Case in point: Ascent Live, the company’s annual three-day user conference. “Consisting of informational sessions, motivational speakers, product updates, networking events and various optional activities, this is our once-yearly opportunity to meet face-to-face with customers and partners,” explains Gauthier. “Now attracting more than 350 participants and continuing to grow, the conference enables us to better serve our customers by providing in-depth product training, unlimited access to our staff, and an avenue for collaboration among industry leaders.”
For the 2017 edition, selection criteria included “a large venue with high-quality accommodations within Colorado, numerous onsite meeting options, various dining options and large spaces for receptions and networking.” Imperative, too, were “qualified event staff and great overall customer service.”
After considering more than a dozen properties, several site inspections included, the company chose the site of its first user conference from 12-plus years back— The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs.
“We knew we would return,” says Gauthier of the luxurious, perennial Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five-Diamond-rated resort, which celebrates its centennial in 2018. “In revisiting the property, we came with a refined understanding of our event requirements. The Broadmoor exceeded these in every way, and we are returning in 2018. [In our experience], venues boasting world-class service set the stage for outstanding customer events.”
Superior service was also a key quotient for an executive planner organizing a recent gathering of 125 technology, media and telecom CEOs for a high-level “connectivity” conference in Park City, Utah. Satisfying this and other criteria, including one-flight access for participants coming from New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco; an atmosphere of exclusivity; skiing activities, and entertainment, was the mountainside AAA Five Diamond St. Regis Deer Valley resort.
“Travel for CEOs is a necessity, not a luxury, and so one of our main objectives was to make the event feel like a home away from home,” recounts the planner. “With the group’s preference for an intimate environment, deciding factors for the St. Regis were its scale, luxury and high level of service, along with the desired ski in/ski out amenity for the program.”