After years of Zoom happy hours and virtual office parties, group travel is back in a big way. With COVID concerns on the decline, large groups are finally gathering again for everything from weddings, to corporate retreats, to large-scale conferences. Hotels across the country are committing to multi-million dollar renovations in an effort to prepare for the rapid return of group travel, from refreshing and revitalizing public areas, accommodations and event spaces, to adding new dining venues and upgrading leisure offerings. As mentioned in a recent Wall Street Journal article, Peter Strebel, chairman of Omni Hotels & Resorts, had predicted that Omni would “probably do more group-room nights in September 2022 than we’ve ever done in the history of this company.” Much of the demand comes from companies looking to organize retreats to boost company morale or introduce new hires to company culture.
Here are some of the trends hotels are currently seeing in the meetings & incentives space, as well as the trends they predict for 2023 and beyond.
The Ranch – Malibu, CA
If you’re not familiar, The Ranch is an acclaimed results-oriented, fitness and wellness program designed to recalibrate the mind and body through an intense fitness and wellness regiment paired with a highly structured plant-based nutritional diet. For those interested in doing a buyout, The Ranch is a memorable, rewarding and turnkey retreat for a private corporate event. The physical nature of the program, combined with the support of a dedicated staff naturally lends itself to promoting a positive environment centered on the encouragement of others.
The daily schedule can be customized to suit the needs of your unique group. Whether it’s creating time for breakout sessions to focus on your business and employees, adding in more cooking classes with the culinary team, afternoon fitness programming centered around yoga, longer rest periods or even a kosher kitchen, the team will work with you to create a daily schedule that caters to the needs. Your group will depart on a path to better health while also strengthening relationships.
HOTEL DU PONT, Wilmington, DE
Since 1913, HOTEL DU PONT is dedicated to delivering timeless luxury with a modern and sophisticated sensibility. Located in downtown Wilmington, Delaware, in the heart of the picturesque Brandywine Valley, the 12-story Italian Renaissance landmark building boasts 217 guest rooms and spacious suites.
HOTEL DU PONT features 19 flexible meeting and event spaces totaling more than 25,000 square feet, including a Conference Center complex, two elegant ballrooms, a dedicated law suite and private dining rooms. This includes professional event staff on site, full business, and packaging centers (UPS), unique dining options, and on-site A/C company. These rooms are carefully designed to create a more interactive work environment and are the perfect opportunity to bond with those joining the space. Their meeting packages include room set-up, audiovisual support, breakfast, lunch, and refreshments. In order to help plan perfectly organized meetings, HOTEL DU PONT offers a dedicated event manager and a creative event planning team.
Opened in November 2021, Hilton Cancun, an All-Inclusive Resort, is nestled between Cancun and the quiet fishing village of Puerto Morelos, set on a secluded stretch of Mayan Coastline. Hilton Cancun features 715 stylish guest rooms offering stunning panoramic views of nature, the ocean, or the resort’s sought-after Swim-Up Poolside rooms, featuring a pool connected directly to the patio.
Coming soon in November 2022, Waldorf Astoria Cancun is set to deliver an unforgettable experience for guests. The resort will feature 173 exceptionally appointed guest rooms and suites, all of which will feature inviting soaking tubs and breathtaking ocean views on their private balconies.
Hilton Cancun, an All-Inclusive Resort, and Waldorf Astoria Cancun are neighboring resorts that offer shared facilities; accessible by guests of both resorts is over 68,000 square-feet of indoor and outdoor event space including 12 meeting spaces that span over two floors and a Main and Junior ballroom. The resort’s all-inclusive options and expert events team can create the ideal experience for any private celebration or professional conference without the worry of logistics.