How to choose a conference venue?

Conference Venue Setup at Deckhouse

Welcome to 2020. It is time to hit the ground running with all your conferences and events you have planned for the year.

If you are the type who loves planning events, or you find them stressful and overwhelming, you will know the key to a good event is the venue choice.

In Sydney, you have thousands of venues to host events for any conference, but where do you begin?

Lucky for you, here at Deckhouse, we have created some pointers to help you set good intentions so you can find the perfect venue in little to no time.

When it comes to conference planning, you want to have everything scoped out, so when you need to find your venue, all the hard work has been done.

So, have a look below at all the steps you need to take to ensure you are ready to find the perfect conference space.

Set venue objectives

Objectives don’t have to be overly complicated or formal. You just need to list down some ‘goals’ around what you want the venue to be.

Maybe start by picturing the conference, what do you want the room to look like, how do you want it to all play out.

You want to find a venue that also works for the objectives of your event. So, ask yourself, what is your conference trying to achieve?

These objectives will set the prerequisites for your venue, which will help to narrow down the perfect one for you.

Set a budget

Of course, you need to set your budget for the event. A budget will help you filter down to the event venues you can afford.

The budget should include itemised services you need for the event. Your venue will have its own value but keep in mind, some venue places may have a lot of added extras, so you don’t need to add them as a separate item on your list.

Start with the most you can spend on a venue, once you start researching, look to see what the added benefits are from each venue space.

Start searching around the area you need

When you get to the research stage, of course, you need to set an area you wish to look at. Don’t rule out all the outer locations in Sydney, they might be easier to reach than you think.

Make sure you weigh up all the factors of the venue space and don’t be afraid to look in the suburbs as well.

You can use Google Maps and other search engine research to find the venues in the area you are looking at.

View the venue’s website

You want to have a thorough look at the venue websites. Do the research and try to get a lot of your questions answered.

As you go through the website, list the pros and the cons. Once you start looking at venues, these might change. Some venues cater to things that might not be listed on their website, so never assume and always ask when you go for venue visits.

Make a shortlist of venues you want to go visit before you make contact.

Make contact to book a site tour

With your shortlist, start making it to the venues you want to visit.

Have certain days for venue site tours and try and see them as close to each other as possible.

Otherwise, you might forget what ones you liked the most before you visit the last one. We recommend you look at them across the space of two or three days. 

Have a venue checklist

Before your venue visit, have a checklist of things the venue needs to have. This way, you will know what to look for and what questions you need to ask to ensure the venue ticks all the boxes.

Set a list of questions for the tour

Just like your checklist, have a list of questions you want to ask along the way. Don’t forget if you miss any, you can always contact the venue after your visit to ask them anything you may have forgotten.

You can have a rough list of questions you develop as you go. Once you have visited the first site, update your list based on things they may have mentioned that you want to ask other venues.

Review the venue based on your checklist

Before you head to the next venue, review your checklist and make notes.

This way, it will be fresh in your mind. If you try and review them at the end of the day, you might get venues confused.

Doing it as you go will ensure you know exactly what venue you liked the most. Even give them a rating out of 10.

Contact venues with more questions and prices

Once you have done all your site visits, make sure you contact the venues with any additional questions you have and also finalise their prices.

Add the price list into a spread so you can see all the venue prices in one document.

Pros and Cons list

You may already have developed the pros and cons list from before you started viewing venues for your conference event.

Update this list and start eliminating the venues that wouldn’t cater to your needs. When it comes to your conference, ensure the venue will work for your niche industry.

Think about those who will be attending and ensure the pros and cons are tailored to them, not just your personal preference.

Be final and own your choice

Once you have narrowed down and have chosen the venue, you like the best. Make sure you contact all the venues to advise them of the outcome.

Although you are not obligated to do so, it is nice to provide feedback so the venue can improve for the future. Besides, just because they aren’t suited to your conference event, doesn’t mean they won’t be in the future. Try to keep all the venues updated with your outcome.

Then you can celebrate!! The hardest part of event/conference planning has been ticked off, choosing the venue!

If you are looking to start organising now, get that list of venues organised! We have one for you to add already. The deckhouse is a unique function space for any conference! We have what you need to host your next conference event.


Contact us today to find out more, or to book a site tour. We want to make the event planning stress free for you.

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