetings, and banquets; and strives to provide clients and guests with exceptional customer service and an unforgettable experience.

Fresh from a $620 million renovation and expansion, the MBCC features nearly 500,000 square feet of exhibit space, a new 60,000-square-foot Grand Ballroom, up to 84 breakout rooms, a 20,000- square-foot rooftop specialty space, and nine acres of green space that can serve as incremental event space. As a testament to the center’s serious commitment to resiliency and sustainability, the MBCC recently received LEED® Silver certification, an exciting achievement recognizing environmentally friendly infrastructure and practices.

Along with the MBCC as its anchor, the Miami Beach Convention Center District will also feature a new headquarters hotel, the Grand Hyatt Miami Beach, an 800-room property that is set to offer visitors attending events at MBCC with another hospitality option by 2024/2025. The property will be at the intersection of 17th Street and Convention Center Drive within walking distance of the beachfront, Lincoln Road Mall, New World Symphony, and The Bass Museum. Other plans for the district also include an elevated sky bridge that will allow attendees to move easily between the hotel and the convention center, and pedestrian promenades on the surrounding streets, among other exciting developments.

Other great meeting centers abound. The Miami Convention Center, located beside the Hyatt Regency Miami and within walking distance to Bayside Marketplace, is one of Greater Miami's most functional meeting, exhibit, and entertainment venues. This major facility, designed to maximize convenience and flexibility, has 34 well-appointed Miami meeting rooms, including a 444-seat auditorium and a 117-seat lecture hall, and can accommodate from 20 to 5,000 attendees in a variety of configurations. Another option is the recently redesigned Miami Airport Convention Center (MACC), which is adjacent to Miami International Airport, adjoining the Doubletree Hotel and the Miami l Merchandise Mart. Minutes from downtown Miami, the MACC features 172,000 square feet of high-tech meeting, conference, and trade show space, including a 29,000square foot social catering ballroom (second largest in the region) and 100,000 square feet of exhibition and function space.

For groups who prefer a more unconventional convention space, Greater Miami and Miami Beach offer a wide variety of meeting and event venues, from hotels and art centers to museums and parks. One alternative space is the Perez Art Museum (PAMM). Set in Downtown Miami in the beautiful Maurice A. Ferré Park, formerly Museum Park, PAMM features sweeping views of Biscayne Bay, sprawling outdoor plazas with lush vegetation cascading from the canopy’s overhang and a variety of modern indoor spaces for business meetings, cocktail receptions, weddings, elegant brunches, dinner parties and more. Here, planners can provide their guests with a complete and unique, contemporary art-inspired experience, from private tours and viewings to indoor or outdoor performances, film screenings, and educational activities.

Next door, the Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science – a.k.a. Frost Science offers great options for group activities and receptions. The 250,000 square foot facility features advanced communications and energy-conservation technology and is structured around a lushly landscaped indoor and outdoor ‘living core’ of terrestrial and aquatic exhibits, featuring one-of-a-kind aquarium components, a state-of-the-art digital dome, hands-on exhibits, and interactive digital technology. Other intriguing spaces include everything from Miami Beach Botanical Garden and Fairchild Tropical Garden to an array of art museums, sports venues, and nightclubs. Vizcaya Museum & Gardens – an Italian Renaissance-style palace and gardens overlooking the Bay – is great for outdoor receptions. Down in the South Miami Dade agricultural region, one of the latest and most unexpected venues is Schnebly Redland's Winery & Brewery, which makes wine from tropical fruits and boasts great entertainment and activity space.

Hotel Space

Hoteliers and developers, increasingly stylish to the city's growing reputation as a prime meeting location, have made modifications to existing space, or in the case of new development, designed properties with meetings in mind. The result is a myriad of interesting options for meeting planners, from ocean terrace board rooms to designer-driven spaces that inspire creativity. For example, small, trendy boutique hotels feature plush conference rooms with designer furniture and plasma screens to attract small, image-conscious groups. In recent years, thousands of new luxury hotel rooms have popped up throughout Greater Miami and Miami Beach, with many others undergoing extensive renovations to keep in line with Miami’s fashion-forward attitude. As of June 2021, Greater Miami and Miami Beach boast 500 hotel properties, and more are on the way.

The region offers a “Who’s Who” of major aspirational brands, including four hotels from The Ritz-Carlton, the Four Seasons Hotel Miami, the Mandarin Oriental, Miami, the Acqualina Resort & Spa, JW Marriot Marquis Miami, Conrad Miami, The Setai Miami Beach, The St. Regis Bal Harbour, Mondrian South Beach, Carillon Miami Wellness Resort, Kimpton’s EPIC and Surfcomber hotels and W South Beach. Faena District Miami Beach is a major four-block development by founder Alan Faena, featuring the Faena Hotel Miami Beach. The hotel offers 169 guestrooms and suites designed by award-winning film director/producer Baz Luhrmann and four-time Academy Award® winning production and costume designer Catherine Martin.

