Welcome to Cvent's Meeting and Event Planning Guide to Detroit. Groups everywhere are discovering Detroit's renewed energy and vitality, making now a great time to visit The D. Billions of dollars have been invested to revitalize downtown, with many new hotels, residential developments, restaurants, and thriving local businesses. The riverfront has been transformed as well, with nearly 4 active miles of paved paths, parks, and plazas. With so much to see and do, Detroit was ranked No. 2 in the world in Lonely Planet's "Best in Travel 2018 Top Cities."
It's meeting time
A $279 million expansion has transformed Cobo Center into a world-class convention and meeting facility with 723,000 square feet of exhibition space. Along with all the latest electronic amenities, including two giant outdoor video boards, Cobo boasts the beautiful 40,000-square-foot Grand Riverview Ballroom and a dramatic three-story glass atrium featuring views of the Detroit River, the RiverWalk promenade, and Canadian neighbor Windsor, Ontario, just across the river. It also has outdoor spaces for meetings and other activities.
It's hotel development time
Downtown Detroit and the metro area are seeing many new hotel options. Currently, the area has about 36,000 competitively priced hotel rooms, with about 5,000 located downtown. The 70-story Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center has been transformed with a $30 million renovation. It offers a variety of meeting spaces, along with 1,328 guest rooms and suites. Aloft Detroit at the iconic David Whitney is elegant and modern and has plentiful meeting space. The hip Trumbull & Porter hotel is near historic Corktown and its restaurants, shops, and clubs, just minutes from Comerica Park, Ford Field, Cobo Center, and many more Detroit landmarks.
Treat attendees to an authentic Detroit experience at the new Detroit Foundation Hotel, housed in the historic former headquarters of the Detroit Fire Department. With 100 rooms, the five-story hotel is conveniently located across from Cobo Center. Other hotel properties being developed include the 130-room boutique Shinola Hotel, which will open in fall 2018 in an early 20th-century retail building. The 100-room Siren Hotel, in the circa-1926 Wurlitzer Building, is scheduled to be completed in fall 2018 as well. Element Detroit, the city's first extended-stay hotel, is being developed by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide and is projected to open in summer 2018. Furniture and home décor retailer West Elm will also open its hotel, housing, and retail space in Detroit's Midtown in 2018. And a 350-room hotel is planned as part of The District Detroit project near Little Caesars Arena, the new home of the Detroit Red Wings and Detroit Pistons.
It's eat, shop, and play time
Downtown Detroit is a growing foodie hotspot. National Geographic recently named Detroit one of its "6 Unexpected Cities for the Food Lover." New restaurants, breweries, distilleries, and coffee shops are constantly opening and flourishing in Detroit. With eateries serving classic Coney dogs and Greek street eats alongside award-winning sushi and steaks, attendees will never go hungry in Detroit.
Detroit offers plenty of retail, too. From unique, independent boutiques to national retailers including Carhartt, Shinola, Nike, John Varvatos, and Lululemon, downtown has lots of shopping options. The surrounding suburbs have great shopping as well, from upscale malls to the state's largest indoor outlet center to charming downtowns.
Detroit and its surrounding suburbs have a wide variety of attractions. Visit world-class cultural institutions, such as the Detroit Institute of Arts and Motown Museum. The Outdoor Adventure Center offers a taste of the outdoors in an indoor setting. Enjoy The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation and Automotive Hall of Fame. Find family-friendly fun at Great Lakes Crossing Outlets' LegoLand Discovery Center Michigan and Sea Life Michigan Aquarium. The Detroit Zoo now has the world's largest penguin habitat, the Polk Penguin Conservation Center.
It's planning time
The Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau (DMCVB) VIP Welcome Program supports the city's hospitality. With partners Delta Air Lines and Cobo Center, the program offers welcome and departure signage, airport greeters, and more. It also offers complimentary exhibitor receptions and Detroit People Mover passes for large groups. Its "Show It and Save" initiative gives attendees discounts at participating restaurants. The DMCVB also offers preshow attendance building, exhibitor services, on-site registration, public relations, post-event evaluations, volunteer programs, comprehensive online tools, and more.
It's grow time
Detroit is moving into its next phase of substantial growth, with $2.1 billion in development projects planned. Four new, large-scale, transformational projects will create thousands of construction and permanent jobs while adding 3.2 million square feet and over 2,000 parking spaces to the city's core. Little Caesars Arena is now open, home of the Detroit Red Wings and Detroit Pistons. This new entertainment center features state-of-the-art technology, innovative amenities, and beautifully designed public spaces. It is part of The District Detroit, which, when complete, will feature housing, retail, restaurants, and a hotel in a contiguous, 50-block, walkable area.
Ranked one of the best in customer service by J.D. Power, Detroit Metro Airport (DTW) provides nonstop service to nearly 140 destinations on four continents. Detroit is a 90-minute flight — or less — from 60% of the country's population. It's a major hub for Delta, and all other major domestic airlines, five low-cost carriers, and four international carriers offer services from the airport. Most suburban and city attractions are just a 20-minute ride away.
Detroit: It's go time
With all that is happening, it is Detroit's time to shine — and time for you to experience it for yourself. Detroit. It's go time.