Destination: Nashville

By: Samantha Whitehorne

Music City is guaranteed to make your attendees feel like rock stars.

Tennessee's capital city boasts lots of new and unique venues for meetings of all sizes.

Nashville Fast Facts

Recent and future association meetings: Emergency Nurses Association Annual Conference, Georgia Bankers Association Annual Meeting, National Association for Campus Activities National Convention

Hotel Rooms: 35,950 citywide

Nashville Convention Center Exhibit Space: 118,675 square feet

Distance From Airport to Downtown: 10 miles

What Else? In 1892, Joel Owsley Cheek developed a recipe for a blend of premium coffee beans, which he convinced the manager of the Maxwell House Hotel to serve exclusively. The coffee was so well received that Cheek got permission to use the Maxwell House name for his coffee. Allegedly, the phrase "good to the last drop" was coined by President Theodore Roosevelt after he sipped coffee at the hotel.

Bigger downtown meeting space. Scheduled to open in May, the 1.2 million-square-foot Music City Center will double the current convention center's downtown meeting and exhibit space and feature a 350,000-square-foot exhibit hall and 57,000-square-foot ballroom. The center will also have a green roof and LEED certification.

Go Greek for a day. In Centennial Park, you'll find the world's only full-scale reproduction of the ancient Parthenon in Athens. Nashville's version, which can be rented out for meetings and events after regular business hours, houses an art gallery and museum as well as Athena Parthenos, the tallest indoor sculpture in the Western world.

Diverse restaurant scene. Nashville is quickly becoming a destination for foodies. Bon Appetit magazine named the Catbird Seat number five on its list of the top-10 new U.S. restaurants in its September 2012 issue.

Samantha Whitehorne is deputy editor at Associations Now in Washington, DC. Email: [email protected]

Samantha Whitehorne

Samantha Whitehorne is editorial director of Associations Now in Washington, DC.