By Andrea Zucker, courtesy Memphis CVB
47 Union Ave.
Memphis, TN 38103
What’s new: The Pyramid, the city’s former sports arena and an icon on the riverfront, will become a $100 million Bass Pro Shop megastore, expected to open in late 2013. There’s talk of building a boutique, wilderness-theme hotel nearby. At the other end of Main Street, on the riverfront, Beale Street Landing will open in April, giving the American Queen riverboat a place to moor and making it easier for tourists to access the river tours offered by other boat companies. A Segway tour company is now based at the Peabody Hotel; the Peabody is upgrading its guest rooms and replacing all 800 windows. The Memphis CVB now manages the Cook County Convention Center.
The boutique Madison Hotel recently redecorated. Southwest Airlines purchase of AirTran Airlines could bring Southwest service into the market.
Rooms: There are approximately 4,300 guest rooms in downtown Memphis and 23,000 area wide.
Location: Memphis, population 635,000, is in Tennessee’s southwest corner, across the Mississippi River from Arkansas, about a dozen miles north of the Mississippi border. The city is 138 miles from Little Rock, Ark.; 212 miles from Nashville, Tenn.; 217 miles from Birmingham, Ala.; 284 miles from St. Louis; 383 miles from Atlanta and 453 miles from Dallas.
Getting there: Interstates 40 and 55 run through the city’s center. Memphis International Airport is 12 miles from downtown and is served by American, Continental, Delta, United and US Airways. Being FedEx’s main hub makes it the busiest cargo airport in the United States.