Officially known as Nanjing (aka Nanking) is a city whose name means "Southern Capital," as Beijing means "Northern Capital." On the Yangtze River, this destination of eight million people is considered one of China's prettiest cities, with surroundings of mountains and abounding cultural treasures such as temples. Nanjing event venues are diverse and run the gamut, from the dawn of time to the ultramodern.
Nanjing's principal entry point is its Nanjing Lukou International Airport (NKG), which is approximately 20 miles south of the city center. It has service from all China's large cities and from South Korea, as well as from Frankfurt, Germany on Lufthansa.
Chief among meeting venues, Nanjing International Expo Center has six exhibition halls, more than 1.8 million square feet of space, 38 meeting rooms, a conference center and an upcoming Phase II that will add two business-minded hotels.
Hotel venues in Nanjing include the 561-room Grand Metropark Hotel Nanjing, which has 23 meeting rooms and the Grand Ballroom for up to 1,200 persons; the 411-room Hilton Nanjing Riverside, which has 16 meeting rooms for up to 1,100 persons; the 352-room International Conference Hotel Nanjing, which has nine meeting rooms and four halls, including Peach Hall that can cater to 1,300 persons; the 350-room Sheraton Nanjing Kingsley Hotel & Towers, which has the Jiang Hai Yuan Ballroom for 500 persons; and the 337-room Purple Palace Hotel, which is named for the Purple Mountain that sits behind it (as well as the rest of Nanjing) and has space for 700 persons.
Unique function spots here are many, and include the world-famous Suzhou Kunqu Opera Theater of Jiangsu Province, which puts on Chinese opera performances and can conduct team building exercises for groups. Jiangsu Provincial Art Museum, which was built in 2010 and has stunning exterior architecture and six exhibit spaces full of Chinese art for groups; Purple Mountain Observatory high up on the mountain of the same name, which has several seminar rooms, very clear skies and – beloved by conspiracy theorists – alleged footage of UFOs; and Nanjing City Museum, which chronicles the history of the city in a building that has a history going back 2,500 years, and, full of complete dinosaurs, the Nanjing Museum of Palaeontology. Not for holding meetings, but a cultural touchstone, is the Nanjing Massacre Memorial Hall, dedicated to the wartime holocaust that occurred here.
Good restaurants for groups include Zhang Shengji, inside the Nanjing Workers' Building; South Beauty, which specializes in Sichuan cuisine; Nanjing Dapaidang, which is very attractive – paper lanterns and muted Chinese touches – despite being in a shopping center; Himalaya, which specializes in Indian and Nepalese dishes; and the 20th-floor, revolving restaurant at the 270-room Xuanwu Lakeview Hotel, which has, as its name suggests, fantastic lake views.