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by Michael C. Lowe | May 01, 2012
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Long Beach
The $140 million renovation and modernization of Long Beach Airport is proceeding on schedule and is expected to be completed in early 2013. The project includes a $45 million passenger concourse; a 34,750-square-foot boarding lounge with improved seating, concessions and restrooms; an atrium; a garden walkway, and a new parking structure.

Delegates arriving at the Long Beach Con­vention & Entertainment Center will find newly stylized lobbies, meeting rooms and hallways. A recent $20 million renovation at the facility includes new furniture, carpets, plants and artwork. The convention center restrooms also have been transformed into loungelike spaces with warm woods and contemporary fixtures. Additional improvements include free wireless Internet in public spaces; new landscaping for the center's Terrace Theatre Plaza, which doubles as an outdoor event space; new lounge-style seating in the center's signature restaurant, The Center Cafe; and new seating in the 3,000-seat Terrace Theatre.

The Long Beach Arena is in the process of adding a new $5 million "loft-style ballroom," which essentially constitutes a mechanism that will drop a curtain from the ceiling to create a 45,000-square-foot separate event space. The new space will feature a grid of truss systems, complete with LED, stage lighting and sound equipment, to provide an intimate environment for dinners and concerts within the larger arena itself. The venue, which is expected to be completed in 2013, will be able to seat up to 5,500 guests.

The Hyatt Regency Long Beach recently completed a $30 million renovation of its guest rooms, suites and corridors. Visitors will find new carpeting, wall coverings, window treatments and floor-to-ceiling upgrades of the bathrooms. In addition, Hyatt spent more than $3 million to replace the heating and air-conditioning units in each of the 528 guest rooms. The hotel offers 22,000 square feet of meeting space.

The Westin Long Beach recently completed renovations to half of its 469 guest rooms and will begin work on the rest beginning in November. The project is expected to be completed in February 2013. Additional renovations to the property's meeting space, elevators and pool deck will follow. The hotel features more than 51,000 square feet of meeting space.

The 311-room Long Beach Marriott recently completed a $10 million renovation of its ground-floor public space, including the meeting rooms, ballrooms, prefunction areas and restrooms. Also unveiled: a renovated fitness center and an additional 1,700 square feet of outdoor courtyard event space. The property now offers a total 10,000 square feet of meeting space.

The Long Beach Convention & Enter­tainment Center has installed new SolarFlora solar generators that can supply as much as 1.2 kilowatt hours of energy daily while providing nighttime illumination as well. SolarFlora outlets, which can be used to charge electronic devices, are free to the public.