While meetings and conventions took a pause in 2020 due to the pandemic, Columbus didn’t stop working to ensure that when the time came to return to in-person meetings, planners and attendees had all the tools they needed for a successful event.
New developments forged ahead, offering more reasons for planners to consider Ohio’s capital. A 468-room expansion of the Hilton Columbus Downtown will bring the total number of convention hotel rooms on the property to 1,000 and total meeting space to 75,000 square feet. The new tower, opening in 2022, will offer a rooftop event space and an “open fire” restaurant. The Hyatt Regency Columbus is also completing a $20 million guest room remodel and renovation by the end of 2021.
2020 MLS Cup Champions, The Columbus Crew, have moved to a new stadium in the Arena District, meaning all of the city’s professional sports teams are within a few blocks of one another (and the convention center). Unique features of the Lower.com Field include a continuous wraparound roof, a 360-degree concourse, new off-site event space and a 5,000-square-foot brew hall that will also be open on non-match days. A new food destination from Cameron Mitchell Restaurants is also now open in the city’s emerging Italian Village neighborhood. The historic Budd Dairy building has been transformed into the Budd Dairy Food Hall, a restaurant incubator offering spaces for entrepreneurial, chef-driven concepts, and also includes a live-performance stage, multiple bars, interactive games, private event space and a rooftop deck.
If there’s one thing we learned during the last 18 months of remote work or virtual meetings that’s here to stay, it’s the importance of digital tools and platforms. As we move toward the future of meeting and events, Columbus makes it easy for attendees to plan their stay.
It’s now easy to get the help of virtual assistant whenever needed on whatever platform is preferred for planning. Of course, visitors can gain access to a virtual trip-planning assistant on experiencecolumbus.com to find all there is to see, do eat and explore in the city. Now, expanded options include assistance on the Experience Columbus Facebook page and Apple messages, in which iOS users can text our virtual assistant, just like they would a friend, to see what’s nearby, where to eat, shop or play in the area. A new Flash Briefing available through any Alexa device also provides daily updates on what’s happening in Ohio’s capital to all who subscribe.
Meeting attendees also have access to the new digital attendee savings passes, making it easy to access discounts and deals at local businesses during downtime.
As in-person meetings return and life looks more like it did pre-pandemic, we can’t wait to welcome you back to the country’s 14th largest city. Let’s work together to bring the industry back stronger than ever. Learn more about all that’s happening in Columbus at experiencecolumbus.com/meetings.