Colorado, the undisputed destination for awe-inspiring natural beauty, is home to health-conscious inhabitants, cosmopolitan cities, 280-plus craft breweries, and plenty of terrific meeting offerings.
Take Denver, for example. The Mile-High City welcomed 2.6 million business travelers for conventions and business travel in 2015, a 9 percent jump from the previous year. "Denver is very appealing in the fall, but we also have numerous year-round draws, including our exceptional dining, arts, and culture scenes," says Rachel Benedick, vice president of sales and services for Visit Denver. She suggests groups check out the 30,000-square-foot Blue Moon Brewing Company's brewery and restaurant that seats 400 in Denver's hip RiNo art district. "Denver is hot right now, so groups are experiencing great attendance due to the curiosity factor and buzz around the city," she adds.
Recently opened hotels include the Westin Denver International Airport hotel and the boutique Crawford Hotel, conveniently located in the newly renovated Denver Union Station, steps away from the airport commuter rail. "With 10,000 downtown hotel rooms, along with high-quality offerings, groups can choose from all brands and price points."
A few miles east of Denver, the recently opened Hyatt Regency Aurora-Denver Conference Center just announced a program with cooking classes, guest speakers, and group workouts, in collaboration with the nearby University of Colorado Anschutz Health and Wellness Center. Don't forget to check out the hotel's in-house Gaiam Gear Closet, stocked with yoga mats and more.
Colorado Springs is full of possibilities for group activities, from the majestic Pike's Peak to the tour-friendly U.S. Air Force Academy and U.S. Olympic Training Center. Stay in the historic Broadmoor, a luxurious, AAA Five-Diamond resort with 185,000 square feet of meeting spaces, an on-site Forbes Five Star restaurant, and a bounty of outdoor group activities.
Try the recently reopened Broadmoor Soaring Adventure, with two zip-line courses running along Seven Falls Canyon, or trade canyons for cars and race go-karts at 55 miles per hour at Overdrive Raceway.
A family-friendly option: The Great Wolf Lodge opens later this year with 311 rooms, 20,000 square feet of meeting space, and a 65,000-square-foot water park.
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This article appears in the October 2016 issue of Successful Meetings.