News

May 08, 2020
Visit Indy and more than 10 downtown convention hotel partners are helping to ease event planners’ uncertainty of booking large face-to-face events with a new offer. New groups that book events in Indianapolis for any 2020 dates will automatically receive zero attrition for room blocks at all of the city’s major downtown convention hotels. “There is obviously great uncertainty about how to conduct events this year and our city, convention center and hotel partners want to help mitigate financial risks for our customers,” said Leonard Hoops, president and CEO of Visit Indy. Participating… more
May 06, 2020
Taking a big step to chart a course forward, the U.S. travel industry submitted to the White House and governors a document containing detailed guidance for travel-related businesses to help keep their customers and employees safe as the country emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic. Entitled "Travel in the New Normal," the document describes vigorous measures the travel industry will follow to reduce the risk of COVID-19 and help to communicate across each and every step of a traveler's journey. The goal: to allow travel to safely resume as states and municipalities relax physical distancing… more
May 05, 2020
As much as we’re all hungering for good news right now, the staggering numbers reporting the severity of the COVID-19 crisis for the hotel industry can’t be spun in a positive light. New data from the American Hotel & Lodging Association shows that 70 percent of hotel employees have been laid off or furloughed, as eight in 10 hotel rooms across the country remain empty. This puts the impact of COVID-19 on the travel industry at nine times worse than 9/11, with forecasted occupancy rates for this year hitting record lows worse than rates from 1993 during the Great Depression. “The human… more
May 04, 2020
While this year’s IMEX flagship Frankfurt event was canceled back in March, members of the IMEX community will still have opportunities to come together virtually over the next several months. The virtual PlanetIMEX platform aims to keep the spirit of IMEX alive by allowing visitors to explore content, reconnect, talk about future business and continue learning in the company of friends and colleagues. Designed in collaboration with Cvent, PlanetIMEX will feature three 3-D, interactive “islands” as destinations within the platform.  Each island will have its own theme (community, education… more
Apr 30, 2020
The Events Industry Council has created a new task force that will work to develop recommendations, guidelines and resources needed to support the industry’s recovery globally. The APEX COVID-19 Business Recovery Task Force will be led by co-chairs Michael Dominguez, president and CEO of Associated Luxury Hotels International, and Kristin Horstman, senior director of strategic events at Salesforce.  “The strength of our industry has always been in our ability to work together,” said Dominguez. “There has never been a greater need to give confidence to the meetings and events community that… more
Apr 29, 2020
Conference management service and software provider eventPower has launched new services and tools to help planners with live, virtual and hybrid events. Clients can choose from fully managed solutions (working with eventPower’s meeting planners) or software as a service tools. “We wanted to improve the efficiency of the existing sales process and create a software that ultimately seeks to increase revenue for our existing and future clients,” said Laurie Powell, eventPower’s vice president of business development, in reference to the new exhibit selection and management tool. Frank Powell… more
Apr 28, 2020
As June draws closer and many states and counties extend their lockdowns while others start to reopen business, MPI has postponed its annual World Education Congress to November. Originally scheduled for June 6-9 in Grapevine, Texas, WEC will now take place Nov. 3-6 in the same location. In a message to registered attendees, Annette Gregg, senior vice president of experience for MPI, said the association had been working through dozens of scenarios to find the appropriate way to recreate its signature annual event. “Using a filter of prudence and possibilities, we are creating a live… more
Apr 28, 2020
The Ernest N. Morial New Orleans Exhibition Hall Authority is moving forward with its $557-million, five-year capital improvement plan. Approved in 2018, the plan includes internal and external upgrades to Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, a new 7.5-acre pedestrian park and 1,200-room headquarters hotel, and funding to ready an adjacent piece of land for a mixed-use development. After soliciting responses in late 2019 from qualified master developers to create a comprehensive development plan and strategy for a mixed-use project on the 39-acre parcel, the Authority short-listed five… more
Apr 24, 2020
Obviously, times are tough for the events industry right now. It’s something we’re all experiencing, feeling and grappling with as we wake up each morning. So many article direct us all to keep the faith or put on a happy face, but there are some days when we just don’t feel capable of doing that — and that’s OK. One thing you can focus on during this time, however, is working on your own leadership qualities that will help you and your teams emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic stronger than before. Angela Raub, CEO of Leadercast, shares her insights on not only surviving this crisis, but also… more
Apr 22, 2020
 To bring a smile to your face during challenging times, read on to learn about event organizations, venues and companies that are setting a positive example of human compassion and charitable giving in-action. GPHA Launches Hospitality Workers Relief Fund  The Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association is seeking donations to assist with purchasing gift cards for local grocery stores and pharmacies to distribute to Philadelphia hotel, Pennsylvania Convention Center and Independence Visitor’s Center hourly employees who lost their jobs due to COVID-19.  The program’s goal is to raise a minimum… more