Tuesday, July 7, 2020

The Future of Meeting Space

As we look forward to planning meetings and events, one challenging factor is accounting for social distancing. In the current environment, it has become difficult for planners to maximize the space in a room while creating a memorable experience for attendees. However, there are still ways to ensure safety and still meet face-to-face.

In the diagram below, you can see the layout for a classroom set with one person per a six-foot table. While this does look quite different than what we are used to seeing, this set allows attendees to maintain six feet of social distancing and meet safely. You will notice that there are arrows displayed on the floor to guide attendees when they enter and exit the meeting space and reduce contact.

A great resource for creating a social distancing diagram like this one is allseated.com. The site provides feature that ensure six feet of distance between all seats and allows you to add directional arrows. Although meeting diagrams may look different for the time being, face-to-face meetings can still create a memorable and safe experience for attendees!

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Weekly Spotlight: InterContinental Hotels of San Francisco

In this week’s spotlight blog post we want to recognize the InterContinental Hotels of San Francisco for the active measures they have taken to ensure the safety and success of future face-to-face meetings. We deeply admire their initiative and commitment toward keeping their partners and guests informed on the plan they have developed to fight the spread of COVID-19. They have created a Mindful Meetings Guide that considers every precaution necessary for us to meet with confidence in the near future.
The first section of the guide focuses on how they have enhanced their standard operating procedures to meet the guidelines developed by the World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). These new standards were created to maintain the health, safety, and well-being of all guests and staff. Their standard operating procedures have been broken down into the following areas: upon arrival, in the lobby, in your guestroom, grab & go dining, in-room dining, in our restaurant, and, in your meeting room. Each section thoroughly considers the potential risks and provides actionable efforts to minimize them.
The next section of the guide provides an updated capacity chart for all meeting space to reflect current social distancing guidelines. Following this, you are then able to view these rooms in a 3D virtual tour with the presented social distancing floor plan and set up. With this feature accessible, we can now visualize and prepare for our upcoming meetings with ease.
The following section of the guide discusses the packages available for your meeting that include your meeting room rental (provided to meet social distancing guidelines), food & beverage needs, break attendant, and two additional bottles of water per person. As discussed further within the guide, all food and beverage meals will be individually plated or packaged, all beverage stations will include a staff attendant, and only bottled water will be served. These steps were taken to limit the contact between staff and guests and avoid further contamination.
 The last section of the guide introduces their new partnership with PSAV in which they will be offering Virtual or Hybrid technology services for your meeting. Their On-Site Virtual Events team at PSAV will provide their expertise to help you create a flawless event that meets all your objectives. PSAV offers a variety of virtual and hybrid services including video conferencing, webcasting and recording, and Chime live.
At Meeting Sites Pro, we are actively looking for new ways to reevaluate the way we meet. Our main priority will always be the health and safety of our attendees; thus, we must change and adapt to the challenges we face against the COVID-19 pandemic. We find comfort in knowing our hotel partners are doing the same. Together, we will get through this and come out stronger than before!

For more information please visit: InterContinental San Francisco

Friday, May 29, 2020

This Week’s Spotlight: Grand Hyatt San Antonio

During this trying time in the meetings and events industry, we know our partnerships will help us through. In light of this struggle, we plan on doing a weekly spotlight post to recognize the partners we work with that help make our meetings run seamlessly.

This week’s spotlight property is the Grand Hyatt San Antonio. We always look forward to working with this outstanding property. This hotel is in a great location, right on the River Walk in San Antonio. One of our favorite things about this property is the comfort of their meeting space. They offer beautiful and spacious ballrooms that are also conveniently connected to the Henry B. Gonzales Convention Center. With many amazing features, the staff of the hotel is what really sells us. Every meeting we have done at this property was executed perfectly because of the friendly and helpful Hyatt team!  

