Known as the White City for its bright buildings perched on the edge of the Mediterranean Sea and the quality of its light, Algiers is the largest city and capital of Algeria. Algiers event venues are suitably exotic; travelers can feel safe here, but women must follow Muslim custom, and alcohol is restricted to hotel bars.
Houari Boumediene Airport (ALG), 10 miles southeast of the city, is Algier's principal airport. Named for a former president, it has service from major European countries such as the UK, Germany, Spain, Germany and especially, France. The only North American service is on national Carrier Air Algerie to Montreal, Canada. Surprisingly, Algiers has one of the only two subway systems in Africa (the other is in Cairo).
Chief among convention venues in Algiers, the Safex Exhibition Park, also called the Palais des Expositions d'Alger, covers 68 acres and has 500,000 square feet of interior space and 250,000 square feet of exterior space for conventions.
Prospective hotel venues in Algiers for meetings are operated by international chains; examples include the 419-room Sheraton Club des Pins Resort, where meeting space includes a 700-seat auditorium; the 405-room Hilton Alger, which has 10 meeting rooms for up to 700 persons; the 309-room Sofitel Algiers Hamma Garden, which has six meeting rooms, the largest two of which seat 200 persons each; and the 307-room Mercure Alger Aeroport, which can cater to groups of up to 250 persons. One nationally owned property is the 296-room Hotel El Djazair, which formerly was known as the St. George's Hotel; it has a new wing of guest rooms and meeting rooms, ornate lounges, nooks and crannies for momentous events.
Places in Algiers perfect for memorable functions include the Fine Arts Museum, or Musee National des Beaux-Arts, which has an impressive collection of French and Algerian art and is set in a beautiful garden on Rue Mohamed Belouizdad (perfect for outdoor events); while an Algerian hotel perfect for local color and events is the Dar Diaf Bouchaoui, which has a large tiled, cool restaurant, views of the Mediterranean, 200 guest rooms, stunningly different and beautiful meeting rooms and space for groups of up to 600 persons. An Algerian hotel in a resort in Zeralda is the Safir Mazafran (part of a chain with hotel throughout the Middle East and North Africa), which has 416 rooms and also space for 600 persons. Back in Algiers, the Museum of Modern And Contemporary Art Algiers, or Musee d'Art Moderne et Contemporain d'Alger, opened in 2007 and has reception and gallery space, as well as a lobby, for events, while the Museum of Popular Arts and Traditions, or Le Musee National des Arts et Traditions Populaires, is in an Ottoman palace built in 1570 that has a huge, ornate lobby for receptions and sit-down dinners.