There is an incredible variety of unique, unusual, and amazing venues on offer for corporate events; from the informal and intimate, to the creative and spectacular, the demand for non-traditional venues is rising. Beaverbrook recently stated that:
Events…are designed to enthuse and entertain your team, whilst also encouraging communication and co-operation.
These venues play a huge role in the success of your event, and so careful consideration should be made when weighing up your options. Here are our top things to look for in a potential venue:
1. Location and accessibility
The location of your venue is one of the most important aspects of planning your event. You need to choose a location that is desirable and convenient for people to get to, or you may lose attendees. Event Exeter explain how:
It’s vital that any venue you choose has good transportation links, so easy access to major motorways and rail links are a must.
If you have people attending from areas further afield, then it may be worth considering a venue near an airport. For a local event, you should try and pick a venue within reasonable distance of most attendees’ homes or places of work, especially if people will be drinking and relying on taxis or lifts to get home after the event.
You also need to ensure that everyone, particularly those with additional needs, can access the building and amenities of your chosen venue.
You need to look at whether your venue has a car park or valet parking. It’s always best to hire a venue with parking available, but if that’s not the case, then have a look for car parks nearby that attendees can use during the event. Alternatively, you can look at things like Uber Events, which allow event organizers to purchase guest passes for their attendees.
The size of your venue is extremely important - are you holding an intimate business dinner for key stakeholders, or a companywide conference with 200 people? You need to ensure that there’s plenty of space to accommodate everyone, without people feeling cramped and uncomfortable. However, you also want to make sure that the space doesn’t look empty, with people being too spread out. You therefore need to pay extra attention to the size of the venue you are hiring, and choose a space that’s appropriate.
Experts at ICAA advise that you should:
Be careful not to assume that all venues offer the same level of service and inclusions, or that all amenities will be available for your event.
Any event venue needs to have the necessary facilities such as:
But, you also need to make sure that your chosen venue is fully equipped with all the technical essentials you will need to host a successful corporate event. This includes things like:
- Audio-visual technology
- Interactive whiteboards
5. Food and beverage
Food and beverage play a very important role in the perception of your company and the overall success of your event. It is therefore always best to sample a venue’s food in advance. Poor food and beverage quality will almost always create a negative impact on your attendees’ experience. So, either go with a venue that serves great food, or one that allows you to bring in outside food suppliers.
Make sure that you get a detailed floor plan of each venue when you are narrowing down your selection. This way, you can plan where important things such as stands, or audio-visual equipment, would be located. This may help you decide which venue will be most appropriate for your event and needs. Whova explain how:
The layout and floor plan will greatly affect different aspects of your event including the flow of traffic and event activities.
Remember that the ambiance and décor of a venue will contribute to the overall atmosphere of your event. You should always research photos of the venue and its surroundings, and visit the venue yourself before hiring it for an event. You need to make sure that the ambience of the venue matches the desired feeling of your event. For instance, if you’re looking to inspire creativity and encourage bonding among your attendees, consider spaces that can accommodate group activities or give off a fun vibe. Whereas if you’re holding an awards ceremony for employees, then you should try and choose an elegant and inspiring space.