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Posh, private settings for VIP meetings

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Small, luxurious, boutique hotels offer an ideal setting for a “boutique business meeting,” where attendees feel appreciated and pampered. Is a boutique hotel or inn right for your next off-site meeting? It might be, if …

… your group size is 50 to 60 people. At a big hotel, that size group might feel lost in a large, impersonal meeting room. “When you start looking at a boutique hotel, you’re purposely doing it to avoid the big-hotel feeling,” says Kurt Paben, vice president at Carlson Marketing, an international conference planner.

… attendees are VIPs or top-level execs. Not only can these venues be posh, but they also offer a vacation-like experience. Porches, a small hotel in North Adams, MA, treats corporate guests to a tour of the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art across the street. Elsewhere, guests may end a day’s work with a trip to a vineyard followed by a gourmet dinner.

… the meeting is “buzz-worthy.” If the company wants attention from the media, a venue with cachet can make the media more interested in the story. Example: The company plans to unveil big news at the end of the meeting.

… confidentiality is paramount. Example: Investment firm UBS likes to take over all the rooms in a hotel, so managers won’t encounter snooping guests.

… it’s the inn’s off-season, when they’re discounting rates to win corporate guests.

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