Planners looking for a dynamic, culturally rich meeting mix will find all the right ingredients, plus first-rate meeting and event venues, in Rochester. This mid-size city overflows with arts and culture, thanks to George Eastman, the Kodak founder and philanthropist who gave most of his fortune to Rochester. Famous sites blend with charming neighborhoods and historic canal towns to create a mosaic of attractions to visit.
It's easy to get Rochester around by car or public transportation. A well-maintained, easy-to-navigate, expressway system connects the metro area from end to end, usually in 20 minutes or fewer. The Amtrak train station, NY State Trailways and Greyhound bus terminals are centrally located in downtown Rochester. In addition, the Greater Rochester International Airport is served by major airlines and offers hundreds of flights each day.
Chief among meeting venues in Rochester is the Rochester Riverside Convention Center, which features a scenic setting on the Genesee River, along with an enclosed walkway that connects it to major hotels and parking garages. In the "Convention District," everything is within easy walking distance. Other Rochester event venues include the George Eastman House International Museum of Photography & Film, the Granger Homestead and Carriage Museum, the Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester, the Rochester Museum & Science Center, the Seneca Park Zoo, and the Sonnenberg Gardens & Mansion State Historic Park.
Hotel venues in Rochester with meeting space include The 362-room Rochester Plaza Hotel & Conference Center, 30,000 square feet of meeting space; the 460-room Radisson Rochester Riverside, also with 30,000 square feet of meeting space; and the 336-room Hyatt Regency Rochester, with 13,000 square feet.
Rochester features charming cafes, informal bistros and neighborhood pubs. Fine-dining establishments serve multi-course meals in historic settings or creative new cuisine in hip, cosmopolitan rooms. Rochester's culinary scene includes wide-ranging, diverse ethnic flavors and many traditions in American fare. Rochester specialties include the white hot, found wherever its familiar counterpart, the red hot dog, is served. Fresh produce is abundant as is locally produced beer and ale. Most restaurants feature wines produced by Finger Lakes vineyards.
Greater Rochester is a first-class golfing region, with close to 60 public and semi-private golf courses. There are also festivals almost every weekend from late spring through the fall. Major events include the Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival and Highland Park's Lilac Festival.