Orange County Convention Center Finishes 2021 on a High-Note

Following the unprecedented impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic, the Orange County Convention Center (OCCC) has experienced an exceptional first quarter – finishing 2021 on a high note. The Center of Hospitality has welcomed many long-standing clients and new conventions and trade shows, after many went virtual last year. As the OCCC and hospitality industry embrace 2022, the focus remains on working with both new and existing clients to ensure the Center is doing Business Better than Usual.

From October through December 2021, the OCCC generated an estimated $370 million in economic impact for Orange County across 42 events, with approximately 221,500 attendees.

In October, the Specialty Tools and Fasteners Distributors Association (STAFDA) hosted its 2021 Annual Convention and Trade Show at the OCCC from Oct. 24-26, 2021. Relocated from another destination, STAFDA welcomed nearly 2,400 industry leaders generating an estimated economic impact of $6.1 million for the Orange County community.

In November, the Center had the pleasure of hosting the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) Expo, the global leader for all leisure and attractions professionals. After foregoing an in-person event in 2020, IAAPA hosted more than 28,000 international amusement park and attraction industry professionals. This event is expected to create an economic impact of approximately $79.6 million for Orange County.


Finally, the OCCC will round out the quarter by hosting its furry friends at the American Kennel Club (AKC) for its National Championship presented by Royal Canin. This year’s event will showcase the country’s top canine athletes. From Dec. 14 through Dec. 19, AKC will bring approximately 25,000 attendees for an estimated economic impact of $64.2 million to the Center.

After an unprecedented year, the OCCC is thrilled to be experiencing a steady event calendar and looks forward to a strong 2022. By continuing to leverage regional partnerships and enhanced safety protocols, the Center remains focused on instilling confidence and maintaining its long-held reputation as a leader in the conventions and trade show industry.

Partner Voices
Dallas already boasts 35,000 hotel rooms, award-winning global cuisine, and a walkable downtown. But we are just getting started. Visit Dallas is thrilled to announce that the city of Dallas is doubling down with a massive new convention center and entertainment district. Featuring 800,000 square feet of exhibit area, 260,000 square feet of meeting rooms, and 170,000 square feet of ballroom. The center will connect business travelers with dining and shopping options in the popular Cedars District means more places to get down to business, and even more ways to unwind. “Dallas is already a great meetings and conventions destination, with the accessibility of two major airports, affordable labor, and an outstanding hotel product,” said D. Bradley Kent, Visit Dallas senior vice president and chief sales officer. “The new center and Convention Center District will enhance Dallas’ competitive position and are exactly what our customers’ need and have been asking for." What’s New – AT&T Discovery District Located in the heart of Downtown Dallas, this new district on the AT&T corporate campus is tailor-made for groups of all sizes. It boasts a multi-sensory experience, including outdoor event space, the AT&T Theater, and multiple dining outlets including JAXON Beer Garden and The Exchange, a bustling food hall. Hotels Coming Soon Names like the JW Marriott (Downtown), lnterContinental Dallas (Uptown), and Hotel Swexan (Uptown) are adding luxury amenities and bountiful event spaces. The projects will debut in 2023 and beyond. JW Marriott This new, 15-story, 283-room hotel will open in the heart of the city’s downtown Arts District this year. The property features a 25,000-square-foot grand ballroom, as well as a spa, restaurant, lobby bar, fitness center, and a rooftop pool deck and bar. InterContinental Dallas  Located in Cityplace Tower in Uptown, InterContinental Dallas will feature sweeping panoramic views of the Dallas skyline. Guests will enjoy spacious, high-end rooms and amenities, including more than 21,000 square feet of event space.   Hotel Swexan Hotel Swexan, a new, 22-story luxury property, is rising in Uptown’s Harwood District and will make its mark on the Dallas skyline. Opening this year, it is a sculptural building with cantilevered upper floors, as well as a 75-foot rooftop infinity-edge swimming pool and a hidden underground lounge.