Get to Know: Victoria, B.C.

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While attending the University of Vancouver, Rob Ringma, Tourism Victoria’s director of sales, developed a passion for Victoria’s natural beauty, accessible wilderness and the genuine authenticity of the people. Victoria, located on Vancouver Island’s southern tip, is steeped in rich history, architectural charm and natural beauty, but Ringma notes British Columbia’s capital city is much more than that. “We are forward-thinking, passionate people who want meetings business. We deliver exceptional and, frankly, completely unexpected venues, outstanding service and warm, authentic hospitality. By virtue of everything Victoria has to offer, hosting a meeting here is nothing short of a capital idea.”

Here are three things Ringma says meeting planners should know about Victoria:

There are countless things to do, from the tame to the thrilling.

“Spas that spoil: check. World-class golf: check. Whale watching: check. Zip lining, salmon fishing, garden tours, nightlife, live music ... these are my favorite things, and your delegates will want to check it all out! And if you’re considering an off-site meeting space, we have a variety of weird and wonderful places, from gardens and castles to cider farms and lighthouses.”

There are approximately 6,500 hotel rooms in the region.

“The Victoria Conference Center boasts over 73,000 square feet of unique meeting space and is within two minutes of several world-class accommodations properties. Our other conference hotel partners provide an additional 150,000 square feet of meeting space in various configurations, and we will be welcoming an additional 14,000 square feet of flexible meeting space in late 2017 when the DoubleTree by Hilton is completed.”

Victoria is Canada’s smartest city.

“Yes, Victoria has been rated as Canada’s ‘Smartest City’ by Maclean’s magazine. It is also now internationally recognized as a leadingedge technology hub. It’s why we’re increasingly referred to as ‘Techtoria.’ We are an industrious capital city built on capital ideas and we will apply this same thinking to help you make your meeting exceptional.”

Meeting and event planners can set their sails for this nautical town.

 

Just a 35-minute ferry ride from downtown Seattle can transport you to a totally different world, says Mickey Molnaire, director of marketing and tourism for the Bainbridge Island Chamber of Commerce. You can leave the big-city stresses behind, and you’ll find a vibrant, welcoming community. “I love the way people who live or work here get active and involved,” she says, “and just the friendliness and slower pace of life.”

 

When Nan Devlin became Tillamook County’s first tourism director of Visit Tillamook Coast in 2014, she had one demand: Ban boring meetings! 

And she promises that when you meet in Tillamook County, “You won’t be locked inside a sterile hotel complex. You’ll be able to walk around the villages, enjoy great views and great local food, and have outdoor activities at your fingertips.”