What services do the major domestic hotel companies provide for small meetings? More than you might think. Here's a rundown.
Crowne Plaza Hotels
(800) MEETING; www.crowneplaza.com
Planners work with a single contact in the Global Sales department or a meeting specialist at the 1-800-MEETING service center. Groups get a choice of one of the following meeting enhancements: frequent flyer miles or rewards points; complimentary meeting room rental; 10 upgrades; complimentary suite; one free guest room for every 25 actualized; one break credit; welcome reception; or 10 percent discount on audiovisual.
(800) 441-1414; (866) 662-6060 www.fairmont.com
AskFairmontFirst is operated by Global Sales Solutions, a team within Fairmont's Global Reservation Customer Contact Center. Group needs are qualified by the GSS agent and dispatched to the desired hotel or hotels. Sales representatives will respond within one hour, based on the destination's hours of operation.
(800) 321-3232; www.hiltondirect.com
Small meetings are handled by the Hilton Direct sales center and site selection service in Dallas. Planners can source more than 2,400 hotels in the Hilton family. Small meetings receive special access to group value dates and other offers in select locations.
(800) 543-1818; www.e-mmediatemeetings.com
Hyatt Meeting Connection managers are the single sales contact for a small-meeting planner. Hyatt offers a real-time booking solution and site for small meetings. E-mmediatemeetings.com was specifically designed to address the needs of organizations with small groups, responding in real time to a planner's request for dates and rates.
(800) 831-4004; www.marriott.com
Marriott offers customized packages to service any meeting need. Via the Events & Meetings page on www.marriott.com, planners can search venues that fit their needs (from hotels to conference centers), take advantage of group meeting offerings, and complete a request for proposal online.
(800) 301-1111; www.starwood.com
From a national office perspective, smaller meetings of key accounts are given the same, if not more, attention than larger meetings. At the Starwood telesales office, account managers are inside sales executives, and processes are in place to handle large volume and quick turnaround — the typical requirements of smaller meetings.
(888) WYNDHAM; www.wyndham.com
Wyndham Express is the chain's small-meeting service, guaranteeing no longer than a 24-hour response time. ValuDays on www.wyndham.com is the best way to find need dates and special rates at hotels for small meetings. Executive conference managers inside the sales department specialize in handling small meetings; and Wyndham Express can determine availability at all 160 of the chain's hotels.