Just 20 miles from downtown Saint Louis, Saint Charles is a community with history at its heart. It was here in 1804 that Lewis and Clark met, on the banks of the Missouri River, to begin their westward expedition. In 1821, Saint Charles became Missouri’s first state capital. Groups learn about these and more in the 14 brick-paved blocks that comprise the Saint Charles Historic Main Street – a National Register Historic District. Planners will also discover unique Saint Charles event venues here, as well.
Saint Charles-bound groups can arrive on one of several highways or through Lambert St. Louis International Airport, which is served by all major airlines. Shuttle service that operates from the airport to Saint Charles is $18 one way or $34 round trip per person and a taxi cab ride runs from $17 to $20 each way.
Chief among the city’s meeting venues, Saint Charles Convention Center provides 154,000 square feet of space that includes a grand ballroom, junior ballroom, exhibit hall, and seven other meeting rooms. In addition, along with the Family Arena’s 40,000 square feet of space, Saint Charles boasts several banquet/conference center facilities, including the Heart of Saint Charles Banquet and Conference Center, with 22,000 square feet of function space; Columbus Banquet and Conference Center, with 9,200 square feet of space; and the Stegton Regency Banquet and Conference Center, with 10,000 square feet of space.
Of the 35 hotel venues in Saint Charles, the two properties with the largest amount of meeting space are the 400-unit all-suite Ameristar Casino Resort Spa, which features a conference center with more than 20,000 square feet of meeting space (including two ballrooms), and the 296-unit Embassy Suites Hotel and Spa, with 6,000 square feet of meeting space.
Ongoing revitalization efforts continue to maintain the charm and ambiance for which Saint Charles is known; at the same time, new opportunities are being created for meeting groups. Phase I of Streets of Saint Charles, a one-million-square-foot luxury residential/office/shopping/dining development with a town square environment, is now open.
Simultaneously, a project has renovated the community’s historic opera house and re-opened it as a banquet facility. The Grand Opera House can handle groups of up to 200 in 2,688 square feet of function space. Other venues in Saint Charles include Foundry Art Centre, which serves as a cultural resource for the entire metro community. Groups of up to 480 people can gather in 7,400 square feet of space. Events can also be held at the National Equestrian Center, which has two arenas that seat 1,500 and 500, along with mezzanine banquet seating for 250 people. A short drive from Saint Charles, a number of top-rated wineries in Missouri Wine Country offer indoor and outdoor settings for group functions.
On the other end of the spectrum is the high energy Demolition Ball & Adrenaline Zone, where groups of up to 400 people can try out laser tag or a unique game played in bumper cars which combines hockey, football, polo and basketball. Another facility focusing on team-building events is Brunswick Zone XL, where up to 1,000 people can play at everything from bowling and billiards, to laser tag and arcade games.
Saint Charles has a blend of restaurants in historic locations and of interesting design. The Mother-in-Law House Restaurant, a Saint Charles original, is an award-winning restaurant with Victorian decor; Miss Aimee B’s Tea Room & Upstairs Marketplace is located in a circa 1865 National Register home; and Trailhead Brewing Company, which features smoked dishes and hand-crafted beers brewed on the premise, is located in an historic grist mill. Quintessential Dining & Nightlife is known for its rooftop terrace of plush seating, and at Hendricks BBQ, a Blues-themed restaurant that can seat 600, the lower level Moonshine Blues Bar includes outdoor deck seating overlooking Katy Trail.