Los Angeles and Anaheim Heat Up

When it comes to new properties and meeting space, Southern California has had a hot summer

Anaheim Convention Center North expansion

Big things are happening throughout Southern California, with Los Angeles and Anaheim two particularly hot spots for planners.

After a record-breaking year of tourism last year (with 47.3 million visitors), Los Angeles is not slowing down. The city's seen quite a few new hotels in recent months, including the 350-room Hotel Indigo Downtown Los Angeles, the flagship hotel of the new $1 billion mixed-use Metropolis development. The InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown opened in June, bringing an additional 889 luxury rooms and 95,000 square feet of meeting space to the city (including the 548-capacity Sky Deck on the hotel's 73rd floor).

This summer also saw the super-chic Dream Hollywood Hotel open its doors, with 179 guest rooms and the 11,000-square-foot Highlight Room's flexible rooftop space; as well as the 170-room Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills (which offers a rooftop pool and luxury retail). Close by the airport, the 152-room Cambria El Segundo LAX is now open for business.

Kimpton is keeping busy in the city. Last month the Kimpton Everly in downtown Los Angeles opened. The 216-room property offers three ballrooms for meetings and events, as well as a number of creative spaces infused with the laid-back feel of the local Beachwood Canyon neighborhood. It also includes the street-level restaurant Jane Q, offering a menu of locally sourced dishes. November will see the opening of Kimpton's La Peer Hotel, with 105 rooms, a 3,900-square-foot roof deck (plus rooftop event space), as well as the 965-square-foot Drawing Room for groups. The 264-room Hotel Palomar Los Angeles -- Beverly Hills has also rolled out a private culinary cinema experience for groups in its new restaurant Double Take.

Anaheim Excites
This month, the Anaheim Convention Center (ACC) will complete ACC North, a 200,000-square-foot expansion with two levels (including a 10,000-square-foot balcony that faces the city's famed theme parks, complete with row seating ideal for viewing the nightly fireworks shows). The 1.8-million-square-foot facility also includes 200,000 square feet of outdoor space, a 7,500-seat arena, and 10-gigabyte Wi-Fi connection.

The ACC sits alongside palm-tree-lined plazas and three hotels offering a combined 3,092 rooms and 275,000 square feet of event space. But there is more on the way: Construction begins this month on a new $245 million, 613-room property, with 42,000 square feet of meeting space, replacing the Anabella Hotel on Katella Avenue, which closed its doors last month. The new hotel is slated to open in 2020.

Plenty of other hotel news is happening throughout the city. Later this year, the first JW Marriott in Orange County begins construction next to the Anaheim GardenWalk. The $150 million property will include 466 guest rooms as well as meeting space. Next year will see the opening of a new 580-room luxury hotel, replacing the Anaheim Plaza Hotel & Suites. Disneyland Resort has announced plans for its first new build in almost two decades: a 700-room AAA Four Diamond property with two pools, slated to open in 2021.

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This article appears in the September 2017 issue of Successful Meetings.