As the 13th largest metropolitan economy in the U.S., Minneapolis outperforms its peers, including Kansas City, Denver, Indianapolis and Charlotte when it comes to tourist attractions and hospitality. A vibrant food and music scene, world-class museums and theaters, an influx of upcoming hotels and venues— including a Four Seasons in 2022—and the tourist magnet that is the Mall of America, all combine with the great outdoors where scenic lakes abound—providing visitors to the city with many Instagrammable backdrops for any event.
It is no surprise that based on the booking trends we are seeing for 2020 and beyond, Minneapolis made it to the short-list of up-and-coming cities in CWT Meetings & Events’ 2020 Future Trends Report. Minneapolis is the Goldilocks of locations; it’s not too large, crowded or overwhelming, and it’s not too remote, dull and boring. It has everything a modern city can offer, at prices that are more reasonable, and a pace that is much more comfortable.
As expected, hosting the Super Bowl in 2018 greatly increased Minneapolis’ visibility—and the city took every advantage to raise its profile. The Bold North, as we’re now known, takes pride in who we are and what we have to offer. It’s this authenticity that is helping to drive more organizations and people to come experience what the city has to offer—in all kinds of weather.
The successful staging of Super Bowl LII and a host of other big sports events over the years, including NCAA Final Four, Stanley Cup Finals, Ryder Cup, World Series, to name a few, have brought not just fans, but potential clients and customers to the city—whether they’re having a great experience on the ground or watching the festivities from wherever they are. With each of these events, the infrastructure improves and the city deepens and grows its talent pool in the event industry. It’s a virtuous cycle that is putting Minneapolis on the map for events. And the cycle continues as events contribute to the Twin Cities by accelerating economic growth, attracting and motivating talent, and serving as a platform to ignite innovation.
Bottom line: Event owners are increasingly looking for experiences—whether in culinary diversity, music and arts, community give back programs, outdoor activities—versus just a place to hold a meeting. Rising destinations like Minneapolis have all these characteristics in common. The Twin Cities are competitive because we have what buyers value in a destination that perhaps they haven’t been to—but now have their sights on.