When planning an event, getting the venue correct is one of the most critical things which helps you attract your audience and create maximum impact out of doing the event.
Out of all the events which take place within the corporate spectrum, cocktail receptions and networking meets are the most frequent, with almost every company calling in their clients to spend some quality time outside the office, without having little or no formal agenda to the evening and creating meaningful relationships which help further client retention. Based on Pareto’s law, many companies use this as a tool to strengthen ties with current clients as well as to impress upon existing clients.
With so many companies organizing cocktail and networking meets, budgets assigned usually are controlled and at the same time, clients want to offer their guests the absolute best in food and drink.
While we think, hotel banquets especially 5-star ones are yet unmatched in terms of service quality and we from experience can say that a 5 Star name alone creates an impact, the past few years have seen the emergence of nightclubs as a new breed of places as an alternative to 5 –Star hotels which serve as corporate cocktail venues.
Based on past experiences we create a list of what you as a client need to know while you try to decide on a venue for you next company event/ Party:
5 Star Hotels
The charm and the charisma which 5-star hotels add to your event is exemplary. The ambience created is usually the best, the brand of the hotel rings a bell with most attendees and attracts a great response from your invitees.
However, as they also say, “Quality comes at a price”
With the hotel usually, you would start with a dinner package with alcohol being as per consumption.
For the Set-up, you would require to include a charge for venue rentals within your budget, as giving you the venue for most of the day means a revenue loss for the hotel, which in business terms would not make sense.
The hotel would give you the banquet hall and extremely brilliant and hospitable service, but that means everything from your stage, sound, lights and AV is yet to be accounted for.
All licenses including liquor have to be accounted for additionally.
This is the best part however, 5 Star Hotels are available to be rented out on any of the days of the week including Fridays and Saturdays.
They can be approached for any kind of event you plan to have, and are not limited to any particular kind.
Night Clubs and Lounges
Night clubs and lounges are built for cocktail receptions and parties. The ambience provides for candid conversations and an informal setting.
These venues usually offer you a per person package which includes Alcohol service and dinner at one flat fee for unlimited service. This fee usually is as much or a little more than what a 5 Star would offer you just for dinner.
Most Night clubs and Lounges open for dinner and are non-functional during the day, which allows to use the venue for Set-Up at no added cost. However, setting up a stage in-case you want to have entertainment can be a challenge due to space constraints.
Along with the venue itself, most night clubs usually have a sound system and ambient lighting for a cocktail reception built in, and they usually include that within the package cost per person. This means you as a client do not have to shell out the extra bucks for Sound and Lights and can either save them or spend them on Corporate Gifting or Décor.
Many of these venues acquire event licenses on a yearly basis, hence they do not usually ask clients to acquire a license for a DJ or Live Entertainment. This however is subject to government regulations and all mandatory licenses need to be in place before the event takes place.
The disadvantage faced with Night Clubs and Lounges is, they usually never give out the venue exclusively on a Friday or Saturday, unless you do a complete buy-out. In that case the cost usually goes higher than expected.
You cannot have banquet seating like you would at a hotel or banquet, you usually need to have floating crowd at the venue.
The kind of events you can do at these venues are limited to just cocktail receptions and company parties.
Besides the above mentioned venues, an event is possible to conduct anywhere you would like, including your own facility as well.
The above information is solely based on our experiences as event planners, we have managed various events at both type of venues for our clients in the past and from what we have noticed, an event is only as good as the client makes it, you know your audience best and we hope the above information can help you make an informed choice the next time you look to organize a cocktail reception or party for your company.