Long Beach and the various other meetings-friendly communities in L.A.’s South Bay and Westside areas share good looks, pleasant year-round weather and easy accessibility to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Most of these destinations also have beachfront appeal, and a few even promise a more attractive price tag than downtown L.A.
From Long Beach to Manhattan Beach to Beverly Hills, the region is ripe with fantastic options for a standout meetings itinerary.
Long Beach, located in the center of Southern California within minutes of L.A. and Orange County attractions, is one of the few group-friendly cities that boasts an urban downtown waterfront, according to Steve Goodling, president and CEO of the Long Beach Area CVB. He says the Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center is an anchor of the waterfront, with panoramic views of Rainbow Harbor and more than five miles of sandy beachfront.
“Long Beach offers all the amenities and excitement of a big city with the relaxed atmosphere of a seaside resort,” he says. “Within an eight-block area around our convention center, attendees will discover shopping venues, entertainment and nightlife, plus more than 100 restaurants serving cuisine from around the globe.”
Near the convention center, which earlier this year completed a multimillion-dollar renovation that included enhanced lobbies, meeting rooms and hallway areas, are meetings-friendly Hyatt Regency, Westin, Renaissance and Hilton properties, as well as the Hotel Maya and the Queen Mary. Close to the Long Beach Airport, the Long Beach Marriott also welcomes groups.
Long Beach attractions include the Aquarium of the Pacific and the Museum of Latin American Art, both of which host off-site events.
“Long Beach is a water sport paradise,” Goodling adds, citing everything from kayaking and kite surfing to stand-up paddle boarding and whale watching as fun possibilities for visiting groups.