There's a major new meetings venue in Philly. Last summer, the 295-room W Philadelphia, located in a 51-story skyscraper in the heart of downtown, opened its doors. “Philadelphia is the quintessential city for a W hotel—rebellious, unexpected, and original,” says Tom Jarrold, global brand leader of W Hotels Worldwide. 

“Its diverse neighborhoods and rich history attract travelers from around the country  and the world, and we are excited to put our unique stamp on its luxury hotel scene.”

With 36 event rooms and more than 45,000 square feet of event space, W Philadelphia offers a variety of meeting space. Here’s an overview:

Pre-Function Space: The event space is spread across three floors, with pre-function space for receptions and networking on floors four and five. The floors are connected by a grand staircase lit by a floating chandelier made of 10,000 gold coins as a nod to the city’s banking history.

Meeting Rooms: W Philadelphia’s meeting rooms have an industrial quality to their design. Hidden behind amber glass doors, they’re designed to evoke the feeling of private recording studios or a soundstage.

WET Deck and Secret Garden: Located atop the seventh floor, the WET Deck features striking views of the city and includes a heated, year-round pool with intricate green and blue custom tile work. Topiary runs alongside the balcony wall, shielding the pool from the cityscape and creating an intimate environment.

Around the corner, guests will discover a lush greenspace known as the Secret Garden. Landscaped with topiaries and myrtle trees, it features illuminated busts of Benjamin Franklin and Marie Antoinette—they spent time together in Versailles when Franklin was the first foreign ambassador of the United States—tucked amid the greenery for a modern twist on traditional garden design.

Stevens’ Prophecy: Concealed behind a two-way mirror, Stevens’ Prophecy is a secret salon with artwork celebrating Philadelphia native, Grace Kelly. The name is a reference to a yearbook prediction by her classmates at the Stevens School in Germantown that she would become “a famous star of stage and screen.”

Great Room: The sun-drenched Great Room ballroom features floor-to-ceiling windows and abstract floral carpeting with exaggerated, digitized references to 1940s needlepoint artwork on display at Philadelphia’s Fabric Workshop and Museum. Capacity: 550 for a reception, 410 for a seated banquet.

Atlantic City

Last year was the highest grossing ever for the United States commercial gaming industry.* Meeting planners who hold gatherings at casinos may just feel like they’ve hit the jackpot, too. Casino-based events provide one-stop convenience—the amenities of convention centers and bountiful hotel rooms, plus activities, dining, and nightlife. 

 

Doreen Guerin grew up an Air Force brat, living in Texas, Louisiana, and later England and France. When she was 13, her parents moved to Queens and, Guerin says, “I’m a New Yorker through and through.” That’s apparent from her accent as well as her dedication to the Javits Center, where, as the senior vice president of sales and marketing, she oversees the booking and event-related operations for more than 170 events each year. 

M+E: What fueled your interest in working in the conventions industry?

 

If you want to be sure your meeting in the Northeast will strengthen team bonds, consider holding it at Cliff House Maine. Nestled on 70 acres atop Bald Head Cliff on the southern coast of Maine, the luxury property offers 226 guest rooms, including 40 suites, an adjacent 18-hole golf course, and 25,000 square feet of conference and meeting space that can accommodate up to 300 attendees. Venues include the Atlantic Ballroom, with its double-height panoramic windows offering endless views of the Atlantic Ocean.