Indoor vs. Outdoor Venues.
Indoor venues and outdoor venues both come with their own set of pros and cons, so evaluating the values of each is an important first step to planning an event.
Here are some ways to determine the best venue for an event.
Time of Year
No matter the event, be it corporate or social, it’s up to the planner to always keep the guests’ comfort levels in mind. If the event is in August, for example, you won’t want to host it outside unless a fully air-conditioned tent is within the client’s budget. While you may love to soak up the sun, guests may not quite feel. Likewise, an outdoor event in December could leave everyone shivering, depending on where you’re located. Spring and fall, however, are beautiful times to be outdoors in many regions, so guests will love the fresh air and breezy weather.
As it is with many things, the event budget is an important piece of the puzzle. Outdoor events often need a tent to be factored in, which can be very expensive but often necessary. In some areas of the country, summer means afternoon showers and I guarantee that nothing ruins a party faster than guests being rained on with nowhere to go! Beyond the cost of the tent itself, the client will also need to pay for permitting and décor for the tent so it’s important to know how much wiggle room you have with the budget.
The size of the event is another major consideration that planners need to keep in mind. Tying back to the budget, small events are understandably more affordable than larger ones. However, with outdoor events, keep in mind that longer guest lists equate to larger tents which can really run your budget up.
Get an idea for the vision that the client has because the level of décor may differ depending on the space. For example, if a client wants a candle-heavy event, this is often permitted at outdoor venues, but indoor venues may require using battery-operated candles instead. On the other hand, a client that wants lots of chandeliers and hanging fixtures will find it easier to manage at an indoor venue.
Find a compromise
If a client truly wants an outdoor event, try and compromise by finding a venue that offers the best of both worlds. For example, a property that has a courtyard alongside a main room gives guests the opportunity to go in and out as they please.
Questions to ask venues
Once you have an idea of what type of venue your client wants, it’s time to start qualifying to find the best of the best. Here are some questions to ask that will help guide your decision:
For indoor venues:
- What décor are we allowed to use? Can we use real candles?
- What is the maximum capacity? Is that for seated or standing?
- How many people can fit comfortably and still have room to move around?
For outdoor venues:
- What is the noise ordinance in the neighborhood?
- Are we allowed to have amplified music or does it have to be acoustic?
- What is the venue’s rain plan? Is there a large enough space indoors to relocate?
- Is there electrical outside?
- Are there restrooms onsite?
At the end of the day, a successful event is all about a satisfied client. Whether they want an indoor venue or an outdoor one, it’s important to walk through all of the logistics of their decision and put on the best event possible.