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The Puerto Rico Convention Center: the excitement is building. The building is exciting.

The Puerto Rico hospitality community is excitedly preparing for the biggest event in its history--the opening in 2005 of a magnificent, state-of-the-art convention facility. The new Puerto Rico Convention Center will be the centerpiece of an exciting $400 million investment project on a 113-acre waterfront site near Old San Juan and the Luis Munoz Marin International Airport.

The 580,000-square-foot building will feature a 152,700-square-foot exhibition hall, the largest ballroom in the Caribbean (39,500 square feet), and 36,200 square feet of flexible meeting rooms.

"The Puerto Rico Convention Center is Puerto Rico's single most important project benefiting the tourism industry," says Jorge Pesquera, executive director, Puerto Rico Convention Bureau. "It is our official entry into the major leagues in the convention and trade show marketplace."

The Convention Center District will include an 850room hotel adjacent to the PRCC (slated to open in 2006), shops, restaurants, and other amenities.

THE EXCITING SPACES

PRCC's exhibition hall will accommodate 12,710 attendees banquet style, 8,727 attendees classroom style, and almost 17,000 attendees for receptions or theater setups. It features 30-foot ceilings, and the loading dock accommodates 22 trailers.

Divisible into two sections, the ballroom holds more than 4,000 people for receptions or theater sets, almost 3,300 for banquets, and more than 2,250 for classroom setups. A production control balcony has connections for sound and lighting controls, plus built-in support for portable laser projection and simultaneous translation.

The four meeting rooms on the first level have 18-foot ceilings and the eight on the second floor have 16-foot ceilings. The 12 rooms are divisible into 25 sections. Depending on the function, meeting rooms can accommodate from 50 to 500 people.

THE EXCITING TECHNOLOGY

The goal of the PRCC is to provide a structure that is consistent with the quality, standards, materials, and design meeting planners expect from a full-service convention facility. The sweeping contemporary architecture created by steel, concrete, stone, stucco, and glass would be impressive to the eye but not functional if it were not supported by the technological infrastructure demanded by today's trade shows and conferences.

From coaxial, fiber-optic, and Cat 5 cable to sophisticated zoned paging systems, technology has been a high priority for PRCC. There are connections for line signaling, recording, playback, and in-house broadcasting as well as distributed television for broadcast, cable TV, and satellite down- and up-links. From wiring in the exhibit hall floor to sound jacks in the meeting rooms, PRCC has it.

THE EXCITED PUERTO RICO TEAM

One of the most rewarding parts of doing business in Puerto Rico is getting to know the people who assist you. The Puerto Rico Convention Bureau is PRCC's official sales and marketing team. Its dedicated team of destination and meeting experts will support and consult with groups bringing meetings to the island. Assistance is readily available for housing, transportation, registration, off-site venues, promotion, and other aspects of a successful event. The staff's goals are to ensure that you see Puerto Rico as a world-class destination and have a memorable and worry-free meeting and to share their excitement about the new PRCC.

EXCITING ADVANTAGES TO MEETING IN PUERTO RICO

Going to Puerto Rico is as easy as it is exciting. More than 600 nonstop flights per week fly from the United States. And U.S. citizens don't even need a passport because Puerto Rico is a U.S. commonwealth. (The currency and the mail are the same, too. English and Spanish are the official languages.)

Puerto Rico offers an exciting array of accommodations and will soon boast more than 16,000 rooms. Along with familiar brands like Embassy Suites, Hilton, Hyatt, Inter-Continental, Marriott, Radisson, Westin, and Wyndham, meeting planners will find perhaps lesser known but no less welcoming resorts, beachfront properties, and city hotels. The 490-room Paradisus Puerto Rico Beach & Golf Resort, the island's first all-inclusive property, is scheduled to open in October on Coco Beach.

Puerto Rico's rich 500-year history is preserved in its arts and culture as well as numerous historic sites that provide exciting backdrops to themed receptions and downtime excursions.

THE BUILDING EXCITEMENT

The new Puerto Rico Convention Center is booking dates for 2005 and beyond. That gives you just enough time to come for a site inspection and see for yourself what the excitement is all about.

CONTACT

Dan Melesurgo, Vice President, Global Sales Puerto Rico Convention Bureau

Phone: 800-875-4765

E-mail: dmelesurgo@prcb.org

Web site: www.prconvention.com
COPYRIGHT 2003 American Society of Association Executives
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Title Annotation:Hospitality
Publication:Association Management
Article Type:Product/Service Evaluation
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 1, 2003
Words:741
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