30 Apr 5 Cool Meeting Spaces in Orlando
No beach? No problem. Orange County Convention Center, one of the largest convention centers in the United States, is only one reason that Orlando consistently ranks among the very top meeting destinations in the country. While it may not boast the sandy beaches of some of its Florida sister cities, Orlando holds its own when it comes to beautiful weather (averaging 233 sunny days a year) and entertainment options galore.
If you’re taking a meeting or event away from the convention space, there are many unique and exciting off-site venues to add flair to your business agenda. Take a look at five of our favorites, ranging from quirky to cultural.
Claiming to be “the most unique event space in Orlando,” Ace Café certainly lives up to its name. Opened here in 2017 as the sixth global location of the café, the 35,000-square-foot dining and entertainment center riffs off the original Ace Café London, which was a mecca for people who loved cars, rock n’ roll and motorcycles. The Orlando space spans two floors and has a full-service restaurant, two kitchens, four bars and a mezzanine that overlooks the main dining space. Planners can book an event here for up to 1,000 people, and packages can include both food and music too—along with a rare collection of motorcycles for admiring.
This 20-acre entertainment destination less than a mile from the convention center provides something for every attendee in your group, with more than 40 restaurants, bars, boutique stores and many attractions. The most notable “icon” in Icon Park is its 400-foot-tall observation wheel, which provides prime views over the entire city. Up to 15 people can fit in each air-conditioned capsule, which also feature Bose audio systems and interactive tables, so adventurous smaller groups can even host a small gathering inside if desired. Afterward, host a dinner at one of the restaurants in the park. Buy-outs of the entire area are also available.
Dr. Phillips Center
There’s a reason Southern Living named this venue among the 50 Best Places in the South—from the gorgeous architecture to the stunning shows and concerts produced inside, Dr. Phillips Center is a true cultural gem in Orlando. Among the largest event spaces: Walt Disney Theater, which has a capacity of 2,700 theater style; the outdoor Seneff Arts Plaza, which can hold 5,500; or the entire indoor Dr. Phillips Center, which can host events for up to 3,000. In 2020, a brand-new venue called Steinmetz Hall will be able to hold 850 for a reception or 600 for a banquet. With an additional 1,700-seat theater as well, Steinmetz is expected to be a game changer for private events.
Quantum Leap Winery
You might not think of Florida as a wine-producing state, so you can surprise and delight your attendees with a meeting or event at this urban winery only 15 minutes from downtown. The owners transport high quality, sustainably grown wine from around the world to the Orlando facility, where they store, finish, blend and package it. More than just a tasting room for wine on tap (which reduces the carbon footprint), Quantum Leap also offers cheese, charcuterie and chocolate bites. Choose from three different options for event rental: the Barrel Room (for groups of up to 35), the Tasting Room (175) or the entire 17,000-square-foot winery (400).
Mango’s Tropical Café
Skip the dull steakhouse in favor of something more colorful, like this Latin-themed restaurant and nightclub. Its unique décor and vibe are sure to spice up your meeting, plus it has all the accouterments meetings require, such as flexible screens, sound and audio systems. With nine different areas available for private rental, Mango’s has a maximum capacity of 2,000 people, serving as the backdrop for everything from launch parties to teambuilding events and dinners. Interactive elements can include live music, ice sculptures, personalized uplighting in your company’s colors and mojito-making classes.