GREATER FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. — A convention centre district enhancement project in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., will signifcantly expand the city’s convention facility and add a major hotel, it was announced earlier this year.
The centrepiece of the enhancement project will be the $600 million flagship convention centre headquarters hotel and Broward County Convention Center expansion, expected to be completed in 2020. The project will expand the convention centre by 300,000 square feet, including the anticipated addition of 100,000 square feet of exhibition space, and add a first-class city centre headquarters hotel with a major brand and a minimum 1,000 rooms.
A special waterfront is envisaged, focused on a mix of activities associated with the Intracoastal Waterway and nearby Port Everglades, consistently ranked as one of the three business cruise ports in the world.
The convention centre district encompasses the area surrounding the convention centre, with meetings oriented hotels, as well as retail, dining and proximity to the destination’s airport and cruise port and 23 miles of beaches.
“We are hitting our stride in all areas of visitation, but especially in meetings and conventions, where we are attracting major groups like the upcoming Seatrade Cruise Global,” said Nicki E. Grossman, president of the Great Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau.
More than $700 million in new hotel development is underway in Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County, with more than 1,000 new hotels rooms entering the market during the next two years. Another $400-plus million in improvements and renovations are planned for 2016 at more than 10 hotels, including Marriott’s Harbor Beach Resort, Diplomat Resort & Spa, Westin Beach, W Fort Lauderdale, Renaissance, Bahia Mar and B Ocean Fort Lauderdale.
Recently, Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood announced a $1.8 billion expansion to add a guitar-shaped hotel of 800 rooms. The 34-storey hotel will increase the complex’s rooms to 1,273 and add five new restaurants, a buffet and nightclub, as well as 150,000 square feet of meeting space.
The $147 million Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort opened in September 2015, while the adjacent $180 million Melia Costa Hollywood will open in 2016 and the $240 million Hyde Resort & Residences will open in phases from 2016 to 2018.