San Diego has long since shed its reputation as that sleepy Navy town just north of Tijuana; but meeting and incentive organizers who haven't visited recently might be surprised at just how far it's come. The city now has so many top-quality cultural offerings that a group would never want for things to do.

  • The classical music scene is alive and thriving under the auspices of the La Jolla Chamber Music Society. Last year, its 33rd season, the society brought in guest violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter, pianist André Watts, and The St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, among others. And every August the society puts on a dynamic, three-week music festival.

  • Then there's 1,200-acre Balboa Park, with its 15 museums and the world-famous San Diego Zoo. In Balboa Park, The San Diego Natural History Museum has completed a major expansion, doubling it size. It offers some intriguing meeting and event space, including a theater that seats 300 and can handle multimedia presentations and teleconferencing, and a 400-square-foot rooftop deck for receptions or sit-down meals.

  • The San Diego Convention Center expansion opened in September, with the 2½-year project doubling the waterfront facility to 2.6 million square feet. There are seven exhibit halls; 525,701 square feet of contiguous exhibit space; the 90,000-square-foot, glass-enclosed Sails Pavilion, with an industry-standard trade show floor; and 72 meeting rooms totaling 204,114 square feet, including a 40,000-square-foot ballroom.

For more info, contact the San Diego CVB: (619) 696-9371.