Top 10 Venues for Trade Shows in San Francisco


Whether it’s a trade event, a special interest convention, or a large expo for industry or the public, San Francisco is a great city for trade show displays and major exhibitions. With a range of venues that go from modest in size, to large purpose built convention centers, it is no surprise that San Francisco has become an important city for the ever strong and continually growing exhibition circuit.


Great Venues for Trade Shows in San Francisco

Let’s take a look at some of the best venues, along with some of the most notable exhibits in San Francisco.

Mission Bay Conference Center

The Mission Bay Conference Center is home to a number of smaller conference rooms, totaling over 12,500ft in floor space. Suited for smaller meetings and trade exhibitions, this is a great location for trade show displays that aren’t on a grand scale.

Moscone Convention Center

You couldn’t talk about exhibits in San Francisco without mentioning the largest convention center in the city. This venue has multiple complexes which allow organizers to run different shows simultaneously. There’s more than 700,000sqft total floor space, and the venue is home to prestigious events, such as the San Francisco Comic Convention, one of the world’s largest comic book, video game, and pop culture exhibitions.

Marriot Marquis

This hotel is also a prime location for exhibits in San Francisco. It offers the convenience of having accommodation on-site, and the more than 117,000sqft of space for trade show displays means that it is even possible to host large national and international conventions and expos. Different areas can be booked for different sized events. The main exhibition space is suitable for up to 366 8x10ft trade booths, whereas the ballroom can handle up to 240 booths of the same size.

Intercontinental San Francisco

The Intercontinental is another leading hotel that offers conference and exhibition facilities for small to medium sized events. Although there is no overly large exhibition hall, the main banquet hall can be used for smaller, more personal events, and would suit a private trade show run by a single exhibitor. This venue would be perfect for hosting an invite-only product launch or similar exhibits in San Francisco.

Galleria San Francisco

This relatively small venue is often used for galas, fashion shows, and private events, and would be a suitable location for private trade show displays for a limited number of attendees. With a small number of display booths (less than ten), the venue could comfortably host at least 500 visitors.

SOMArts Cultural Center

Some of the most interesting exhibits in San Francisco are held at the SOMArts Cultural Center. As an example, the venue hosted the annual Murphy and Cadogan Contemporary Art Awards Exhibition in 2016. The venue offers different spaces for different events, including a theater for presentations, or a 1000 person capacity exhibition hall. Intimate San Francisco trade show displays for creative industries would be well suited to this venue.

Festival Pavilion at the Fort Mason Center

This large venue can accommodate up to 180 10ftx10ft exhibition booths, making it excellent for trade show displays and large exhibitions. There are a number of benefits to choosing this venue, including options for catering, easy vehicle access for exhibitors and support contractors, as well as a mezzanine area that can be set up for private receptions or as a fully functioning café.

South San Francisco Convention Center

This convention center is in the middle of the biotech region of the city, making it an excellent choice of venue for medical and technology focused exhibits in San Francisco. It is conveniently located near Bay Area hotels and is just minutes from the San Francisco International Airport. Being right inside the heart of the biotech industry, and just on the outskirts of Silicon Valley, this is one of the most popular convention centers in the region. Facilities include catering, as well as audio/visual services for feature presentations and conferences. There is 20,500sqft of total floor space offered by this venue.

Herbst Exhibition Hall

Located in the Presidio and designed by the Army Corps of Engineers, this venue offers 5,476sqft of floor space, which means it is suitable for smaller events or private trade shows. It’s unique location in San Francisco make it great for niche industries, or any industry that wants to tie into a historical theme.

Nob Hill Masonic Center

In an iconic location, there is over 16,500sqft of exhibition space at the Masonic. There are also breakout rooms for private exhibitions or interactive events within a larger show floor. So much space means that exhibitors can take advantage of innovative trade show booth design when using this venue.
Because there are so many great conference centers, there’s no surprise that San Francisco is home to one of the largest comic book and pop culture conventions, and other important industry conventions like the Pacific Institutional Real Estate Investor Forum, JavaOne 2016, Game Developers Conference, and even the Microsoft Build Developer Conference.
With such a vibrant city and excellent accommodation throughout the area, it is likely that San Francisco will continue to be a hotspot for trade show displays in the coming years.