by Sarah J.F. Braley | July 01, 2018
ARLINGTON
Local Update

 Ground was broken Nov. 1 on the flagship Live! by Loews, which will serve as the headquarters hotel for baseball's Texas Rangers. The $150 million, 302-room property, opening in 2019, will be part of a sports-and-entertainment complex and will sit between the Rangers' Globe Life Park and the Dallas Cowboys' AT&T Stadium. More than $1.25 billion worth of new development is now under construction in the Arlington Entertainment District, including the hotel and a new ballpark for the Rangers.

 More than $10 million is being spent to convert the Arlington Convention Center into an esports arena. The facility will feature space for competition events, gaming, retail and social areas, VIP hospitality options, a broadcast studio, and team-training space. The transformation should be complete before year's end. According to Jon Hixon, vice president of sales for the Arlington Convention & Visitors Bureau, the CVB will continue to market and sell the Esports Stadium Arlington as a convention facility, and to that end improved A/V is being added to the mix.

 The city offers free trolley service that stops at select hotels like the Crowne Plaza Suites and the DoubleTree by Hilton, and takes guests to attractions such as Globe Life Park (home of the Texas Rangers) and the Meadowbrook Park Golf Course.

Meeting Hotels: Major group properties in town include the 311-room Sheraton Arlington, 308-room Hilton Arlington, 237-room DoubleTree by Hilton Arlington, 200-room Crown Plaza Suites and 175-room Blue Cyprus.

To find and compare hotels, and send RFPs, visit mcvenues.com.

Airport Transit: Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, approximately 12 miles north of downtown. Transfer cost to downtown by taxi, $33; Lyft and Uber start at $22; by shuttle, $18

Dallas Love Field, about 20 miles from downtown. Transfer cost by taxi, $42; Lyft and Uber start at $26; by shuttle, $26

Taxes: City room tax, 9%; state occupancy tax 6%; Public Improvement District tax, 2%; total tax on rooms, 17%

Group Venues: Arlington is home to some of the state's top event venues. Among the options are AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys football team, which can host up to 5,000 people on the field or as few as 50 in the Post-Game Interview Room. Up to 400 people are welcomed at the International Bowling Museum, which has two breakout rooms and a small movie theater. Six Flags Over Texas specializes in picnics for larger groups and includes access to its heart-stopping rides. For more information click here. 

Contact: Arlington Convention and Visitors Bureau, (800) 433-5374



SAN ANTONIO


Local Update

 Celebrating its 10th anniversary on the River Walk, the 1,003-room Grand Hyatt San Antonio has completed a $19 million renovation of its guest rooms and meeting spaces, as well as the bar, corridors and lobby. Adjacent to the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center and connected to the Alamodome by a footbridge, the property includes 115,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor event space; meeting rooms have been modernized as part of the project. Seating at the hotel's Bar Rojo has been expanded, with new power outlets added into the furniture.

 The Henry B. González Convention Center has received LEED Silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council for implementing measurable sustainability strategies in design, sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and more.  

Meeting Hotels: Properties include the 1,003-room Grand Hyatt San Antonio, 1,002-room JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa, 1,001-room Marriott Rivercenter, 629-room Hyatt Regency Riverwalk, 512-room San Antonio Marriott Riverwalk, 500-room Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort, 498-room La Cantera Resort, 485-room Hilton Palacio del Rio, 473-room Westin Riverwalk and 410-room Wyndham San Antonio Riverwalk.

To find and compare hotels, and send RFPs, visit mcvenues.com.

Convention Centers:
 Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center; exhibit space, 514,000 square feet; meeting rooms, 70; (877) 504-8895

Alamodome; exhibit space, 160,000 square feet; number of meeting rooms, 16; (210) 207-3663

Airport Transit: San Antonio International Airport, eight miles north of downtown. Transfer cost to downtown by taxi, $35; Lyft and Uber start at $18; by shuttle, $15

Taxes: Room tax, 16.75%; sales tax, 8.125%; total tax on hotel rooms, 16.75%

Group Venue:
 The makers of Seersucker Southern Style Gin, a local spirit, have opened a newly remodeled tasting room. The surrounding lawn  is perfect for bocce ball, cornhole and picnics for up to 75 people. (210) 817-1580

Contact: San Antonio Convention and Visitors Bureau, (210) 207-6700