Know Before You Go To HPN19

Get Ready for Our Annual Partner Conference!

We’re so excited to see you all in Seattle for a great week of networking, getting business done and of course, fun! For full agenda and details, visit the HPN19 website.

Conference Mobile App
The #HPN19 app is available for download and contains all the information you need to know about this year’s event!

Text hpnglobal to 41411 for information to download and access the mobile event app!

Daily Emails
We’ll be sending out daily emails that cover all the exciting things that #HPN19 has to offer… Stay tuned!

Text Chatbot
In additional to the daily emails HPN will send each morning to prep you for all the exciting events of the day, we’re also partnering with EventBots, by 42Chat, to bring you a brand new chatbot experience for #HPN19! We’ll share information on how to interact with “HPNster” throughout the week!

Safety & Security
HPN Global has partnered with Emergency Concierge International (ECI) to provide comprehensive safety, security and medical services dedicated specifically to the attendees of our 2019 Conference.

In the HPN19 app you will find valuable emergency information under the “Emergency Info” tab.

If you have any safety, security or medical concerns/issues please don’t hesitate to contact ECI at 480-712-5027. They are here to help!

How to Prepare for #HPN19

Weather / Attire
Dress Code: HPN Casual – Jeans welcome!

High temperatures range between 63° to 66°, with a few days of forecasted clouds and possibly rain. Keep in mind it will cool down quite a bit at night. We recommend dressing in layers, especially for indoor/outdoor activities. Don’t forget an umbrella!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Club HPN will be at Museum of Pop Culture (MoPop) – Come dressed as your favorite pop icon!

#HPNGivingBack

Together with BWH Hotel Group, we’re partnering with Mary’s Place to help make a difference in the Seattle community.

In 2018, Mary’s Place helped 650 families move into stable housing, provided 180k overnight stays, 360k meals, served over 1,300 children, helped 1,500 people with employment services, and provided meals, showers, dry clothing, hygiene items, and resources to 100+ women and families per day.

With over a 95% success rate, Mary’s Place is truly making a difference in the community and we’re excited to do our part!

In addition to monetary donations onsite, we’re also accepting the following:
• Beanies, Gloves, Rain Ponchos, Socks
• $5 Gift Cards to: Starbucks, Subway, McDonalds, CVS, Target

Transportation from Airport to Hyatt Regency Seattle
Please note, HPN Global does not provide transportation to/from the airport. You will need to arrange transportation on your own. Here are a few options to consider:

UberX/UberPool – Will pick up from the 3rd floor of the parking garage with numbered stalls
Uber Select – Will pick up curbside

NOTE: Hyatt Regency Lake Washington appears 1st on when selecting your destination, so be sure you’re selecting Hyatt Regency Seattle!

The Link Light Rail picks up from the 4th floor of the airport parking garage and will get you to Hyatt Regency Seattle for only $2.75! You’ll get off at the Westlake Station and walk 5 minutes to the hotel. Plan your trip.

NOTE: If you are comfortable taking public transportation, this may be a faster option during peak, rush hour times – traffic can get heavy in downtown Seattle.

Share your photos with us on social and tag #HPN19

We’re here to help! If you have any questions, please email us at reg@hpnglobal.com.

See you in Seattle!

Jil Dasher’s 10 Most Asked Questions To Conquer Site Visits

According to Jil Dasher, SVP & Managing Director, Meeting Services, the following are great questions to ask during a site visit. Although HPN is known best for site selection and contract negotiations, did you know our team also assists in hotel site inspections and offers Full-Service Meeting & Event management, too? HPN is a one-stop solution for all your event planning needs.

1) Does the hotel or event site have a preferred or exclusive vendor list?

If the venue answers yes to this question, it can be good, or it can be a challenge. If you are new to the area and aren’t working with a Destination Management Company (DMC), having a prepared list of vetted vendors can make your job significantly easier. On the flip side, the limitations of that venue mean you might not be able to use outside vendors that you have partnered with before. In addition, if they do have preferred vendors, find out if you can have direct contact with them or if all communication will go through the site. Not having direct contact can slow down decisions.

