Holiday Inn Gainesville Celebrates Grand Opening of Renovated Conference Center and Breakfast Cafe

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GAINESVILLE FL – The Gainesville, FL Holiday Inn located directly across from the University of Florida campus celebrated the grand opening of their newly renovated meeting space and full-service breakfast cafe, both located on the second level of the “gator country” hotel. The Conference Center and Boardroom underwent a complete renovation from top to bottom and is now fashioned with not only modern amenities like eco-friendly NEST thermostats, but also a sleek, contemporary style to go along with the flexible event venue’s new look.

The inaugural celebration in the new meeting space last Wednesday featured a playful luau theme and catering by the Holiday Inn’s resident restaurant, Piesanos Stone Fired Pizza Pints and Pies. Wearing colorful leis and letting loose in the mobile photo booth  made it easy for the Sales Team and business partners in attendance to connect with each other. It was the perfect opportunity to network and showcase what the new meeting space could provide as a modern event venue in the Gainesville FL area.

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The Conference Center features over 4,100 square feet of flexible space that can be resized for any event, with a maximum capacity of 340 individuals. Use the entire venue for a large event, or flex it down to a smaller “room” for a size that meets your needs. The Boardroom is just as spacious, featuring an over-sized conference desk and plush seating.

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The new Breakfast Cafe, also located on the second level, is a much-anticipated amenity for hotel guests. The cafe offers everything a hungry early-riser could want – hot, fresh, made-to-order meals that even come with a guarantee. If breakfast isn’t served in 15 minutes, it’s free.

The menu consists of a variety of morning favorites like omelettes, a veggie skillet, biscuits and gravy, and much more. Piping hot coffee at your fingertips? It’s all yours. The cafe is open daily, Monday-Friday 6:00AM-10:00AM and Saturday & Sunday from 7:00AM-11:00AM.

To schedule a tour of the Gainesville Florida Holiday Inn’s brand new Conference Center and Boardroom, please contact Sales today at (352) 376-1661 ext 182. You may also visit the Meetings and Events page to learn more or request information. You will also find a meeting room diagram and capacities sheet for download.


Pancakes with Your Selfie on Them? Yes, It’s Really Real.


Free pancakes with your selfie on them? Yes, it’s really real! The #PancakeSelfieExpress truck has been hanging out here at #HolidayInnUF before the big breakfast event tomorrow morning on the University of Florida Campus.

The Holiday Inn Express brand embarked on a 9-city tour across the US as the proud sponsor of the Southeastern Conference (SEC) football, bringing with it not only a pancake Narcissus himself would have adored, but late checkout and breakfast until noon as part of their “Snoozapalooza” campaign. The late checkout/breakfast promo began back on Sept. 17 and will run through December 18th for guests staying at a Holiday Inn Express on weekends.

pancake1.jpgSo, you’re still wondering about this weird science-sounding contraption known as the Pancake Selfie Express? Guests love pancakes and guests love selfies, so why not combine the two? The on-trend food truck allows guests at the event on the University of Florida campus tomorrow to start their day with a heaping serving of technology as the high-tech laser printer and super fast pancake maker takes your selfie from phone to food in a matter of minutes. It also made a great backdrop from some really fun photos our team took earlier today.


The Holiday Inn Express Pancake Selfie Express food truck will be visiting the University of Florida campus tomorrow from 9:00AM until 12:00 PM as SEC Nation broadcasts live from campus. More info about the event here.

Keeping the Spirit of Innovation Alive


Take a moment and look back in time. A time where deadlines didn’t matter and day-long meetings were completely unbeknownst to you. Empty spaces could easily be filled with wild wonderlands of mystical creatures and faraway lands simply by using your mind.

Imagination – do we lose our ability to daydream as we get older? Maybe that little filament loses its spark and dims as we age, but does it have to fizzle and fade away? Perhaps we can light a fire that burns from endless embers, ready to burst into flame with a flash of light from a metaphorical bulb hovering above your head. Poof! An idea is born.

cademuseumMarch’s Holiday Inn Gives Back Charity is the Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention, where children learn to explore the ambitions that lead to great inventions. We’ll be donating a portion of group sales proceeds this month towards this organization, because great ideas don’t spring from stagnant minds.

Like the best museums, the Cade Museum provides great experiences with interactive learning, programs, and opportunities to grow into creative potential. Their classes, programs, and exhibits are designed to engage visitors in “purposeful creativity,” the kind that leads to great inventions, new businesses and things that change the world.

