Meet Me In Mexico

Centro Citibanamex

A premiere and strategic meeting destination for business from around the world, Mexico has over 70 dedicated venues equipped with the latest technology and attended by skilled personnel.

Event organizers looking to Mexico for their events will benefit from the country’s highly developed infrastructure, which includes convention and exhibition centers plus hundreds of thousands of square feet (meters) of modern, well-appointed spaces in leading hotels and resorts that set the stage for unforgettable conferences and exceptional networking opportunities, all of which has lead to the successful completion of over 266,000 meetings per year.

Leading international conferences and congresses such as Mexico’s Aerospace Summit (Queretaro – October 2017), Automotive Meetings Queretaro (February 2017) and The Green Expo (Mexico City – October 2017) are bringing together leading industry experts, manufacturers, buyers and suppliers in top global sectors, spurring the country’s interest in continuing to invest in the meetings infrastructure to meet the growing demand.

New and Notable

The Toluca Convention and Expo Center was inaugurated in January of this year and it’s being touted as one of the most important meetings industry infrastructure projects in the country, serving to confirm the Estado de México as a top player in the segment. It’s located just 15 minutes from downtown Toluca, 25 minutes from Santa Fe in Mexico City and 5 minutes from the Toluca International Airport.

The investment of MX$650 million encompasses an area of 172,222 ft² (16,000 m²) across three levels with six ballrooms, two terraces, a buffet area, a press room, a lounge area and a convention hall. The center is a sustainable project, following strict regulations including the donation of perishable leftovers to nearby communities in need; paperless transactions; the utilization of natural light; water treatment and even a milkweed greenhouse to aid in the conservation of the Monarch butterflies.

Construction has begun on a new convention center, the Centro Internacional de Congresos, in Merida, Yucatan, which will be ready by early 2018. This two story building will include a 60,816-ft² (5,650 m²) multi-function convention space, two meeting rooms with 20,2658 ft² (1,892 m²) of space each, a 13,562 ft² (1,260 m²) Business Center, two Foyer areas totaling 59,427 ft² (5,521 m²), two terraces on the second floor with areas of 5,382 ft² (500 m²) each and a 46,661-ft² (4,335 m²) Main Plaza. A second venue will accompany this new Convention Center: the Palacio de Música, currently under construction as of press time and slated for inauguration in late 2017. This center for the musical arts will house the National Center for Popular and Traditional Music of Mexico and will be just steps away from the famous Peón Contreras Theater, which is being extensively restored. The Palacio will have a concert hall with seating for 500 people, as well as a music school and recording studio.

Automotive and metal-mechanics powerhouse Torreón, Coahuila, is seeing progress on its new Torreon Convention Center, which began construction in late 2016. The center is located near the Universidad Iberoamericana in the northern part of the city and is expected to have 538,196 ft² (50,000 m²) of area for 12 meetings rooms (3034 ft²/ 280 m² each), plus two more with 53,820 ft² / 5,000 m² and 64,583 ft² / 6,000 m², respectively, as well as an expo area with room for 350 stands. The project is expected to be complete in three stages.

Home to one of the top fairs in the country, Aguascalientes is working on the new Isla San Marcos Convention Center, which is expected to have over 107,639 ft² (10,000 m²) of space with a capacity for up to 8,000 attendees.

Luxury Meetings

Meanwhile, top-notch hotels and resorts with excellent convention facilities—new and under construction—are cropping up around the country.

Baja

An international bid process for management and operation of the La Paz Convention Center (2014) and the Los Cabos Convention Center (2012) has been opened for their management and operation, so expect more news on those two facilities in the near future.

Meanwhile, hotel venues have been stepping in to fill the void. Expect to see new meeting facilities at the grand re-opening of the iconic Westin Los Cabos Resort Villas & Spa (formerly Westin Resort & Spa Los Cabos), which is reopening in April of this year after a multi-million dollar renovation. The resort currently has over 11,900 ft² (1,106 m²) of indoor function space in 12 meeting rooms.

One of the newest well-heeled kids on the block, the extraordinary 304-suite all-inclusive Grand Velas Los Cabos, opened its doors in December 2016 and began welcoming groups and conventions as of March to its 16,370 ft² (1,521 m²) Convention Center. The center is ready to host up to 1,700 guests (cocktail arrangement) with two upscale ballrooms—one at over 10,700 ft² (994 m²) in size—that can be combined or divided into twenty breakout rooms. They also have an ample oceanfront terrace that can host cocktail receptions for up to 600, with views of the Sea of Cortez. Planners choosing the Grand Velas Los Cabos will also have access to the venue’s award-winning cuisine and custom menu services, among other white-glove and state-of-the-art services.

A stone’s throw from the Grand Velas, the Chileno Bay Resort & Residences, part of the Auberge Resorts Collection, is part of an exclusive beachfront resort community with only 60 guestrooms and over 13,000 ft² (2,787 m²) of flexible indoor/outdoor meeting space. All meeting venues come with a side of stunning ocean views plus it also offers a private boardroom, a lounge room with large screen TVs and an outdoor garden event space.

Opening in August of this year, the newest gem from Starwood’s Luxury Collection and the first in Los Cabos, the 131-guest room and suite Solaz, A Luxury Collection Resort, Los Cabos, will have over 9,900 ft² (920 ) of state-of-the-art event space, among a slew of other amenities including three restaurants, a 26,000 ft² (2,415 m²) pool and beach deck, and much more.

