It’s no secret that the Caribbean is one of the most popular destinations to enjoy a vacation full of wanderlust and relaxation. In 2017 alone, the Caribbean welcomed more than 30 million visitors. Its sunny weather, clear blue waters, tropical landscapes, variety of cultures and savory cuisines attract people from around the world looking for a laidback, tropical destination. However, what many people may not be aware of is the Caribbean’s more business-savvy side. With large convention centers, extensive hotel capacities and event spaces, the Caribbean welcomes business travelers with open arms. There’s plenty of large spaces among the different islands perfectly equipped to host conferences, meetings, conventions and trade shows. Here are all the reasons you should look into choosing the Caribbean to play host to your next big conference.
Trinidad is the business hub half of a two-island nation. The capital, Port of Spain, is located here and is home to the nation’s business world. Given the country’s important role in the energy industry (it’s the fifth largest exporter of liquified gas in the world!), many important players of the business world visit Trinidad to attend all sorts of conferences, meetings, conventions and trade shows.
Luckily, Trinidad is well-equipped with top accommodations to receive so many visitors every year. The Hilton Trinidad & Conference Centre is one of the best hotels for business in all the Caribbean, as it offers an astounding 42,700 square feet of flexible indoor and outdoor meeting space. With 412 balconied rooms, the property makes the perfect spot for lodging, especially as it’s often the location of many events in town. If you’re looking to utilize more intimate meeting rooms, there are 20 flexible function rooms that each vary in size. Finally, there is a 10,376 square-foot Grand Ballroom to host more elegant receptions and events. Talk about a place that is convenient, practical and resourceful all at once!
If that wasn’t enough, Hilton Trinidad & Conference Center is located just walking distance from Port of Spain’s city center, home to all the important offices and corporations in town. A truly world-class venue, the conference center at the Hilton Trinidad & Conference Center has hosted important entities like IBM Canada and the Trinidad and Tobago Manufacturers Association, and has hosted large conferences such as the Energy Caribbean Conference.
Given that the Dominican Republic is one of the largest trading partners for the US in the western hemisphere, the country makes an excellent location for hosting large-scale conferences. In fact, the textile industry and other manufacturing have been booming in this country ever since the implementation of trade-free zones, making it a great location for people in the industry to network and meet. Santo Domingo, the capital, is especially important, as it serves as the business hub for all important entities in the country. Santo Domingo is an excellent location to hold your next conference, as it’s a city rich with economic activity, invaluable historical landmarks and even world-class golf courses.
Where in Santo Domingo is the best place to host your next conference? Located at the heart of Naco- the business district of Santo Domingo- Embassy Suites Santo Domingo offers everything you need to host an incredible event. Not only is it close to downtown, corporate offices, restaurants and major city attractions, it also has a 24-hour business center and 16,000 square feet of flexible meeting space. This includes two ballrooms and six function rooms. The hotel is also the tallest building in Santo Domingo – offering the most beautiful views in the city and making it the perfect setting to impress your attendees. Given the convenience and central location of the hotel, hosting a conference in Santo Domingo is both a great idea and one that can be easily executed.
An American territory, Puerto Rico is an appealing location to host conferences and meeting events. The convenience of passport-free travel makes planning an event here even more attractive, as it eases the traveling process extensively. There are hundreds of conferences, trade shows, and business events hosted in Puerto Rico every year, and having the opportunity to host abroad in the Caribbean without even having to leave the country makes Puerto Rico such a unique destination for business.
San Juan is an essential business, shopping and entertainment hub for the entire region, as multiple international banks and multinational corporations have their offices here. The pharmaceutical industry specifically has an important role in Puerto Rico’s economy, as most of the prescription drugs used in the U.S. are produced here. Thus, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that two-thirds of people who visit Puerto Rico are actually there for business, not vacation.
Following Hurricanes Irma and Maria in 2017, the Caribe Hilton underwent a $100 million restoration, and is set to open on May 15th, 2019. The conference center at the Caribe Hilton houses 24 meeting rooms and a capacity to host 3,000 guests. The hotel is conveniently located between Old San Juan and Condado, and just a seven minute drive away from the Puerto Rico Convention Center in San Juan- the largest convention center in the Caribbean. Its convenient location, refurbished facilities, infrastructure, and ease of access attracts many American businesses to host meetings, trade shows and conferences.
Aside from its clear blue waters and pristine beaches, The Bahamas plays host to thousands of business travelers. A short 20-minute seaplane ride from Miami will get you to Bimini, home of the Hilton at Resorts World Bimini. This 305-room hotel offers 10,000 square feet of meeting space – plenty for a large-scale convention. Given its close proximity to Florida, Bimini is a great place to host a convention or business meeting if you’re looking for an easily accessible and nearby abroad destination.
However, the true business hub of The Bahamas is Nassau. Here, financial services contribute 15% of the annual economy, making this an essential industry to the region. The British Colonial Hilton Hotel is one of the most popular hotels for business travelers, as it is located in downtown Nassau, making it the best one when it comes to convenience, comfort and accessibility.
Although tourism is the main industry in Barbados, offshore financial and information services remain key sectors of the country’s economy. As a country, Barbados is known for its strong fiscal regulation, democratic tradition and stable currency. No wonder so many businesses hold meetings and conferences in this island every year.
When it comes to the location for these events, Hilton Barbados Resort is an obvious choice. Aside from having superior dining options, it is home to the largest hotel meeting space in Barbados, with more than 10,000 square feet of space. Additionally, there’s a 6,200 square-foot ballroom perfectly capable of hosting a cocktail party or any type of networking event. Located only 5 minutes away from Bridgetown, the capital of Barbados and hub for all local offices and important corporations, Hilton Barbados offers the best of both worlds.