Cobo Center’s green efforts are landing it new business. The Sustainable Brands conference will relocate to Detroit in 2017, after five years in San Diego.

Cobo achieved the Green Meetings Industry Council’s APEX/ ASTM rigorous standard certification in 2015. (It was just the ninth convention center to do so.) Its green initiatives have been numerous, and the center has earned several awards for its efforts, including the 2015 Detroit Free Press Michigan Green Leader Award. It recently added food composting to its sustainability program.

Sustainable Brands is an industry leader in reducing the environmental impact of its conferences. It was the first event organizer to meet the ISO 20121 Standard requiring such organizers to identify the effects their activities have on the environment.

Cobo Center’s five-year renovation included technology upgrades intended to reduce events’ environmental impact, such as its exterior digital signs and room message boards. Greg Sandy, Cobo’s director of sales and event services, says the center considers its sustainability measures part of its technology offering.

The Sustainable Brands conference is part of Cobo’s overall business growth. The first half of fiscal year 2016 saw a 15 percent growth in revenue over the same period in 2015. 

When executed safely, in-person meetings and events are possible. But it’s been tough for meeting planners across the nation, due to differing state-by-state and even county-by-county guidelines. In some areas, meetings and events returned a while ago, but for others, it’s hard to imagine what planning a meeting would be like. In an effort to show the latter how to hold safe business gatherings when restrictions loosen, the Meetings Mean Business Coalition (MMBC) launched their Meet Safe platform as a resource for other planners to reference when planning future in-person meetings.

 

The Kimpton Pittman Hotel has opened in Dallas’ storied Deep Ellum neighborhood, serving as the first hotel in the neighborhood and providing doorstep access to some of the city’s most popular shops, breweries, dining and live music venues.

 

The fare and flare of Spain has arrived in downtown Grand Rapids with the opening of the new MDRD, pronounced Madrid, on the 27th floor of the tower at Amway Grand Plaza Hotel (previously Cygnus27 restaurant). While the feel and flavors have changed, the unparalleled views of downtown and the Grand River means that this space still provides the best skyline dining in the city. Here, every seat is the “best seat in the house.”