img_1639 One of the most important parts of planning a successful meeting or event is selecting a location that is best fit to serve the interests of the hosts & guests of that event. At Coterie Spark, we are often tasked with selecting the best site for a client to host their next meeting or conference, and this summer is no exception. Fresh off of a three day tour of properties spanning three different states, Kelly Gordon is one of our most traveled producers, so we asked her to sit down and share a few professional tips for conducting a successful site survey.

Whether planning locally or across the globe, here are five top site selection tips that are crucial to be mindful of when selecting the perfect venue to add spark to your event:

  • Create an outline. Don’t rely on your memory when it comes to addressing key questions and points of interest as there can be a lot of distractions when it comes to visiting many locations in a short time frame. Come prepared with a detailed outline that you can complete throughout your site visit. If you are comparing properties, it’s important to be consistent.
  • Stay overnight, and request a standard room. You learn a lot about a property by staying overnight and you should experience the hotel as the guests you are planning to host would. If you rush a site visit without staying overnight, you might miss valuable information about comfort level, staff hospitality, onsite amenities and more.
  • Experience as much as possible. Restaurants, transportation, activities, the fitness center, etc. If something is important to the program, experience it first-hand. Touring an area is a given, but experiencing key points of interest brings priceless knowledge.
  • Ask about cost. Ask about less obvious costs/fees that the property may require. Also, request sample menus with pricing. Often times this is not addressed until after the contract is signed. As planners, it’s our job to make sure we are focused on the bottom line. By addressing this beforehand, it gives the opportunity to negotiate better deals and to make an educated decision.
  • Request layouts & diagrams. There is something to the saying “seeing is believing”. Request layouts for the proposed space to make sure the sales team is not over selling the space they are featuring. When reviewing the layouts, make sure a realistic amount of space is allotted for audio visual in addition to your hard elements.

These are just a few of our best practices for assisting in the site selection process. If you are looking for the perfect place to host your next program, call us! The Coterie Spark team is ready and waiting.