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by By Michael J. Shapiro | February 01, 2010

Last year proved an important one in efforts to attract groups to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, with the long-awaited opening of the International Convention Center. The nearly 162,000-square-foot venue sits on 42 acres just past a government-protected estuary, amidst rich tropical flora. The facility, which hosts up to 7,000 attendees, offers a 54,000-square-foot exhibit hall and 5,000 square feet of meeting space.

Among the coastal area's many meeting hotels are the expansive 477-room Sheraton Buganvilias Resort & Convention Center, and the charming, recently renovated 433-room CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa.