News

Feb 11, 2021
Representatives from CVBs across the world are scheduled to descend on Baltimore July 10-15 for Destinations International’s annual convention. The summer event is the highlight of DI’s lineup, announced last week, as the association looks to play a pivotal role in the travel and hospitality industries’ recovery.  As is to be expected, the Baltimore-based convention will be hybrid, allowing attendees unable to travel to participate in the education and network virtually. All of DI’s major events this year will be hybrid, with only CDME courses being solely face-to-face. “The 2021 Annual… more
Feb 11, 2021
It’s no secret that the U.S. hospitality and travel industries have taken a major hit since COVID-19 took hold. But a new report from the U.S. Department of Labor confirms that they took the lion’s share of damage during the past year. The latest DOL jobs report has found that 39% of the American jobs last since February 2020 came from the leisure and hospitality sectors—triple the number of the next most devastated industry (government, which saw its workforce drop by 13%).  There is a current 16% unemployment rate among leisure and hospitality companies, nearly triple the overall U.S.… more
Feb 10, 2021
Global live and digital brand experience agency, Sparks, has acquired leading trade show exhibit company 3D Exhibits. The acquisition of the Chicago-based company, which has additional locations in Cleveland, Indianapolis, Las Vegas and Milwaukee, allows Sparks to complete its Midwest expansion strategy while positioning itself for continued growth in new and current client channels. “This acquisition significantly increases our trade show business and is consistent with our approach of viewing this challenging time as an opportunity for dynamic moves that might otherwise not have been… more
Feb 09, 2021
A slew of new hires and promotions at event-related organizations are a positive sign of growing confidence in the resurgence of the trade shows and events industry this year. Check them out:   UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, has tapped Marie-Laure Bellon to serve as its next COO, effective March 1. She will work out of the organization’s Paris headquarters. Bellon is currently the CEO and general manager of French exhibition organizer Eurovet, a trade show organizer for lingerie and swimwear, and a subsidiary of Comexposium and the French Knitting and Lingerie… more
Feb 08, 2021
The city of Chicago is getting ready to lure back meetings and convention business in 2021 with a little help from digital technology. Launched Jan. 21 by Choose Chicago in collaboration with the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, Healthy Meetings Chicago is an interactive digital platform designed to showcase the health and safety advantages of hosting events at the McCormick Place Campus. Currently available in Phase 1 for desktop or laptop viewing, the new platform illustrates the extensive new protocols and processes put in place by the city’s convention center and hospitality… more
Feb 05, 2021
A bipartisan proposal geared toward assisting the travel and tourism industries passed a crucial first step with the U.S. Senate’s approval late this week. The measure, put forward by  U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) and Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), prioritizes the devastated hospitality sector, as Congress works through President Biden’s proposed $1.9 trillion stimulus package. The amendment was passed as part of the Senate’s budget resolution, which marks an important step towards passing COVID-19 stimulus legislation, Cortez Masto’s office said. It is an assurance that the country’… more
Feb 05, 2021
If there’s one thing that the live events industry has continued to demonstrate over the course of its history, it’s an open-hearted willingness to help its own, particularly in times of crisis. COVID-19 has presented yet another opportunity to do just that.  Since the Las Vegas trade show industry came to a halt last March, many trade show and event workers have remained out of work and in urgent need of help, including with basics such as food. A concerned group of trade show industry companies, including the Experiential Designers and Producers Association (EDPA) Las Vegas Chapter; Metro… more
Feb 04, 2021
Carrie Abernathy never imagined a year ago that she’d be where she is now. The corporate event planner and founder of the Association for Women in Events is back in Virginia, but 3.5 hours away from her former stopping grounds in Northern Virginia. Figuratively, she is adapting like the rest of us to a new world. Abernathy started a website, A Women with Drive, and is looking to impart the wisdom she’s gained while serving on dozens of event industry boards and advisory committees through speaking engagements and with a regular content series on our website. We talked to Abernathy about what… more
