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2018 Preview: 10 Most Anticipated Boston Venues for Meetings and Events

The hotels, conference spaces, restaurants, and cultural spaces slated to open in Boston for events and entertaining this year.

Four Seasons Hotel & Private Residences One Dalton Street
Four Seasons Hotel & Private Residences One Dalton Street
Photo: Courtesy of Four Seasons Hotels

Looking for a new venue for your next event? Here are the most anticipated Boston restaurants, corporate event venues, hotels, conference centers, and party rooms slated to open in 2018. These new and renovated Boston venues will accommodate groups large or small for private and corporate events, conferences, meetings, weddings, business dinners, teambuilding activities, cocktail parties, and more.

1. The space formerly known as Ming Tsai's popular restaurant Blue Ginger in Wellesley will be converted into Smith & Wollensky's first suburban location. The steak house will measure 12,000 square feet and will include a 225-seat dining room, a 25-seat indoor bar, and a small patio. Three private dining spaces will accommodate 90 seated guests or 110 for a cocktail-style reception, with full buyouts available for as many as 275 guests. The restaurant will also include its signature dry-aging room, serving Prime dry-aged steaks and chops and premium seafood with an extensive wine lists.

2. Opening in late 2018, the Four Seasons Hotel & Private Residences One Dalton Street will make Boston one of a select number of cities with two Four Seasons Hotels. Towering 742 feet high, the One Dalton project will be the tallest residential building in the city, changing the Boston skyline. The hotel will span floors 1 through 23, while floors 26 to 61 will be private residences. The hotel will feature a ballroom, meeting rooms, a gym with a spa, and a signature restaurant.

3. Located in the former Mantra space just off of Boston Common, Boston Chops Downtown Crossing will be the sister location of chef/owner Chris Coombs' popular restaurant in the South End. Located in what was once the Old Colony Trust Company bank, the historic space will include original bank details, like a gigantic vault and lots of marble. There will be significant space for private parties and meetings, as well as a special "instagrammer" table dedicated to getting the perfect pic. Boston Chops DTX is expected to open at the end of February or beginning of March.

4. Villa Victoria Center for the Arts is an ornate 19th-century church owned by the Inquilinos Boricuas en Accion, a local nonprofit and community development organization, in Boston’s South End. Expected to complete its renovations in the fall, the 1,700-square-foot venue will boast an enhanced facade, new windows and doors, and new lighting that shows off the the historic features of the building, including the Villa Victoria mural. The center has four different event spaces available for rent, including a main hall with high ceilings, hardwood floors, and intricate antique woodwork; La Galeria, a gallery space ideal for casual meetings or cocktail receptions; and a 500-square-foot visual arts studio with a projection screen and art supplies.

5. One of Quincy's most popular restaurants, Alba is a stylish steak house that will turn its small roof deck into one of the largest outdoor eateries in Boston come May. Expected to span about 6,000 square feet over Alba and its neighboring restaurant Zef, the 300-seat roof deck will have a covered bar area, roof top kitchen, an herb and vegetable garden, and a new steel staircase with a built-in climate controlled wine room. Inside, Alba has two private dining rooms: the 20-seat wine room and the 70-seat Madison room.

6. In the summer of 2018, Urban Axes, the popular indoor recreational ax-throwing facility, opens a Boston-area outpost in Somerville for walk-ins, group events, private parties, and corporate outings. Participants throw 1.5-pound hatchets at wooden targets marked with a bullseye and score points, similar to a game of darts. The space will feature multiple ax-throwing areas with a maximum capacity of about 80 to 100 people. In addition, the space will also have a full bar. Don't fear the blade, however: All tournaments start with safety and instruction from one of their house “axeperts."

7. The transformation of the eight-acre underpass between Boston's South End and South Boston neighborhoods, Underground at Ink Block, will be available for private events in 2018. Events can range from a candlelight dinner to a music festival or product launch. Guests can enjoy world-class street art, as well as curated retail, fitness, food, and beverage experiences.

8. Helmed by chef Jason Cheek, who previously worked at Toro and Coppa, Southern Proper draws from Cheek's North Carolina roots. With a prime setting on the first floor of the Girard in the South End, Southern Proper is inspired by the design of Cheek's grandmother’s living room in a tobacco-barn structure. The bright and welcoming spot, which will begin accepting private events come February, will feature antique wallpaper and light fixtures, green and gold accents, and smoke-infused, raw pine walls. Guests can feast on house made pickles, smoked meats, and, of course, fried chicken.

9. Expected to complete a $10 million renovation by late winter of 2018, the Kimpton Nine Zero will undergo a head-to-toe transformation of its 190 guest rooms and suites, lobby, and 2,400 square feet of private event and workspace. With a prime spot at the crossroads of Beacon Hill, Downtown Crossing, and the Financial District, the hotel will embrace a new luxe look and feel, boasting a redone lounge and plenty of workspace for business travelers.

10. The first ShowPlace Icon to hit Massachusetts will land in the Seaport this winter with ShowPlace Icon at Seaport, a 44,000-square-foot theater featuring state-of-the-art technology, a dining and cocktail program, and views of the Fort Point Channel and Seaport Boulevard. The space will house 10 auditoriums, seating as many as 855 guests. The auditoriums range from the 131-seat ICON-X, a premium large-format room, to a 63-seat auditorium that feels like a private screening room. The location boasts floor-to-ceiling windows and the Lobby Lounge, a 150-seat spot to grab a drink before, during, and after shows.

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