The Canary Islands, Spain’s most southerly possession, sit approximately 100 miles west of the coast of Africa, in line with the southern portion of Morocco. There are seven main islands — the larger Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Fuerteventura, and Lanzarote and the smaller La Palma, El Hierro, and La Gomera, the last so relatively remote that it has its own whistling language. Tenerife, Gran Canaria, and Lanzarote are very popular vacation destinations for northern Europeans; as a result, there are many Canary Island venues catering to this market.
All the islands have airports as they sit a relative distance from each other. The four most important, with service from all over Europe, are Reina Sofia Tenerife South Airport (TFS) and Tenerife North Airport (TFN) on Tenerife; Gran Canaria Airport (LPA), also known as Las Palmas Airport, on Gran Canaria, and Lanzarote Airport (ACE) on Lanzarote.
The largest of convention venues for the Canary Islands is Tenerife’s Magma Arte y Congresos, which has 60,000 square feet of indoor space, 45,000 square feet of outdoor space, 19 meeting rooms, the Main Hall for 2,000 persons, and the overall ability to host up to 2,500.
Hotel venues in the Canary Islands are of a high standard. On Gran Canaria, there is the seaside, resort-style, 561-room Lopesan Villa del Conde Resort & Corallium Thalasso, which has eight meeting rooms and a business center. On the other side of the island is the 202-room Hotel Santa Catalina, which opened in 1890 and has hosted such notable guests as Winston Churchill, Maria Callas, and Agatha Christie; it has eight function rooms, some of them very grand and one able to host 300 persons. On Lanzarote there is the 160-room Arrecife Gran Hotel & Spa, in the island’s capital, which has 6,000 square feet of meeting space in six lounges. On Tenerife, there are the 579-room Gran Melia Resort Palacio de Isora, an adults-only resort that has seven meeting rooms and a 7,500-square-foot Gran Salon; and on the other side of the scale of things, the stunning, 20-room Hotel San Roque, which is perfect for incentive groups, with natural swimming beaches and pools, views of the island's highest spot, Mount Teide and New Mexico-style, red-earth walls.
One beautiful, historical site on Gran Canaria is Finca Condal Vega Grande, which is the site of a manor house and the whitewashed, pine-roofed Church of Nuestra Senora de Guadaloupe; it can accommodate up to 1,200 guests. On Tenerife, there are the Casa Lercaro Orotava, which has tents and indoor and outdoor spaces, a conference hall, wonderful views of Mount Teide, and a maximum capacity of 600 persons; Tenerife Museum of Science and the Cosmos, which has large gallery spaces and an atrium, and Tenerife Espacio de las Artes, commonly referred to as TEA, which has a center of photography and more than 200,000 square feet of space in three buildings, two of which are huge and triangle-shaped.
Restaurants perfect for groups are dotted all over the islands. On Gran Canaria, try El Herreno, which has more than 50 years of history, Canary Islands cuisine, terraces, and a group lounge, or Restaurante Tagoror, which is located inside a cave, but with outside areas, too, in the beautiful Guayadeque Canyon, and serves very well-presented local dishes. On Lanzarote, perhaps go to La Cabana, a fine-dining restaurant regarded as one of the island’s best and which has private dining rooms. On Tenerife, two excellent restaurants are El Restaurante Regulo, which is far from regular, being in an 18th-century building on the Plaza del Charco in the town of Puerto de la Cruz and with several private dining rooms, and Restaurante Los Roques, which just might be the best restaurant on the island and has great harbor views and also contains private dining rooms.