Programs include their Creativity Lab, which focuses on the “who,” not just the “what” and “why” of technology and new concepts. In the Lab, students learn to think creatively like inventors by using their own imaginations, with a combination of human history and the arts. They also offer a variety of special programs and camps to get the gears of ingenuity turning.

Keep the spirit of creativity alive!

When you book a room block and/or any of our meeting space during the month of March 2016, a portion of our proceeds will be donated to the Cade Museum.

Contact Sales Today

5 Ways You Know Springtime is Coming in Gainesville

Not that winter is all that harsh in the Sunshine State, but there’s something about the slight increase in temps during the day and those few extra minutes of sunlight in the evening that tell us that spring is on the way.  Here’s 5 more ways we know springtime is coming, as portrayed by a few local events and more.


spring garden festival resizedKanapaha Botanical Gardens Spring Festival
You’ve been analyzing the layout of your flower bed in preparation for all the plant life that’s about to take root there. You even made space for a family of garden gnomes. Breathe in the fresh scent of spring’s first flowers, live plants, and kick back with the live entertainment, children’s activities and live auctions. The event’s 175 booths offer plants, landscape displays, garden accessories, arts and crafts, educational exhibits and, of course, food.
WHEN:  March 19 (9am – 5pm) & 20 (10am – 5pm),  2016
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gators baseball
Gators Baseball Season Has Begun

You can smell the scent of ballpark franks on the grill, fresh-popped popcorn and hear the crack of the bat as our team smacks one out of the park! First game of the season is today, February 19th!
Gators Baseball Schedule
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46th Annual April 11 - 12, 2015Santa Fe Spring Arts Festival
You’re already clearing out space in your house for some new artwork you know you’re going to snag at this much anticipated arts event. Set amid picturesque turn-of-the-century homes in the Northeast Gainesville Historic District, the 47th annual Santa Fe College Spring Arts Festival on Sat.-Sun., April 2-3, offers fun and inspiration for the whole family.  This festival is one of the largest in Gainesville and is known for its abundance of high-quality and unique artwork. It’s an event not to miss!
WHEN: Saturday, April 2, 9 a.m. to 5pm and  Sunday, April 3, noon to 5pm
WHERE: NE 1st St, Gainesville, FL 32601
photo/facts credit: The Santa Fe College Foundation

Woman with allergy symptom blowing nosePOLLEN
Your car is yellow, no matter what color the paint actually is. Florida is known for being green pretty much year round and with that comes a price – POLLEN. You’ve also stocked up on anti-histamines, extra car wash liquid and terry cloths to keep your vehicle clean.


Love Bugs Everywhere
This isn’t just for Gainesville, but really the whole state of Florida! What is it with nature attacking our cars in this state? If it’s not pollen, it’s the strange, yet oftentimes abhorred little critter known as the love bug that wreaks havoc on our cars’ paint jobs in droves. Small, fragile and odd creatures are the love bugs, but it wouldn’t be Florida without them. Time to buy even more car detailer and terry cloths.
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Breaking the Cycle of Poverty Through Education


tsicSpringtime is fast approaching and that means students are looking forward to spring and summer break, and some are on the brink of graduation – ready to take on college and essentially, the world. However, some students struggle. Some need an extra push, a hand to hold and a shoulder to lean on. This is where the organization we’ve selected for February’s “Holiday Inn Gives Back” comes into play.

Who is Take Stock in Children?
‘The Education Foundation of Alachua County’s Take Stock in Children (TSIC) is a scholarship and mentoring program that helps low-income, at-risk students break the cycle of poverty by graduating from high school and receiving a college degree.

Local middle and high public school students are invited to apply for TSIC, provided that they qualify for free or reduced lunch, have at least a 2.5 GPA. Once selected for TSIC, the students sign a contract stating that they will maintain their grades, adhere to school attendance and behavior standards, and stay drug and crime-free throughout middle and high school. The students also receive a volunteer mentor with whom they are required to meet at their school on a weekly basis. TSIC works with the guidance counselors at each middle and high school to monitor the students, and currently employs three Student Advocates whose sole job is to follow-up with and form relationships with the students. Upon high school graduation, if the student has fulfilled the points of the TSIC contract, they receive a 2-year college scholarship.’
credit: The Education Foundation
How to become a mentor

How You Can Help us Help TSIC!
With the Holiday Inn Gives Back Program, we donate a portion of our proceeds from group and meeting bookings at our hotel made during the month of February. Whether your group reserves a room block or meeting space, (or both even!), these are both ways to contribute. The future starts with today’s children.

