I’ll have a more comprehensive post about the TRAFFIC conference within the next couple of days, but I want to discuss the Bellagio as the TRAFFIC conference venue and make a few observations about Las Vegas as well. Overall, I thought holding the conference in Las Vegas was a very good idea, and I enjoyed being out there.
Until my late 20s (I am in my early 30s now), I had never visited Las Vegas. In the last 5 years, I’ve been to a couple of bachelor parties in Las Vegas, a long weekend with my wife, and now a business conference. For the sake of this discussion, you should probably know I enjoy spending time in the city of Las Vegas.
In my 3 prior trips, I had only spent a brief amount of time at the Bellagio. I went to Bank nightclub and did some gambling there. I found the hotel to be huge, which is good and bad for the sake of this conference. Let’s discuss…
Here are some benefits of the hotel’s size:
- You can have private meetings in public spaces without drawing attention to yourself.
- There is excitement in the air with thousands of other people around
- Many places to go and things to do within the hotel, including restaurants, pools, casino, shops…etc.
- Plenty of hotel rooms of all sizes
- Concierge and amenities
Here are some drawbacks to the hotel’s size:
- Less likely to bump into other conference attendees outside of the conference area
- Easy to get caught up doing other things and miss conference events/panels
- Hotel is like a labyrinth, and it can be easy to get lost and/or take a while to get to the conference area
Some people were a bit critical of the Las Vegas venue, especially when it meant that I was playing blackjack and taking time off at the pool instead of watching the auction. Personally, I think Las Vegas is a great place for a TRAFFIC conference, and I will share some reasons why as well as why there are a few drawbacks.
Here are some benefits of having a conference in Las Vegas:
- Dozens of world class restaurants and nightclub venues, so you can avoid awkwardness of seeing what companies are taking who to dinner and clubs
- You’ll have more attendees who want to attend in a fun city
- A little downtime on a business trip is good, and there are plenty of things to do outside of the hotel
- There are direct flights from almost all major US cities and generally easy connecting flights.
- Hotel rates aren’t bad at all
- This time of year, the weather may be hot, but it hardly rains
Here are some drawbacks of having a conference in Las Vegas:
- Easy to get distracted with outside activities
- Can lose money in the casino (this was my second LV trip that I actually won playing blackjack)
- Can be difficult for east coast people to stay up / out late
Overall, I liked the fact that the conference was in Las Vegas. I thought the venue choice was excellent, and the conference area set-up was very good. I’ll write more about the conference in a couple of days, but if you are thinking about whether or not to attend the conference in Vegas next year, I think you’ll find it to be a great venue.