Why Austin Should Be Your Next Meeting Destination

A Sponsored Message from Visit Austin

Author: David McMillin       

aerial shot of amphitheater with lawn area behind seat area

The new open-air Moody Amphitheater at Waterloo Park in downtown Austin is the place to be for concerts and festivals alike. (John Sutfin)

As you narrow down the list of destinations for your next meeting, you may be looking at other lists for inspiration. Don’t be surprised if Austin makes an appearance on just about all of them. This year alone, the city has been named to Cvent’s “Top Meeting Destinations in North America” (ranked No. 10), Wallethub’s “Best State Capitals for Safety & More” (No. 11), and Southern Living’s “The South’s Best Cities” (No. 8).

A Diverse Cast of Venues

One of Austin’s most unique characteristics is that planners will find space suitable for events of all stripes in every part of the city — downtown, north, south, east, or west. Below, a handful of places and spaces to consider:

ACL Live at The Moody Theater — Attendees will recognize this state-of-the-art performance space from PBS’ Austin City Limits, the longest-running music series in American television history. Located in the heart of the city center, the venue is adjacent to the W Austin, putting attendees steps away from the downtown action.

Assembly Hall — Head east to find evidence of Austin’s always-expanding events infrastructure, including this 2024 addition that offers a 5,500-square-foot Main Hall, 1,000-square-foot meeting room, and a 2,000-square-foot courtyard for outdoor receptions. Plus, it sits within one of the city’s hottest entertainment districts.

laughing foursome drinking at outdoor bar

Austin’s Palmer Events Center is a centrally located crowd-pleaser of a venue within a stone’s throw of downtown. (Taylor Prinsen)

Palmer Events Center — Across from Lady Bird Lake, this venue has 131,000 square feet of space, including 70,000 square feet of exhibit space, upper-level meeting rooms with balconies, and stunning views of downtown Austin.

University of Texas Commons Conference Center — Event organizers looking to capitalize on Austin’s intellectual capital should look to the University of Texas, where UT’s Speakers Bureau can provide expert speakers and the Commons Conference Center at UT’s Pickle Research Campus just north of the city offers ample square footage for gatherings.

Hill Country — West of the city, a range of resorts are redefining the attendee experience. At Camp Lucy in nearby Dripping Springs, they can throw hatchets and feed alpacas, or at spa- and wellness-focused Miraval Austin just bliss out and recharge.

airport gate with seating, computer work area

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport ranked No. 9 on Food & Wine’s 2023 list of the best U.S. airports for food. (Gensler and Dror Baldinger)

Big Plans for the Future

Austin has always been an attractive place for meetings and events, but the future is looking even brighter for the home of SXSW. Austin-Bergstrom International’s West Gate Expansion project will add three new gates and new concourse amenities, including an outdoor patio, by 2026. And a $1.6-billion redevelopment of the Austin Convention Center will wrap by 2029, modernizing and expanding the center’s rentable space.

Getting around the city will become easier, too, thanks to Project Connect — an ambitious transit plan that will expand the city’s light rail and bus network. To boot, a major restoration of Austin’s famed Historic Sixth Street, popular for its nightlife, will revamp the neighborhood’s daytime experience.

In Austin, truly the best is yet to come.

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