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Houston hosts major convention industry expo

Aiming to show off on the International Meetings Stage, Houston is attracting over 2,000 convention and meetings professionals from 43 countries to one of the industry’s largest annual events.

Hosted by the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE), Expo! Expo! takes place from Dec. 10-12 at the George R. Brown Convention Center, which will give attendees access to hundreds of suppliers in the exhibition and events industry. Helping decide where large conventions will head in coming years, Expo! Expo! shines the spotlight on Houston.

“Houston has changed tremendously in just the last five years, let alone two decades,” said Greg Ortale, president and CEO, Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau. “Being able to show this important industry group what the city is capable of will help us secure major conventions for years to come. Houston has reestablished itself as a top destination.”

Executing more than 20,000 major exhibitions worldwide each year, IAEE’s membership committee last met in Houston in 1989. The George R. Brown Convention Center had just been completed, but few of the hotels and amenities that exist today, such as the Hilton Americas, Discovery Green or Minute Maid Park, were even on the drawing board.

Scheduled to open adjacent to the George R. Brown Convention Center in 2016, the addition of the new Marriott Marquis Hotel will expand Houston’s existing convention capacity. The 1,000-room Marriott Marquis will allow Houston to compete for much larger conventions and tradeshows than the existing hotel space allows for.

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