Conferences are an essential part of professional development and business networking. As a
result, organising a conference can be overwhelming. There are many moving parts to consider
including budget, itinerary, speakers, catering, guest list and most importantly the venue.
Venues set the first impression of any event, create the atmosphere and impact on the success
of your event. Selecting a venue is no easy task, there are logistical considerations, location,
number of attendees, accommodation etc. but there are also softer considerations that can be
overlooked; what does the venue stand for, what atmosphere will it provide, how personalised is
the service and how environmentally focused is it?
Brackenhurst Conference and Retreat Centre, has been hosting indoor and outdoor
conferences and retreats for many years and can guide you in creating a memorable event in a
Here are some the areas we suggest you consider when identifying the perfect conference
What is the goal of your conference? Perhaps it is to share information, gain consensus or bring people together after a hiatus. Being clear about your conference objective can help you to identify a venue which will align with your desired outcome. Perhaps your guests need time to think on their own, maybe they need to be inspired, or you need enough space to get everyone together in one place. Brackenhurst Conference and Retreat Centre can provide all of that and more.
Be realistic. A budget allows you to narrow down your options. You can break down your budget by food, transport, venue and possibly accommodation. Brackenhurst Conference and Retreat Centre offers a range of menus, accommodations and venues to suit almost any budget.
Location is key. Depending on the objectives of the conference you may want to prioritise somewhere central, or you may want to give your attendees the opportunity to get away and take a break. To escape city life so that they have the space to think differently. ‘Next time you are planning a conference or retreat, consider asking if your venue has been linked to improvements in education, job performance and increased production. Green spaces increase the hormone Oxytocin which helps people feel more connected to one another and promotes bonding and social closeness!’
At Brackenhurst Conference and Retreat Centre we can say with confidence that our location can provide you with these additional benefits.
If your conference will last longer than a day, you will need to consider a venue that has accommodation and other amenities such as restaurants and possibly activities nearby. At Brackenhurst we can offer you all of this including a range of accommodations from cottages to dorms and even outdoor team-building activities. Our aim is to provide your guests with a truly memorable experience.
Have you identified the equipment and technological support that you might need? Wi-Fi and charging stations go without saying and are available across the Brackenhurst Conference and Retreat Centre. For larger events, you may need microphones, audio-visual equipment, screens and projectors. Checking in advance that these are available before making a booking is a must. Our team are always happy to provide advice on what is possible within each of our indoor and outdoor spaces.
The theme of your conference as well as the number of guests help you determine whether the space is right for your organisation. COVID-19 signalled a shift in conferencing patterns with organisations prioritising outdoor spaces or rooms with natural air circulation.
Does the venue you are interested in meet the needs of all your guests? Perhaps you need access ramps, clear signage or other aids to assist people to move around easily during the conference. Knowing your guests and their needs is imperative when choosing a venue.
It may also be important to you to ensure that the space you choose aligns with your organisation’s values. ‘At Brackenhurst Conference and Retreat Centre we are passionate about our environment. Our campus is home to a 40-hectare indigenous forest. It wasn’t always this way, in 2002 the Brackenhurst Forest was purely exotic trees and had very little biodiversity. After a great deal of work, our forest is now a wonder of Kenya with a thriving population of Colobus monkeys where once there were none’.
Every business on the Brackenhurst campus makes a financial contribution to the forest restoration. For every bed night stay at Brackenhurst, we allocate $2, Muna Tree Café donates 2% of sales and this year Woodland Star International School’s contribution will exceed $12,000.
The quality of service provided is directly proportional to the ratio of venue staff to guests. From the start of your conference journey with Brackenhurst, you will be allocated a key contact for your event to ensure that everything runs smoothly and we will be happy to answer any questions you may have about the team allocated to your event. We are keenly aware of our responsibility to our employees, a number of whom have been with us for over 20 years and have vast amounts of experience in the conferencing sector. We also pride ourselves on the glowing hospitality of all our staff who will go out of their way to ensure you have everything that you need.
Check with the venue what is allowed regarding branding before you book. Then ensure that you can work with the venue team to make it happen. This could include signage around the venue, use of screens, branded notebooks, pens or water bottles (environmentally friendly options!). Successful conferences use branding to help ensure guests don’t forget their experience.
Finally, check out the venue reviews before making a final decision. At Brackenhurst Conference and Retreat Centre we are very proud of our 4.5* ‘Excellent’ reviews on Google Business and TripAdvisor. We will let those speak for themselves!
Now you know what you need to consider when booking the perfect conferencing venue. Get in touch and our team will be happy to do everything they can to guide you through your conference planning journey. Contact us today: email@example.com or call +254 724 256 721 | +254 736 424 242 | WhatsApp +254 748 199 552
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