As a successful event planner in New York, you likely already have a process for how you go about selecting venues for your clients’ events. But it’s always helpful to review your process for identifying key amenities and value propositions each particular venue might have to offer. So, whether you’re a veteran event planner or embarking on your career journey as a planner for the first time, these are the venue details to look for before making your selection.
1. Seating Capacity
This might seem like a no-brainer. Obviously, one of the very first questions you’ll ask of a venue representative involves the guest or seating capacity to make sure you have enough room for the event you’re planning. But there’s more to explore when it comes to seating. Dig deeper to see what seating looks like. Will guests be comfortable? Does the seating arrangement make sense for the event? For example, if you’re planning a more corporate event, where networking and mingling will be encouraged, you’ll need more socially accommodating seating. If it’s a presentation event with a stage and guest speaker, you’ll want to have more of a theater seating set up with comfort in mind for long seated periods of time.
2. Parking Availability & Valet
Another question an event planner might ask a venue representative is about parking availability and any valet services that might apply to the event. Depending on the event you’re planning, you’ll want to consider parking conveniences that matter to attending guests. If the venue is in the heart of the city, with a guest list full of out-of-town attendees who might not be familiar with navigating downtown, valet service is more essential. There may also be free and paid parking options to note, as well. The key is to dig deeper into parking availability so you can confirm with your clients what services will best suit the events’ guests.
3. Views & Settings
Pay attention to the views and settings of a venue before booking. Does the venue offer an incredible view or have unique backdrops that add value to your event? There will be pictures throughout, with your photographer professional and candidly among the guests. Finding the right venue that adds flair, fun, and atmosphere to those images and videos will only help boost the event experience.
4. Audiovisual Capability
If you’re planning an event that requires audiovisual components, including microphones, ambient and stage lighting, and screen presentation capability, you’ll want to inquire with the venue about what they have to offer. You might be arranging to bring your own or the clients’ materials that will need to work with the provided equipment. And it’s also a good idea to verify if a venue staff member will be on-hand to assist with technical setup, operation, and troubleshooting. These key elements will need to be managed seamlessly for the event to be considered a success.
5. Theme Compatibility
As an event planner in New York, your job is to have a keen eye for detail, especially when you’re planning a themed event. Certain themes will be better suited to certain venues, too. If your event is more of a conference, with breakout sessions for attendees to gather in small groups to collaborate, you’ll want a venue that can accommodate small groups segregating themselves for more private conversations. If your event is more of a social theme, as another example, you’ll need ample space to accommodate a DJ, a photo booth, or a dance floor. Walk through your venue considerations to visualize which layout will be more compatible with your event theme.
Choosing a venue involves so much more, like catering or menu considerations, included entertainment, availability dates, and duration times. But these five tend to be among the most important when making the perfect venue selection for an event.
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