Recently, I’ve noticed the trend of meeting planners looking for a fully customized and personalized event experience, and there’s no better way to accomplish that than buying out an entire resort or hotel with a beautiful setting such as a mountain backdrop. Although a buyout can sound expensive and unobtainable, many ways exist to find flexible rates that will allow companies to book a private retreat while not overdrawing on any budgetary restrictions.
Recently, a good friend traveled to a corporate Christmas party in Vail that was hosted by her husband’s employer. I’ve gone to a similar gathering at The Peaks Resort & Spa in Telluride, and it certainly was one of the most fun work holiday parties I’ve attended to date. It made me think of how special it is to get staff away for time in the mountains. All of a sudden it’s “we get to go …” instead of “we have to go…”
Here’s a few ideas to make holiday celebrations in the mountains extra memorable.
The new “Boulder Lifestyle Meetings Menu” at St Julien Hotel & Spa will feature a variety of teambuilding exercises designed to help groups be more effective and have fun! Keeping all the sophisticated style expected from a distinguished member of Preferred Hotels and Resorts LVX Collection, an AAA Four-Diamond Property and a Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Hotel, these new experiences allow groups to experience Boulder like never before.
The Ranch, a healthy lifestyle company, has introduced three custom group experiences at The Ranch 4.0 at Four Seasons Hotel Westlake Village in California. The new packages incorporate the core elements of The Ranch’s signature program—hiking, rest, strength conditioning, massages and yoga—with custom programming to suit a group’s individual needs, four-day stays at the Four Seasons and a daily diet of fresh vegetarian fare.
With groups and meeting planners on a constant quest to integrate experiences that provide a taste of the region, JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa has 150 types of tequila and a variety of program offerings incorporating the spirit. After taking part in the Tequila Infusion Class for groups of 10-60 and led by the resort’s tequila master, participants leave with an appreciation for the differences between Reposado, Anejo and Blanco and a 9-ounce bottle of their own tequila concoction using a wide range of infusion ingredients.
Active groups are often happy groups. Why stay indoors in meeting rooms all day when so much more can be incorporated as demonstrated by these new ideas from Wyoming, California and Arizona?
Organization is key to a planners’ success; a system for staying on track makes for a sense of control, even for the largest of workloads. But keeping track of daily tasks, upcoming events and goals can be overwhelming, and rarely are all those things recorded in one place. That is until the Bullet Journal took hold. Ryder Carroll, inventor of the Bullet Journal, calls it “an analog system for the digital age that will help you track the past, organize the present, and plan for the future."
Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants picked the brains of chefs, sommeliers, general managers and bartenders from its 70- plus restaurants, bars and lounges across more than 30 U.S. cities to push the foodie envelope for 2017. Here are some trends to look out for at the Kimpton and beyond:
+ MEDITERRANEAN-INSPIRED DISHES: Moroccan spiced lamp chops with tomato-cucumber fattoush and lemon yogurt
The Snake River has carved its way deep into the Earth’s surface to create the massive walls of Hells Canyon. While hiking, camping, fishing, kayak - ing and rafting are great ways to see this amazing attraction, jet boat tours offer something truly different. Hells Canyon is most easily accessed from Lewiston. From White Bird, part of the road is gravel but doable in passenger cars. Idaho Outfitters and Guides Association can provide contacts for guided trips.