Under one roof

Collaborations are in. And now we are seeing venues take on a hybrid skin of their own and gravitating towards lifestyle-oriented environments.

Venues, in a traditional sense, have offered us a backdrop for our events, whatever it may be. Now, they are growing in stature and capitalising on their guests' presence. Bakeries, florists, DJs, cafes, concessions, greengrocers, are all elements popping up inside venues. A bit like the movie 'Inception', venues are becoming venues within venues... still following? Good!

NYC is a great example of where hybrid venues are on a roll, space is at a premium so savvy venue teams are making the most of what they've got. More often than not, a single venue will have a formal bar, sports bar, bistro, fast food outlet and fine dining restaurant just to cater to all audiences' need. Why go anywhere else? Why indeed. This is a clever marketing tool and one which is working.

One great example of this is the Armani Hotel in Milan. We were lucky enough to visit last year and wow, this place has got a lot of layers. You enter through a three-storey department store which sells, well you've guessed it Armani goods and nothing else. We took a quick detour through the Armani chocolate shop (yes designer chocolates do exist, and yes they are stupidly expensive... and yes we did buy a box) and headed up to the hotel. Located on a further four floors the opulence of the Armani design really comes out, finally reaching the restaurant, spa and bar. To say they've packed a lot in would be an understatement but they've done it in such a way that the venue experience does not falter at any step of your journey, even the lifts are on-brand. You know you're in Armani's designer presence at every turn, so why would you leave?

Consistency is the key to hybrid venue's success while trying to pack so much in under one roof, it's important for venue teams to consider how the guest experience must remain the same, even if the individual spend changes to suit the client's wants and needs at that particular moment. If venues stay true to their brand pillars and keep the customer at heart, no doubt more and more venues will start to grow layers.