Why hold your event in an historic venue?

Over the 18 years that I’ve been
organising events at Trinity House, many corporate meetings bookers and
planners have imparted why they have prefer to stage their most important
events in an historic venue, as opposed to a contemporary function space. One of the most frequent reasons given is
prestige, regular and first-time corporate bookers look for a venue that is
inherently impressive an address which doesn’t require a hard sell to their
client/s. 

Venues with character also tend to
photograph better and ‘a picture can tell a thousand words’.  Brochure images of a large blank area can be daunting;
no matter how sleek the interiors are, although for some events a blank canvas
is a prerequisite. One regular client,
Lynn Little of Corporate Research Forum*, confirms that “a heritage venue will
invariably have an interesting story to tell which is a great conversation
starter, especially with delegates who are not familiar with each other. And
other value-add benefits can include free use of, or access to, their treasures and artefacts; at Trinity House guests
can ring the bell of the Royal Yacht Britannia, for instance.  Crested crockery, cutlery, glassware,
presentation table silver, menus, and chairs  all help to impress clients – and validates my
judgement as the corporate booker!”

Historic venues also tend to be generically
themed so that planners needing to come up with ideas for a themed event can
borrow from the venue itself and expand on an existing premise, in the case of
Trinity House, a strong maritime influence. Furthermore, with ‘experiential’ the main buzz
word in the industry these day, bookers are looking for comprehensive programmes
to ensure delegates receive value and the legacy inherent in an historic
building often builds their anticipation.

Many atmospheric older buildings
provide a completely different mood from day to night (unlike contemporary
minimalist spaces) which help to set the tone for varied events whether it be a
bright, business-like day conference or a glittering formal dinner.  Classic interiors are enhanced with the use
of modern technology (when used in harmony with the surroundings) but in many
modern venues there is only the technology to recommend. 
Incorporation of subtle sound, lighting and Wi-Fi throughout is standard these
days, and in a traditional venue these elements are sensitively integrated to
support client requirements as well as enhance the ambience.

Although it’s a given that the right location
for the remit is essential, if the venue is a celebrated and commanding one, clients will overlook if the location is not
centrally located. The sense of impending
occasion is paramount – that and the full engagement of the participants.

*Corporate Research Forum is a membership network
for organisations looking to develop their people strategy and organisational
effectiveness.

Any comments? Email conferencenews@mashmedia.net

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Conference News hosts great guests on its pages. Our Blog section is the collection of the best opinions in the UK and international events industry.

ConferenceNews Guest Author

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ConferenceNews Guest Author

Conference News hosts great guests on its pages. Our Blog section is the collection of the best opinions in the UK and international events industry.

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