It’s incredible how much getting away from the office and into a different space can spark newfound creativity and collaboration. However, it takes a lot of work to advance from the initial planning stages of an event to the actual conference, convention, or retreat. One way you can make the process easier for yourself is by securing the right conference center. With the right space, planning will be simpler for you and the event will be more enjoyable for your guests.
Below, we review five steps you should take when reviewing conference center options for your next corporate event. And if you are searching for the best Utah conference center, don’t miss checking out Zermatt Utah — a European-inspired luxury resort and conference center nestled in the Wasatch Mountains just south of Park City.
Conference Center Considerations: 5 Steps to Guide Your Process
1. Narrow Down The Right Location For Your Conference
Location is the first criterion you’ll want to select. Try to balance convenience with appeal; if you have guests traveling from out-of-state, convenience to an airport is important, but don’t settle for a location that lacks character or interest. Airport hotels and conference centers offer little excitement to guests who may be experiencing a new city or region for the first time.
While attending seminars and networking are the primary purposes of the trip, remember that your guests also enjoy taking part in new cultural or social outings, too. By finding a local conference center in a unique location, you can help guests feel like they’re gaining new travel experiences in addition to attending a conference. Look to hotels and conference centers near can’t-miss attractions, restaurants, bars, and outdoor space. Being able to step outside the conference center to gather with other guests will be a perk your guests will appreciate.
In the same way, if most of your guests will be coming from cities close by, try to choose something slightly off the beaten path. This will offer a chance for locals to feel like tourists in their own area.
2. Determine if the Conference Space Has the Right Setup for You
The second criteria to consider is critical to your event operations; make sure the conference center or hotel has the space, equipment, and features you need to successfully carry out your event. Here are a few questions to ask:
What‘s the square footage of meeting space?
What are the capacity limits for each meeting space?
How many separate spaces are available?
What equipment and furniture will be available in the meeting space? Consider projectors and A/V equipment, whiteboards, tables and chairs, stages, lighting, decor, and anything else you need for your specific event.
Are all the conference spaces centrally located or are they divided across separated floors or buildings?
What previous corporate events in Utah have been held at the conference center? This may help you get a better understanding of what’s possible in the space.
Does the conference center include a hotel so participants can stay on-site? Or do they partner with a nearby hotel to offer room discounts?
If the conference center has an in-house event coordinator, communicate with them about your goals for the event. Review their recommendations for their space and make sure it aligns with your vision.
3. Review the Cost and Insurance Policies
Your budget will largely determine where your event can take place, but sticker price isn’t the only thing you should review. Make sure you have a clear understanding of what is and isn’t included in the cost of reserving conference space. Factor in additional costs you’ll need to cover if not covered by the conference center, such as refreshments or additional event rentals. Also, be sure to request and review their insurance policies to understand your organization’s liability during the event. Hopefully, you’ll never have to worry about insurance coverage. But, if a piece of equipment is broken or another incident occurs during your reservation, you don’t want to be surprised by any financial responsibility.
4. Ask about Parking and Transportation For Your Conference
If most of your guests will be driving to your event, inquire about parking:
Is it free? Is it covered?
What’s the capacity of their parking space?
Is there valet parking available?
A convenient and comfortable parking situation will be an important factor in your guests’ enjoyment. Alternatively, if most of your guests will be coming from out-of-state and will need transportation from the airport, inquire about shuttle services they may offer. If they don’t have an in-house shuttle service, do they partner with one for a discounted rate? Seamless transportation solutions are an excellent way to make sure your guests start and end their time at your event on a positive note.
5. Review Amenities and Nearby Attractions
When planning your conference, you’ll likely build in downtime for guests to rest, socialize, and absorb the information they’ve been learning. While some guests may prefer to spend some quiet time in their rooms, many will want to take advantage of their trip to see local sites, experience nearby attractions, restaurants, bars, and shops, and socialize with fellow attendees through a fun activity. A conference center with amenities like coffee shops or restaurants inside their facility is an added bonus for guests not looking to travel far.
When determining what attractions would be most appealing to your guests, think about your audience: what types of activities will they enjoy outside of conference events? Make sure the conference center caters to those interests or is in close proximity to them. A range of several types of activities guarantees everyone can find something to align with their interests.
The Best Conference Center in Utah, Zermatt Utah
When choosing a conference space, Zermatt Utah checks all the boxes for your upcoming corporate events in Utah. Located less than an hour away from Salt Lake City International Airport, it’s easy to shuttle guests to our pristine location in the beautiful Wasatch Mountain Range. And with 18 different meeting rooms making up 65,000 square feet of event space, we can accommodate organizations of varying sizes.
As for amenities, Zermatt Utah is full of options for everyone — and in every season. Our resorts restaurants and spa offer relaxation with easy access. And, we’re just a short drive away from world-class skiing and other winter sports in Park City. In the summer, we’re minutes from beautiful hikes, mountain biking, unforgettable crater diving, and quaint shops and restaurants in downtown Midway.
Ready to rent meeting space at Zermatt? Request a proposal from our Utah conference center team.