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.
How many hookers did you bang?
That’s not my thing. I am very happily married.
I am sure others have some stories though. There are always stories like that no matter where the conference is held.
That only happens at IRS, LEO, and other government related tax payer funded conventions in Vegas.
Dude, I was joking. You sound defensive.
What are you hiding? 2nd room rented in a cheap motel? Hope you wrapped that rascal.
Ha! At least you have a sense of humour!
Not so much today. Running on fumes and have house guests coming over.
Elliot, Glad you had fun, wish I was there, It would have been awesome and fulfilling to learn more about buying domain names. But about the heat, It may be hot in Vegas but it is not as bad as Alabama with the humidity that the south has.
Good point… and to that point, my nose and throat felt the affects of the dry heat and cigarette smoke.
Great point Elliot. I was seriously considering attending TRAFFIC but prior commitments left me on the Bench. I attend Pubcon, New Media Expo and Affiliate Summit West all in Vegas. Its a motivating environment! I firmly believe holding a conference in Vegas increases the attendance.
Elliot, What was the evening general consensus of opinion regarding the next 5 years ref Search / India – China online / SIRI interfaces / is technology in step with evolved linguistics ??
Much of the general talk was about gTLDs and how much they are going to change the business.
Did you peee in the pool?
Your life span has shortened by 10yrs thanks to cigarette smoke!
Yeah, and plenty of other things 🙂
IMO the Venetian is far more upscale, you should give them a try next time… Better yet, you should rent a car and take the tour at Hoover Dam or if you like the water, rent a boat for the day at Lake Mead, Theirs more to Las Vegas than sitting in Hotels.
And if you want to take your lady out for a nice dinner, the restaurant at the top of the Stratosphere is the ticket 😉
We stayed at TheHotel at Mandalay last time we were there. I don’t think Vegas is on the short list of places to return for a vacation.
Next stop is Panama at the end of the summer.
While I love Vegas, one of the major drawback is that Vegas becomes the draw rather than the event itself. A conference should force intimacy to maximize exposure and interaction between attendees. It is those attendees that make the conference a success. There is a big difference between a fun trip and successful conference.
“A conference should force intimacy to maximize exposure and interaction between attendees.”
Sounds terrible to me.
Kidding aside, I am more likely to attend an event if it’s in a great location. Even if there aren’t tons of options like Las Vegas, I will always find a way to get away from the conference and enjoy the scenery.
In theory, it might sound like a good idea to be “forced” to see conference attendees non-stop, but in reality, I have no interest in being cooped up for days. I do my best to see the people I want to see, meet a few people here and there, enjoy my time away, and then get back to business.