The smallest country in Central America, El Salvador has much to offer. San Salvador, the capital, is very much a business city (its official currency is the US$) and sits behind Panama and Costa Rica as one of the most financially sound Central American nations. Its second city, Santa Ana, is a historical but seldom-visited treasure. With this type of pedigree, El Salvador event venues are simultaneously exotic and familiar.
Surprisingly, El Salvador has some of the best air links to North America and other Central American countries. Comalapa International Airport (SAL), which is also known as El Salvador International Airport, is 30 miles south of San Salvador. It has excellent links to North America and also is the main hub of TACA Airlines.
Convention venues in El Salvador includes San Salvador's Centro Internacional de Ferias y Convenciones, known as CIFCO. This has an amphitheater for 8,000 persons. CIFCO's Central American Hall hosts almost 9,000 and 12 exhibit halls are available for between 300 and 1,740 persons.
Hotel venues in El Salvador feature the 228-room InterContinental Real San Salvador in San Salvador, which has 13 meeting and function rooms for up to 1,000 persons; the 225-room Sheraton Presidente San Salvador, which has an 11,728-square-foot ballroom and 12 meeting rooms; the 205-room Hilton Princess San Salvador, which has 5,500 square feet of meeting space, and the 133-room Courtyard by Marriott San Salvador, which has 2,400 square feet of meeting space. Stay in one of these hotels and visit the country's wealth of beautiful jungle, beaches and Colonial towns by day, with also perhaps the evening meal. A good choice on the Pacific Ocean is the Royal Decameron Salinitas, which is huge, with 552 guest rooms and a conference center able to host up to 2,000 persons.
Groups will be happy gathering in San Salvador at the Teatro Nacional de El Salvador, which is Central America's oldest theater, built in 1917, and has a main theater with spellbinding decoration and 650 seats, a lobby and two halls; Museo Nacional de Antropologia Dr. David J. Guzman, an important anthropology museum, which debuted in 1883 and has five gallery halls, another hall for temporary exhibits, a library and an auditorium; Museo de Arte de El Salvador (MARTE), a little younger, having been opened in 2003 and which has the outdoor Plaza de las Artistas for up to 800 persons and the indoor Salon de Eventos Ernesto Alvarez Cordova for up to 200 persons, among other spaces; and the Teatro de Luis Poma and Tin Marin Museo de los Ninos, a children's museum, both of which can be rented out in their entirety.
When it comes to dining, standout choices for groups include Bella Vista, which has more than 50 years of service and can host up to 150 persons; and the very grand, historical Andalucia y Ole, which is close to the university. Two great restaurants, serving Italian and Brazilian cuisines, respectively, are Il Buongustaio, which is part of a boutique hotel with the same name and five guest rooms; and Faisca do Brasil, which is in the InterContinental Real San Salvador. In Santa Ana, there is Lover's Steak House, which does love steak, as well as seafood, is in a Colonial-style building and has a private dining room.