With its blue skies, Technicolor sunsets, indigenous charm, and great values at some of the most highly rated meeting facilities in the world, the sunny Southwest shows no signs of losing its appeal for meetings.

Phoenix's urban core has seen a major transformation recently. An expanded $600 million convention center was architecturally inspired by the Grand Canyon and is adorned with $3.2 million worth of public art. The state's largest hotel is located one block from the convention center. And now, a light-rail transportation system links meeting attendees to a wealth of dining and entertainment options and to a shuttle station at Sky Harbor International Airport.

Downtown Scottsdale is undergoing more than $3.3 billion of development. Two of the most prominent projects — the $250 million Scottsdale Waterfront and the $41 million SouthBridge — offer boutiques, restaurants, galleries, an amphitheater, and recreation paths along the ancient Arizona Canal. Plans for downtown include the $30 million Museum of the West, opening in early 2013.

In Santa Fe, a new 72,000-square-foot “green” convention center is generating as much excitement as the city's 400th anniversary celebration.

And Las Vegas offers a winning hand of top-tier resorts that will be joined by another 30,000 guest rooms over the next four years.