Phoenix, Arizona a great place for meetings and conventions!
Phoenix Arizona a place for meetings and conventions. I am a Corporate Convention Photographer and love covering meetings, traveling and photographing people having a great time. Also the awesome clients I have been lucky to be with for many years.
How do I start this blog? There are so many places in the country but I can say that Phoenix Arizona is in the top 10 for meetings and conventions.
Downtown Phoenix is where meetings and conventions come together.
Close the airport and easy to get downtown, is the Phoenix Convention Center.
My first meeting in Phoenix was mid 1990’s. The group was TCAA (Truck Cap & Accessory Association). Phoenix Convention Center was not what it is today. Mike Dwyer, CAE (hired me to be the official convention photographer for this association), he is now Chief Executive Relationship Officer for Association Headquarters, and serves on the AH Office of the President and a partner of Association Headquarters.
Phoenix Convention Center meeting space breakdown.
The total space is 900,000 sq ft, Exhibit hall floor offers 502,500 sq ft and breakout/meeting space is 150,000 sq ft. I do have to mention the ballroom, with 45,000 sq ft., you can easily pack any large event or dinner. This a great place that Phoenix has for meetings and conventions.
My last job was in January 2020 for Vision Source. I was providing headshots for a 3-day meeting. What I liked about this location is the walking distance to just about anything you need.
Hyatt Regency was the my hotel while on assignment, which is across the street from the convention center. You can easily walk to the Arizona Center Shops and entertainment can be found at CityScape that is about two blocks from the Hyatt hotel. If you are like me and like to eat healthy you are in luck. A new Fry’s Food full-service grocery store which is just a couple blocks from the Phoenix convention center opened when I was there. Also, there are so many places to eat that are close by.
Chase Field home of the Arizona Diamond backs is always a favorite place and the Phoenix Suns Arena home of the Phoenix Suns, also is just a short walk from the Phoenix convention center. MLB spring training camps in Phoenix, no pun intended, is a home run for any group that wants to take their members to watch a baseball game.
JW MARRIOTT PHOENIX DESERT RIDGE RESORT & SPA
The drive from the airport is a nice scenic ride and well worth the time.
A luxury experience that makes this a AAA 4-Diamond JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa in Phoenix, Arizona is a place for meetings and conventions.
Over the years, the resort has upgraded areas and that always improves and delight the guests. A google search said this resort offers about 212,500 sq ft of meeting space and with 950 hotel rooms, five pools, a river, a spa and two championship golf courses, (I have played the courses and they are always in the best shape and beautiful desert views.)
Convention Photography of attendees during break by sign at the JW Marriott Resort in Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & SPA
There is plenty of walking and jogging areas that the resort has mapped out. The Desert Ridge Marketplace has shops and restaurants. A 5-minute car ride or take the resort shuttle that leaves every hour. Check the hotel for specific times. If you like to walk, it is about 20-minutes. Great exercise in the dry desert air.
ARIZONA BILTMORE, A WALDORF ASTORIA RESORT, MEETINGS AND CONVENTIONS THAT HAVE HISTORY.
Another great hotel and resort to have meetings. Their meeting space offers 200,000 sq ft. The golf course is always in top shape. Great restaurants like Frank & Albert’s, Wrights at the Biltmore, and The Wright Bar.
If you are like me and like to explore there are some great art galleries nearby and Biltmore Fashion Park with many stores to choose from.
Opened in 1929 and the consulting architect was Frank Lloyd Wright.
The Biltmore was erected entirely of “Biltmore Rock” which is a textile block first used by Frank Lloyd Wright to build private homes.
Just a bit of trivia on the mansion. We all have had Wrigley gum to chew on at one time or another. Did you know that Chicago chewing gum magnate William Wrigley, Jr became the sole owner of the Biltmore in 1930?
He built this mansion at a cost of $1.2 million back in 1929. That would cost $18,356,631.56. I googled this to be sure but that is a lot of money and the depression just started. That is a lot of gum to sell. He wanted a winter home because he was the majority owner of the Chicago Cubs, so he wanted a place of his own. In 1930 he then purchased the Biltmore.
The Arizona Biltmore currently has gone under some great renovation and slated to open in Spring 2021. They will reopen with a new pool and waterslide and renovated the spa and fitness center.
If you get a chance to visit Phoenix stop by these places, get a drink, or just walk around. It is worth your time to see what you can offer your groups. There are many other places I have stayed in Phoenix but want to just write about a few and hopefully not bore you too much.
Meetings will come back this year and even stronger the following. I wrote a blog on this if you care to read it, click here.
