Where o' Where Shall We Go?
It's been a busy month at work and you have a huge project to complete by the end of the year, then it happens........your boss assigns you the task of coordinating the company holiday party. It's simple, party for 200 people, food, beverage, decor, entertainment......not much to it, right?
It's not that simple so let's start from the beginning with picking an appropriate venue. Nowadays events are taken out of restaurant private rooms and ballrooms and into airplane hangars, rooftops of parking structures or a field of grass to build a grand experience for attendees. BUT the most important thing to consider is your audience and their needs. Here is a list of websites that can help narrow down the venues by city and guest count.
Below are my Top 5 when choosing the perfect venue for an event, but you need to figure out what is important to you and your guests.
It's important to pick a location that is a mid-point for all guests and easily accessible to a highway if in a big city center. Additionally you don't want your guests parking and walking through an unsafe area of town especially when they leave late at night.
I live in Los Angeles and parking is ALWAYS an issue. Make certain there are parking lots that can hold all of the cars for your event (guests, vendor's trucks & event staff), or have valet available. The venue should have a parking plan that works best for their venue. If there are no parking lots available a shuttle service can be a great option, just have the guests & vendors park at a nearby lot and shuttle them in.
Unless you’re on a rooftop or field of grass most venues have bathroom facilities. However it is important to have enough stalls for your guests, long lines at bathrooms is a big no-no but it happens often. Below is a table to help you figure out your needs.
* For no lines add 1-2 more stalls on top of these numbers.
Most buildings have ample power and this is not an issue. However, older buildings might not have many electrical outlets that work for your site plan and where you need electricity. Vendors will need to bring extension cords AND tape them down. When using a site with limited/no electricity generators are needed, PLEASE have a back-up generator that is connected to the main generator for an easy transition. It's important to let the power supplier know what will need electricity (kitchen, lighting, audio, bathrooms, computers, phone charging station, etc.) so they can calculate and provide the proper generator.
Cell Phone & Internet access
Everyone lives by their phone, so make certain the CEO can take and make phone calls, text & emails at the venue (unless you want them disconnected, which isn't a bad thing). A huge part of entertainment at events are photo booths with the ability to post photos immediately to social media. This is also very important when communicating between event staff if not using a walkie-talkie system.
Here is a checklist to make certain you ask all the right questions when picking a venue for your corporate event.
I would love to hear your top 5 list of considerations for choosing a venue. Please add them to the comments below. Have a great weekend.