Request Information Now 

Or call us at (352) 376-1661 and ask to speak to a Group Sales Coordinator about booking your room block or meeting space today

5 Romantic Things to Do in Gainesville for Valentine’s Day

With a rich history and breathtaking scenery, Gainesville boasts plenty of romantic ways to spend this lover’s holiday together. Whether you love to dine and savor wine, or prefer to take in the scenery outdoors, this little college town has enough charm to win your heart.

Picnic Lunch at Kanapaha Botanical Gardens
With 62 acres of natural beauty to explore, the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens is a top choice for a romantic afternoon with your love. Get some fresh air, or bring a picnic lunch to share. Kanapaha is also pet friendly, so bring your furry sweetheart, too. Discover a variety of plant life while exploring the water gardens, the herb garden, the hummingbird garden and even a ginger garden.
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Stroll Down Cholokka Boulevard in Historic Micanopy

Sometimes known as “the little town that time forgot” historic Micanopy (pronounced mick-ah-NO-pee) is thought to be one of Florida’s first inland towns. “Dedicated on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983, Cholokka Boulevard, once an Indian trading route,  is Micanopy’s main street,  and the Town’s primary tourist destination famous for its antique shops.” Micanopy was also voted as one of “The Cutest Small Towns in America” by Huffington Post and is located only 20 minutes to the south of Gainesville.
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Swamp-Head-The-Wetlands-Taps-1200x493Sample Craft Beers and Tour Swamp Head Brewery
If you’ve been living under a rock, you probably still know craft beers are greatly displacing “mainstream” national beers by storm. Are hops and barley your thing? Then an afternoon tasting some of Gainesville’s unique brews is for you. Tours are offered on a first-come-first-serve basis on Tuesdays at 5:30pm, 6:30pm and 7:30pm as well as Saturdays and Sundays at 2pm, 3pm, 4pm and 5pm. They get pretty creative with their concoctions, too. At the time this article was written, there was a “Coconut Curry Stump Knocker” Pale Ale in the tasting room. Swamp Head is a must-visit for the craft beer lover in Gainesville.
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kittyValentine’s Day Couples Tour at Carson Springs Wildlife Conservation
If you want to take a walk on the wild side, Carson Springs is offering a wildlife tour package this Valentine’s Day. They are primarily a conservation and educational facility, rescuing exotic animals in need. This Saturday and Sunday (Feb 13 & 14) Carson Springs is offering a tour featuring complimentary drinks, warthog races (what!!?), feeding demonstrations and a special gift for only $65.00 per couple. LEARN MORE!
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And Last But Not Least, a Romantic Dinner for Two at Piesanos
Gainesville’s favorite Italian food and pizza is right here adjacent to the Holiday Inn UF. Piesanos Stone Fired Pizza Pints and Pies features your favorite pies and Italian delicacies, but also features over 40 taps, pouring a variety of local craft beers and national brews, plus a wine selection that will win your heart. No Valentine’s Day is complete without good food. Especially good Italian food!
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Please Pardon Our Dust…



Dear Guest(s):


Thank you so very much for the opportunity to host you.  Whether here for business, pleasure, or the University, we’re delighted to have you as our guest(s)!

Presently we are in the process of a significant upgrade to our roof.  There will be construction workers visible throughout the day for the next three to four weeks.  As there will be materials being transported to the rooftop, you may encounter some of these workers on the guest elevators as well as in the parking lot.  In most instances, those workers will be accompanied by someone from the hotel team-  i.e. a bellperson or someone from our management team.

Unfortunately there will be some level of sound that maybe unpleasant however, we will control the actual start time of the project so that it commences after 9:00 am and end at sun down.  Secondly, we will attempt to minimize that sound as much as possible and respond to any concern.

If for any reason, there is any level of discomfort on your part, please do not hesitate in speaking with any member of my team.  Thank you so very much for the opportunity to serve you.  Have a wonderful day and in case I miss chatting with you personally, have a wonderful holiday season…

Warmest regards,


Odyssey Leach, CHA

General Manager

Holiday Inn Gainesville University Center