The district is also home to Faena Forum, a 50,000 square foot cultural institution available for special events. In addition to major global brands, Greater Miami and Miami Beach boast an impressive roster of stylish independent brands, such as the Miami Beach EDITION, The Goodtime Hotel owned by Pharrell Williams and David Grutman, Grand Beach Hotel (Miami Beach and Surfside), Solé Miami Resort, Hotel Victor South Beach, W Miami, Hotel Beaux Arts, Autograph Collection, Soho Beach House, Shore Club, The Biltmore Miami Coral Gables, 1 Hotel South Beach, Element Miami International Airport and Trump International Beach Resort.

Miami’s renowned classic convention resorts have also kept pace. The Fontainebleau Miami Beach and the Eden Roc Miami Beach—among the largest in the area—recently underwent multimillion-dollar restorations that brought the legendary beachside resorts back to their glory days and beyond. The Eden Roc launched the largest Nobu restaurant and bar lounge in the world, created by Chef Nobu Matsuhisa, Academy Award-winner Robert DeNiro, and Hollywood producer Meir Teper. Meetings with a side of golf are de rigueur at Trump National Doral Miami, a 650- acre resort (26 hectares) offering five 18-hole championship golf courses that can cater to golfers at every skill level. The resort completed a $250-million renovation, which includes the restoration and expansion of 100,000 square feet of event space, including technology upgrades and the creation of a beautifully detailed 7,200 square foot ballroom and 8,000 square foot terrace, located atop the main clubhouse with a scenic overlook and the resort’s signature golf course.

Downtown Miami, the financial and commercial center of the city, has been a hub of development activity in recent years. The AAA Five-Diamond award-winning Mandarin Oriental, Miami takes excellent care of discerning delegates with 15,000 square feet of flexible space, 22-foot ceilings, stunning rice-paper chandeliers, and cutting-edge technology. The hotel is one of the few hotels in the U.S. to achieve Forbes’ Triple Five Stars—one for lodging, spa, and restaurant. The JW Marriott Miami caters lavishly to its primarily business clientele and the $379 million Four Seasons Hotel Miami on Brickell Avenue instantly raises the bar for luxury business hotels throughout South Florida. EAST Miami (352 rooms) brings a playful lifestyle hotel with an Asian twist to downtown Miami—the first one in the United States is a luxury hotel located at the new Brickell City Centre and boasts 20,000 square feet of flexible function rooms and outdoor venues.

Brickell City Centre brings three levels of unparalleled shopping, dining, and entertainment anchored by a 107,000 square foot, ultra-modern Saks Fifth Avenue. Luxury brands are rapidly opening their doors with premium, contemporary and blend of new-to-market brands in the mix. The 500,000 square foot vertical shopping experience is rounded out with a mix of premium and contemporary shops filled with beauty, home decor, jewelry, apparel, and much more. The restaurants and bars, an integral piece of the Brickell City Centre experience, make up the third and fourth levels, an experience anchored by CMX, the VIP Cinema Experience.

Also downtown is the Miami Convention Center, a major facility that encompasses the 612-room Hyatt Regency Miami, which recently finished a multi-million-upgrade, as well as the 5,000-seat James L. Knight Center Auditorium. A popular concert venue, the Knight Center boasts state-of-the-art sound and lighting systems suitable for the world's most particular performers. Ranked as the "largest hotel exhibit space in South Florida," the Doubletree by Hilton Miami Airport & Convention Center offers 24,160 square feet of meeting space plus another 115,500 square feet of meeting and exhibit space in the adjoining Miami Airport Convention Center (MACC).

The grand dame of downtown Miami hotels, the InterContinental Miami, recently completed a $34-million renovation which includes upgrading and redesigning its 65,000 square feet of meeting space. The hotel is near the Bayside Marketplace, as are other popular hotels, such as the 152-room (plus 50 condos) DoubleTree by Hilton Grand Hotel Biscayne Bay, the 579-room/21-suite Miami Marriott Biscayne Bay (23 meeting rooms and 20,000 square feet of meeting space) and the 527-room/58-suite Hilton Miami Downtown (45,000 square feet of meeting space and 19 meeting rooms).

Many other hotels throughout Miami, from The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami (450 rooms, including 113 suites), to the historic Biltmore Hotel Miami Coral Gables (275 rooms), offer attendees top-notch business facilities and service in beautiful resort settings. Also in Coral Gables are first-rate business hotels such as the elegant Hyatt Regency Coral Gables (250 rooms) and the Hotel Colonnade Coral Gables, Autograph Collection (157 rooms), with its new ballroom bringing meeting space to over 30,000 square feet. Over on the northern tip of the county in Aventura is the renowned JW Marriott Miami Turnberry Resort & Spa (685 rooms), boasts a 120,0000 square-foot conference center, a stunning golf course, spa and wellness center, and a Tidal Cove Water Park if you’re traveling with the kids.

