As 2016 winds down and planners begin scheduling for 2017 meetings and events, Kindred Resorts & Hotels, a collection of independent hotels and resorts uniquely focused on the group and meetings market in North America, has announced their findings on 2017 meetings trends based on the results of a recent survey among the brand’s 64 properties. The impressive properties that make up the collection are known for their strong meetings programs including compelling culinary and wellness offerings, unique outdoor and experiential teambuilding activities, meeting spaces that go beyond the boardroom and exclusive packages.
Projected revenue is trending up
According to the survey, 61 percent of properties met their 2016 projected revenue for group business and 66 percent of properties reported that booked revenue for 2017 is trending up from the previous year, with the strongest projected quarters being the second and third (39 percent each).
Trends on the rise for 2017
One anticipated meetings trend for 2017 is the increase in outdoor programming and experiential, destination-focused teambuilding activities. Groups are more and more wanting to get out of the boardroom and explore the destination, partaking in authentic, local experiences, whether it be paddle boarding on Lake Austin, snowshoeing in Colorado, hiking in Vermont, golfing in Pebble Beach, or fishing excursions in Florida. Community service activities are also becoming popular with groups and provide a great teambuilding opportunity to come together in helping others.
Kindred’s properties also cited the increase in wellness and healthy, local culinary offerings for meetings and coffee breaks. Thirty percent of those surveyed noted that soda requests are decreasing, and as an alternative, meeting attendees are requesting beverages such as water, smoothies or organic juices. Gluten-free menus have been the most requested dietary option (61 percent) followed by vegetarian (32 percent). Responding to this rising health trend, many of the Kindred hotels offer sustainably grown and locally produced food, organic gardens, specialized menus, healthy cooking classes and more to help meet demands from these groups.
Trends on the decline
The survey notes that on the decline are formal events, as well as the more traditional meeting breaks and conference rooms. Guests are favoring receptions and causal beach barbecues or clambakes over more formal seated dinners with suit and tie requirements. Additionally, with so many unique meeting and break-out venue options from rooms with incredible views and a sense of place to renovated barns, upscale guesthouses, luxury boats, gardens and more, the need for a traditional meeting room is no longer as necessary for productivity.
“Across the board, 2017 booked business is up and the group trends we are seeing are centered around experiences and health,” said Bree Brostko, Managing Director of Kindred Resorts & Hotels. “Meeting planners are looking to break off from the traditional board room conferences and offerings and get outside, experience the destination and truly get a taste of the local culture and cuisine.”
For more information on Kindred Resorts & Hotels, please visit http://www.meetkindred.com.