HPN has a fully vetted list of preferred partners around the globe that we source on your behalf, so you have competitive bids in hand when you are on your site visit and contracting the hotel or venue. With HPN handling the vetting and RFP process, you know you are in good hands no matter who you choose to work with. If there are ever any issues, HPN can assist in mitigating them for you.

2) Are there any time restrictions for outdoor events?

Most venues have limits on amplified sound after a certain time of the night. For example, some venues might allow it until midnight while others end at 10 p.m. If you plan on having a deejay or band perform for a late-night event, knowing this up front is crucial. There are also event spaces, like museums and observatories, that only allow alcohol to be served for a certain amount of time or in certain areas of the venue. Knowing this valuable information upfront helps you plan your event within the available venue parameters while determining what is best based on the specific needs and expectations of the event you are hosting.

3) What else is going on during my event?

There are all kind of factors that can affect your event, from a concurrent event held at the venue to major road construction or citywide festivals. Each of these will need to be planned around, whether its finding alternate routes, putting up draping to hide construction work or hanging extra signage to ensure your guests make it to the correct event. Asking at the time of the site and contracting will save major headaches and confusion at your event!

4) What emergency preparedness plans are in place?

Your staff and attendees should have confidence that there is an emergency plan in place and what to do in the case of an on-site emergency. At the very least, your meeting team should know where the first aid kit and AED are located (preferably at the Registration Desk and easily accessible). Additionally, the entire planning team should be on the same page with the hotel or venue staff about how to handle everything including a power outage, fire alarm, medical emergency or on-site evacuation to assure that everything runs smoothly in the face of something unexpected.

5) What are the site’s security guidelines?

You’ll want to know the credentials of the on-site security, whether they’re in-house staff, off-duty cops or a third party hired for the event, and what specifically are they responsible for. That information will allow you to make decisions about extra security to make sure unwanted guests don’t wander into your event, which is something in-house security is often not responsible for. Here is a great article on the subject: https://hpnglobal.com/event-planning-risk-management/

6) What is the accessibility of the venue?

For starters, you will need to know if the venue is ADA compliant, especially if it is an open event to outside guests. You’ll also need to know about parking and whether there will be space for pick up and drop off. Both you and your guests are going to need this information to plan how they will get to the event. You’ll also want to know if there is a loading zone nearby, how many freight elevators does the site have and how big are they. The answers to these questions are key for figuring out how long it will take to load in decor and furniture.

7) What is the best staff-to-event ratio?

This question is good for both site visits and your on-site planning team. When talking with a DMC or a full-service partner like HPN Meeting Services, you will want to know that your dedicated Operations Manager is not working on too many programs at a time – otherwise, you may not be getting the full support you need, especially when it comes to last-minute changes or emergencies. When dealing with hotels and venues, asking how many servers, bussers, bartenders, and barbacks will be working your event ahead of time will help ensure that your event has the support it needs to run smoothly from start to finish.

8) How many power sources are there? Where are they located and what is their output?

This is such an easy question to overlook but it’s pretty important. For general sessions and conferences, people are going to need to plug in their phones, laptops, and tablets so you are going to need either a lot of power sources or one that has enough output to handle multiple devices. Thinking about power is even more important when you are planning an outdoor event. You can lose a substantial amount of the budget to generators and extra power charges, so it’s crucial to know immediately if the site can handle your electricity needs.

9) How many bathrooms are available?

This is another easily overlooked question that can make or break an event. If the event space has limited bathrooms, you’ll want to accommodate with extra time between sessions. If you know you will have significant disparity between male and female guests, you might need to requisition a bathroom for whichever needs more. Asking about the availability of ADA, family and gender-inclusive bathrooms or dedicated nursing rooms on-site is critical to covering all attendees needs, especially for open events or ones where you do not have the full demographic information about your attendees.

10) How does the site prefer to communicate?

