Santa Clara History and Convention Services

The Santa Clara Chamber welcomes visitors to our City and will help ensure our visitors make the most out of their trip. Consider the Chamber as your entranceway to Santa Clara.

Brief History of Santa Clara

In 1777, the Franciscan padres selected what is now known as the Santa Clara Valley to establish Mission Santa Clara which was named after Saint Clare of Assisi. Mission Santa Clara remained operational where the Ohlone would be brought to the Mission for compulsory baptism and conversion to Christianity until 1936 when control of the missions was taken from the padres and given to the civil commissioners. Santa Clara, incorporated in 1852, began as a humble town with the Mission Santa Clara de Asis and an economy centered on agricultural. Starting in the 1960s, an incredible transformation began with the emergence of the semiconductor industry. This transition and emergence of the technology industry has made Santa Clara the heart of Silicon Valley where some of the world’s largest businesses are headquartered.


Through a membership base of businesses throughout the community, the Chamber will serve as your liaison for finding firms that have products or services to offer you and your delegates. We can also provide guidance on off-site activities that will showcase Santa Clara and enhance your meeting.


The Chamber can provide the appropriate contacts for all of Santa Clara’s city and civic officials. We also can assist with a welcome letter to your organization from the Mayor of Santa Clara.


If you would like to promote your meeting or conference to local attendees, the Chamber will provide an up-to-date list of preferred contacts for both print and electronic media.


The Santa Clara Convention Center is in the center of Silicon Valley five freeway miles from Mineta San Jose International Airport and less than an hour’s drive from San Francisco International Airport. Distinctive glass pyramids mark the entrance to this award-winning facility. For photographs, floor plans and a virtual tour, visit

The 302,000-square-foot Convention Center’s hallmarks include a 100,000-square-foot clean-span exhibit hall, 607-seat theater, 31 breakout rooms and 2,000 free parking spaces. In addition, the 22,400-square-foot Mission City Ballroom is multi-purpose and can be used as ballroom, meeting or exhibit space.


The unique design of our four exhibit halls allows them to be utilized individually or as one unit providing great flexibility when planning a conference or exposition. The halls feature 28-foot, six-inch ceilings and can be configured in units of 75,000; 50,000; 25,000; 12,000 and 6,000 square feet, in addition to the full 100,000 square feet of space. As many as 491 10-by-10-foot booths can be accommodated. Nine docks serve the exhibit halls including three ramps with roll-up doors and eight dock levelers. Floor load capacity is 350 pounds per square foot.

The exhibit halls can also seat 4,500 people banquet-style or 7,000 people theater-style while permitting an unobstructed view of a centrally located stage. Each exhibit hall is served by its own refreshment stand featuring theme menus. Full food and beverage services are available on the exhibit floor and to exhibitors.


Our experienced event services staff is on-hand to make even the smallest meeting a success. Over 45,000 square feet of meeting and ballroom space can be configured to provide as many as 25 breakout spaces for five to 2,700 people.


For a staged performance or product introduction, our luxurious Elizabeth A. Hangs Multimedia Theater provides 607 plush, fixed-arm seats facing a 40-by-18-foot stage that includes a 15-foot radius thrust and spacious wings.

The theater’s superb acoustics are finely tuned from the control booth where sophisticated audio and visual equipment handle extensive sound and theatrical lighting systems, including full stage lighting control. Simultaneous, 4-channel translation using wireless headsets, which meet ADA assistive listening device requirements, is also available. Multi-image slide projection, video projection and audio systems can be operated from the control room or the stage.

Four complete dressing rooms and a fully furnished “green room” offer delightful comfort. Seven spaces are wheelchair accessible and adjacent companion seating can be provided. If needed, additional wheelchair space can be created.


The Convention Center has catered many prestigious events and gained a reputation for unequaled consistency and quality. In-house caterer ARAMARK’s fully equipped kitchen and banquet facilities enable the staff to prepare up to 4,500 meals for service in the meeting rooms, grand ballroom or exhibit halls. In addition to regular fare, special menus, including ethnic selections, can be arranged with the chef.


Experienced in-house preferred providers PSAV Presentation Services and Smart City Networks offer a full range of audiovisual and telecommunications services. Full-time staff members serve you from an inventory of the latest audiovisual equipment. Telecom services include voice and data services through a “fiber backbone” providing high bandwidth connections.


Silicon Valley’s premier meeting place, the Santa Clara Convention Center features Wi-Fi technology throughout its 302,000-square-foot building. Guests attending meetings in Santa Clara can use their wireless devices anywhere in the Convention Center to check e-mail, download files and surf the internet.


Santa Clara’s Convention Center has a full-service UPS Store that provides shipping and business services to convention delegates. The store operates seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. In addition to UPS Air and Ground, the store provides full-service copying, notary services, office supplies, computer services, passport photos and other business-related services.


Santa Clara Convention Center is an eight-time winner of the Waste Reduction Awards Program for its outstanding efforts to reduce waste and protect the environment.