Time To Play

One of the best reasons to meet in Miami is that when the day's work is done, visitors find themselves in America's Riviera – a playful mix of sun and fun. For delegates on a break or spouses along for the journey, options for entertainment, both organized and spontaneous, abound. Whether it's zipping around sparkling Biscayne Bay on a motorboat, lounging poolside at one of Miami Beach's chic boutique hotels, or swimming with the dolphins, Miami attracts record delegates for many conventions. Immaculately groomed golf courses, world-class tennis courts and amazing sports teams satisfy recreational and spectator sports fans.

Most intriguing is LoanDepot Park, the spectacular ultra-modern home of the Miami Marlins in Little Havana. The venue, featuring one of the most innovative designs in the nation, is perfect for many events, from concerts and trade shows to private and corporate gatherings. The state-of-the-art masterpiece offers stunning vistas of downtown Miami and the option of having the roof and left field skyline wall closed to keep the ballpark at a cool 75 degrees or opened to enjoy the Miami tropical sun.

Speaking of sunshine, a gateway to glorious ecological discovery lies less than an hour from downtown with two national treasures—Biscayne National Park and Everglades National Park, as well as many county parks offering eco-adventure tours close to the city.

Miami's emergence as one of the world's preeminent centers for art and culture has increased the appeal dramatically. Case in point is the dazzling $500 million Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County downtown. Designed by world-renowned Argentinean architect Cesar Pelli, the 570,000 square- foot complex features three separate performance facilities: the 2,200-seat Knight Concert Hall, the 2,400-seat Sanford and Dolores Ziff Ballet Opera House, and a 200- seat black box Studio Theatre. The center is also home to the BRAVA! Farm-to-Table eatery featuring Chef Hector Torres at the helm as well as The Café at Books & Books with cuisine by the legendary Chef Allen Susser.

In Miami Beach, the New World Center, home of the New World Symphony, features a flexible concert hall with 757 seats at its largest configuration in the round. The center’s SunTrust Pavilion offers 2,330 square feet of flat floor multipurpose performance space, while the dramatic rooftop garden and patrons lounge feature unparalleled views of Miami Beach and Biscayne Bay. The centers, along with cutting-edge museums and galleries, as well as arts districts (Wynwood and Design Districts), have enhanced Miami’s reputation, drawing globally renowned events such as Art Basel.

Restaurants are among the top in the nation, with top chefs attracting kudos for innovative cuisine – best enjoyed during Miami Spice Restaurant Month(s) (August/September), featuring value-driven pre-fixe menus. Miami Spa Month(s) in July and August feature rejuvenating special treatments for as low as $109 at Miami’s premier spas.

One of the hottest retail areas these days is the Miami Design District, the ultimate destination for cutting-edge fashion, art, design, and culture with brands such as Bulgari, Giorgio Armani, Givenchy, Max Mara, Tiffany & Co., Valentino, and Versace. Up north, the Aventura Mall, one of the top five highest-grossing malls in the nation, features a three-level, 241,000 square foot retail wing with special emphasis on upscale, fashion-centric stores. A continued favorite is Lincoln Road in South Beach, known for trendsetting shops and extraordinary people-watching, while the chic, celebrity-studded Bal Harbour Shops is sure to please, even if you’re only window shopping. Bayside Marketplace downtown offers midscale mall shops as well as independent kiosk retailers and is home base to day cruises (including tours of the stars’ homes) and hop-on, hop-off bus tours of the city. Other notables include the tony Shops at Merrick Park in Coral Gables, CocoWalk in Coconut Grove, and outlet-driven Dolphin Mall near the airport. The newest retail work/play district is the Brickell City Centre, complete with the EAST Miami hotel, shopping, and restaurants.

Of course, no playtime in Miami would be complete without nocturnal pursuits. Miami’s nightlife is legendary – offering ample opportunities to spot hot celebrities and supermodels. Word of caution: the clubs don’t get going until after midnight, so a disco nap and a shot of Café Cubano is a sure way to recharge.

For those wanting to stay and play with the family, Miami offers a surprising variety of attractions, from Miami Seaquarium, Zoo Miami, Jungle Island, Monkey Jungle, and the Miami Children’s Museum to the Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science and Coral Castle.

Access into and around Miami is top rate. MIA offers great connectivity, serving approximately 150 cities around the world with non-stop service – making it attractive for growing international attendance. With a Rental Car Center at Miami International Airport (MIA), renting a car is easy for moving in and beyond the city. Delegates can also take advantage of Metrorail, Miami-Dade County's 24.4-mile, elevated rapid transit system that connects them from MIA to downtown, and then on to great places such as Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, South Miami, Coral Gables, and the renowned Dadeland Mall. Other recent transportation developments include the Brightline Downtown Miami train station, giving people even more ways to travel around the city.

The Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau (GMCVB) is an independent not-for-profit sales and marketing organization whose mission is to attract visitors to Greater Miami and Miami Beach for leisure, business, and conventions. For a vacation guide, visit our website at www.MiamiAndMiamiBeach.com or call 1-888-76-Miami (US/Canada only) or 305-447-7777. To reach the GMCVB offices, dial 305-539-3000. Meeting planners may call 1-800-933-8448 (US/Canada only) or 305-539-3071 or visit www.MiamiMeetings.com.