With just a few weeks to go until IMEX America returns to Las Vegas, destinations, venues and suppliers from around the world and across North America are gearing up to showcase their latest products and services for meeting and event planners. There’s plenty of news to share – from new venue and hotel openings, redevelopments, innovative incentive activities and a strong focus on sustainable meetings and events (read more in the IMEX America show preview).
The expanded show floor at IMEX America, taking place September 10 - 12 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center at The Venetian® | The Palazzo® in Las Vegas, will be home to around 3,500 suppliers from 150 countries including new exhibitors Pasadena Convention & Visitors Bureau, Leonardo Hotels, The Hoxton, Destination Cleveland, Los Cabos Tourism Board as well as an extended Tech Pavillion showcasing the latest event tech innovations.
To date, more than 30 current exhibitors have expanded their presence at the show, including Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Bureau, Royal Caribbean International, Hyatt Hotels, NYC & Company, Hungary and Dallas.
North America in the spotlight – 100 booths, 40 states
Around 4,000 qualified buyers will come together during the three days of the show to plan and book everything from high-level incentives to huge association conventions as well as to make important new contacts, strengthen existing relationships and seal critical business deals. This year planners doing interstate business in North America will find 100 booths representing over 1,000 suppliers from 40 states including individual destinations such as Wilmington, Jackson Hole, Spokane and Albuquerque.
Attendees can also dive into all things experiential at a new Discovery Zone, dedicated to experimentation and immersive activities. This forms part of the show’s focus on Imagination, IMEX’s Talking Point for this year. Planners can also get stuck into practical hands-on workshops and experience truly immersive role play with surprise sensory components. IMEX America’s new Discovery Zone is designed to fuel fresh thinking and encourage creative risk-taking.
Explore high-stakes decision-making
Immersive learning experiences don’t get more interactive – or dramatic – than InsideRisk’s session – What kind of leader are you under maximum pressure? Based on the true story of Swiss executive J.P. Mottu, who in 1988 found himself in charge of saving a young engineer kidnapped by Colombian rebels, the program thrusts participants into real-life negotiations that have been kept secret for over 25 years.
The multi-media workshop, taking place on Smart Monday – IMEX’s pre-show day of education, is designed to help leaders dramatically increase their trust-building and critical thinking abilities. Participants experience high-stakes situations individually and in groups, exchanging invaluable insights and forging memorable relationships with peers.
Laughter is the best medicine
By contrast, another immersive activity sure to bring a smile to attendees’ faces, will be laughter yoga at the new Laughter Lab. Part of the Inspiration Hub, sponsored by Maritz Global Events, home to all show floor education, the Laughter Lab hosts several sessions on the power of laughter by Sarah Routman from Laugh for the Health of It, LLC. Laughter yoga encourages creative play with prolonged voluntary giggles that start intentionally and become spontaneous, providing plenty of positive health benefits.
There are many opportunities to relax and revive during busy days at the show, starting with the Be Well Lounge, brought to the show by Lee Papa's Mindfulness Lounge™ and supported by Imprint Events Group. Rise early for the IMEXrun (registration now live), sponsored by Italian National Tourist Board - ENIT, CORT, Hilton and Maritz Global Events, or take part in daily 7 a.m. mind, body and soul movement classes with live music, courtesy of JessicaMicheletti.com. Alternatively, attendees can learn how to weave wellbeing into their own events by following the dedicated health and wellbeing education track or trying out new ‘Nook Pods’. The pods, which were a big hit at IMEX in Frankfurt, recognize that acoustics affect our wellbeing – in particular the 30-50% of people who are introverts. They provide a quiet, private space to recharge or simply to concentrate.
Education remains a firm focus of IMEX America and there are more than 180 learning opportunities over the entire show this year – all free of charge and designed for meetings and events industry professionals at all levels, both buyers and exhibitors. Education sessions cover 10 tracks including Business Skills, Creative Learning, Personal Development, Technology and Trends & Research. Each track provides fresh thinking and new learning formats designed to make meetings more engaging, embrace new ways of thinking and human behavior, consider big trends and issues, and explore innovation and imagination.