Eat, Drink & Meet Around the World with Laura Schwartz
This month we eat, drink and meet at the Importanne Resort in Dubrovnik, Croatia.Though Croatia joined the European Union just this past July, the country has been a center of culture since its founding in the 7th century and a developing tourist destination since the mid 1800's. The old city of Dubrovnik, situated on the Dalmatian coast, has become one of Croatia's most attractive tourist destinations. As world travel is becoming easier and this area remains at a very good price point, it is a unique, exciting and productive location to Eat, Drink & Succeed.
I visited the Importanne Resort and its conference facilities in October on a personal stay at the tail end of the tourist high season, which runs April through October. Located on the Lapad Peninsula, the luxury property is surrounded by the sea, only 16 miles from the international airport and just two miles from the Old Town center making it a convenient and beautiful place to eat, drink and meet in Dubrovnik.
A great location aside, I chose the Importanne Resort because it is unique; within it are four hotels including one four star and three five star properties. It has various price points to fit various budgets, offers family friendly accommodations, and is at the center of adventure for any age and any size group. You can enjoy a variety of activities, from a group tour into the Old Town to networking activities on the beach, morning yoga on the rock, individual treatments in the spa and much more.
I stayed on their Royal Princess property. Like each of their hotels it has balconies with endless views of the Adriatic or the Park and well-appointed décor. With suites and meeting spaces to accommodate various size groups, from 15 to 500, the property can host a variety of functions. For example, I stayed in a suite that recently hosted a board dinner for an American pharmaceutical company and then toured the conference center that was occupied by a British company's annual meeting and visited another location that was hosting breakout sessions for the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.
The resort's amenities for groups don't end there. Although just a few miles from one of the oldest cities in the world, the Importanne boasts modern, tech-savvy conference facilities that rival event spaces found in the world's largest cities. With free Wi-Fi throughout the entire property and built-in audiovisual equipment, the resort certainly planned their conference facilities with technology in mind, not to mention its guests.
Ever since my days at the White House I have shared my event mantra, "We don't host events, we host guests." Even if you have the best sound system or the prettiest flowers or the most delicious food - if you don't think of how each element relates to the guests themselves - you've missed the point in creating a productive and enjoyable event. And the Importanne Resort hosts its guests. In addition to their high-tech equipment, the conference spaces incorporate contemporary design elements that keep the spaces fresh and inviting.
Several of the meeting rooms have floor to ceiling windows with a view of the sea, allowing attendees to enjoy the elements of this prized location while also enjoying their event. Whether facing the sea or not, the conference rooms at the resort promote energy and creativity for its attendees.
The Importanne even has beautiful hallways. This is probably not something you hear a lot, but I pay great attention to hallways when scouting venues. I don't see them as simply a location to connect conference rooms but rather a gathering point to share a coffee between sessions or a place to continue the conversation after a fabulous meeting.So often hallways can be dark and feel small but at the Importanne Resort the halls are wide with tall ceilings, beautiful lights and chairs. The inviting space allows you to enjoy a cup of coffee, meet other attendees and make new connections. The conversations that happen outside the conference doors can sometimes be more important than the ones happening inside.
The Importanne Resort has so much to offer but it wouldn't mean anything without the smart, professional execution of its seasoned conference staff.The team is outstanding with trusted experience in the hospitality and meeting planning industries.From the sales director to an assigned quality control manager, who is with you throughout your experience on the resort, they see to your every need before, during and after your conference so that you, the meeting planner or attendee, can get the most out of your event.
The next time your client is looking for something truly unique, remember the Importanne Resort. You will be sure to create an event where all of your guests and you will define what it means to Eat, Drink & Succeed!