It’s no secret that Hollywood loves to remake classics. In this case, it’s a brick-and-mortar do-over of a 20-story tower, the former Renaissance Hollywood, now renovated and recast as the Loews Hollywood Hotel. Anchoring the Hollywood & Highland Center, the 628-room hotel has a close connection—about 70 steps, in fact—to the Academy Awards, which is held in the complex’s Dolby Theatre. An indoor corridor, known as the “winner’s walk,” connects the Dolby Theatre to the Loews.
California Meetings + Events
Want your trade show booth to stand out from the crowd? With the ability to create environmentally friendly displays that light up the floor, NanoLumens, an LED display designer and manufacturer, has your answer. The company, which uses LED technology for digital wallpaper that can be flat, curved, round, thin and flexible, has installed displays for Fortune 500 companies on four continents.
Simultaneously juggling smartphones, two-way radios and clients’ requests can now be a little less stressful, thanks to a line of holsters by Circle T Designs. These industry tool belts can hold a standard two-way radio and a smartphone, leaving you hands-free to direct traffic and sign off on change orders. Designed by event planner Cindy Thompson in collaboration with designers Mo & Co Bags and Leather Girl Kelley, the holsters come in a variety of colors and materials—from pleather to leather.
The best thing about meeting breaks, as many chair-bound attendees will attest, is what’s on the refreshment table. In San Francisco, the InterContinental Mark Hopkins Hotel has gotten off the sugar track with a fiber-rich Popcalm Break menu for meetings. The spread features popcorn with a variety of shake-it-on herb and spice blends (ginger/coconut/ wasabi, for one) to help guests unwind, de-stress and boost their immune systems while noshing. A selection of vitamin waters accompanies the snack food.
For years now, hotels have asked guests if they want to opt out of daily towel replacement and bed-linen changes for environmental reasons. Now some are paying guests to forgo housekeeping services altogether.
After a 21-month, $43 million expansion and renovation, the Riverside Convention Center showcased its transformation with a gala preview for more than 1,000 guests at the end of February and a ribbon-cutting ceremony March 1. The convention center is almost entirely new, with an expanded main exhibit hall and 20 meeting rooms accommodating groups from 20 to 3,000. The center now has 65,000 square feet of usable indoor space, upper and lower concourses and an events plaza with nearly 15,000 square feet of outdoor space.
Everything old can be new again. For event planners, a timely and stylish look backwards is now an option via Fullerton-based Found Vintage Rentals. The 4-year-old firm specializes in short-term rentals of antique furniture (such as more than two dozen farm and rustic tables) and decorative items (old clocks, globes, mannequins) with more than 3,000 unique pieces in its collection.
Carmel, at the southern end of the Monterey Peninsula, is an internationally known golf destination. It also offers a team-building opportunity that’s one of a kind on the West Coast.
Indoor mini-golf has been around for a while—Concord, Alameda and Rancho Cordova are among Northern California communities with courses that attract the arcade-going family set. Urban Putt in San Francisco’s Mission District, which opened in May, is something different: an immersive bar/restaurant concept with 14 holes of high-tech golf themed to everything from sea creatures to San Francisco landmarks.
Los Angeles enjoyed a record year in tourism in 2015, welcoming 45.5 million visitors. That’s an increase of nearly 3 percent over 2014, and it makes 2015 the fifth consecutive year to shatter visitation records. Some credit for this boom goes to Ernest Wooden Jr., who has been the president and CEO of the Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board since 2013. It’s under his very capable leadership that LA is marketed both nationally and internationally.