As we look toward the future of meetings and events, we are actively working with our partners to navigate the safest way to meet again. We want to recognize the actions the Grand Hyatt San Antonio has put forward in effort to do so. Hyatt Corporation has announced their Global Care & Cleanliness Commitment which further builds on the safety and wellbeing of their colleagues and guests with Global Biorisk Advisory Council accreditation, hotel-level sanitization specialists, and a working group of trusted medical and industry advisors. In addition to corporate guidance and standards, the Grand Hyatt San Antonio has continuously informed us of the efforts they are working to develop to ensure a safe meeting experience. A few of these efforts include plexiglass at the front desk and keyless entry to rooms to minimize physical contact. Their team has also been proactive at reevaluating their meeting space to allow for social distancing. Although we are all faced with uncertain conditions, we find comfort in knowing our partners are working toward reevaluating the future of meetings and events.
For more information please visit: www.grandhyattsanantonio.com

At Meeting Sites Pro, we are so greatful for the work and dedication of our partners. We understand this time has been difficult for many, and we want to recognize the Grand Hyatt San Antonio for their preventative efforts, commitment, and grace. Thank you to all who are working to keep us safe and healthy.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Future of Face To Face Meetings | Virtual Think Tank

On May 14, 2020, Meeting Sites Pro, Inc. hosted a Virtual Think Tank to join with industry leaders and discuss the future of face to face meetings. The group split into breakout sessions to discuss PPE and Screening Policies, Meeting Room Set Up, Food and Beverage Options, and Meeting Flow, Registration, and Agenda Management before returning to our Main Session where we shared our small group discussions and collaborated on additional ideas and thoughts. It was an engaging discussion and we look forward to doing more in the future. In the meantime, our discussion summary and findings can be seen by downloading the below PDF. Please reach out if you would like to join these discussions, if you have additional information to share, or if we can be a resource to you on an upcoming meeting. Stay safe and be well!

Download PDF Meeting Summary

Visit Our Website:  www.meetingsitespro.com and www.smsquared.com
Follow Our Blog:  www.meetingproblog.blogspot.com
Connect with Us on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/michellebartolone

Meeting Sites Pro, Inc. & SM Squared
Worldwide Meetings & Conferences
Woman-Owned Small Business | HUBZone | GSA 

Meeting Sites Pro… Your Meeting is Our Passion”
“SM Squared… Worldwide Strategic Meetings Management”

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Meeting Sites Pro, Inc. Celebrates 20 Years

Contact: Michelle Harty, CEO
Phone: 619-749-1133


[Naples, FL, May 2020] Through the uncertainty and challenges of the past few months, we at Meeting Sites Pro have been impressed and amazed by the passion, resiliency, and adaptability found in our industry and the world. While there has been hardship, there has also been optimism and kindness. We have found joy and happiness in embracing our community and cherishing each moment. It is with that sentiment that Meeting Sites Pro, Inc. is pleased to be celebrating 20 years of business.

This anniversary marks an important milestone for the company as we look back on the growth, successes, and relationships built over the years. From our beginnings as “Michelle’s Meeting Services” to where we are today as a full service worldwide meeting management company with a separate division (SM Squared) operating in the life science industry, we are proud to have a legacy of serving our clients and building partnerships. Our goal is to always provide our clients the best-in-class quality services and cost savings while offering a personalized experience unique each meeting. We go above and beyond to create not just a meeting, but an experience. This is as true as ever as we look forward to the future of meetings and events and explore opportunities to offer creative solutions and superb service even through unique circumstances.  

So many people, places, and events had an impact on our company trajectory, and in reflecting on this milestone, we want to extend a warm thank you to each and every one of them. To our amazing clients, thank you for your trust and support. To the staff of Meeting Sites Pro, past and present, it is your hard work that lead to the accomplishments that built the legacy we have today. To our partners and vendors, thank you for your continued collaboration and dedication to helping us build successful events.

Looking forward to the second half of this year and beyond, we understand the importance of health and safety as a top priority. Meeting Sites Pro has been preparing for our new normal by strategizing on how to have meetings while ensuring safety and your peace of mind. We are excited for our future in the meetings industry as we continue to strive to exceed your expectations even in these unusual times. Please know that when it is time to meet again, we will be here, ready and excited to create safe, functional, and flawless meetings that meet our client’s objectives. Thank you to all involved with Meeting Sites Pro and cheers to 20 years!

[Meeting Sites Pro is a woman-owned, full-service, worldwide meeting & event management company specializing in creating high quality meetings for a diverse client base to include companies large and small in the pharmaceutical, medical device, government, high-tech, association, franchise, education, insurance, energy, and defense industries.]


If you would like more information about this topic, please call Michelle Harty at 619-749-1133 or email info@meetingsitespro.com. You may also visit our websites www.meetingsitespro.com and www.smsquared.com or connect via LinkedIn (www.linkedin.com/in/michellebartolone)