Case Study

Berkeley Haas School of Business

How we helped a world-renowned business graduate program plan their Las Vegas trip by managing a $300,000 budget and facilitating more than 400 guests

Results

We were able to create an excellent guest experience thanks to avid communication and a well planned execution. This allowed us to showcase that we are experts in our field and our service is unrivaled.

Our client was able to accomplish their goals within budget while exceeding expectations and garnering a positive impression in the eyes of their group.

Stats

  • 400 guests serviced
  • $300,000 total budget
  • 127 hotel rooms booked

Challenges

In such a competitive landscape, we had to show our client why they should partner with us. They needed help simplifying complex large scale events and room blocks from a company with experience. After winning their business and working with them, we wanted to exceed what we did for them the previous year and once again impress the attendees in their group.

Insights

The first time we worked with the client we had to discover their goals, budget and priorities. Our years of experience and consistent communication with the group help us accomplish this. During the second year with the client, the acting organizer wanted to make the 2018 trip the best trip yet. We were able to deliver because of an early start to planning and the knowledge we gained from the client’s goals the previous year.

Solution

2017 Las Vegas trip

Our goal in 2017 was to earn our client’s business and establish a long-term working relationship with top university, UC Berkeley. We were confident that we could deliver an excellent guest experience for their group of 175. We worked very closely with the five event organizers over a span of three months leading up to their trip. They were responsible for making this the best graduate school trip yet.

UC Berkeley 2017 private party Las Vegas
The UC Berkeley group having a great time in 2017.

After gathering information to create an exciting experience, we consolidated the best possible options and walked our client through multiple proposals to win their business. Even though our client had dialogue with multiple other companies, they decided to work with us because of our expertise working with large organizations, our strong relationships with each venue and hotel, and our ability to provide excellent service while staying within their budget.

The first step was finding somewhere for their large group to stay. We were able to secure exclusive hotel rates for far less than available to the general public.

Our client’s group stayed at the Mandalay Bay Resort in 65 double queen rooms and two large penthouse suites. The night-time venue they chose was Hakkasan Nightclub at the MGM Grand, where they did a buyout of half of the Main Room Mezzanine, a private and roped-off intimate balcony section overlooking the DJ booth. The group loved the energy inside of Hakkasan and were treated like VIPs thanks to the exclusiveness of the Mezzanine.

Matt Irwin with Berkeley Haas organizers
Matt Irwin with Berkeley Haas organizers.

The group spent the next day at Daylight Beach Club also at Mandalay Bay. We proposed Daylight because they offered the most amount of real estate within the venue while still staying within the budget. Daylight offered us a buyout of their grand cabanas sections with private roped off access only for our clients for an extremely reasonable rate.

2018 Las Vegas trip

Planning for our client’s 2018 trip was an entirely new challenge. Each year the graduate school appoints different organizers, and they have a friendly competition of making the party better than the previous planners. We already established trust and a working relationship with them, and we were up for the task.

This year’s group was up to 225 attendees. We were able to negotiate a highly discounted hotel net rate, which was 70 percent off the retail rate. Not only were the rates cheaper than the previous year, we reserved 700-plus-square-foot suites for each attendee at Delano Hotel. Our long standing relationships with the executives of Mandalay Bay and Delano allowed us to secure room inventory well in advance.

Our client’s group stayed at the Delano in 60 double queen suites and two large penthouse suites.

We opted to reserve a private area on the terrace of Intrigue Nightclub at Wynn Resort for their evening activity. Intrigue was chosen because of the larger space, the openness of the covered terrace patio area and the proximity to the DJ booth. Diplo was performing this evening and not only did the group receive a larger space close to the DJ, we were able to save them money and provide the same amount of alcohol as they had the previous year at Hakkasan. The weather couldn’t have been better, and the group enjoyed the beautiful outdoor layout and pristine design for which Wynn properties are known.

As for the daytime fun, Daylight was a massive hit last year and we decided to reserve the same area for our clients. We made some slight changes to the flow of the alcohol, which resulted in their drink credit lasting an hour longer than the previous year. We finished the day with a personal “Berkeley Haas” bottle presentation and DJ shoutout for the group.

We look forward to working with Berkeley’s Haas School of Business again in the near future.

Summary

We managed a group of 175 and another of 225 in 2017 and 2018, respectively. This was to mark the end of their MBA program at Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, and we ensured that their celebrations would be an experience to remember. It was a pleasure working with the organizers of this project.

Our Roles

We were responsible for highlighting viable options, walking the client through proposals and securing agreements with the venues. We also facilitated the events by staffing them with Stupak members to ensure that the clients could interact with their guests and to handle any issues that may come up.

Find out how we can help you make your Las Vegas trip an elevated experience.