Boston Hotels for Conventions

by Lisa Mercer Google

The Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, in downtown Boston, and the John B. Hynes Veterans Memorial Convention Center, in the Back Bay, put Boston on the map as a convention destination. Some of Boston's larger hotels also have meeting and convention space. The size of the event dictates the venue. Larger conventions use the convention centers and offer discount rates at the neighboring hotels. Mid-sized and smaller conferences use hotel meeting space. The hotels near the convention centers may offer additional meeting space when the convention centers are overbooked.

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Hynes Convention Center Hotels

The John B. Hynes Veterans Memorial Convention Center is convenient to Boston's extensive, but not always reliable, public transportation network. If the trolley, affectionately called the "T," breaks down, you might miss that early morning session. The Sheraton Boston Hotel and the Hilton Boston Back Bay are the closest hotels to the Hynes Convention Center. These hotels usually offer discounts to convention attendees. The Sheraton actually has walkways that connect the hotel with convention center. It has 1220 rooms and 53 meeting spaces. Its Constitution Ballroom sits up to 400 people and serves as a convention-related banquet and awards dinner venue. The Hilton Boston Back Bay is about one block from the convention center. It has 385 guest rooms, 15,000 square feet of meeting space, a 2,800-square-foot ballroom, junior ballroom and 13 breakout rooms.

Boston Convention and Exhibition Center Hotels

Like the Hynes Convention Center, the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center is convenient to public transportation, but it involves taking a train and a bus to get there. Two hotels are in the immediate area. A sky-bridge connects the Westin Boston Waterfront with the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center. The hotel has 793 guest rooms and 22 meeting spaces. Its largest meeting space is 15,001 square feet. If you have a busy schedule, but don't want to miss your workouts, book a Westin Workout room, which features in-room weight training and aerobic equipment. The Seaport Hotel, with its extensive, full-service business center, is another local option. The hotel has 39 meeting rooms as well as a dedicated meeting planning and catering department.

Back Bay and Faneuil Hall Convention Hotels

Destination plays an important role in people's decision to attend a convention. The shops, restaurants, theaters and museums in Boston's Bay appeal to potential convention attendees, whose family members may beg to come along for the ride. The Marriott Copley Place connects to the Prudential Center and the Copley Place Mall, which features shops, restaurants a movie theater and a long indoor passageway for bad-weather walking. The hotel has 46 meeting rooms 70,000 and square feet of total meeting space. Its Grand Ballroom has a maximum meeting space of 23,436 square feet, and a maximum seating capacity of 3,640. There are 25 breakout meeting rooms and an on-site exhibition center. Historic Faneuil Hall, located near the water, is another action-packed Boston destination. The Millennium Bostonian Hotel, located in the Faneuil Hall area, has 7,800 square feet of meeting space, making it suitable for smaller conventions.

Historic Hotels

Some people choose a convention because of its location. Others choose conventions whose hotel rates would be unaffordable if not for the special convention discount. The Boston Park Plaza Hotel and Towers is an example. The hotel, a member of Historic Hotels of America, was built in 1927. Royalty, heads of state and other celebrities have stayed here. The Park Plaza Castle, built in 1891 and listed on the Register of Historic Places, sits across the street from the hotel. Constructed as an armory for the First Corps of the Cadets, it now serves as the hotel's meeting and convention space. Combining the hotel meeting rooms with the space in the castle gives the Boston Park Plaza Hotel and Towers 65,000 square feet of meeting space, which accommodates up 2,000 people. The hotel has 941 guest rooms.

About the Author

My articles have appeared in Aspen Magazine, HerSports, The Professional Skier and other print and online publications. When I'm not teaching fitness or writing, I work at Copper Mountain and at the Breckenridge History Society.

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