Roanoke, VA Event Planning

Key Highlights

Hotels 29
Total Sleeping Rooms 3,278
Committable Sleeping Rooms* 300
Committable Meeting Rooms* 35
Convention Center Space 45,000 Sq. Ft.
Largest Exhibit Space 20,286 Sq. Ft.
Largest Ballroom 14,396 Sq. Ft.
Average Hotel Room Rate USD $97
Average Daily Meal Cost USD $51
Average Weekly Car Rental USD $313
*Maximum for a single hotel

Roanoke, VA Meeting Planning Overview

Welcome to the Meeting and Event Planning Guide to Roanoke, a city guide for meeting professionals. Bursting with breathtaking natural beauty, vibrant culture, outdoor adventure and a strong arts scene, Roanoke serves as the ideal metro mountain destination, offering first-class amenities typically found in an urban center, while still maintaining a charming, friendly atmosphere. A five-time All-American City, five-time top Digital City and one of America's Most Livable Communities, Roanoke sits in the heart of Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains, an area known for its spectacular vistas and dazzling foliage. Beyond its spectacular setting, the Roanoke Valley offers a variety of meeting and event facilities, including two civic centers and an IACC-approved conference center, as well as more than 5,000 guest rooms to accommodate delegates.

Roanoke is conveniently along 1-81, 168 miles west of the state capital of Richmond and within a day's drive of more than half of the nation's population. A hub of transportation, finance and industry for southwest Virginia, Roanoke is one of the few metro areas that offers immediate proximity to the Blue Ridge Parkway, a popular attraction within the National Park system. The city is easily reached via the Roanoke Regional Airport, which sits about 10 minutes from downtown Roanoke and serves direct flights to and from nine major destination hubs aboard four airlines. The airport provides direct access to Valley Metro's Smart Way bus, which runs to downtown Roanoke, Monday through Saturday. Once in Roanoke, delegates can hop aboard Valley Metro's Smart Way commuter bus, as well as its free Star Line Trolley, which provides free weekday transport to shops, businesses, restaurants and hotels between downtown Roanoke and Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital.

Speaking of convenience, the sprawling Roanoke Civic Center sits within walking distance of downtown Roanoke and several major hotels, as well as five miles from Roanoke Regional Airport and six miles from the Blue Ridge Parkway. The center features 110,000 square feet of meeting and event space throughout its 10,500-seat Coliseum; 2,151-seat Theatre; 46,000-square-foot Special Events Center; and 14,000-square-foot Exhibit Hall, which accommodates up to 1,500 guests and sits adjacent to three additional breakout meeting rooms for 25 to 75 delegates. Meeting amenities include full-service catering and audio-visual services, as well as on-site parking for 1,400 vehicles.

Aside from the Roanoke Civic Center, Roanoke is home to a variety of unique venues perfect for group gatherings and events. The downtown Center in the Square houses three museums and three performing arts companies, as well as a variety of rentable event spaces, ranging from a 3,000-square-foot Butterfly Garden to a traditional boardroom and community room. Also set in downtown Roanoke, the Taubman Museum of Art showcases a 2,155-piece collection rich in 19th- and 20th-century American painting, as well as features such event spaces as a 168-person auditorium, 144-seat black box theater and three-story atrium with a stunning glass roof and staircase and travertine floors.

Groups can catch a high-quality music, dance or theater show at Roanoke's Jefferson Center, or hold their own event in the center's 925-seat Shaftman Performance Hall, 450-person Fitzpatrick Hall, 300-person Fralin Atrium, 200-person Rehearsal Hall, 44-person L.L. Rice Room and 50-person Training Theater. Set adjacent to active Norfolk Southern mainline tracks, the interactive Virginia Museum of Transportation showcases thousands of automotive, aviation and transit objects, as well as more than 50 pieces of rolling stock, including the largest collection of diesel locomotives in the South. Groups can gather in the museum's 23,805 square feet of total event space, which spans its galleries and meeting rooms. Groups looking for a taste of the outdoors gather at Mill Mountain Park, home to a Discovery Center, 10 miles of trails, picnic area and pavilion, a wildflower garden and more, including the iconic Roanoke star, a 100-foot-tall illuminated structure that serves as the symbol of Roanoke.

About Roanoke, VA / Additional Info

From its fantastic quality of life to its awe-inspiring surroundings, Roanoke is beloved by meeting and leisure travelers for its arts and culture, range of accommodations, local cuisine and immediate proximity to the renowned Blue Ridge Parkway, which boasts some of the best mountain views in the world. A destination of hospitality and accessibility, Roanoke sits within easy reach of several major roadways, but still offers plenty of recreation-rich areas for hiking, biking, golfing, water sports and more. Roanoke is also a place of deep thought, as 21 institutions of higher learning are set within a 60-mile radius of the Roanoke Valley; in fact, the area boasts a higher concentration of undergrads per capita than Boston-Cambridge or Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill.

Before Roanoke began as an area of higher learning, outdoor recreation and meeting excellence, pioneers first visited the area in the 17th century. Roanoke served as a farming area until the completion of the Shenandoah Valley Railroad in 1882 marked the start of rapid growth in the area. Roanoke's location in the Blue Ridge Mountains and midway between Maryland and Tennessee helped the city grow into a major hub for Norfolk Southern Corporation and a network for modern highways. Today, Roanoke is known as western Virginia's center for industry, trade, health, education, travel, conventions and entertainment.

Roanoke area attractions offer travelers the best in cuisine, local wine, history and more. The nearby National D-Day Memorial takes visitors on an archival journey through World War II and pays tribute to those who served, appropriately set in the town that suffered the highest per capital D-Day losses in the nation. Groups and families flock to the LewisGale Field at Salem Memorial Ballpark to cheer on the Salem Red Sox, an Advanced Class “A” Minor League professional team and Boston Red Sox affiliate. The nearby Wine Trail of Botetourt County offers beautiful scenery and access to three family-run wineries that create quality wines through old world techniques. The beloved Historic Roanoke City Market – the oldest continuously operating open-air market in Virginia – has been delighting hungry visitors with fresh fruits, vegetables, flowers, plants and more since 1882.

Speaking of local tastes, many of the Roanoke area's restaurants craft their menus around Virginia-grown ingredients. The River and Rail Restaurant in the heart of Roanoke serves updated Southern classics, and a weekly menu based on seasonal products from local providers. The Blue Apron Restaurant and Red Rooster Bar in Salem specializes in authentically modern seasonal fare, while Salem's Mac & Bob's Restaurant is known for its relaxed atmosphere and full gamut of American dishes. Pomegranate Restaurant and Gathering Place in Troutville is a casual, comfy restaurant dedicated to local cuisine, while The Roanoker Restaurant has been satisfying locals and visitors with its homemade specialties since 1941.

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