Why Idaho for Your Next Meeting or Event?
Idaho's cosmopolitan capital city sits on the Boise River and is surrounded by the Boise foothills, where outdoor activities abound. New hotels, dining venues and group attractions debuting over the past few years have proved potent draws for meetings business.
New & Coming Soon
TA plan to transform one of the city’s oldest hotels, the 182-room Red Lion Boise Downtowner, has been delayed. Work now will not begin until 2021, starting with the hotel’s exterior. The $10 million project will reflag the property as a Delta Hotel by Marriott.
Recent Hotel & Venue Additions
The 112-key Hotel 43 has turned its second floor into allergen-free "Pure Wellness" rooms. Each of the 22 guest rooms has undergone a seven-step purification process to remove 99.9 percent of all allergens, and they now feature allergen-free bedding covers, filtered shower heads, bacteria barriers and tea tree–oil aromatherapy. The air in the rooms is cleaned constantly using Pure Wellness technology by HealthWay, an air-purification company. The property has 1,757 square feet of meeting space, the signature Chandlers Steakhouse, and the Metro Cafe coffee shop, a grab-and-go eatery. A complimentary shuttle takes guests to and from the airport.
In August 2019, soft upgrades were completed at the Boise Centre's original West building. New carpets now grace the 24,426-square-foot Grand Ballroom, which also received a paint job and had new acoustic panels added. Four restrooms were revamped to match the new East building, which opened in summer 2017. The facility features a grand total of 80,000 square feet of space.
Improvements to the lobby level of the 252-room Grove Hotel were completed in November 2019, where the bar was expanded and the welcome area was redone. The property's restaurant has been renamed Trillium and now serves a New American menu from its open kitchen.
Built in 1925 as a stop on the Union Pacific Railroad, Boise Depot is now a popular event venue. The 3,542-square-foot Great Hall holds up to 165 for a dinner and 300 for a reception; guests can take a turn in the site’s Platt Gardens if the weather is fine.
Phase two of the J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Family Foundation Whitewater Park opened in September, adding a second controllable wave and additional whitewater features using boulders and rocks for surfers and kayakers.
Notable Meeting Hotels
Properties with meeting space include the 303-room Riverside Hotel, 252-room Grove Hotel, 180-room Residence Inn Boise Downtown City Center, 112-room Hotel 43 and 110-room Inn at 500 Capitol.
To find and compare hotels, and send RFPs, visit Northstar Meetings Group's new venue finder.
More Event Venues
Looking to Plan an Idaho Meeting?
Learn everything you need to know about this idyllic locale at Destination West
, Northstar’s premier event for meetings and incentive pros looking to book biz in the area.
Built in 1889, the Victorian Bishops' House was lifted onto a truck in 1975 and moved to its current location near the Old Idaho Territorial Penitentiary. The home, which hosts special events for up to 100 people, still features the original hardwood floors and its original woodwork has been restored. The expansive grounds also are available for gatherings.
For groups with a love of all things musical, Voicebox Karaoke, which opened this past December, is just the ticket. Set up a competition or just let everyone sing their hearts out. Full buyouts are available for groups of up to 90.
A favored local concert spot, the Knitting Factory also presents wide-open raw space for special events. Holding 1,000 for concerts, the venue also can seat 300 for a dinner.
Last July, Zoo Boise debuted a 2.5-acre, $8.9 million expansion in partnership with Africa's Gorongosa National Park. Moving into their new homes were African wild dogs, baboons, warthogs, vervet monkeys, Nile crocodiles and hyenas. Proceeds from admissions go to a conservation fund for endangered species.
Opened in September, Certified Kitchen + Bakery cranks out English muffins and baked goods from its 52-year-old sourdough starter. Serving breakfast and lunch, the space seats 49.
Closed for four years and $17 million worth of renovations, the Idaho State Museum reopened October 2019 with 18,000 square feet of space for displays such as the Abraham Lincoln exhibit (Honest Abe signed the act creating the Idaho Territory in March 1863). The facility holds up to 210 for an event.
Outside of Town
The 32,000-square-foot conference center and all 325 guest rooms at the Coeur d'Alene Resort
have been refurbished. Group activities include a ropes course, golf and river rafting.
The ski mecca of Sun Valley
has been undergoing a number of upgrades for the past year. Phase two of a Sun Valley Inn revamp was scheduled to finish this month, as 80 guest rooms were redone and the total number reduced to 97. New runs are being carved out of Cold Springs Canyon, ready for skiers for the 2019-2020 season.
Once the "home" of Lyda Southard, who used arsenic to kill four of her seven husbands for the insurance money, the Old Idaho Territorial Penitentiary is now a favorite spot for events. Built in 1870 in what was then the Idaho Territory, the site was in service until as recently as 1973. The four-acre "Old Pen" welcomes outdoor events for groups of up to 1,200 people in the main yard and grounds, as well as smaller groups in the former women's yard and the "dormitory."
As the Idaho Territory was initially populated, immigrants from the tiny Basque region on the border between France and Spain found their way to Boise. The Basque Museum and Cultural Center celebrates that migration and can help set up a block party for 200, with music, dancers and giant pans of paella.
Transportation in & Around Boise
Boise Airport, approximately six miles from the city's downtown; transfer cost by taxi, $15; many area hotels offer complimentary shuttle service.
Top 10 Boise Restaurants
From western style cuisine to international delights, Boise offers a variety of dining choices sure to enhance your event.
- Chandlers Steakhouse - Seafood, Steakhouse
- Barbacoa Grill - Steakhouse
- Bittercreek Alehouse - American
- Goodword Barbecue Company - Barbecue
- Fork - American, Bar
- Bardenay Restaurant & Distillery - American Pub
- Capital Cellars - Wine Bar
- Luciano's - Italian
- 10 Barrel Brewing Co. - American
- Bombay Grill - Indian