Queens NYC – the borough for Meetings & Events
NYC & Company, New York City’s destination marketing organisation, invites meeting planners and attendees to be adventurous and “Make It NYC” in Queens, the City’s most culturally diverse borough. With expansive hotel meeting spaces, unrivalled entertainment venues and ease of access with two major airports and several subway lines, Queens is a dynamic destination that brings a whole new perspective to meeting in New York City.
“Queens provides unmatched business experiences for planners and attendees that want to turn ordinary meetings and events into something extraordinary,” said Jerry Cito, Senior Vice President of Convention Development. “With its melting pot of culture and international flair, combined with ease of transportation and unique venues, we invite businesses to ‘Make It NYC’ in the world’s borough of Queens.”
Long Island City
Located just across the East River from Manhattan, Long Island City has grown into a thriving arts community, complete with waterfront parks, galleries, museums, eateries and hotels for meetings and events. Accessible by eight subway lines, East River Ferry service and bike lines that extend over the Queensboro and Pulaski Bridges into Manhattan, the neighbourhood is just minutes away from Midtown Manhattan and the Javits Center via the new 7 subway line extension to 34th Street-Hudson Yards.
The 100-room Z NYC Hotel boasts a 5,000 square-foot rooftop venue with picturesque views of the Manhattan skyline, along with private meeting room spaces in a boutique setting. Housed inside an old factory, the 123-room Paper Factory Hotel features 5,000 square-feet of flexible event space, including a unique open air venue called the Tree House and a soon-to-open 2,200 square-foot Bierzelt Beer Tent.
As the branch of the original Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in Manhattan, MoMA PS1 provides planners flexible indoor and outdoor spaces set in a contemporary art environment. Options include an outdoor courtyard capacity for 4,000 attendees, a theatre-style space that can accommodate 45 guests and the museum’s public entrance that can hold 150 standing.
With its raw industrial design, The Foundry is a hidden gem in Long Island City that is perfect for small events up to 180 people. Its indoor space can accommodate 125 people for a seated dinner or 165 in its outdoor courtyard space. In addition to its 1,500 square-foot industrial kitchen, its outdoor terrace provides spectacular views of the Manhattan skyline and Queensboro Bridge.
Other Long Island City hotels that offer meeting and event spaces include the Aloft Long Island City Manhattan View, Hilton Garden Inn New York Long Island City, the Holiday Inn Manhattan View and the Courtyard Long Island City/New York Manhattan View.
Airport-Area Meetings and Events
Accessible through both John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and LaGuardia Airport (LGA), Queens is often the first point of entry for visitors and delegates coming into New York City. In the coming years, both airports will be undergoing major renovations, which will include new amenities and transportation infrastructure improvements that will greatly benefit corporate travelers attending meetings or events nearby.
The surrounding neighborhoods of Elmhurst, Flushing and Jamaica boast a variety of world-class hotels and event spaces. Meeting options at LaGuardia Airport include the recently renovated 358-room LaGuardia Plaza Hotel, with 12,500 square feet of flexible space, along with more than 15,000 square-feet of event space and breakout rooms at the 438-room New York LaGuardia Airport Marriott. The nearby 173-room Sheraton LaGuardia East Hotel offers 14 meeting and event spaces that can be combined to 5,243 square-feet of space.
At JFK Airport, the 330-room Crowne Plaza JFK Airport New York City offers nine meeting rooms and 4,540 square feet of flexible meeting space, complete with fantastic views from the hotel’s ninth floor. Other hotel properties in Jamaica that near JFK Airport include the Hilton Garden Inn Queens/JFK Airport, Radisson Hotel JFK Airport and the Fairfield Inn Marriott New York JFK Airport.
Expected to open in 2018, the 505-room TWA Flight Center Hotel at JFK Airport will contain 40,000 square-feet of meeting and event space, a 10,000 square-foot observation deck that overlooks the runway, and eight food and beverage locations.
In nearby Jamaica, the Jamaica Performing Arts Center is a multi-functional, theater-style venue in the landmarked 1858 First Reformed Dutch Church that holds up to 400 people, complete with state-of-the-art amenities. Another historic venue option, the Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning offers up to 1,173 square-feet of studio space, as well as classroom and conference room space.
Planners looking for large venue space just minutes away from JFK Airport can consider Resorts World Casino, which has 70,000 square-feet of floor space and an outdoor terrace overlooking the Aqueduct Racetrack. As the City’s only casino, the venue is a great fit for product launches, trade shows and business meetings.
Flushing Meadows Corona Park
Home to the 1939 and 1964 World’s Fair, Flushing Meadows Corona Park offers plenty of recreational space and activities for planners looking for standout events, including the USTA Billie Jean King Tennis Center, Queens Zoo, Queens Botanical Garden, New York Science Museum, Queens Museum and Citi Field, home of the New York Mets baseball team.
With more than 200,000 square-feet of hospitality space for corporate meetings and trade shows, Citi Field can host up to 6,000 guests in its meeting and event spaces combined. Easily accessible by several mass transit options including the 7 subway line, the ballpark has multiple venues that can be rented out, including its field, luxury suites, the Citi Auditorium and the Jackie Robinson Rotunda. Watching a Mets baseball game after a long day of meetings in nearby Flushing or Long Island City is also a great team-building activity to consider.
Last summer, the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center completed its $600 million renovation, which included a new 6,000-seat Grandstand Stadium and a $150 million retractable roof over Arthur Ashe Stadium, home to the US Open. The complex is a great place to have a corporate events and team outings, offering team-building tennis experiences.
In the nearby neighborhood of Flushing, Flushing Town Hall offers quaint and artistic spaces, including their recently renovated theatre that can seat up to 190 guests. The venue also features and intimate gallery space that can hold up to 100 people for a cocktail reception. In the warmer months, planners can take advantage of the recently renovated outdoor garden with 2,000 square-feet of event space.
Dining and Culture
Queens’ diversity is well-reflected in its incredible culture, history and global cuisine. Planners can create meetings for their clients with unique experiences, including a tour of the historic Louis Armstrong House Museum in Corona, brewery and history tours of Long Island City with BQE Tours: The Brooklyn Queens Experience and private film screenings at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria.
A must-visit for younger professionals, Astoria is one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the borough and is less than twenty minutes from Midtown Manhattan. Its young and hip vibe is reflected in its restaurants, boutique shops and arts institutions. The area is also home to Melrose Ballroom, a multi-level 25,000 square-foot performance venue that has hosted celebrities including Steven Tyler and Rihanna. The venue has private event space as well, including a main ballroom, rooftop lounge and deck for entertaining.
Foodies can taste their way around the world in Jackson Heights, easily accessible by the 7 subway line (known as the “International Express” by locals). This close-knit urban community welcomes travelers with exotic and tasty dishes on every corner, featuring Tibetan, Colombian, Asian, Latin American and Indian food. Chinese cuisine can also be found in nearby Flushing, which is one of three Chinatowns in New York City.
For more information on planning a meeting or event in Queens, visit nycgo.com/makeitnyc. To contact a member of NYC & Company’s Destination Services team, visit nycandcompany.org/destinationservices