Cars, Bars and Spas: Meeting in Stuttgart, Germany

More than 220 event venues abound in the city where the automobile was invented.


Stuttgart, in the Baden-Wurttemberg region of Southwest Germany, is considered the birthplace of the automobile, where the first gasoline-powered vehicle was invented in 1886 by Karl Benz. Today, the city is the global headquarters for Mercedes-Benz and Porsche as well as Bosch, a leading global supplier of automotive parts and systems. It's also a major center for environmental technology, helping to make it one of Germany's most sustainable cities and one of Europe's greenest urban areas.
Here you'll also find a wide range of meeting and event facilities -- more than 220 venues -- from state-of-the-art convention centers to stunning castles and historic town halls, including the following.

Campus Airport. This mixed-use complex conveniently sits directly across the street from Stuttgart International Airport. The campus includes the nearly 1,300,000-square-foot Messe Stuttgart trade fair center, and the ICS International Congress Center, which can accommodate up to 10,000 attendees. Also on-site are top-notch hotels: The 4-star, 326-room Mövenpick Hotel Stuttgart-Airport offers a ballroom and 16 multifunctional event spaces (a second, 262-room property will open in 2019), while the 4-star, 229-room Wyndham Stuttgart Airport Messe Hotel has seven function rooms. A wide selection of on-site restaurants and other meetings-support services completes the picture.
Congress City. In this busy district in the heart of town, the recently renovated 555-room, 4-star Maritim Hotel is adjacent to the Liederhalle Culture and Convention Center with its five halls with 12 flexible meeting rooms that can accommodate up to 3,000 attendees. The historic Alte Stuttgarter Reithalle (Old Stuttgart Riding Arena), built in 1885, is now a stunning event space that seats 700. The Bosch-Areal entertainment and shopping mall is right next to the Maritim with its own fitness center, cinemas, shops, eateries and Mash, a nightclub-style venue able to host up to 2,000 attendees.
"Stuttgart is an ideal location that met all of our goals," says Karin Hanson of Karin Hanson Events and planner for the GENIVI Alliance. "The GENIVI members, board and guests are all hard-charging technology and auto leaders who want to easily connect with the right people and information at a destination," she notes. "The Stuttgart Convention Bureau, the Maritim Hotel and the Liederhalle Convention Center were all very helpful in making this happen for us."
In addition to the convention centers, the city offers a number of meeting/function venues, each with its own memorable features. For example, attendees can enjoy a 360-degree view from the meeting room at the top of the TV Tower; admire art and the view from the glass "cube" of the Kunstmuseum (Modern Art Museum), with three meeting rooms and a restaurant; and focus on the agenda in the five light-filled meeting rooms at the Literaturhaus. In the center of town, the 10th-century Altes Schloss (Old Castle), now a museum, has a variety of meeting and event spaces. The baroque Neues Schloss (New Palace) offers meeting space for up to 400 attendees. For more information, contact the Stuttgart Convention Bureau. For more about the region's meetings-ready castles, visit our deep dive into the topic here.
There are also many unique and wonderful activities in and around Stuttgart that attendees can do as part of their program. For example, plan a meet-and-greet with racecar drivers and take a spin in a classic car via the Mercedes-Benz Museum, which displays 160 fabulous vehicles along with fascinating history exhibits. At the Porsche Museum, with over 80 sleek cars on display, attendees can hop behind the wheel of the latest models as part of the Porsche Drive program.

Stuttgart is one of the largest wine-growing areas in Germany.
Stuttgart is one of the largest wine-growing areas in Germany.

In addition, special performances can be arranged at Stuttgart's world-famous opera, ballet and modern dance companies. The city also is one of the largest wine-growing areas in Germany, offering many wine-tasting venues and tours of vineyards. VIP visits can be arranged to the luxury department store Breuninger and the designer brands' outlet mall, Outlecity Metzingen, the home of fashion label Hugo Boss. And when it comes to pampering attendees, the city has three mineral-water spas-LeuzeBad Cannstatt and Berg.
For more information, contact the Stuttgart Convention Bureau.