Washington DC meeting planning offers planners some of the most unique and historic settings and event locations. Home to some of the most recognizable monuments and buildings in the world, Washington, DC offers endless opportunities for meeting and event planning. From the 2.3-million-square-foot Walter E. Washington Convention Center to chic restaurants and unique Washington DC event venues within the various museums of the Smithsonian Institution, a plethora of meeting and event facilities await in the nation's capital. Washington, DC is also home to more than 150 embassies, chancelleries and diplomatic residencies - many of which are available for private events.
Located within close proximity to several growing cities such as Alexandria and Arlington, Washington, DC offers several alternatives to the usual downtown DC event planning. Host your next meeting in Alexandria and take pleasure in a historic waterfront community with 18th- and 19th-century architecture, unique shops, galleries, restaurants and major hotels. Select from more than 9,000 hotel rooms and 400 restaurants located in Arlington and enjoy the luxury of a small-town meeting while situated only minutes from Reagan Washington National Airport, Arlington National Cemetery and all major Washington, DC attractions.
There is no lack of transportation options when it comes to DC meeting planning. Access to the city's many attractions, DC meeting hotels, and neighborhoods is readily available through its efficient transportation system: Metro and bus service touch almost every point of interest within the city. The DC Circulator bus provides another transportation option, serving as a connection between the National Mall, Union Station, Georgetown, and the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. The District also prides itself in being one of the most accessible cities in the world for the physically challenged. Metro and Smithsonian guides are available to help handicapped individuals utilize public transportation, while City Scooter Tours provide wheelchair and mobility scooter rentals for any length of time.
Well-planned from its inception, the District is dotted with beautiful parks, gardens and public spaces. West and East Potomac parks comprise more than 720 riverside acres that are divided by the Tidal Basin. In addition to 1,600 cherry trees, West Potomac Park is home to many of the city's major memorials. East Potomac Park showcases more than 11 different types of cherry trees and serves as an outdoor activity center with picnic grounds, tennis courts, three golf courses, bike paths and a large swimming pool. Rock Creek Park offers an outdoor amphitheater, playgrounds, the remains of Civil War battlements and endless acres of wooded parkland to explore and outdoor locations for Washington DC meeting planning professionals to choose from. Approximately 91 acres of wilderness preserve can be found on Theodore Roosevelt Island, dedicated to the memory of the nation's 26th president. This public park is now a habitat for numerous animals including rabbits, great owls, fox, turtles and groundhogs and has over two miles of foot trails for visitors to wander.
Planning events in Washington, DC gives you options that you would be hard-pressed to find in many other cities. Washington, DC's flourishing cultural scene is influenced by people from around the world. Whether your taste buds are craving Asian, Mediterranean, Portuguese or something else entirely, choose from an eclectic blend of restaurants such as Zengo, TenPenh, Zola, Citronelle, Rasika, DC Coast and the Old Ebbitt Grill. Catch a world-class performance at the Kennedy Center, Wolftrap, Ford's Theater or Verizon Center. Watch the Nationals play ball at Nationals Park in southeast Washington along the fast-developing Capitol Riverfront adjacent to the Navy Yard, or check out a DC United game at RFK Stadium.
Secondary to the federal government, Washington, DC's primary industry is tourism. However, there are several other notable industries thriving within this metropolitan city. The law, higher education, medical research, publishing and government research industries are booming. The city also serves as the world headquarters for many well-known companies including Atlantic Media Company, Special Olympics, Inc., AARP, Inc., Gallup, Inc. and the International Monetary Fund.
View the other pages in the Washington, DC Destination Guide to learn more information about event and meeting planning in Washington, DC.