Phoenix

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

Why here?

In recent years, more than $5 billion has been pumped into a 1.7-square-mile zone in the heart of the city, contributing to a downtown growth spurt that has seen the development of office space, shops, restaurants, hotels, and convention and academic facilities. Meanwhile, the Greater Phoenix area continues to build on its reputation as a golf and spa mecca with luxurious resorts that offer eco-friendly lodging, healthy dining and wellness-oriented activities such as outdoor yoga, hiking and meditation programs. 

Only in Phoenix

A recent study by the Greater Phoenix Economic Council and real estate firm CBRE highlighted Phoenix's growth as a hub for the high-tech industry, which already employs more than 83,000 people. Companies including Intel and Amazon have recently added jobs locally, and big firms in a range of industries — financial services, insurance, consulting and even manufacturing — have IT operations in and around the Phoenix area. 

Transportation In & Around Phoenix

Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, approximately 3 miles south of downtown Phoenix; transfer cost by taxi to downtown, $15. The airport is also served by Uber and Lyft.
 
Sky Harbor has been garnering plenty of accolades: It was named Best Airport in the 2018 Conde Nast Traveler Readers' Choice Awards, and named the best airport for shopping in USA Today's 10 Best Travel Contest. Adding to its allure: A major renovation of Sky Harbor's Terminal 3 included the addition of new shops, dining outlets and amenities.

In other airport news, American Airlines recently launched a daily nonstop flight to London Heathrow Airport, while Condor Airlines will offer three flights a week between Frankfurt, Germany and Phoenix from May to October.


Important Phoenix Facts & Figures

Taxes: Bed tax, 3.0%; city tax, 2.3%; county tax, 1.77%; state tax, 5.5%
 
Convention Center: Phoenix Convention Center; exhibit space, more than 900,000 square feet; number of meeting rooms, 99
 
CVB: Visit Phoenix


 

Meeting Venues

Coming Soon

• The Sheraton Grand Phoenix is set to undergo a sweeping renovation. The 1,000-room property — the city's largest — will be transformed into a prototype for Marriott's portfoliowide rebranding of Sheraton. When the renovation is completed, the Sheraton's guest rooms, lobby and 77,000 square feet of meeting space will reflect the new brand identity.

• Arts and entertainment collective Meow Wolf and development collaborative True North Studio have announced plans for a hybrid interactive art installation and hotel in the Phoenix Roosevelt Row Arts District. The 400-room property will include a 75,000-square-foot exhibition area and a 10,000-square-foot performance space.

 
• Construction is underway on the new Great Wolf Lodge Arizona resort in the Talking Stick Entertainment District in Scottsdale (part of the Greater Phoenix area). The 350-room property is set to open in October with an 85,000-square-foot water park and a 27,000-square-foot entertainment center.

• Local development and management firm Oxygen Hospitality Group announced its purchase of the Wyndham Garden Phoenix Midtown in February, along with plans for a multimillion-dollar renovation. The 160-room hotel, which has 5,000 square feet of meeting space, will remain open throughout the renovation.

Venues

• Near the Phoenix Convention Center, a $77 million downtown "innovation center" is being developed in partnership with Arizona State University. The new research facility, part of the Phoenix Biomedical Campus, is scheduled to open late next year.  

• The Phoenix Convention Center has plans to renovate its food court this summer. The facility has close to a million square feet of meeting and exhibit space, including a 312,500-square-foot main exhibit hall and a 46,000-square-foot ballroom. Two spots to check out within walking distance of the convention center: the Arizona Science Center and The Bungalow in Heritage Square. This building, also known as the Stevens House, dates to 1901 and sells locally made toys, handmade pottery and natural beauty products
 
Papago Golf Course in Phoenix recently opened Evie's Pavilion, a 2,900-square-foot indoor/outdoor event venue overlooking the Papago Buttes and the city's skyline. The pavilion can accommodate up to 150 guests.

Recent Additions

• The AC Hotel by Marriott Phoenix Biltmore debuted last fall in the Biltmore neighborhood. With 5,000 square feet of meeting space, the 160-room hotel can host groups of up to 150.

