Aria unveils convention space, complete with a rare view

A view of T-Mobile Arena from the South Primrose Veranda during a tour of the new Aria East Convention Center Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018. The new $170 million addition boasts 200,000 square feet of convention space.

The new convention space at the Aria features a view unlike many spots on the Strip. The third level of the 200,000-square-foot addition features an innovative indoor, open-air veranda space overlooking The Park and T-Mobile Arena.

The $170 million East Convention Center project took two years to complete, bringing Aria’s convention space to more than 500,000 square feet. The four-level addition opened Thursday; the first event is next week.

“Convention business demand at Aria continues to grow, especially as planners discover we can accommodate larger groups, allowing us to book into 2020 and beyond,” said Tony Yousfi, Aria’s vice president of sales. “With this expansion, we can better service our clients’ needs and increase the spectrum of events we host."

With other convention space upgrades at MGM Grand, Park MGM and Luxor, totaling approximately 900,000 additional square feet when all the expansions are completed by the end of this year, MGM Resorts International will have 4 million square feet of meeting and convention space.

Aria Opens East Convention Center

A view of the new Aria East Convention Center Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018. The new $170 million addition adds 200,000 sq. ft. of convention space. Launch slideshow »

It features meeting spaces as small as 459 square feet or as big as the 21,011-square-foot Primrose Ballroom at Aria.

“After several very successful years at Aria, during which our customer conference continued to grow in size and complexity, we unfortunately found ourselves pushing the limits of available space,” said Stephan Gray, vice president of corporate marketing for Kronos Inc., one of Aria’s clients. “With the new expansion, we are able to reconsider our multiyear plan.”

One unique aspect of the renovations is the Cypress Executive Lounge located on the second level. It has private suites and a stocked pantry featuring a refrigerator full of everything from water to Dom Perignon champagne. Additionally, the area features a conference room with movable furniture to allow adjustable meeting space, and partially hidden private study room, a feature not seen in the common convention space.

The space is filled with upgraded technology, including increased Wi-Fi connectivity to ensure all guests have reliable internet access, even while attendees operate multiple devices simultaneously.

“We can have 5,000 users, each with three devices going at the same time without hiccups,” Yousfi said. “That’s what we’re built for. Basically 15,000 Wi-Fi ports at one time, is what we can do.”