Newly-opened in January of this year, the 77-room Cachet Beach Hotel & Beach Club on the famous Medano Beach in Cabo San Lucas is the first phase of Cachet Corazon, the first dual-branded resort destination for the company. The second phase, Cachet Deluxe Los Cabos, is set for completion in 2018. The property will have 20,000 ft² (1,858 m²) of meeting and event space. Also opening in early 2018, the Montage Los Cabos, overlooking Santa Maria Bay with 122 large guestrooms and suites and 52 contemporary villas, plus 6,100 ft² (567 m²) of indoor meetings and events areas, as well as multiple outdoor beachside function lawns; and the 639-guestroom, all-inclusive Hard Rock Hotel in Cabo San Lucas that will offer 26,000 ft² (2,415.5 m²) of meeting and event space.

Launching this spring, the dramatically renovated Paradisus Los Cabos (formerly the Meliá Cabo Real) has 350 rooms and suites on one of the largest swimmable beaches on the Cabo Corridor and will feature a 1,100-person capacity ballroom and breakout spaces. A variety of outdoor areas, including the gardens, pool area and beach, will be available to book for events accommodating up to 3,000 guests.

Stay tuned for news about the Costa Palmas Los Cabos 1,000-acre private master-planned development, which will include a Four Seasons Resort as well as indoor and outdoor meeting and event spaces overlooking Yacht Cove.

Pacific

Puerto Vallarta is looking forward to the expansion of the Hilton Puerto Vallarta after a multi-million dollar deal was inked late last year. This will not only result in an increase of rooms and suites to 451 but also in the addition of banquet rooms, meeting rooms and more.  

The Riviera Nayarit is celebrating grand openings for two enormous convention centers this year. In March, Grupo Vidanta inaugurated its state-of-the-art Convention Center with over 16,000 ft² (1,486 m²) of floor space and meeting rooms, with four main ballrooms, foyer areas, and smaller meeting spaces as well as enormous lakeside terraces that allow the center to accommodate thousands of guests. One of the highlights of the Center is the 75,000 ft² (6,968 m²) Santuario. The Convention Center is part of the Vidanta resort complex with 5 resort hotels, two golf courses (Greg Norman and Jack Nicklaus designs, respectively), over a mile of beach and more.

Projected to open in June 2017, the Bel Air Convention Center—part of the newly remodeled Bel Air Unique Resort & Convention Center Vallarta—will feature a total of 40,408 ft² (3,755 m²) of event space, including 11,345 ft² (1,054 m²) of indoor space that can be divided into 8 rooms and 29,062 ft² (2,700 m²) of outdoor space for events.

Riviera Nayarit also has two major luxury hotels under construction, the 145-villa One&Only Mandarina, which will also boast a private convention center, and the 250-room luxury Fairmont Costa Canuva. Slated to open in late 2018, it will reside within the new master-planned seaside community, Costa Canuva, on the Riviera Nayarit just north of Punta Mita and approximately 40 miles (64km) north of Puerto Vallarta International Airport. The new Fairmont is expected to boast more than 22,000 ft² (2,045 m²) of meeting and event space, six restaurants and bars and more.

Central

The recently re-opened 306-room NH Collection Mexico City Reforma, formerly known as the NH Collection Mexico City, is a two-minute walk from the financial district and has 10 function rooms that can fit up to 300 people, s well as a poolside terrace perfect for outdoor banquets. Another new NH property, the NH Collection Leon Expo, opened steps away from the Poliforum convention center with 141 rooms and seven multifunctional rooms with space for meetings that can range from just six executives up to groups of 200 attendees.

Yucatan and Quintana Roo (Mexican Caribbean)

As far as convenience for quick meetings, it’s hard to beat the new 126-room hotel property currently being built inside the Cancun International Airport, which is slated for completion in 2018. Also in Cancun, Marriott is working on a new-build property to break ground within Puerto Cancun, located between Cancun’s Hotel Zone and its downtown area. The 800-acre master-planned development includes 270 acres of ecological reserve, an 18-hole golf course designed by Tom Weiskopf, a 200-slip marina, some 5,000 residential units, 115 retail outlets (opened late-2016), restaurants, cinemas and much more once completed. The Renaissance Cancun will comprise 180 rooms and approximately 4,790 ft² (445 m²) of indoor meeting space.

On the Riviera Maya, H10’s new, enormous five-star Ocean Riviera Paradise (with 974 junior suites and suites) has nine meeting rooms with excellent natural light, many of which can be partitioned and have a capacity of over 300 people. Construction has resumed on the Riviera Maya Kanai project in Puerto Juarez with projected opening dates in 2018 for a 156-room-and-villa St. Regis Kanai Resort (with 15,000 ft² / 1,394 m² of event space), a 180-room W Kanai Retreat (with 7,500 ft² / 697 m² of event space), and the Sheraton Cozumel with 120 rooms, including six suites and 8,500 ft² (91,493 m²) of event, meetings and convention space.  

South of Puerto Aventuras in Akumal, the brand-new all-inclusive adults-only (March 2017) UNICO Riviera Maya offers modern facilities and 448 upscale guestrooms and a convention center with one main ballroom (11,603 ft² / 1,078 m²), 10 breakouts (4,220 ft² / 392 m²) and outdoor event spaces.