• The DoubleTree by Hilton Phoenix North opened in 2018 with 284 guest rooms and 14,000 square feet of meeting space in a part of the city close to major health-care and insurance industry employers including UnitedHealthcare and Liberty Mutual.
 
The Phoenician, a Luxury Collection Resort, has unveiled a new restaurant — the Phoenician Tavern — which offers "upscale pub grub" and craft beers in a laid-back bar setting. With a total of 249 seats, the eatery's options for groups include a 78-seat private dining room and 34-seat outdoor patio. The tavern's opening caps a three-phase, propertywide series of renovations that began nearly three years ago and saw a refresh of the resort's 645 guest rooms, golf, fitness and spa facilities.
 
• The 119-room Royal Palms Resort and Spa added nearly 3,600 square feet of new meeting and event space last year, bringing total indoor and outdoor event space at the property to more than 20,000 square feet.

 

Things to Do

Check out the local festivals, exhibits and performances taking place during your events.

Good Sports

The home stadium of the NFL's Arizona Cardinals was renamed State Farm Stadium, after the insurance company made an 18-year deal for naming rights (it was previously named the University of Phoenix Stadium). The venue recently spent $28 million renovating its club level in preparation for two major events coming to the city within the next five years: Super Bowl LVII in 2023 and the NCAA men's basketball Final Four in 2024.

Sipping Spots

• Local restaurateur Christopher Collins overhauled two of his Phoenix restaurants last October, giving each a new name, look and culinary theme.  Twisted Grove Parlor + Bar is now a bistro called the Collins Small Batch Kitchen.
 
• The Southwestern U.S. is agave country, and there are any number of high-end tequila bars in the greater Phoenix area with dozens or even hundreds of varieties. But for atmosphere, you really can't beat Phoenix's Taco Guild. Housed in a historic mission-style church building that features a soaring wood-beam ceiling and stained-glass windows, Taco Guild serves award-winning tacos, burritos and other Mexican fare. A private dining room hosts groups of up to 25.
 
• Kickstarter-backed Greenwood Brewing is scheduled to open a brewery, taproom and beer garden along Roosevelt Row in downtown Phoenix. The woman-owned brewery produces craft beer with girl-power monikers such as "Herstory" pale ale. Greenwood's new home — a mix of new construction and adaptive re-use of existing structures — is scheduled to open this fall.

Stay Another Day

• If you're in Phoenix at the beginning of the month, catch the self-guided First Fridays Art Walk, which takes place along and around Roosevelt Row in downtown. More than 70 galleries, venues and art-related spaces participate; tour them by utilizing the free hop-on/hop-off shuttles that circulate through three artsy districts.
 
The Heard Museum in Phoenix has one of the most extensive collections of American Indian art in the U.S., with a focus on tribes of the Southwest. The downtown venue features some 40,000 fine artworks and cultural artifacts.
 
• Last September, a unique destination called The Churchill opened its doors in downtown Phoenix. The innovative $3.5 million project entailed repurposing 20 shipping containers into sites for 10 locally owned shops, bars and restaurants.
 
• With a collection of more than 15,000 musical instruments, the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix is an engaging venue for tourists as well as groups.

Side Trips

• Grand attraction: This February, the Grand Canyon celebrated 100 years since it was designated a national park. The canyon's famed South Rim, which is open year-round, is roughly a three-and-a-half hour drive from Phoenix. Outfitters including Detours American West, offer private tours and, for a truly birds-eye view of this natural wonder, private helicopter tours.
 
• Restoration spot: The former Carefree Resort and Conference Center has been transformed into Civana Carefree, a wellness-themed eco-chic retreat. The 176-room resort has 23,000 square feet of function space, including a 9,600-square-foot ballroom with a capacity of 1,000. This past December, Civana debuted an enormous new 22,000-square-foot spa, so guests can unwind after taking advantage of the resort's complimentary classes and activities.
 
• Desert aisles: Stroll the winding paths of the Desert Botanical Garden. The 140-acre venue showcases a variety of arid plants, from towering saguaros to delicate blooms. During the winter holidays, the gardens are transformed into an evening wonderland, lit by thousands of luminarias and twinkling lights.