Five key things to Consider Before booking a Hotel Room Block for your Wedding or Event:
Room Block Size: Room blocks can be as small as a simple 10 room block of whatever is available at the hotel in a complimentary hold or they can be as large as full hotel buy-out. 10 rooms is typically the cap on a complimentary hold.
Complimentary vs. Attrition: Many hotels do not offer complimentary blocks. Most hotels carry what is called an "attrition rate" in order to book a block of rooms; especially in heavily populated or highly traveled areas. "Attrition" means that you are financially guaranteeing a specific number or percentage of rooms.
For example: If you reserve 10 rooms with an 80% attrition, then you are financially responsible for and guaranteeing the hotel that 8 rooms will book. If your guests book 7 of the 10 rooms, you would be responsible for paying for one room at the set rate for the room block.
Room Types: Most hotels will place the type of rooms available at which rates in your contract. If you select "10 queen rooms" or "2 deluxe king rooms, 5 queen rooms, 1 suite and 2 ADA accessible rooms" that is what will be available to your guests. The hotel is removing those rooms from their inventory for your block so other guests cannot book the rooms. Typically they will try to accomodate speical requests, but if you know you need something specific, go ahead and get specific.
Negotiating Power: Negotiate the best price If you have any additional items you are thinking about hosting at the hotel you are securing the room block at, it's best to present that in the beginning before signing your room block contract. This gives more negotiating power and you can cross something else off your list! (ie: a welcome reception the day before,a conference room for ladies hair and makeup, a morning after brunch for guests, etc...).
Pro Tip: The hotel will often include a free room on the event night for the host. If your block is large enough, they may also be willing to upgrade this complimentary stay.
Amenities: What amenities does this hotel have to offer? Are these items that are an additional cost? If so, ask for it to be included in your room block. For example, if self parking costs additional, ask for that to be waived for your guests; or if there is valet onsite, as for a reduced rate. Anything to sweeten the deal will go a long way to make your guests feel extra pampered!
Photo: Danielle Harris Photography