Waltham stretches along the Charles River about 10 miles northwest of downtown Boston; its community is home to both Brandeis and Bentley universities. With rents that are lower than Boston's and easy access to that city via convenient commuter rail service, downtown Waltham has attracted increasing numbers of young professionals in recent years. Downtown's Riverwalk is where many Waltham event venues are located; groups may enjoy coming out of restaurants and bars along nearby Moody Street for a stroll along the river.
Waltham is a 45-minute drive from Boston's Logan International Airport.
Conference venues in Waltham include an IACC-approved facility as well as facilities at both Bentley and Brandeis universities. The Conference Center at Waltham Woods, located in the Massachusetts Medical Society building, offers 17,000 square feet of IACC-approved meeting space in 14 rooms, including a 159-seat amphitheater. The Conference Center at Bentley University offers more than 12,000 square feet of meeting space that includes a 480-seat auditorium, a 250-seat amphitheater, and ballroom space for up to 400 people. Classrooms and overnight accommodations are available during the summer. Brandeis University offers the Hassenfeld Conference Center, which has a ballroom that can handle up to 200 people, and the Faculty Center, with a function room featuring floor-to-ceiling windows that can accommodate 150 guests.
Hotel venues in Waltham include the 348-room Westin Waltham – Boston, which offers 20 meeting rooms, with the capability of theater-style seating for 750 and banquet seating for 600 people. The 275-unit Embassy Suites Hotel – Boston/Waltham and the 100-room Best Western TLC Hotel both have 8,000 square feet of meeting space, with the ability to handle a meeting of around 300 people, and the 135-room Hyatt House Boston/Waltham offers 1,100 square feet of meeting space in two rooms.
Waltham is home to a number of large estates that are ideal for special events. Gore Place is an early 19th-century National Historic Landmark home that includes a 45-acre estate with a working farm where an annual sheep shearing festival is held; it can hold a dinner for 90 people in its circa 1793 Carriage House, and a three-season tent is available for larger groups. At the Lyman Estate, it is possible to have an event for up to 175 people in the ballroom where the waltz was first introduced to Boston society. And Stonehurst, the Robert Treat Paine residence built in 1886 on a secluded hilltop, can host a special event for up to 150 people. In all, the city boasts 109 sites on the National Register of Historic Places, including the Waltham Watch Factory historic district, honoring the first company to make watches on an assembly line (in 1854), and the Boston Manufacturing Company, the first integrated textile mill in the U.S.
Meeting delegates are sure to find something tasty and festive for dinner along Waltham's Moody Street, which is also referred to as Restaurant Row because of the number, variety, and quality of its restaurants. The Gaff bar and grill is known for its calamari and Frickles (deep-fried pickles).
Photo by Wikimedia Commons user: Marcbela