Phoenix Arizona ia a place for meetings and conventions and if you are looking for a Convention or Corporate Event Photographer for you meeting, conference or convention, I hope you can consider my services. I love what I do and will always go above and beyond to capture the images for you. If you are planning a meeting I would love the chance to earn your business. You can send your RFP here.
COVID-19 at Meetings and Conventions for 2021. What can we expect? What is going to be the new norm that stays with us for years? The Meetings and Tradeshow Industry has been in a tailspin, but ready to bounce back strong by the 3rd to 4th quarter of 2021.
March 2020 is the last time I traveled for a Corporate Photography Job. I remember the day perfectly our lives changed in ways I could have not imagined.
I am a Convention Photographer and provide services to the Meetings and Tradeshow Industry. It has been challenging to say the least. Businesses in all areas have been affected and many have not survived. The latest stimulus check will help but for how long?
As I go through the various cities looking at the Convention calendars of events, I see many cancellations and postponements. In addition, events have been scaled back but the good news is not completely, so there is hope.
The biggest vaccination campaign in history.
The biggest vaccination campaign in history is underway. 392 million doses have already been administered as of March 17, 2021 across 128 countries and this based on Bloomberg. 9.50 million doses a day so far and growing.
NORTHSTAR meetings group recently posted an article writing that recovery is starting back up. They write that approximately 355,000 new jobs have been gained in the leisure and hospitality sector last month alone. This according to the latest report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is great news and hopefully with continued awareness and wearing masks we will get ahead of this pandemic.Keep in mind that even with Vaccines being administered daily, half of U.S. properties are projected to stay empty in 2021. I looked at the American Hotel and Lodging Associations 2021 State of the Industry report.
What’s going with the HOTELS AND LODGING INDUSTRY?
AHLA research shows 34 percent of American’s feel comfortable staying in a hotel right now. I can say this as well. My hotel points are enough for at least 40 days but I have not used them unless it’s for work and that was once last year in October.
When AHLA did their surveys, they found that many noted that their comfort level is tied to vaccinations, with 20 percent saying they won’t feel comfortable until a majority of Americans have been vaccinated. You can find out more by going to their site.
Hotels are coming back so please note that cleaning protocols are in place and have been since last year. New technologies in cleaning are being utilized not just in hotels but in the meetings spaces all over the country.
Meeting and Conventions will start to come back in the 3rd and the 4th quarter. Vaccines are rolling out at a good pace, and this gives meeting planners and convention planners positive vibes.
As we get moving toward normalcy, here is my take on the Do’s and Don’ts so you can be ready for the work to I feel confidant will be ahead of us. Please note, I realize this has been said a lot but I thought to just share again my thoughts here.
DO: SOCIAL DISTANCING AND WEAR YOUR “MASK”
Yes, it’s a sentence that have come to be heard more than we care but there’s a reason for this. I’ve battled a few people (verbally but not too bad) that look at this as silly, government control and so on but here’s the reality.
Flatten the curve: You know the daily numbers we get from our local news, national news. If we can stay at least 6’ or 2 meters away from everyone that we don’t know and yes even those relatives and friends that you see on occasion, this really does help. Working from home for those that are lucky to still have a job know zoom as their best friend or worst enemy but it’s what we have to do. You can also still chat with you friends on the phone, yes, it’s not just for texting or sending photos. Use Zoom to chat as well if you can’t FaceTime.
DON’T: GOING TO LARGE GATHERINGS INDOORS OR OUTDOORS THAT HAVE NOT BEEN PROPERLY PREPARED.
You can be carrying the virus and not show any signs or feel any symptoms so this works both ways. Someone in that crowd may have it and not know it, some may have it and know it and don’t care. It’s just not worth the risk to you, your loved ones you have to go back home to and if you are the income earner this will devastate your family.
DO: GET VACCINATED
I went to the CDC.gov site and below are some highlights.
COVID-19 vaccination will help you from getting COVID-19. It’s that simple. Vaccines currently available in the United States have been highly effect at preventing COVID-19.
Additional COVID-19 vaccines that are in development are being carefully evaluated in clinical trials and will be authorized or approved only if they make it substantially less likely you’ll get COVID-19.
Getting vaccinated yourself may also protect people around you.
Experts believe that getting COVID-19 vaccine may also help you from getting seriously ill even if you do get COVID-19.
COVID-19 vaccination is a safer way to help build protection and an important tool to help stop the pandemic.
It is my belief that we are seeing the light at the end of the tunnel and 2021 will be the year that happens. Let’s all come together and make a difference.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog and if I can help you at your Tradeshow, Convention and Event. Send me your RFP. I would like to get back into the Meetings Industry and do what I do best. Capturing More than the Moment.