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Why Denver?

NAMIC’s Annual Convention returns to the Mile High City for the fifth time in event history. The breathtaking scenery is an undeniable draw for most Denver visitors, but what were the considerations that enticed NAMIC to Colorado’s state capital for the 122nd annual event? Kristen Spriggs, NAMIC’s senior vice president of member development, shares some insights.

  • How far in advance did NAMIC decide on Denver as the location for the 122nd Annual Convention?
    People are often surprised at how far out we work to secure our locations and the facilities we use. We signed this contract in 2012. It is a competitive market and we are always looking for the popular new destinations and hot new hotels that can accommodate our 2,000-person event. We have contracts in place for almost every year until 2023 – 2022 is open right now, but we plan to announce that location before the end of the year.

  • What was it about Denver that made it an attractive convention host city?
    Denver is a convenient location with a wonderfully walkable downtown. The central location in the United States plus the flight options – several airlines offer multiple daily nonstop, affordable flights – initially ranked Denver high on our list. Once we started to explore the convention center, which was recently remodeled, and the surrounding hotels, we knew we had a great contender for a future convention destination. When you add to that the plethora and quality of restaurants, unique shopping, the theatre district – all within steps of the convention hotels – we knew it offered the right combination of what NAMIC Annual Convention attendees seek.

  • What about the convention center? What made NAMIC staff want to host the convention there?
    The convention center is spacious enough to host our activities, but it’s compact enough to make it feel like we “own the joint” during the three days of our event. Denver leaders have also recognized what convention attendees want in a venue. For example, there are plenty of comfortable spaces to recharge your electronic devices while connecting with peers or business partners. Visit Denver also has its visitor center located right at the entrance of the convention center, which makes it super convenient to learn about the city and hottest new attractions on your way to sessions or a meeting. Another feature is the quick-service restaurants located on the west side of the center. They’re great to grab a quick bite to eat before or after a busy day.

  • What are you most excited about for the 122nd annual event?
    We are featuring experiential learning that has a local flare. Craft breweries and marijuana dispensaries are two emerging issues for the property/casualty industry, and we will be in the hotbed of those in Denver. It a unique opportunity to offer a first-hand, up-close learning lab as part of our convention agenda.

  • Any tidbits of advice for NAMIC members attending convention?
    Usually my advice is: 1) wear comfortable shoes and 2) bring lots of business cards for all the connections you are going to make. But this year for the Mile High City, I’ll add 3) drink lots of water and 4) bring lip balm because it is dry. And as a contact wearer, I was so happy I had eyedrops with me during my last visit.

  • For those members who haven’t yet registered, what would you like them to know?
    We are planning another great event with the help of your peers on the Convention Planning Committee. It is truly “Where the Industry Comes Together,” and we hope you can join us!

  • Members of the NAMIC member development staff took to the streets of Denver to scope out the sites during one of their visits. The Nickel, a pub inside Hotel Teatro; Euclid Hall in the Larimar Square district; and Linger’s rooftop lounge in the LoHi neighborhood all got stamps of approval. Nickel Pub and Euclid Hall are within walking distance of the Colorado Convention Center and Linger is a short car ride away. Be sure to check out the art installation at the Hampton Inn and Homewood Suites, two of the convention’s featured hotels.