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Meeting and Greeting in Houston
Houston is a city of diversity, and that clearly is reflected in the variety of meeting and event venues located throughout the city. Take a look at some new and newly renovated spaces, from architectural and cultural centers to hotels, restaurants and adjunct medical facilities. Then take a closer look at Bayou Place and consider a local craft brewery for a different and fun setting for a corporate or social event.

New and Noteworthy
In the ever-growing city of Houston, new meeting venues are popping up all over. Take a look at some of the newest spaces available for your next event.

Now occupying 5,000 square feet carved from the old Albert Thomas Convention Center in the Bayou Place renovation, the Architecture Center of Houston (ArCH) houses the offices of the American Institute of Architecture-Houston Chapter, the Architecture Center of Houston Foundation and an architecture gallery. The facility’s meeting rooms and outdoor patio terrace overlooking Buffalo Bayou are available for evening and weekend rentals. The affordable contemporary space features unique bimonthly rotating architectural exhibits and holds up to 300.

The Asia Society Texas Center’s brand-new $48.4 million 38,000-square-foot headquarters opened in April 2012. Designed by architect Yoshio Taniguchi, the center includes the 280-seat Brown Foundation Performing Arts Theater, the 4,000-square-foot Louisa Stude Sarofim Gallery and the 3,000-square-foot Edward Rudge Allen III Education Center as well as three gardens. Facilities are available for special events of various sizes.

Located in the historic Houston Heights, the Heights Theater Events Venue is an exciting new event space. The venue has ample room for event festivities with approximately 7,000 square feet perfect for mingling, dining and dancing. With room for 175 seated guests, the Heights Theater Events Venue is a great showcase for receptions, parties, social hours, corporate events and fundraisers. Rental of the space also features a theater marquee to announce the event, neon lights, projectors, multiple stage areas and a preparation area for outside caterers.

The 255-room Hotel Sorella in Houston has opened a new Sorella Meeting and Events Centre, which provides 10,000 square feet of meeting space at the property. The centerpiece of the new addition is the 4,000-square-foot La Scala Ballroom. The center also features four boardrooms, a small conference room and more than 1,300 square feet of pre-function space. The luxury hotel also offers guests a rooftop pool, spa and health club and the Bistro Alex restaurant.

Omni Houston Hotel’s newest event-space addition is its Regency Ballroom. With capacity for a reception of more than 1,000 guests in its 10,000 square feet of space, it features a pre-function area and floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the grounds. It supplements the hotel’s Grand Salon for functions up to 300 and 11 meeting rooms that can accommodate up to 600.

Opened to the public in late November 2011 and available for special-event bookings as of December, the newest addition to Bayou Place is Sundance Cinemas Houston. This upscale drink-and-dine theater, complete with a fully stocked Sundance Bar and art gallery, is designed to be the perfect place for business meetings, private screenings and receptions. Sundance Cinemas offers upscale theater concessions as well as in-house catering options, on-site event management, plush screening rooms, an outdoor patio and first-class service for an unforgettable experience.

Ramped-up Renovations
In addition to the new spaces on the scene, several properties in Houston recently have been refreshed and refurbished to meet the modern needs of event planners and meeting groups.

Built in 1913 for S.H. Kress & Co., the newly restored space at Main and Capitol in downtown Houston is now a three-in-one venue for food, live music and events as The Capitol at St. Germain. Seating up to 200 or holding a 400-person reception, the majestic turn-of-the-century 8,400-square-foot venue was restored to its original grandeur with revitalized period elements. The Capitol’s unique setting promises something old and something new with its menu of “shared bites,” such as seared bay scallops, risotto croquettes, sashimi and lamb chops, perfect for catering events of every kind.

The Edwin Hornberger Conference Center is a year-round full-service event and meeting venue available for Texas Medical Center (TMC) member institutions and other nonprofit organizations. Located on Houston’s renowned TMC campus, the space underwent a renovation in fall 2011 and reopened under the Trevisio Restaurant and Conference Center. The Hornberger’s spacious and versatile facility is ideal for lunch or dinner meetings, educational workshops, seminars and receptions. Elegantly appointed with Art Deco–inspired carpeting as well as ambient and task lighting throughout, a large foyer greets guests and leads to a 13,000-square-foot ballroom featuring 18-foot-high ceilings adorned with 16-foot beams and original crystal chandeliers. An on-site News Center also can be used for business presentations and press conferences.

With more than 3,500 square feet inside coupled with a 3,000-square-foot patio, Hughes Hangar is a hidden gem along the Washington Corridor that combines a timeless backdrop of 1940s post-Depression architecture with modern-day wonders. Previously the Washington Grill, this upscale restaurant offers entertainment, food and handcrafted cocktails. Considered a speakeasy gastro lounge, the space is available for special event rentals. Dark furniture and eye-catching timeless decorative pieces gives the space an alluring ambiance that allows patrons to sit, relax and sip on cocktails to the tune of contemporary beats.

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