New Bern and Craven County, North Carolina, have so much to offer visitors of all ages. While there are a large number of locals, there is an even larger population that has discovered our secret and decided to make a move to this enchanted area. If you haven’t ever visited, you’ll find a very proud community that is happy to share its favorite things to do. This area has a rich history that has been beautifully maintained since it was founded over 300 years ago. You can visit the original capital of North Carolina at the Tryon Palace to get a true sense of what Colonial life in the South was like. You can also enjoy a variety of outdoor activities, delicious restaurants, unique shops, noteworthy playhouses, and so much more. In addition to preserving its past, the area is extremely active and has become a destination spot for both younger and older generations. It’s time to book your event; work has never looked so good!
Meet: New Bern Riverfront Convention Center
On the confluence of the Neuse and Trent rivers is the New Bern Riverfront Convention Center. Its facilities and quality of service are as incomparable as the views. The newly renovated New Bern Riverfront Convention Center boasts nearly 30,000 square feet of rentable space, ideal for meetings or events of any variety. New Bern and Craven County have received statewide recognition for their hospitality and continue to set a high bar for all business travelers. The temperate climate, water accessibility, active nightlife, and unique restaurants and shopping attract both residents and visitors.
The New Bern Riverfront Convention Center is centrally located downtown and is the hub of local activities. Located on the ground floor is the Colonial Capital Ballroom, which now boasts a more modern feel and neutral color palette of soothing greens and blues. The ballroom can be set up in a variety of ways, separated into three spaces or grouped together as one large one, depending on the client's needs. The Riverfront Veranda and Heritage Hall, including its two alcoves, are also located on the ground floor, bringing the total usable space on the first floor to 23,740 square feet. Upstairs, guests have access to the Tryon Room, which can be split into two smaller rooms or combined into a single, 2,030-square-foot space. Also upstairs are the Berne and Executive Board Rooms, as well as additional restrooms. The Promenade and Heritage Hall are ideal spaces to utilize as part of an event, or they can be easily converted into registration or exhibitor space by the experienced staff members, who make every event effortless for their clients.
The convention center has an in-house kitchen facility, which can prepare concession-booth-style food or full-service banquets. The experienced staff is dedicated to providing smooth and productive events, going above and beyond what is asked of them. No task is too small, and every detail is addressed. In addition to a beautiful facility and a friendly and professional staff, there are so many reasons that the New Bern Convention Center is the perfect place for meetings and conventions, no matter the size. With the renovated DoubleTree Hotel reopening right next door to the center, downtown New Bern will be better than ever — and that’s pretty impressive. Plan your all-inclusive 2021 event now; once you visit, you may not want to leave!
Eat: Downtown New Bern
New Bern has become a hub for culinary talent. The food available in New Bern's downtown area ranges from all-American to Thai, from classic Southern with a modern twist to fresh, local seafood. The one commonality? It's all 100% artisanal. The drunken noodles at Thai Angel, shrimp and grits at The Chelsea, the honey croissants at Morgan's Tavern & Grill, and pretty much everything at Cypress Hall, including crafted cocktails — all have New Bern's unique stamp on them.
Your mouth may be watering, but that's not even the half of it. There are ice-cream and soda shops, a vibrant nightlife, and plenty of engaging historical points of interest, including the birthplace of Pepsi and the North Carolina History Center. Throw in locally owned shops, historic architecture, extensive water activities, museums, and lodgings, and you get a good idea of the downtown New Bern vibe.
Stay: New Bern Hospitality
Now that you have decided to visit, the next step is to book accommodations. Fortunately, New Bern has plenty of those as well. Our waterfront hospitality partners are The Courtyard by Marriott, The Bridgepointe Hotel & Marina, and the DoubleTree Hotel (reopening in early 2021). If you prefer a more intimate overnight stay, there are several wonderful bed-and-breakfasts to choose from in the downtown area, including The Jarvis at 220, The Benjamin Ellis House, The Hanna House, and The Aerie.
While it's certainly a perk to stay in the heart of downtown, where the only transportation you'll have to arrange is your own two feet, there are other options as well. The Candlewood Suites, Comfort Suites, and Springhill Suites by Marriott are also within New Bern's city limits, just a short drive away from the downtown experience. For information on these accommodations and a complete list of options, go to our tourism website.
A City of Firsts
New Bern is a city of firsts: the first Colonial and state capital of North Carolina, the originator of Pepsi Cola, the first in the Colonies to hold a provincial convention in defiance of British orders, the first printing press, and the first pamphlet, newspaper, and book published in North Carolina. Regardless of which part of the city calls to you, we guarantee it has some firsts in store for you as well. With its Southern charm and close proximity to coastal waters, it is a place like no other, and we just know you’ll fall in love.
Request a quote or personalized site visit today by contacting us online or via phone at 252-637-1551. We'd love to show you around!
Written by Shannon LuQuire