Mary Free Bed opens Meijer Conference Center in renovated Professional Building

Grand Rapids, Mich. – Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital is celebrating the opening of its Meijer Conference Center, a significant feature of the hospital’s $66.4 million expansion and renovation project.

Named to recognize a generous gift from The Meijer Foundation, the conference center is the largest gathering place on the hospital’s downtown campus. Grand Rapids philanthropist Frederik Meijer was a founding member of the first community-based Mary Free Bed Board of Trustees formed in 1965.

The Meijer Conference Center provides new meeting space for Mary Free Bed to host symposiums, clinical grand rounds and other educational events that further its mission to restore hope and freedom through rehabilitation.

Housed inside the Mary Free Bed Professional Building, the conference center can seat up to 175 guests. It features integrated technology for video conferencing, including ceiling microphones, confidence monitors, dimmable LED lights and automatic shades. The venue can be partitioned into three separate meeting rooms.

The conference center is part of the project’s third phase to renovate the Professional Building adjacent to the main hospital on Lafayette Avenue, north of Wealthy Street. In addition to the conference center, the building houses a catering kitchen, hospital administration and other support services. [Click here for additional images from the grand opening event held April 13.]

The final phase of the project targets renovation of the Mary Ives Hunting Center, which houses the Inn at Mary Free Bed. The inn, which provides affordable and comfortable housing for outpatients and families of inpatients, will be enlarged from six rooms to 22. The renovation is in the design phase and targeted for completion in late 2017.

Opening of the conference center comes just six months after Mary Free Bed celebrated its grand re-opening in a ceremony attended by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder and other dignitaries. The Oct. 13 re-opening marked completion of the second phase of the expansion and renovation project that makes Mary Free Bed the fifth-largest independent rehabilitation hospital in the United States.

Mary Free Bed is a not-for-profit, nationally accredited, rehabilitation hospital. For more than 125 years, Mary Free Bed has restored hope and freedom through rehabilitation for children and adults who have experienced brain injuries, strokes, spinal cord injuries, multiple traumas, amputations, cancer and other diagnoses. The combination of comprehensive services and an exclusive focus on rehabilitation enables specialty physicians and staff to help patients achieve outstanding clinical results. For additional information, visit

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