Captil Rotunda

Why here?
A new neighborhood -- The Wharf -- aims to re-establish the nation's capital as a waterfront destination. Three hotels are now open on the mile-long site on the Potomac River; an arena, restaurants and more are planned. On Virginia's riverfront, developments include the Hilton Norfolk on the Main.

Washington, D.C., has earned the first LEED for Cities Platinum designation. The program launched in 2016 to help cities measure and communicate their sustainability performance.

The Morris American Bar, a cocktail bar that uses "artisanal" ice, and the upscale Unconventional Diner have opened in the Shaw neighborhood. The two are part of the Washington Convention Center complex.

Opened in 1919, the Attucks Theatre in Norfolk, Va., once welcomed legends such as Cab Calloway and Duke Ellington. The venue now hosts up to 258 people for private events.

The 300-room Hilton Norfolk the Main has opened on the Virginia city's downtown waterfront. The hotel's 39 meeting rooms, with 42,000 square feet of space, collectively are called the Exchange.

For groups meeting in Norfolk, Va., several organizations facilitate team-building activities that benefit the community.

For options, contact Volunteer Hampton Roads' Team Works. Give-back activities also can be arranged at the Virginia Zoo; contact Visit Norfolk for details.


Local Update

 The 278-room InterContinental Washington, D.C.--the Wharf has opened in the waterfront area just south of the National Mall, the centerpiece of a planned 24-acre mixed-use social hub. The hotel's Afro-Caribbean eatery, Kith and Kin, is helmed by D.C. chef Kwame Onwauchi. Other amenities include a rooftop pool with a restaurant and bar, a fitness center, a 4,250-square-foot spa and more than 17,000 square feet of meeting space. Alongside the InterContinental, a 175-room Canopy by Hilton and a 237-room Hyatt House also have opened.

 Hilton is now managing the former Loews Madison Hotel, which has been renamed the Madison Washington DC, a Hilton Hotel. The 356-room property features more than 12,000 square feet of meetings space.

 Project Journey, a $1 billion, multi-year capital-improvement plan for Reagan National Airport in Arlington, Va., began last summer with the demolition of some hangars to make way for a new commuter concourse. The work also will create new security checkpoints and improved parking. Groundbreaking on a new 14-gate concourse is expected this year; the security checkpoints will open in 2020, followed by the new commuter concourse in 2021.

 All 373 guest rooms have been redone at the Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. Overlooking the Tidal Basin, the hotel has more than 38,000 square feet of meeting space, including a 4,000-square-foot event lawn. The on-site restaurant, Muze, serves American fare with Asian touches, and the spa has eight treatment rooms.

Meeting Hotels: Properties include the 1,175-room Marriott Marquis Washington, D.C.; 1,152-room Washington Marriott Wardman Park; 1,070-room Hilton Washington; 897-room Grand Hyatt Washington; 838-room Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill; 834-room Omni Shoreham Hotel; 807-room Renaissance Washington, DC, Downtown Hotel; 772-room JW Marriott Hotel Washington, DC; 581-room Mayflower Renaissance Washington, D.C.; 544-room Capital Hilton, and 459-room Washington Marriott at Metro Center.

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

Convention Center:
 Walter E. Washington Convention Center; meeting space, 125,000 square feet; exhibit space, approximately 700,000 square feet; number of meeting rooms, 70. (202) 249-3000

Airport Transit: Reagan National Airport, 20 minutes from downtown. Transfer cost by taxi, about $25; by shuttle, $16

Dulles International Airport, 45 minutes from downtown. Transfer cost by taxi, $75; by shuttle, $30

Taxes: Room tax, 14.5%; sales tax, 5.75%; total tax on hotel rooms, 14.5%

Group Venues: On the Anacostia River south of Capitol Hill, the waterside Yards Park features abundant green space, dancing fountains, a wading pool and a lovely pedestrian bridge. Parties of up to 25 can gather without a permit for less than two hours (no alcohol allowed, and people are asked to leave the park even cleaner than when they arrived). For larger groups, the Great Lawn welcomes up to 1,200, the Boardwalk and Terrace Steps hold 3,000, and the River Street Gardens accommodates 250. The Canal Park area within Yards Park has a number of areas designated for events.

You don't have to be a numbers whiz to gather at the Carriage House of the Mathematical Association of America. The historical building has been modernized for small meetings and holds up to 70 for a reception on the first floor. Two smaller rooms upstairs hold up to 20 people. (202) 319-8476.

Contact: Destination DC, (202) 789-7000