You’ll be working closely with the hotel or venue leading up to and during your event, so you want communication to be as simple, streamlined and efficient as possible. That can be as easy as asking if they prefer information sent over in an Excel sheet rather than a Word document, or texting instead of calling during certain hours of the day. Simply asking how your hotel, venue or manager operates most efficiently is key so you can make sure you’re in tune with one other.

If you have any additional questions, please contact Jil Dasher directly; she would love to help!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Phone: 319-331-5304
Email: jdasher@hpnglobal.com

Event Wifi Services

An item that continues to come up when we are working on groups is wifi needs. How much bandwidth is enough and how much-dedicated megs do you guarantee under concessions. I am passing on some great resources to figure out the answer to these questions.

In order for us to help our clients, it is very important for us to identify the following information:

  • How many attendees will be in the meeting space?
  • Will they have multiple devices?
  • Is there a live streaming requirement?
  • Will you be downloading/uploading data for presentations?
  • Are they using a mobile meeting app?

 Once we have this information you can use the PSAV bandwidth calculator to figure out how many megabits of bandwidth is needed for the group. If it is a large group with a lot of attendees you will want to get dedicated wifi that is exclusive for your group. We typically negotiate the bandwidth complimentary as a concession our larger groups and always include the megabyte number.

For more information, please click here.

If you have any questions about wifi or anything else, just give me a call. 

Steven J. Scatino
Partner/Executive Vice President, Sales
HPN Global, LLC
13825 N Northsight Blvd Suite 201,Scottsdale, AZ 85260
Office: 480-998-9770 Ext. 225
Cell: 602-418-4127
Fax: 480-718-8136
Email: sscatino@hpnglobal.com

Sourcing Tip of the Month: June

Here is our HPN Global June 2019 sourcing tip of the month – provided by our amazing Sourcing Coordinator, Grecia Montaño.

RFP System Refresher:

A friendly reminder to our meeting suppliers to provide as much information as possible when filling out your RFPs. If you have alternate dates, please propose that option instead of turning it down. Another helpful thing to know is that under hotel comments, this area is a great section for you to communicate directly with the HPN Associate with additional information beyond dates, space and rates and really sell your property. If that particular program you are responding too, really works well at your property, show it in the comments! No detail is too small when we’re reviewing responses to RFP’s as we work hard to find that perfect fit for our clients.

Sourcing Trend:

We had a new “Top 5” Soured cities for the month of May including Austin/Dallas & Atlanta which are typically not seen in the top 5 destinations! We love seeing new cities pop up as trend. See below for the Top 5:

1. Austin
2. Atlanta
3. Phoenix/Scottsdale
4. Dallas
5. DC

Grecia Montaño
Sourcing Coordinator
gmontano@hpnglobal.com

 

 

 

 

 

Click Here to get started

Sourcing Tip of the Month: May

Here is a recap of our sourcing tip of the month – provided on our monthly conference call to all of our associates.

Sourcing Trend:

Puerto Rico is rebounding and ready for business! Receiving a record number of visitors as they continue to rebuild. New hotels are opening, hotels damaged are renovating and scheduled to reopen in the coming months, and travel to the island is at an all-time high.

Promotion Alert! 

HPN Global clients receive a Strategic Partner offer for Aruba!

Considering booking your event for any time between May and December 2020, and receive exclusive HPN Global concessions.  Contact us for participating hotels (each offering their own additional concessions).

Enter to win a CLEAR Membership

HPN Global and CLEAR want to put you at the front of the line. 

Whether you plan to join us in Seattle for #HPN19 or not, here is your opportunity to win a year of free Clear! HPN Global and CLEAR want to put you at the front of the line. Being an industry leading organization, we know what it’s like to be at the front of the line – and we want to take you with us. 

Enter here http://bit.ly/FREECLEAR to win a CLEAR membership on us. Winners will be announced on Tuesday, August 13th.  

