Destination: Albuquerque

By: Samantha Whitehorne

New Mexico's largest city is filled with culture, top hotels and resorts, and about-to-be remodeled spaces.

With more than 300 years of history and as many days of sunshine annually, Albuquerque captures the imagination.

ABQ Fast Facts

Recent and future association meetings: New Mexico Dental Association's 103rd Annual Convention, National Social Science Association's National Fall Professional Development Meeting, Southwestern Finance Association's 2013 Conference

Hotel Rooms: 15,000; 900 within walking distance of the convention center

Convention Center Exhibit Space: 67,000 square feet

Time From Airport to Downtown: 10 minutes

What Else?: Many movies and TV shows are produced in Albuquerque, as the city can double as nearly any other U.S. location. The list includes the AMC series Breaking Bad and movies such as The Lone Ranger, The Avengers, and Crazy Heart.

Convention center facelift. The West Complex of the Albuquerque Convention Center will soon have a new look. Preliminary designs for the $20 million project include massive windows with panoramic views, a new exterior façade, and a total remodel of the ballroom. The project will be phased to allow for ongoing convention and meeting business. Construction is slated to begin by mid-2013 and is expected to be completed by the end of 2014.

Top-notch hotels and resorts. More than 46,000 Conde Nast Traveler readers voted three Albuquerque properties as best in the Southwest. The Hotel Andaluz—a historic, AAA Four Diamond, LEED-gold-certified boutique hotel downtown—was named one of the top 25 hotels in the region. In addition, the Sandia Resort and Casino and Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort and Spa were named to the publication's list of top 25 Southwest resorts.

Cultural venues. Albuquerque is recognized as one of the most culturally diverse cities in the country, and its meeting spaces reflect that. The National Hispanic Cultural Center's 219,000 square feet of meeting space will give attendees an opportunity to mingle while learning about Hispanic culture around the world.

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

Samantha Whitehorne

Samantha Whitehorne is deputy editor of Associations Now in Washington, DC.