People are always on the lookout for a venue that’s a bit different for their corporate events. And there’s good reason for this – if you choose a memorable venue, it’s likely that your conferences will have even more impact and delegates that attend will be unlikely to forget them.
Of course, there is an absolute wealth of venues to choose from these days, including places like conference hotels, exhibition centres, country houses and even former warehouses, if you want to go for that industrial or utilitarian vibe. Sometimes a great view from the venue can add a dramatic backdrop to your event – a view of the Sydney skyline at night, for example.
One thing to bear in mind is logistics. You need to choose a location that is easy for people to get to and preferably one that is well served by public transport. It’s also good to have parking facilities on site or nearby.
Once you’ve got the location sorted, you need to make sure there are adequate facilities – including equipment for audio and visual displays, and things like catering facilities or services. Often it’s easier to book a venue that has all the related services available in house, to reduce the time you need to spend on coordination and to cut costs.
It depends whether you are organising corporate entertainment or a business conference. With each individual event, you’ll have a different message to convey, and what might be great for an annual general meeting may not be as suitable for a client Christmas party or a launch event or fundraiser. If you’ve got different suppliers like entertainers and caterers attending the event and providing services, make sure it’s somewhere they are able to travel to and that there’s enough space for them to store their equipment.
You may be planning to have some time during the event when groups break out to work in seminars, and in this case a venue where you arrange cabaret style seating might work well, ensuring that all tables have a clear view of the central speaker podium, of course.
For evening events, a venue that has overnight accommodation available is useful – in which case hotels are often a good option.
In the UK, businesses have found that cinema theatres can make great venues for conferences. They can provide the perfect setting for a large audience. The seating is really comfortable and already in place and for any presentations that require a screen, what could be better than projecting images up onto a big cinema screen? The sound system is already set up too. All you need to do is bring along your materials. And once the film or slide show is complete, the lecture theatre style seating allows for speakers to stand up in front to their audience and take questions.
The choice of venue can be integral to the success of an event – it’s worth putting in the research to get it right.