By Rachel Benedick
Booking events that require hotel rooms and event space couldn’t be easier than it is in Colorado. VISIT DENVER and other destination marketing organizations (DMOs) in the state can help you find the perfect space to hold your gathering—no matter the size. We can help meeting planners receive bids from different hotels, assist in site inspections, and help find all the local services needed from florists and caterers to photographers and speakers. We have brochures, websites, photos, videos, press releases and a full-time marketing and PR staff to help publicize a meeting.
Our Convention Services Department acts as your “boots on the ground” to help with any local assistance, from closing streets and working with local city government and police to finding a special banquet room for a board dinner.
How is VISIT DENVER able to provide these services for free? Like most destination marketing organizations, VISIT DENVER is funded by a percentage of the lodger’s tax collected on hotel rooms in Denver. The more people who stay in Denver, the larger marketing budget there is for VISIT DENVER, so our mission is to market the city as a destination for meetings and tourists. We also have nearly 1,300 private business members throughout Colorado who work with us, including hotels, resorts, restaurants, attractions, service firms, sports teams and shops.
There are 9,400 hotel rooms in Denver’s safe and pedestrian-friendly downtown, as well as 300 restaurants, more than 90 outdoor cafes and rooftop bars, five art museums, three professional sports stadiums and even a theme park. Denver has one of the largest performing arts centers in the nation and numerous venues offering live music. Through the region there are 43,000 hotel rooms and a slew of attractions and outdoor recreation options.
Tips for your next convention
- It’s a seller’s market, so flexibility can help achieve your goals. If you will consider alternate dates and/or patterns, we need to know.
- Provide a detailed history of your conference or meeting. The more information we have, the better equipped we are to help get what you need.
- Are expectations on the rise, but do your budgets remain flat? We can help find local speakers as well as subject matter experts who can have a positive impact on the bottom line.
- Having trouble showing the true impact of your meeting to a city? VISIT DENVER works with Destination Marketers Association International (DMAI) on economic impact reports as well as room demand studies to really show how many rooms and spending a convention generates.
- And finally, use your local destination marketing organization. These services are free and exist to help ensure that your next meeting is the best in history.
Rachel Benedick, vice president of convention sales & services, has been with VISIT DENVER, The Convention & Visitors Bureau for more than 16 years. During her tenure, Benedick was the lead in booking the 2008 Democratic National Convention and SnowSports Industries America (SIA) annual tradeshow, among many other historic bookings.