Laura Hess

Senior Sourcing Specialist 

Lhess@hpnglobal.com

Click Here to get started


Sourcing Tip of the Month: April

Sourcing Trend: Top Sourced Cities for Q1 were:

  1. San Diego
  2. Orlando
  3. Chicago
  4. Phoenix / Scottsdale
  5. Dallas

Total RFPs sourced are up 12% from last year’s Q1!

Date flexibility continues to be key. If you can look at a flexible pattern within the week and/or the weeks prior or after, this may help open availability and provide more options. Even if you want to select one set of dates, we suggest allowing for hotels to offer alternate dates, just to see what comes back. This is a huge timesaver on short term leads, which we have seen a big increase this year!

Talk to your HPN Global Associate about this and we will be happy to help guide you!


Courtney Tate:
Senior Sourcing Specialist
ctate@hpnglobal.com


Click Here to get started

Sourcing Tip of the Month: March

Sourcing Trend:
SHORT TERM LEADS! 90 days out and under leads are up substantially; 11% from last year. If you are trying to book a short-term meeting, you may want to consider marking the dates as flexible on the front end to allow for more options in a short time frame.

Promotion Alert!
Although demand is extremely strong and short term availablity is tight, we do see cancellation happening so if you have a meeting please share with us and we might be able to put you in cancelled dates and create a win/win for your group, the hotel and even the group that cancelled.

Talk to your HPN Global Associate about this and we will be happy to help guide you!

Hillary King
Senior Sourcing Specialist
hking@hpnglobal.com

Sourcing Tip of the Month: February

RFP System Refresher:

Please ensure that you are including the preferred meeting space sets and number of attendees in your agenda as we need to determine about how much space your group will need for their program. If exhibits are needed, it’s also helpful to include an estimated amount of square footage for these so we can research accordingly.

Sourcing Trend:

*The top destinations we sourced in January 2019 are Atlanta, Chicago, Phoenix/Scottsdale, Washington DC, Dallas

*Another trend that we’re seeing is an increase in Short Term Leads (90 day and less) – Up about 11% from last year

Recap of January 2019

*January 2019 was the busiest in company history, sourcing over 1,000 RFPs – Up 11% from last January

Promotion Alert!

We are seeing many hotels offering short-term promotions from our many popular markets.

Pick your perk / Pick 3

• Daily Complimentary AM or PM Break

• Comp Meeting Room Rental

• Complimentary Guestroom and Meeting

• High Speed Internet Access (Newly Updated)

• 3% Rebate to Master Account

• 25% Discount on A/V Prices (In House Services Only)

• 15% Discount on F & B Banquet Menu Prices (Banquet Events Only)

Talk to your HPN Global Associate about this and we will be happy to help guide you!

Grecia Montano
Senior Sourcing Specialist

Meeting Planner View Atlantic City

So Meet Me Tonight in Atlantic City

Upon arrival last weekend, I was very impressed with the transformation that has taken place there. No longer is it just pretending to be a rich man in a poor man’s shirt.

The aurora is truly rising behind this solid meetings destination. With the recent opening of the Harrah’s Waterfront Conference Center in the marina district, this is now one of the largest and nicest meetings spaces on the Atlantic seaboard, just over the Jersey state line. Harrah’s offers over 2500 newly renovated sleeping rooms and two stacked 50,000 square foot ballrooms, each breaking into 30 sections. The pre-function space in the conference center was huge, each level had over 25,000 square feet outside the ballroom. They also had outdoor terraces with amazing bay and ocean views. The flexibility of their meeting space was unsurpassed and impressive.



Prefunction space at the Waterfront Conference Center
One of the sections of the flexible ballrooms at the Waterfront Conference Center


…Sleeping at the beach all night.
The sleeping rooms were divided up into several towers, all have recently been remodeled or are brand new. The vast majority of the rooms have great water views. The elevators were very fast and efficient, something that is often forgotten at a hotel of this size. All the rooms I saw were incredibly nice, with spacious separate tub and shower, with exceptional lighting and counter space. Everything you need to put your makeup on and fix your hair up pretty. The beds were plush and the internet was fast, not much else you need to have an enjoyable stay.

