You may remember that we visited Monterey, Calif., back in 2016 before both the Portola Hotel & Spa and adjacent Monterey Conference Center embarked on major overhauls that completely revamped the meetings scene in the city.
Now that the renovations have been completed, we wanted to provide an inside look at the new spaces and what they can offer meeting planners booking events in this particularly refreshing beachfront location, located about 1.5 hours south of San Francisco.
The 379-room Portola Hotel & Spa recently revealed a completely new entrance and lobby, complete with a new lobby bar and restaurant, Jacks Monterey. As attendees pull up to the property, they’ll see a completely new driveway that equally highlights the hotel and conference center, especially at night when the two are lit up. Making their way inside the hotel, attendees will still be greeted by the property’s signature interior trees. However, the new lobby design refreshed its look with playful lanterns hanging from the trees as well as colorful, communal furniture disbursed throughout. Jacks Monterey is equally inviting, as its tables meld with the lobby furniture, making their way into the interior, where a massive bar and more high-top seating is located.
Reopened in January after a $60 million renovation, the adjacent Monterey Conference Center touts floor-to-ceiling windows on its east-facing wall as well as more than 40,000 sf of meeting space. While the atrium lobby is certainly well lit, the 10,000-sf ballroom (that replaced its auditorium) features a wooden ceiling designed to feel like the inside of a ship’s hold, according to Janine Chicourrat, the hotel’s general manager, and it can be divided into five separate meeting rooms, all of which have access to natural daylight.
Here’s a peek at the latest offerings: