Tips & Blogs

Your Corporate Event Checklist: Things to Consider when Choosing a Venue

When planning for a corporate event, training or meeting, choosing the right venue is just as important
to your success as carefully planning the schedule of sessions or plotting the agenda. The right venue
can mean the difference between a successful meeting and training experience or uncomfortable
attendees who keep their eyes glued to their watches and can’t wait for the sessions to finish. What
are the factors that can have an impact on your meeting’s success?

Below are some things to consider when choosing a venue for your next corporate meeting, workshop
or training.

 

The inclusions

When you approach a venue to get rates, discuss the details of the event and the activities
you expect to provide to get a clear picture of all possible costs and fees. Ask what the venue
fee covers.  Are service and taxes included? Is there a set-up or break down fee? Are there
fees for linens, tables and chairs?  Any food and beverage minimums? Are Wi-Fi and audio
visual equipment included or will there be an additional charge? Some venues offer all-
inclusive pricing, so make sure you’re comparing apples to apples.

 

Space and layout

Carefully assess the space to make sure it meets your event needs. Is there a capacity limit?
If you need breakout rooms, a stage or a networking area, can the facility accommodate this?
Often the spaces outside of the main meeting room are not considered fully when appraising
a venue. However, they are vital if you want to have networking cocktails organized. Make
sure you find out whether use of outdoor space is included in your pricing package.
Also, you don’t want your meeting room to seem half empty by renting a room meant for 300
if you have only 50 attendees, so choose spaces with this in mind. How flexible is the floor
space? Can rooms be changed around if needed? Will you have full use of the venue, or will
other events be happening?
Discuss all of your plans with the person managing the venue: he or she may have ideas
about ways to accommodate your needs that aren’t immediately apparent.

 

Location, accessibility and parking

If your meeting or event attendees are traveling from out of town, you may want a venue near
the airport, train or central transportation. Find out if parking is provided, what any extra costs
might be, or if alternative transportation can be arranged. If on-site parking isn’t available,
consider reserving nearby parking for attendees, or book transportation such as a shuttle bus

or taxis. For local meetings or events, consider a venue close to your office to encourage
attendance (or farther away to create a change of scene).

 

Services and amenities

Don’t assume that all venues offer the same level of service and inclusions, or that all
amenities will be available for your event. If you need additional services like special catering
(including dietary requests), floral arrangements, pads and pens, audio-visual services, IT
support, staging and lighting, decor for event production, ticketing, or transportation, find out
what your venue offers or if they have preferred vendors you can work with. Vendors
recommended by the venue may have more experience on site, know things like outlet
capacity or the best entrances for catering, and can help you avoid missteps.

 

Atmosphere

The ambiance and décor of a space can set the mood or tone for your meeting. If you need
serious decisions made or a polished professional image to be cemented, consider that when
selecting your venue. If you’re looking to inspire creativity or engender bonding among your
team, consider spaces that easily accommodate hands-on or group activities or give off a fun
vibe. If you’re having an award ceremony or gala, choosing an elegant or inspiring space
matters. Everything from the style of furniture, lighting to architecture of a space contributes to
the atmosphere. However, don’t overlook acoustics. Be sure to check outside the space for
noise issues or nearby activities that might interfere with your plans.

 

Food & Beverage

Decide what sort of meals, breaks, snacks or refreshments you will be offering and determine
what is included by your venue. Do you need a sit-down meal or buffet-style? Can the venue
accommodate special dietary requests such as gluten free, vegan or Halal? Is the food
prepared on site, and are fresh ingredients used, or is outside catering needed? If alcohol will
be served, is an alcohol license and bartender needed or is it provided? Also find out if a
minimum food order is required.

 

Audiovisual /Tech

Most likely your meeting will have some AV and Wi-Fi needs to accommodate PowerPoint or
slide presentations, videos, demonstrations or Internet connections. You may need
microphones, projectors, screens or special lighting. Discuss what your venue can provide,
what is included in the fee, and what you need to rent from an outside vendor. It is also
important to consider staff support on the day itself — will it be a venue staff member or
outside AV provider? Ask whether charging stations and Wi-Fi are provided for attendees,
and whether tech support is available if people have trouble connecting.

 

Restrictions

Venues may have restrictions that include, for example, decorating (not hanging anything on
walls), photography/videography, alcohol, or outside catering. Outdoor space may not be
available for use during certain times, or lawn tents may have restrictions. Be clear on these
issues up front so you’re not left scrambling at the last minute.

 

Lodging accommodations

When planning out-of-town corporate events or inviting teams from other locations, it may be
convenient to select a venue that offers overnight lodging, or that is near a suitable hotel.  If
the venue can’t accommodate all of your guests, arrange for transportation, or let people
know if you’ll be covering the cost of taxis.

 

Staffing

Find out what sort of staffing support is provided and what experience the staff have with
similar events to yours. Are there enough waiting staff, concierge support and security for
your event, or will you need to hire more staff? Do they work overtime? What do they wear?
Will they help with checking in attendees, managing registrations, or ticketing (if needed)?  Do
they handle all the setup and clean up? Carefully consider your attendee to staff ratio to
determine if you’re covered.

ADDRESS

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San Pedro Laguna, Philippines

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