GEORGIA – On Global Meetings Industry Day (April 8), Explore Georgia, the tourism division within the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD), showcased the state’s leading conference centers and destinations.
Global Meetings Industry Day (GMID) is led by the industry advocacy coalition Meetings Mean Business, and this year’s theme, ‘Meet Safe,’ recognized the industry’s top priority of operating meetings and events with health and safety top-of-mind.
“Professional meetings and events are essential parts of Georgia’s tourism industry, and we are thrilled to unite with destinations across the globe during Global Meetings Industry Day to stand in support,” said Mark Jaronski, deputy commissioner of Explore Georgia. “It is exciting to see the hope and optimism of having safe in-person and hybrid events, and as event planners are looking toward the future, we want to be sure that Georgia is first on their minds. Leaders across our state tourism industry are committed to providing safe and compelling experiences both during and after business hours.”
Destinations across the state are already welcoming in-person groups, including:
Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta
Located in the heart of downtown Atlanta, the Georgia World Congress Center (GWCC) features 1.5 million square feet of exhibit space and is the world’s largest LEED-certified convention center. Along with the convention center, the Georgia World Congress Center Authority’s (GWCCA) campus spans 220-plus acres and includes Centennial Olympic Park and Mercedes-Benz Stadium—both offering space for meetings and conventions. New expansion plans will add a pedestrian mall, a transportation depot, and a convention hotel, Signia by Hilton Atlanta. GWCC was the first convention center in the U.S. to achieve GBAC STAR accreditation.
The Classic Center, Athens
The Classic Center is in the middle of downtown Athens’ shopping, dining, and entertainment district. Meeting rooms at The Classic Center are just steps away from more than 1,700 hotel rooms and a wide array of entertainment options. The Classic Center hosts events of up to 6,000, with 373,000 square feet of event space, including pre-function space and an outdoor pavilion. New expansion plans will add a 5,000-seat arena, set to open in 2023.
Savannah Convention Center, Savannah
The Savannah Convention Center is a 330,000-square-foot waterfront complex on the Savannah River featuring 100,000 square feet of divisible exhibit space and 50,000 square feet of prime meeting space, including 13 meeting rooms, four executive boardrooms, a 25,000-square-foot grand ballroom, a state-of-the-art 367-seat auditorium, and an expansion plan that will add significant space.
Many facilities across the state have earned certification from the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC), the gold standard in safety protocols. In addition, these facilities and businesses have committed to the Georgia Safety Promise, a statewide campaign from the Governor’s Office and the Georgia Department of Public Health encouraging businesses and the public to agree to measures that will help keep Georgians safe from COVID-19, minimize the spread of the virus, and keep Georgia open for business.