Rene Dee, CEO of The Westminster Colletion, recently gave some valuable advice on choosing the perfect venue for your event in April's Government Business Magazine.
Choosing the right venue really isn't as easy as it sounds - it's estimated there are as many as 1000 in London alone, often making this quite a daunting task. To illustrate, some hotels may provide excellent conference facilties but their priorities often lie with those occupying rooms. It is therefore very important for event organisers to ask themselves fundamental questions when choosing a venue, right from the very start.
The Four Fundamental Factors
1 Understand what your event objectives are. This may sound quite obvious, but event organisers who do not establish their objectives will struggle to find an appropriate venues. Venues will also not be able to offer succinct advice without knowing your needs and requirements.
2 Compile a full brief of event requirements. This must be as detailed as possible, from design specifications for the room layout to cloakroom arrangements. This all helps your event run as smoothly as possible.
3 Ensure both the selection and final decision making process are clear. The management and organisation of your event is crucial.
4 Budget. Make sure that is clear from the outset and either fixed or flexible. If you do not make the final decision about the budget, ask who does.
Armed with the above, you can decide the location of your venue, which can easily be found using google, venue finding agencies, directories and marketing collectives such as The Westminster Collection. The clearer your objectives and requirements, the easier it will be to select a venue in your desired location. Speak to your selected venues on the phone rather than email and run through your brief after checking availability. Only once you are satisfied that your brief can be met at the times you require and within your budget should you use email for communication with the venue. The reason for this is to avoid misinterpretation and a verbal conversation is the only way to achieve this, especially prior to the next step of making a visit to the venue.
You should also be aware of the terms and conditions in any contract, which vary from venue to venue. Take into account every eventuality including cancellation charges, public liability, licenses. Be prepared for any last minute changes with a fail-safe checklist to allow for any "what if" situations.
For more information about the Westminster Collection please visit