Ottawa Convention Centre
Fairmont Chateau Laurier
Casino du Lac-Leamy
Recommended Website: ottawatourism.ca
Average Hotel Room Rate: $133.99 (2009)
Getting There: The following airlines serve Ottawa from Canadian destinations: Porter; Air Canada; Bearskin; Canadian North; First Air; WestJet.
Convention Facilities: Currently under construction and expected to launch in April, 2011, the Ottawa Convention Centre (formerly the Ottawa Congress Centre) will feature almost triple the space (192,000 sq. ft.) of its previous incarnation. Amenities include 28 meeting rooms; a 56,000-sq.-ft. multipurpose hall accommodating 6,260, theatre-style and 4,600, banquet style; and a 21,300- sq.-ft. ballroom with a view of the Rideau Canal and Parliament Hill.
The Hampton Inn Ottawa and Conference Centre is adding 400 guestrooms to its property, which features 36,000 sq. ft. of meeting space, including two ballrooms, 23 meeting rooms and two amphitheatres accommodating 230.
Recently, the Westin Ottawa completed a $40-million renovation to guestrooms and public and meeting spaces. Its 27 function rooms total 44,000 sq. ft. of flexible convention and meeting space, hosting 3,000.
Accommodating groups of 20 to 800, Fairmont Chateau Laurier offers more than 400 guestrooms and 31,000 sq. ft. of meeting space, including 18 meeting rooms, six of which are over 2,000 sq. ft. each.
Attractions + Distractions
In May, 2010, the refurbished Canadian Museum of Nature reopened. Eight meeting and event spaces host receptions for 500 and banquets for 300.
Thirty minutes from Ottawa, the retrofitted Diefenbunker museum hosts 500. Exhibits and recreated areas provide a glimpse into the Cold War, when the underground bunker was built to house government and military officials in case of nuclear attack. Four spaces available for meetings and events.
The Casino du Lac-Leamy, in Gatineau, Que., has renovated its popular theatre, which can seat up to 1,100 and is available for events, dinner shows and meetings.
À la Carte
Town, a gastropub serving Italian cuisine, opened in June, 2010, spearheaded by owner Marc Doiron (former pastry chef of Rideau Club, a popular private club in O awa).
Also launched in June, 2010, in Old O awa South, was Taylor’s Genuine Food & Wine Bar, with an emphasis on on small plates. Overseeing things is Ottawa restaurateur/chef John Taylor, of venerable Domus Cafe.