Sleeping room at Harrah’s

…I ain’t here on business, I’m only here for fun.
One of my favorite features at Harrah’s was the massive indoor pool that they turn into a concert venue at night. This is a perfect reception space for up to 400 people. The complex has dozens of restaurants at all price points, ranging from high end steak houses to grab a slice pizza joints. Overall, I found the food to be really good, high quality, and it was not overpriced. Several venues did live music at night, adding to the energy of the hotel. The casino was huge, but not all that noisy. They also have a large performance theater that seats 1200, this can also be used for private events or general sessions should the need arise. Harrah’s offers a very unique offering, a large Viking cooking school. This gives people the opportunity to cook their own meal and learn from professional chefs, then eat what they made in a back room with wine parings. It looked like a lot of fun, this type of experiential activity is really popular right now.


Indoor pool at Harrah’s
Viking Cooking School inside of Harrah’s

…Rich man wanna be king
Over in the center of the boardwalk is Caesars Palace, an 1100 room hotel. This hotel is smack in the center of the action. This is a miniature version of the iconic hotel in Las Vegas. They have 28,000 square feet of meeting space, highlighted by a 17,000 square foot ballroom. The hotel has some of the best restaurants on the boardwalk, Morton’s, Nero’s Italian, Phillips Seafood, and Gordon Ramsey’s Pub and Grill. This is a truly great hotel for groups of 250-300. The rooms were very upscale and large, all with nice water views.


Sleeping room at Caesars Palace

…Running off down the boardwalk
Next to Caesars, is Ballys, a 1200 room hotel. Ballys is a really nice option for groups more on a budget than Caesars or Harrah’s, but still a nice product. The 80,000 square foot meeting space is all on one level, making it very convenient. They also offer the largest casino floor in Atlantic City, and also have a number of restaurants at all price points. Both Bally’s and Caesars are right across from a massive outlet mall. The prices and selection were outstanding here, I am not a shopping fan, but this was one of the best outlet malls I have ever been to.


Sleeping room at Bally’s
Some of the meeting space at Bally’s

…Never gave no thought to landing.
The Atlantic City airport has very limited service, right now only Spirit flies in there. The Philadelphia airport is about an hour away, giving you a ton of flight options. This time from the airport should not be a huge impairment to booking there, as it is often an hour or more to get to the main downtown hotels in cities like Chicago, LA, New York, Houston, and plenty of other cities. As an added convenience, one-third of the US population is within one tank of gas to get to Atlantic City, tearing down the highway like a big old dinosaur. So Mary, climb in…We’re pulling out of here to win.

…Cant start a fire without a spark.
For many people, the first thing that they think of when entering a casino is the amount of smoke that is used to be omnipresent. The filtration systems that casinos have installed recently has changed this reality. I spent extensive time at three large casinos and never once smelled smoke in any public area. The meetings spaces are all non- smoking, as are the restaurants. In years past, it was impossible to enter a casino without smelling like an ashtray, but these are better days shining through now, making this a non-issue in most casinos.

I was impressed by the transformation that the city and the hotels that I visited has undergone. It is a city I would enjoy going back to, and one I can see bringing groups of all sizes to in the future. There is still a lot of value to be found here, especially for groups booking during the week. It has all of the amenities that my groups are looking for, and is perfect for those groups that has a big driving contingent and those looking at the Northeast.

I will say it again, Meet me tonight in Atlantic City.

All photos were taken by Timothy Arnold, May 2018. Most quotes shamelessly stolen from the immortal Bruce Springsteen.
**Guest Written by Timothy Arnold, CMP, CMM – Regional Vice President of HPN Global


Timothy Arnold, CMP, CMM
Regional Vice President
Hospitality Performance Network – HPN Global

972-624-1144 Phone
http://www.linkedin.com/in/timothyarnoldhpn
tarnold@hpnglobal.com

HOTEL UPDATE: Chicago