Why Colorado is a Hotspot for Conferences and Conventions

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Why Colorado is a Hotspot for Conferences and Conventions


By Beth Buehler


Colorado is known for offering a wide range of excellent meeting and event venues, four seasons with memorable activity options, and western style and friendliness. When combining this with top-notch destination marketing organizations (DMO), destination management companies and suppliers that partner to roll out the red carpet for groups, it is no surprise that Colorado is a hotspot for conferences and conventions.


It’s a fact confirmed by Cvent’s most recent Top Meeting Destinations lists from 2023 that evaluate and recognize cities that are successfully attracting meetings and events. The leading meetings, events and hospitality technology provider evaluated more than 12,500 cities worldwide listed on the Cvent Supplier Network, one of the world’s largest venue-sourcing platforms. Colorado’s three largest communities landed in the top 50 for North America: Denver (10) Aurora (25) and Colorado Springs (42).


When considering the wide range of communities in the state for conferences and conventions, make sure to browse Destination Colorado Meetings’ website for great information and an easy online RFP process to match your needs with the organization’s 150-plus members.

Mountain View Pavilion rendering, courtesy Gaylord Rockies Resort & Convention Center

Hotels and resorts with big space

In Aurora, Gaylord Rockies Resort & Convention Center has more than 500,000 square feet of indoor, outdoor and pre-function meeting and event space. From large-scale meetings and trade shows to intimate board meetings, corporate retreats and incentive trips, the resort can accommodate nearly any gathering. The sheer size of the property also is reflected in the 1,501 a guest rooms (including 114 suites) and eight dining outlets. In 2024, Gaylord Rockies is re-concepting three of its restaurants, launching a new dining experience, remodeling the Grand Lodge, and adding the Mountain View Pavilion with more than 12,000 square feet of indoor event space, 14,000 square feet of outdoor terraces and patios, and 15,000 square feet of lawn.


As the world’s longest-running Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five-Diamond resort, The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs is also hard to beat for memorable events. Whether planning a board meeting for 10 executives or a multiday conference for 5,000 attendees like the annual Space Symposium, there is 315,000 square feet of well-appointed function space and spectacular outdoor venues. The property’s convention center includes Bartolin Hall, Broadmoor Hall, International Center and Colorado Hall and encompasses more than 200,000 square feet of space.


In the heart of The Mile High City, Sheraton Denver Downtown Hotel has 133,000 square feet of meeting and event space and a prime location on the 16th Street Mall. The entire hotel was transformed and unveiled in 2021 and is just blocks from the Colorado Convention Center, Denver Art Museum, Denver Performing Arts Complex, Denver Union Station, Coors Field and more.


Elsewhere on Colorado’s Front Range and conveniently located just off Interstate 25, Embassy Suites by Hilton Loveland Conference Center has 263 guest suites and more than 58,000 square feet of function space, including the 28,800-square-foot Front Range Ballroom and 7,200-square-foot High Meadows Ballroom. There is a separate entrance and parking for the conference center, giving it a private feel from the rest of the hotel. For additional options and large groups, considering booking in tandem with The Ranch Events Complex next door.

The Ranch Event Complex, courtesy Visit Loveland

In the mountains, Beaver Run Resort & Conference Center in Breckenridge and Grand Hyatt Vail have ski-in/ski-out locations, spas and more than 40,000 square feet of meeting and event space. Beaver Run has 22 meeting rooms and some of the best access to both the slopes and historic downtown Breckenridge. A variety of lodging types and dining options also make this a popular location for groups who keep coming back year after year.


Located alongside Gore Creek, Grand Hyatt Vail is Vail’s largest meeting facility and has three ballrooms that range in size from 2,000 to 6,000 square feet. There also are breakout rooms, boardrooms and 4,800 square feet of outdoor and tented space in the summer and early fall. Groups can choose from several dining outlets, activities such as Topgolf Swing Suites, and 285 guest rooms (including 29 suites) and 84 private residences.


Beaver Run Resort and Grand Hyatt Vail along with the slope-side Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa and Viewline Resort Snowmass, Autograph Collection have hosted the 500-person Colorado Governor’s Conference on Tourism as it moves between mountain and city destinations annually. The recently renovated Viewline Resort has over 28,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor meeting space and access to additional space at sister property Wildwood Snowmass located nearby. Park Hyatt Beaver Creek has more than 20,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor options for groups and 190 guest rooms.

Colorado Convention Center expansion opening in December 2023, courtesy Evan Semón and VISIT DENVER

Purpose-built convention and conference centers

Another reason Colorado is a hotspot for conferences and conventions is the selection of standalone convention centers of varying sizes. The biggest news is completion of the 200,000-square-foot expansion of Colorado Convention Center (CCC) in downtown Denver at the end of last year. The addition was constructed on top of CCC and includes the 80,000-square-foot Bluebird Ballroom that can be divided into 19 rooms; 35,000 square feet of pre-function space with floor-to-ceiling windows; and a 20,000-square-foot rooftop terrace. Equally impressive is the new catering kitchen on this floor.


The next largest option is Keystone Conference Center in Keystone with 100,000 square feet of space including three ballrooms (the largest is 19,800 square feet) and 50 meeting rooms. The venue can hold groups of up to 2,500 people and has the added benefit of being near the slopes at Keystone Resort.

Telluride Conference Center, courtesy Telluride Ski Resort

Telluride Conference Center in Mountain Village and Copper Mountain Conference Center both have about 16,000 square feet of meeting and event space and prime ski resort locations. The newly renovated and renamed Snowmass Conference & Events Center has more than 8,000 square feet of function space across nine rooms. Estes Park Conference Center, also in the mountains but not on the slopes, features 20,000 square feet of space including two ballrooms and 12 meeting rooms.


Mid-sized communities like Pueblo and Grand Junction have attractive options in the heart of their downtowns, providing easy access to hotels, shops, restaurants, nightlife and attractions. There is 47,000 square feet of meeting event space at Pueblo Convention Center, while Grand Junction Convention Center is about half the size at 24,100 square feet of space.

A beautiful backdrop for meetings, courtesy Estes Park Events Complex

Event complexes expand options

While not specifically built for conferences and conventions, there are a variety of event complexes around Colorado that host their fair share of meetings. The Ranch Events Complex in Loveland features FNBO Exhibition Hall, Larimer County Conference Center, 4-H Youth & Community Building and Blue Arena, a large space that hosts everything from major concerts to professional minor league hockey games.


Infinity Park Event Center in Glendale has eight meeting spaces, including an 8,600-foot ballroom that has been the location of Destination Colorado’s annual Colorado Meetings Showcase the past two years. Infinity Park also has an outdoor festival plaza that can hold up to 2,500 guests. Meanwhile, Estes Park Events Complex has 33,000 square feet of indoor space as well as a pavilion and covered grandstands. The most distinct option here is the Silo Meeting Room that holds up to 15 people and is in an actual silo.


It’s easy to see why Colorado is a hotspot for conferences and conventions with all the great venues and a wide range of communities from cities to mountain towns and everything in between!


Top Photo: Pueblo Convention Center, courtesy of Jacob Rivera


Colorado native Beth Buehler has been editor of Colorado Meetings + Events magazine for 19 years, helped launch Mountain Meetings magazine, and was on the team that introduced Southwest Meetings + Events. She has planned numerous meetings and events and enjoys exploring Colorado.