Meetings & Conventions: Planner's Portfolio March
BY CHERYL-ANNE STURKEN
The Site-Selection Process
The following checklist was compiled in part with the
help of Jennifer W. Brown, CMP, strategic site specialist, Meeting
Sites Resource, 1300 Quail St., Suite 200, Newport Beach, Calif.
GENERAL REQUIREMENTSWhat type of property best serves the meeting's objectives
(city hotel, resort, conference center)?From where will most attendees be traveling?Will pre- and post-convention trips be planned?What are the group's primary service needs?
SLEEPING ROOMSWhat are the room rates, including sales and bed tax?How are room rates determined (rack, sliding scale, government
per diem)?What is the breakdown of sleeping rooms, smoking and
nonsmoking, by sleeping configuration (singles, doubles, one- and
two-bedroom suites)?How many rooms comply with the Americans With Disabilities Act?
In what sleeping configurations?On what date will the room rate be guaranteed?Is there a complimentary-room policy?What is the policy on late arrivals and late checkout?How is overflow handled?What is the in-room telephone charge?What is the policy on cancellation and attrition?
FUNCTION SPACEHow many meeting rooms will be available exclusively to the
group?Do any have visual obstructions? Are they soundproof?Does each meeting room have its own sound system, data ports,
and light and temperature controls?Is there a storage area near the meeting space?Do ballrooms have access to the banquet kitchen?What is the capacity and location of the freight elevator?
FOOD AND BEVERAGEWhat is the tax and gratuity percentage on group
functions?What is the number, type and seating capacity of on-site
restaurants? Are they available for group functions?Does the property offer outdoor dining options?What is the average price of breakfast, lunch and dinner?Will the hotel contact provide specific food and beverage
quotes for one function?Are complimentary coffee breaks offered?
IMPORTANT CONSIDERATIONSAre any groups scheduled to be on-site during the dates your
group will meet? If yes, what types of groups?Are any citywide special events scheduled to take place?How many parking spaces are there? What are parking rates? Is
valet parking available?How far away are the convention center, downtown, hospital and
airport?What are the local alcohol consumption laws?Is airport shuttle service offered?What type of local transportation is available?What is the average taxi fare from airport to property?What are the local union requirements? Are there any
restrictions? When do union contracts expire?When was the last renovation? Does the property have any
renovations planned? What are the scheduled dates?What are the concierge hours? Where is the concierge desk? Can
additional concierges be added?What type of security is provided?Are there sports, entertainment and child-care facilities?What is the average length of service per employee?How long has the general manager been at the hotel?Does the property offer any promotional assistance?Ask for contact names of three comparable groups that recently
met at the property.
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