5 Unique Venues to Spice Up Your Meetings and Events
With Zoom-fatigued attention spans on the wane and pandemic-weary people eager to get back into the world and converge face-to-face again, is a traditional conference center really what the doctor ordered for your next meeting or event? If not, maybe it’s time to get creative and aim for an out-of-box alternative venue to help create excitement and enhance attendee engagement. Here are five fun, unique and creative venues to keep on your radar for your next meeting or special event.
SGWS Wynwood (Miami)
Located in Wynwood, Miami’s eclectic creative arts and culture district, SGWS Wynwood is a 17,000-square-foot, multipurpose hospitality and education center recently unveiled by Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits. Featuring the latest in audiovisual technology as well as full-service catering provided exclusively by Constellation Culinary Group, the expansive, modern-industrial venue offers the following four versatile meeting and event spaces for corporate groups:
- Mixology Lounge: Ideal for a seated or reception-style event, as well as mixology courses, this 1,624-sq.-ft. space features an expansive 30-foot bar.
- Demonstration Kitchen: Designed to provide best-in-class dining experiences and custom-crafted menus with locally sourced ingredients, this venue is perfect for a wine- or cocktail-focused dinner, chef pop-up, master class, pairing seminar or product launch. SGWS Wynwood has access to renowned sommeliers, mixologists and chefs to help curate a custom culinary experience for corporate groups.
- Founder’s Room: Awash with natural light, with a 24-foot-long, custom-built walnut table as its centerpiece, this intimate 1,302-sq.-ft. space features high ceilings and is a nice setting for dinners, wine tastings or meetings.
- Tasting Room: Equipped with a built-in bar, as well as high ceilings and extensive seating options, this 1,297-sq.-ft. venue is designed for interactive events such as wine tastings, cocktail receptions and seminars.
To keep visitors comfortable and safe, SGWS Wynwood takes rigorous safety precautions, including the use of an infrared thermal imaging system, daily self-screening, a facility mandate on face masks/coverings, the enforcement of social and physical distancing, and housekeeping services with scheduled surface sanitation guidelines.
Quorum at the University City Science Center (Philadelphia)
Located in Philly’s bustling University City neighborhood, Quorum at the University City Science Center is designed to serve as a central gathering space for businesses, students and the innovation community. Able to accommodate everything from small meetings and workshops to corporate events and galas, the two-floor, 11,000-sq.-ft., natural light-filled venue features six distinct meeting and event spaces varying in size and seating capacities ranging from four to 250 people.
Groups can also take advantage of the 3,000-sq.-ft., first-floor Quorum Lounge, equipped with TVs, a kitchen and audiovisual compatibility, as well as the second-floor common area, ideal for pre- or post-event networking, meeting breaks and cocktail receptions.
To ensure the utmost in health and safety measures for all visitors, the facility is also GBAC STAR-accredited.
Emporium Arcade Bar at AREA15 (Las Vegas)
Described as “an immersive complex where art, commerce, food, design, technology and innovation all blend together,” AREA15 is the world’s first purpose-built experiential entertainment district offering live events, immersive activations, art installations, unique design elements, retail, cutting-edge technology, bars, eateries and more than 230,000 sq. ft. of flexible indoor and outdoor meeting and event spaces.
Newest to this fun-filled destination is the Emporium Arcade Bar, which offers classic arcade games, pool tables, pinball, foosball, an innovative bar menu, a colorful artistic ambiance and a private event venue for corporate groups. Planners can opt for free table reservations for small casual gatherings and full venue buyouts for larger events with a maximum of 600 guests. Drink and game token packages can also be booked for gatherings of any size.
To ensure visitor health and safety, AREA15 and all its experiences follow the latest health recommendations and protocols, including mandated masks and social distancing, and non-invasive guest temperature screenings via an AI-driven thermal scanning platform.
The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park (San Diego)
Developed and managed by the San Diego Symphony on the city’s scenic Embarcadero, The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park is a brand-new 3.7-acre centerpiece park offering sweeping, 360-degree views of the downtown skyline, the marina and the San Diego Bay. Designed to host more than 100 concerts and events year-round, this permanent waterfront venue is also available to host corporate groups, charity events and galas, with a maximum capacity of 6,889 guests.
Boasting a 4,800-sq.-ft stage and 1.25-acre audience area, the state-of-the-art venue offers 13 different spaces, including eight catering spaces that can each hold up to approximately 100 people and concert seating with five sections: Marina (VIP), San Diego Row (Premiere/Corporate), Parkside, Bridgeview single chairs and Lawn seating.
Groups can also take advantage of The Rady Shell’s top-notch food and beverage program, Shell Provisions, which includes a range of local specialties in partnership with some of the city’s most popular purveyors.
Savanna Hall at Zoo Atlanta
For groups passionate about supporting wildlife conservation, the new Savanna Hall at Zoo Atlanta combines the majesty of the African savannah with one of Atlanta’s most treasured historic buildings famous for its neoclassical architecture, the former Atlanta Cyclorama. Restored and reimagined as a state-of-the-art gathering place with more than 25,000 sq. ft. of event spaces, the new hall offers sweeping views of the zoo’s all-new African Savanna complex, home to African elephants, giraffes, zebras, warthogs, birds and more.
Savanna Hall features include:
- Michael & Thalia Carlos Ballroom: A two-level space with floor-to-ceiling windows and outdoor terraces overlooking the African Savanna habitats
- Delta Savanna Terrace: An outdoor reception space overlooking the zoo’s newly transformed Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation Plaza
- Three versatile meeting rooms
- Two state-of-the-art kitchens, including a dedicated kosher kitchen
- On-site catering from Proof of the Pudding
Zoo Atlanta also offers an exotic array of immersive outdoor pavilions and indoor event venues, including the Savanna Vista outdoor pavilion; the Twiga Terrace; the 16,000-sq.-ft. Ford Pavilion & Grand Patio; the Conservation Action Resource Center, housing three venues: the 2,000-sq.-ft. Ford Conservation Conference Room, the TECHlab and the Coca-Cola World Studio; the Panda Veranda & Chinese Plaza; the Flamingo Plaza and the Takamenda Gorilla Deck.
A wide range of special group packages and entertainment options, including Zoo buyouts for up to 5,000 guests, are also available.