Top Meeting Spot
The Phoenix Convention Center was named one of the top 10 U.S. convention centers by Business Review USA. The publication lauded the PCC as a "truly multifunctional space."

Bedroom at Palomar Phoenix DowntownThe 242-room Hotel Palomar Phoenix is set to debut this month at CityScape Phoenix, the new downtown district for shopping, entertainment and dining. The property will have 10 meeting rooms, a rooftop pool and bar, and a restaurant, Blue Hound Kitchen & Cocktails.

The 527-room Wyndham Phoenix Downtown has been reflagged as the Renaissance Phoenix Downtown. The hotel has 21 meeting rooms.

The 155-room Courtyard Phoenix Camelback Hotel has completed a renovation of its guest rooms, public areas, fitness center and three meeting rooms.

Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport
 has completed its North Runway Project, which upgraded the airport's longest runway with state-of-the-art lighting and other improvements.

Meeting Hotels
Properties include the 1,000-room She­ra­ton Phoenix Downtown Hotel, 950-room JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa, 740-room Arizona Biltmore, 740-room Arizona Grand Resort, 712-room Hyatt Regency Phoenix, 643-room The Phoenician, 584-room Pointe Hilton Tapatio Cliffs Resort, 563-room Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort, 527-room Renaissance Downtown Phoenix, 242-room Hotel Palomar and 242-room Westin Phoenix Downtown.

Convention Center
Phoe­nix Convention Center; exhibit space, 872,000 square feet; number of meeting rooms, 109; (602) 262-6225

Airport Transit
Phoenix Sky Harbor International Air­port, three miles east of downtown Phoenix. Transfer cost by taxi, $15-$20; by shuttle, $12

Room tax, 5%; sales tax, 8.27%; total tax on hotel rooms, 13.27%

Group Venues
Enjoy a meal on the patio at Windsor, which offers healthy salads, tasty bar food and a selection of traditional cocktails. Attendees can have dessert next door at Churn, the restaurant's ice cream parlor. Groups of up to 80 can be hosted. (602) 279-1111

Since 1929, the Heard Museum has been devoted to exploring the art, culture and history of Native Americans, with a focus on tribes of the Southwest. The downtown venue features some 40,000 fine artworks and cultural artifacts and can host events for up to 300 people. (602) 252-8848

Lucky Strike,
 an outpost of the hip bowling alley/lounge chain, is part of the CityScape complex. The venue has a private four-lane suite for groups of up to 20 people; larger parties (of up to 150) also are accommodated. (602) 732-5496

Greater Phoe­nix Convention & Visitors Bureau, (602) 254-6500 or (877) 225-5749

Worth a Visit
Tour Taliesen West, Frank Lloyd Wright's singular Scottsdale home and headquarters of the architect's foundation.

Last fall, The Phoenician completed a three-year, $80 million renovation that included a new 15,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art ballroom; the new Relish Burger Bistro, and a complete refurbishment of the property's 647 guest rooms.

The 101-room Hampton Inn & Suites Scottsdale Riverwalk, near the Talking Stick Resort, opened in February.

The Courtyard by Mar­riott Scottsdale Salt River debuted in April. The property has 156 guest rooms and 3,000 square feet of meeting space.

The 270-suite Scotts­dale Marriott at McDowell Moun­tains has wrapped up a $2 million reno­vation of its 15,000 square feet of meeting space. The 5,000-square-foot Valencia Ballroom now has an upgraded sound system and updated audiovisual capabilities. In addition, the executive boardrooms were renovated and refitted with 60-inch LCD flat-screen televisions, and the fitness center was updated and expanded.

The 431-room Xona Resort Suites Scottsdale has been renamed the Zona Hotel & Suites Scottsdale, following a multimillion-dollar guest room renovation. New amenities include an in-house golf concierge.

The 649-room Fairmont Scottsdale Princess recently broke ground on a new $20 million conference center that will add 52,331 square feet of meeting space to the property, for a total of 150,000 square feet, upon opening in October.

The 194-room Hotel Valley Ho has a new event space called Sands, which is a Polynesian-styled area that can accommodate up to 400 attendees.

Following a head-to-toe renovation, the 195-room former Hotel Theodore has reopened as The Seguaro. This follows the sale of the hotel last year to the Sydell Group and its move to a new management company, Joie de Vivre Hospitality. The property has a total of eight meeting rooms along with a Jose Garces signature restaurant.

Kimpton's Firesky Resort earned green certification from Green Key, the international organization that rates hotels on their commitment to improving their environmental and fiscal performance.

Citizen Public House,
the gastropub in Old Town Scottsdale, has opened its new cocktail lounge, Citizen RnD, on the second floor. The new facility has a decidedly speakeasy vibe: Guests must call from the back alley (602-904-3904) to request entry.

Meeting Hotels Among the many properties in the area are the 732-room Westin Kierland Resort & Spa; 649-room Fair­mont Scottsdale Princess; 647-room The Phoenician; 490-room Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Gainey Ranch; 453-room Camelback Inn, a JW Marriott Resort & Spa; 404-room Scottsdale Plaza Resort, and 210-room Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North. A more comprehensive listing of hotels can be found at

Airport Transit Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, about 10 miles southwest of downtown Scottsdale. Transfer cost by taxi, $20; by shuttle, $20

Taxes Room tax, 5%; sales tax, 6.5%; total tax on hotel rooms, 14.92% (includes 1.77% Maricopa County transaction excise tax and 1.65% City of Scottsdale transaction tax)

Group VenuesLa Hacienda at the FairmontOrganize a tequila tasting for up to 100 people, indoors or out, at La Hacienda at the Fairmont, a contemporary Mex­ican eatery that features an impressive 200 varieties of tequila from 36 different labels, as well as a custom blended barrel from Herradura. (480) 585-4848

The SunRidge Canyon Golf Club opened its Jim McLean Golf School last November. Instructors teach golfers how to improve their game with lessons ranging from a 30-minute refresher to a three-day intensive. (480) 837-5100

For high-energy groups, the Octane Raceway has two indoor race tracks, an arcade and a challending rock-climbing wall. Groups of 10 to 750 people are accommodated. (602) 302-7223

Guests can dine in the courtyards of the Morroccan-themed Los Cedros USA, then enjoy cocktails while touring the facility's stables to visit beautiful Arabian horses. Afterward, the sleek animals perform in a 30-minute show, for groups of up to 1,000. (480) 575-6100

More than 12,000 instruments and objects are on display at the Musical Instrument Museum. Exhibits celebrate myriad styles, ranging from folk and country. The venue can host events for up to 400 people. (480) 478-6000

Contact Scottsdale Convention & Visitors Bureau, (800) 782-1117