Here at Venues and Events International we pride ourselves on our relationships with all of our partners and we appreciate the value each of them individually brings to the industry. We all know that every event is different and may require a range of services to deliver that ‘exceptional’ event for your client. Is it about location? Does sustainability play a part? Or are you in need of that personalised service with the ability to be flexible?
As a boutique agency ourselves, we wanted to share our thoughts on the value of independent properties and what their unique offering means to our events.
Location. Many event organisers want to take their delegates out of the hustle and bustle of their workplace environment and offer their delegates a unique experience. The advantage a lot of independent properties have is their location. You may not necessarily want a property in the heart of a town or city, but perhaps out in the countryside or rural areas offering peace and tranquillity. These properties don’t have to be a million miles from civilisation. Transport links are continuously improving, that although you may be searching for a venue outside of a town or city, there will be more often than not adequate transport links to get your delegates to your event safely.
Locally sourced produce. Independent properties will search for local produce that they can use within their hotel or venue. This proves to be a more sustainable option for the property as transport costs will be lower, and lower emission fumes generated. Not only this, by using locally sourced produce, the property will be investing money into their local community. By partnering with local providers, they also provide a more natural experience for delegates, capturing the essence of the region they’re in.
The ability to adapt and offer a personalised service. All event organisers want their event to be unique and memorable for their guests. Independent properties tend to have the ability to adapt allowing a greater scope for creativity and identity for individual events. With fewer people within the organisation to report to, organisers are more likely to get decisions faster rather than having to report to head office for approval for key decisions around individual events. With the freedom to be more flexible with their approach, independent properties can provide this ‘unique’ delegate experience organisers are looking for.
Return on Investment. With only one hotel or a small collection of properties to manage, by listening to guest feedback, investment can be made straight back into these properties where they know improvements need to be made to improve the overall guest experience. If guests can see where investment is being made, this gives them loyalty in the brand and will encourage them to return.
An independent property’s budget is targeted towards making a positive impact not only on the hotel but to the local area. Rather than having to invest money back into the Chain, they can look at investment into raising their profile within the local community.
With these thoughts in mind, we took a look at what some of our independent have to offer and what makes them unique…
Widely considered one of the finest concert halls in the world, Symphony Hall is a truly unique venue in the heart of Birmingham City Centre within walking distance of local hotels, car parks, mainline train stations and Arena Birmingham. It is housed in the same building as the International Convention Centre.
Symphony Hall is a flexible event space with the ability to transform from a concert auditorium to a venue for banqueting or cabaret style events using our Next Stage concept; a floating, flat floor which can be installed over the entire stalls seating area in the auditorium. Symphony Hall was designed look as good as it sounds with its warm, luxurious space, full of classical curves, polishes surfaces, columns and tiers making it the perfect venue for your event.
The Fish Hotel
A country hotel with a twist. Discover The Fish Hotel; a collection of quirky hotel houses, huts and treehouses on a hillside with a spectacular setting and view.
They’re miles from the sea and it’s a hike to the nearest river, yet they’ve called themselves The Fish. How did that happen? Legend has it that The Benedictine monks of Pershore Abbey could have told you. Until the monastery was demolished in the 16th century, Fish Hill more than just a wiggly sloped stretch of the A44; it was their fridge. They kept and cured the abbey’s fish stocks in caves hewn into the hillside, which soon became known as ‘Fish Hill’. The monks may be long gone, but the name they left lives on.
Nestled in 400-acres of grounds and countryside, they have quirky Hotel Houses, Huts and Treehouses, set into a steep Cotswold hillside with spectacular views, just 15 minutes from Moreton in the Marsh Train Station with a direct line to Paddington.
IET Birmingham: Austin Court
This unique, listed building in the heart of Birmingham city-centre is a beautiful blend of modern design and period features. State-of-the-art AV facilities combine with an inspiring waterside location to offer organisers a truly unique meeting and event venue. With a large variety of rooms that can cater for up to 150 guests, they have the perfect space for your event – whether you’re hosting a conference, meeting, awards do, pop-up cinema or gala dinner.
To ensure a seamless process from start to end of your event, they have partnered with Amadeus Food to bring you the best of the Midlands seasonal cuisines. Sourcing local ingredients where possible, their team ensures their menu is innovative and inspiring, providing some of the best venue food around.
The food has probably travelled less far than you have – it’s all locally sourced and prepared freshly and innovative menus are devised to fit in with your programme. Their fifty-year love affair with good food means that we’re perfectly equipped to cater for your meeting or corporate event.
As part of their ongoing commitment to local sourcing and ethical sustainability they take great pride in growing much of the fruit, vegetables and herbs they use in The Kitchen, right in Chewton Glen’s own garden.
With food at the heart of what they do, get your creative juices flowing in The Kitchen, their new cookery school in collaboration with celebrity chef James Martin.
Newbury Racecourse offers large, stylish and flexible conference and events facilities conveniently located along the M4 corridor. They manage their conferences and events as efficiently as they run their racedays; they are dedicated to excellence and deliver impeccable service to clients through their meticulous handling and attention to detail as proven by their recent awards for customer service and catering.
Organisers regularly combine their indoor facilities and outdoor spaces for bespoke events such as summer family fun days, team building activities, product launches, classic car shows, national gaming events and concerts. For indoor events, each of the racecourse’s three grandstands has unique characteristics that can be matched to each individual event requirement. Outside, their 300 acres of grounds make a stunning backdrop for any outdoor event.
Located in the heart of the North West of England, the DW Stadium is a versatile venue with 12 flexible meeting and event rooms that can accommodate 5 to 500 guests for various types of functions, including conferences, meetings, training days, seminars, product launches and exhibitions. Couple its facilities with their team of award winning in-house team of chefs and you are sure to have an event that is stylishly and memorably catered for; and remembered for all the right reasons.
The Stadium is located close to the regions motorway network, the M6, M58, M61 and M62 are a short drive away. Wigan is located on the North West Coast Line; just over two hours from London and Glasgow so a great location for pulling people across the UK together.