conferences

Paul Van Deventer Appointed to Co-Chair Meetings Mean Business Coalition

The president and CEO of Meeting Professional International, Paul Van Deveter, has been named the Meetings Mean Business Coalition co-chair.

Beginning Jan. 2017, Van Deventer will work alongside fellow co-chair Richard Harper, executive vice president, HelmsBriscoe. Together, they will help the organization highlight the importance of in-person meetings, conferences, conventions, trade shows and more.

Previously, Michael Dominguez, senior vice president and chief sales officer, MGM Resorts International, served as co-chair.

New Hilton Opening in Downtown Norfolk

Hilton Hotel’s new 21-story hotel, The Main, is opening in March 2017, in Norfolk, Va. On the corner of Granby and Main Street, right next to the Elizabeth River, the new hotel will feature the largest meeting and event spaces in Norfolk.

“The Main is a transitional moment for Norfolk, filling a void in the downtown scene offering both locals and visitors a comprehensive hospitality experience,” says Bruce Thompson, CEO, Gold Key. “We wanted to create a cultural destination in downtown Norfolk, one that excites both locals and visitors alike.”

Meet Wendy Ratkin

These interviews are part of a series that highlights new hires within the industry. Have you recently started a new role or do you know someone who has? Submit your ideas to brittany.trevick@tigeroak.com.

Wendy Ratkin was recently hired as the director of catering and conference services for The Curtis Hotel in Denver.

1. What are you most looking forward to in your new role as director of catering and conference services?

Whova Takes the Work Out of Networking

Developed by a San Diego tech team that spun off from UC San Diego, the Whova app is designed to boost networking and contact swapping at events and conferences of any size. It offers a platform that connects organizers, attendees and sponsors before, after and during an event. With Whova, eventgoers can plan who they want to meet before the event; a superior strategy to relying on randomly bumping into people. During the event, Whova provides real-time notifications on updates like room changes or reminders that cocktails are being served.

15 Reasons to Book within the Group Block

Q: What’s the best way to fill my group room block during my upcoming convention? There are so
many available choices, from vacation rentals through websites like Airbnb and VRBO, to discount
hotel stays through sites like Priceline and Orbitz.

Renaissance Allentown Opens its Doors

Exciting news for the city of Allentown: the Renaissance by Marriott Allentown has opened its doors and is ready for guests.

The 170-room hotel connects to the PPL Center hockey arena and overlooks Center Square. J.B. Reilly, cofounder and president of City Center Leigh Valley, owns the hotel. A fitness center, free Internet and 10 meeting rooms are just some of the amenities the hotel offers. Capacity for events ranges from nine to 433. Guests can even bring their pets.

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