Feb 03, 2021
“Recovery from the pandemic is a journey and after this week in Atlanta, I can confirm that we have taken a giant step forward,” proclaimed Bob Maricich, CEO of International Market Centers, following the close of the Winter 2021 Atlanta Market, held Jan. 12-19 at AmericasMart. He continued, “We provided the platform — with safety measures and the return of favorite market experiences — and our buyers and sellers brought the passion, inspiration and dedication that will bring the home and gift industry back. It is onward and upward from here.”  He added that the nation’s largest gift, home… more
Feb 03, 2021
When discussing the future of trade shows, Convention Data Services President and CEO John Kimball draws an analogy to Walt Disney World. With one click of a button, a guest has for years been able to gauge the length of ride lines and determine his or her group’s next stop. “Nobody wants to wait in line,” Kimball said. This is especially true when registering for a conference. Before, long lines were a mere (or more) nuisance upon arrival. But in the coronavirus era, annoyance turns to unsafe as congestion in exhibition halls risks the spread of a once-in-a-century disease. What if those… more
Partner Voices
One of the most iconic names on the Las Vegas Strip just got an upgrade. Mandalay Bay has everything that your business needs from a refreshed convention space designed to inspire productivity and creativity, to an impressive selection of world-class restaurants and amenities. If you're looking for a venue that's both inviting and innovative, you have to be here. New Wave Experiences Mandalay Bay continues to invest in a new wave of enhancements both in the convention space and within the resort as a whole. New restaurant openings including Orla by Michael Mina, drawing inspiration from the award-winning chef’s childhood in Egypt and with flavors and décor inspired by the spices found in markets common to coastal Mediterranean towns, as well as Caramá by Wolfgang Puck, bringing the essence of Italy and spirit of Wolfgang into one concept, are recent additions. The Four Seasons Hotel Las Vegas also experienced a recent remodel of all 424 rooms. Swingers, a high-end, adults-only golf and entertainment concept will debut in Fall 2024. Enhanced Technology Creating a truly effective conference venue requires careful thought into what a business needs: the right technology, capacity, and inspiration to bring ideas to the next level. As part of the resort’s refresh, Mandalay Bay implemented state-of-the-art technology upgrades, installing cutting-edge Cat6A Ethernet cabling throughout the convention center. This advancement doubles the frequency of data transmission, enabling lightning-fast speeds up to 9400% faster. The convention center now boasts 11 dynamic digital walls, spanning up to 24' x 13', strategically positioned for brand placements, sponsorships and targeted event messaging. Additionally, attendees can benefit from 20 double-sided 55" mobile flexible display units, facilitating effortless navigation to meeting rooms and events. RFID locks were installed on all meeting room doors, and over 200 motion detection cameras have been placed throughout the space. Refreshing New Design & Fine Art The newly remodeled convention space provides a bright and vibrant atmosphere that complements Mandalay Bay's tropical-inspired brand. Featuring white-washed walls and ceilings adorned with bold floral patterns in cerulean and coral tones, the space is complemented by warm walnut accent walls. In addition to the redesign of all pre-function spaces, meeting rooms and ballrooms, Mandalay Bay's 1 million square feet of exhibit space has undergone a rejuvenation, including new paint, covered pillars and relocated strobe lights. Sustainable Spectacles Mandalay Bay is committed to Focused on What Matters and creating more responsible meetings. Refillable water stations all available around the resort, cutting unnecessary plastic usage from single-use bottles. The Mandalay Bay campus’ recent upgrades represent a bold step forward in redefining the Las Vegas experience. With a focus on innovation, sustainability, and unparalleled service, Mandalay Bay sets a new standard for excellence in business hospitality. Whether you're seeking cutting-edge conference facilities, world-class dining options, or simply a luxurious retreat, an unparalleled meeting experience awaits.