Each Friday, I bring you five new things you may not know about cities around the world to help you decide just where to hold your next event. This week, what's new in Nashville, America's "Music City."
In 10 days, Nashville's Gaylord Opryland hotel will reopen its doors after devastating summer floods.
Its highly anticipated return will present event planners with the perfect holiday gift - the return of 600,000 square feet of meeting and exhibit space in Nashville.
As the calendar inches closer to the grand opening date of November 15, Gaylord Hotels Senior Vice President and Chief Sales Officer Kemp Gallineau shared his enthusiasm with About.com:
"I cannot begin to describe the feeling of pride that goes along with having been part of this process," said Gallineau. "From the beginning of this restoration, our customers have shown us strong support and have demonstrated their brand loyalty in a way that is a true testament to the relationships we've built throughout the Gaylord brand. With that in mind, and a goal to surpass the high levels of service and facilities we already offered, we have created an environment that is greater than we've ever been. Our STARS are anxious to greet our guests with a new pep in their step, a smile on their lips and an opportunity to say 'welcome back.'"
Another major hotel project is providing an added dose of holiday cheer for Nashville.
©Omni Hotels & Resorts
The city recently came to an agreement with Omni Hotels & Resorts to bring a new 800-room convention center hotel to downtown Nashville. The property, which will be located across from the under-contruction Music City Center, will feature more than 80,000 square feet of event space. Both are set to open in 2013.
Nashville's Frist Center for the Visual Arts gained immense prestige recently when it became one of just three cities in the world (and only two in the US) to host The Birth of Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Musée d'Orsay.
James Abbott McNeill Whistler. Arrangement in Gray and Black, No. 1: Portrait of the Painter's Mother, 1871. Oil on canvas, 56 3/4 x 64 in. ©RMN (Musée d'Orsay), Jean-Gilles Berizzi
Currently on view through January 23, 2011, the exhibition of 100 paintings (including 17 that are only being shown in Nashville) shows the evolution of Impressionism through the eyes of mid-to-late 19th century artists in Paris. Among the works is the painting best known as Whistler's Mother (pictured above). Special pricing is available to groups of 10 or more. Call (615) 744-3247 for information.
Celebrate Lowcountry cuisine by checking out the new restaurant of one of Nashville's most distinguished chefs.
Fish & Co. is by James Beard award-winning chef Louis Osteen, known for infusing his seafood-inspired menus with the flavors and charm of the south. Drool-worthy offerings include Blue Ridge Rainbow Trout stuffed with Crabmeat and Osteen's famed Shrimp & Grits. Special events for groups of 20 up to 2,000 can be accommodated. Whole restaurant buy-outs also are available. Dial (615) 320-1119 to inquire about bookings.
Nashville's Music City Walk of Fame is about to add six more stars.
Little Jimmy Dickens
This Sunday, Little Jimmy Dickens (shown above), Eddy Arnold, Bobby Hebb, Kris Kristofferson, Rascal Flatts and Mel Tillis will all be inducted into the prestigious collection of musical standard-setters. Their addition brings the number of stars along Nashville's Music Mile to 48. Past honorees have included Kid Rock, Dolly Parton and Little Richard.