. San Diego | Northstar Meetings Group

Guide to Meeting & Event Planning in

San Diego

Learn why you should host your next meeting, event or conference in San Diego. 

Why San Diego for Your Next Meeting or Event?

The allure of this Southern California city extends far beyond the favorable weather. A walkable district connects the waterfront, the San Diego Convention Center and Petco Park — home of baseball's San Diego Padres — to the Gaslamp Quarter, where you'll find the Hard Rock Hotel, the Marriott, the Omni and countless other hotels, restaurants and nightlife venues. Here's some of what's in store for the area.

Venue Additions & Renovations 

Hilton-Affiliated
The iconic Hotel del Coronado is now part of the Curio Collection by Hilton. The 132-year-old property, a National Historic Landmark, offers 757 rooms and 78 luxury villas and cottages, plus 47 meeting venues on-site. As part of the Curio Collection, the hotel has tapped into Hilton's sales, marketing and loyalty programs.

The Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Golf Club and Spa, a 327-room property in nearby Carlsbad, has debuted a redesigned Grand Ballroom and several other event spaces as part of a $50 million resortwide renovation. The project is expected to be completed by September. 

Upon the reopening of the 317-room Pendry San Diego, guests of the luxury hotel will be offered a 30-day complimentary subscription to One Medical's digital-health and virtual-care services — a perk to offer peace of mind and on-the-go medical assistance to travelers who patronize this or any of the other properties in Montage International's U.S. portfolio. Details are available at montage.com. 

The debut of the Shell — the first permanent waterfront concert venue on the West Coast, according to the San Diego Symphony — has been postponed until the summer of 2021. Originally scheduled to open on San Diego Bay this July, the venue has had to push back the inaugural season because of restrictions on gatherings.

The San Diego Mission Bay Resort, a rebranding and renovation of the former Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, has debuted. The 357-room hotel on the Mission Bay Park waterfront has undergone a $21 million transformation of its guest rooms, conference center and board rooms. Property owners are awaiting city approval to invest an additional $10.5 million to update the lobby, the restaurant and the public spaces.

The 98-room TownePlace Suites San Diego Downtown opened in 2018. The all-suite hotel provides rooms with full kitchens and separate living/working and sleeping areas. It was the first downtown San Diego property to offer the Guest Service Robot Butler, built by Savioke, which delivers items to guest rooms 24/7. Fourteen45 Bar & Grill offers dining with an outdoor patio on-site, and the hotel shares meeting space with the Holiday Inn Express next door.

Looking to Plan a San Diego Meeting?
Learn everything you need to know about this surfside locale at Destination California, Northstar’s premier event for meetings and incentive pros looking to book biz in the area.

The 400-room InterContinental San Diego opened in Sept. 2018, on the site of the former Lane Field baseball park. A two-story Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steakhouse is part of the mix, as are many other street-level restaurants and shops, underground parking, and 35,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor meeting space. That includes two ballrooms, of 12,000 and 4,500 square feet, respectively. The adjoining 50,000-square-foot Lane Field park is available for private events, as well. An 8,000-square-foot fourth-floor pool deck overlooks San Diego Bay, and the 19th floor is home to a sky bar and an outdoor terrace.

The San Diego Marriott Mission Valley wrapped up a $9 million renovation in early 2018. The 353-room property sports an upgraded events lawn, revamped meeting space, a remodeled lobby and lobby bar, and what was the first signature M Club Lounge in San Diego. The lounge, which is reserved exclusively for Elite and Club loyalty members, offers complimentary hot breakfast, hors d'oeuvres and beverages. The hotel's approximately 33,550 square feet of meeting and event space was completely refreshed to better foster communication and productivity and is outfitted with energy-efficient lighting. 

Sun Power

Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres, is outfitted with Major League Baseball's largest solar-power system. The system will produce some 12 million kilowatt-hours over the next 25 years. 

North Park Al Fresco

Glampisphere, an outdoor, sail-covered event space, is in a hip spot adjacent to the Air Conditioned Lounge. The venue holds up to 77 outside or 193 in tandem with the lounge.

Travel Essentials

Convention Center: San Diego Convention Center; exhibit space, approximately 615,701 square feet; number of meeting rooms, 72; (619) 525-5000 

Taxes: Occupancy tax, 10.5%; San Diego tourism assessment, 2%; California tourism assessment, approximately 0.2%; sales tax, 7.75%; total tax on hotel rooms, approximately 12.7%

Event Venue: The Museum of Making Music, an interactive exploration through the past century of playing and recording music, provides a unique meetings backdrop in the North County coastal village of Carlsbad. Up to 150 attendees can be accommodated for private events. (760) 438-5996

Contact: San Diego Tourism Authority,  (619) 232-3101