How to Partner With a Hotel for Your Next Event
From defining a budget to marketing, event planners are constantly juggling multiple moving parts. Every element adds value to the overall event, making it critical that planners and support staff maintain balance throughout the planning process.
Selecting the right venue is paramount to the success of any event. For event planners, hotels are like a neatly wrapped gift. Not only do they offer large and unique event spaces, they typically have onsite catering, support staff, and overnight guest accommodations.
While a hotel isn’t the right venue for every event, the benefits of this type of partnership typically extend well beyond the standard accommodations. A properly negotiated partnership can be financially rewarding for both parties and help ensure your event’s success.
So, how do you determine if you should partner with a hotel for your event?
How do you choose a location, and what perks should you look for during the decision-making process?
Let’s start with the benefits of a hotel partnership.
Benefits of partnering with a hotel for your event
Choosing a venue for your private event is a decision that should not be taken lightly. From the ambiance to the amenities offered, an event space can either make or break an event.
For several reasons, partnering with a hotel is the perfect solution.
On-site accommodations for guests: Guests can fully enjoy everything your event offers, knowing that they won’t have to get back in their cars once the affair has ended.
Easier checkout process: Simplify planning for your guests by including an option for hotel accommodations during checkout.
Amenities: Special amenities such as room service, valet parking, and gyms help guests feel more at home.
Discounted rates: Most hotels offer discounted room rates or an affiliate program, where you’re paid a fee for each guest that books through your event’s website.
Support staff: The average cost for an event’s support staff is $20-$30 per person per hour. Using the hotel’s team can help save on your event’s overall budget.
Simplifies the planning process: Partnering with a hotel simplifies the planning process as you only have one team to collaborate with rather than several.
Event promotion: Higher ticket sales equates to higher profits for the partnering hotel, so it’s in their best interests to promote your event.
While partnering with a hotel for an event offers many benefits, it isn’t always the right solution.
Should you partner with a hotel for your next event?
It’s important to examine your options from every angle when selecting a venue for your event. Let’s look at a few elements to consider when making your determination.
Type of event: Consider the type of event and estimated guest count throughout the venue selection process.
Know your audience: Who is your target audience and what type of venue is best equipped to help you meet their needs?
Budget: Before you schedule any meetings, clearly define your goals and budget for the event. What elements are important to you and what features are negotiable? When you visit the venue, consider any additional costs that could arise from hosting your event there. What are their insurance requirements? Are items such as tables, chairs, and A/V equipment included in the venue price?
Benefits to both you and your guests: What discount is the hotel willing to offer you for booking their event space? Remember, a true partnership is one where both parties walk away winners.
Guest accommodations: Are they willing to block out rooms for your event? What type of discount will they offer? How do they handle cancellations or last-minute bookings? Be sure to ask about Room Block Rules.
Before meeting with the hotel representative, take a moment to consider what value you bring to the table.
Negotiating a hotel partnership for your event
Have you determined that a hotel partnership is the best fit for your event? If so, it’s time to start the negotiation process.
Come to the meeting armed with all the details we’ve discussed above. Do not underestimate the value that your event stands to deliver.
- Valet parking
- Restaurant and bar tabs
- Gift shop purchase
- Advertising on event website
These are all just a few ways attendees stand to generate additional revenue for the hotel. A bonus - this boost in spending trickles down, putting more money in the hotel staff's pockets.
While every hotel has standard event procedures, most will make adjustments to gain your business. Use this as a bargaining tool to ensure you and your guests get the most out of the event experience.
Once you’ve come to an agreement, ask to get everything in writing. This protects both you and the hotel and ensures everyone understands what’s expected of them.
Pro Tip: When negotiating, ask the salesperson what event support the hotel offers. Can they provide information regarding floor plans, capacity, and catering options? Partnering with a venue that has a dedicated event team will save both time and frustration.
As the event planner, partnering with a hotel simplifies the planning process and ensures you have support until the last guest leaves the building. An experienced and knowledgeable support staff, coupled with the added amenities your guests will receive during their stay, will help create lasting memories that they will talk about for months.