What goes into selecting a conference hotel

Richard rjnelsoncf at cox.net
Fri Oct 5 14:59:55 MDT 2018

Thank you Monte for that wonderful report.  All is well that ends well.  The
only issue I see is the greatly unbalanced week end week day room rate
difference.  Of course this is due to the type of business hotel that it is.
My Sunday night rate was $205.41 with four different taxes listed.


Over all the hotel was OK.  As I said California is an expensive state.
After all you have to pay for that train to nowhere somehow.


Thanks for your work on this.


X < > Y,




-----Original Message-----
From: hhc-bounces at lists.brouhaha.com [mailto:hhc-bounces at lists.brouhaha.com]
On Behalf Of Monte Dalrymple
Sent: Friday, October 5, 2018 1:41 PM
To: Handheld Computing Conference discussion list
Subject: Re: What goes into selecting a conference hotel


As a data point, for HHC 2018 I started with a list of all hotels within

20 miles of the San Jose Airport that advertized a meeting room. I

then removed from the list those with a meeting room that was obviously

too small for our needs (50 people in a classroom format.) Then I

looked at their published nightly rate, which eliminated a few more,

because I didn't think over $200 a night was going to fly. I then

requested a quote from the 10 left on the list. As part of the quote

I asked the question: Can we bring in our own snacks and sodas?


In nine of the cases the response to the snack question was "absolutely

not, we are a full-service property." The hotel we ended up at said

"we can work with you."


The quoted meeting room rental rates ranged from $800 to $2900

per day. The hotel we ended up at quoted $800 (the standard rate

for the room is $2500, I was wrong when I said $1500 during the

discussion at the conference.) I expect that the quote was this low

because I had negotiated with Jorge (my point-of-contact at the hotel)

the previous year for HHC2017, so he was motivated for 2018.


I should note that everyone gave roughly a $30/day discount on the

block of rooms (40 room-nights), but they were all around the $120

to $150 mark. This is the Bay Area, plus there was a big concert

that weekend.


At this point the Springhill Suites was the obvious choice, and I

started negotiating in earnest. I gave Jorge my hard limit of $600/day

for the room and we eventually settled there. I got the $600/day

number working backwards from an amount I expected to be

available given a $50 registration fee, subtracting out money for

USB drives, snacks, etc. I got those numbers from Richard's

conference report from the prior year. I factored in the ridiculous

taxes and gratuity fees, but didn't take into account the A/V stuff

(which was probably a mistake.)


Part of the room fee allowed us to bring in lunch if we wanted,

so next year I expect we could get the room for $400/day or

less by  tossing that add-on. I also expect that the block of rooms

could be negotiated down now that we are a returning customer,

and the same is probably true for the A/V stuff and sodas.










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