The Venetian Resort Demonstrates Future of Meetings
To provide meeting professionals with guidance on the safe return of meetings and tradeshows to Las Vegas, The Venetian® Resort Las Vegas and Sands® Expo & Convention Center have launched several initiatives that keep attendee safety in the forefront, as part of the landmark convention center’s Venetian Clean Commitment.
As meetings return to America’s top convention destination, The Venetian Resort has already put this commitment to the test by hosting a large scale television production, and has demonstrated the future of meetings with a mock tradeshow highlighting the latest safety measures, which were recently certified by a leader in the industry.
“Meetings are at the heart of The Venetian Resort, and we recognize the importance of bringing meetings back in a safe and responsible way,” said Chandra Allison, senior vice president of sales at The Venetian Resort Las Vegas and Sands Expo. “We support our governor’s goal for Nevada that, as we re-open for meetings, we will be open for the long term, doing so with safety and consistency in mind.”
Earlier this year, The Venetian and Sands Expo were among the first major convention centers to share protocols for meetings during the COVID-19 pandemic. These Venetian Clean guidelines were put to the test this summer when the resort hosted a major television production in its convention center.
PUTTING OUR PROTOCOLS TO THE TEST: ABC-TV’s SHARK TANK
This summer, the hit ABC-TV television show “Shark Tank” partnered with The Venetian Resort with the idea of moving its entire production operation to Las Vegas.
The Meeting Services team at The Venetian and Sands Expo put its Venetian Clean Commitment to the test, working through the logistics of creating a “bubble” environment to successfully host the television production. A number of safety protocols were implemented, including frequent on-site COVID-19 testing and use of the resort’s new food and beverage guidelines outlined in the Venetian Clean Guide to Meetings.
After more than two months, the bubble, which measured more than one-million square feet was a success and free of COVID-19.
A NEW ERA OF THE TRADESHOW
The Venetian has played a pivotal role in the “reimagining” of the meetings and tradeshow experience in Nevada. A mock tradeshow was recently staged in the Sands Expo exhibit hall, working in collaboration with government partners, public health experts, and the largest resort companies on the Las Vegas Strip, as well industry vendors.
Nevada state leadership, including Governor Steve Sisolak, and other meetings industry professionals, recently toured the set up to see the physically-distanced meeting, tradeshow, and event setups, as the state was finalizing new guidelines for public gatherings. (See video with highlights of the tour.)
The 296,000 square-foot exhibit followed the guest journey of a tradeshow, from attendee arrival, through registration, and into the exhibit hall, where exhibitor booths, educational sessions, food courts and general sessions were staged to demonstrate physical distancing protocols and sanitization procedures.
VENETIAN CLEAN CERTIFIED BY BUREAU VERITAS
To verify its Venetian Clean standards, The Venetian Resort aligned with Bureau Veritas, a nearly 200-year-old world leader in testing, inspection, and certification.
Bureau Veritas has developed the Safe Guard™ Hygiene Excellence and Safety Label to support the operational activities for The Venetian as it continues to keep safety and hygiene at the forefront. The Cleveland Clinic serves as the Medical Advisor for Bureau Veritas’ health, safety and sustainability programs, including Safe Guard.
The partnership between The Venetian and Bureau Veritas included an on-site inspection and a thorough review of the resort’s Venetian Clean protocols. Through this certification, and subsequent ongoing reviews, the Safe Guard label can provide comfort that the resort — from the suites of the hotel towers to the meeting space of the Congress Center — is ready for meetings and conventions.
A LEADER IN TEAM MEMBER SUPPORT
The Venetian Resort is committed to ensuring Team Members are trained on Venetian Clean protocols. In addition to extensive training, Team Members in front-line positions are tested for COVID-19 on an ongoing monthly basis. As of September, The Venetian Resort has provided nearly 46,000 COVID-19 tests for Team Members since this proactive testing program began, the only of its kind on the Las Vegas Strip.
Las Vegas Sands has been focused on the health, safety, and well-being of its Team Members from the very beginning of the pandemic. “To our knowledge, we are the only gaming operator that has continued to maintain pay and benefits for each of our Team Members throughout the pandemic,” said Allison.
Team Members of The Venetian Resort are also part of a pilot program to test a new digital “smart ring,” which can potentially predict the onset of COVID-19 before symptoms are apparent, and a new digital device for Team Members that can assist in contact tracing efforts should another Team Member report experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.
SUSTAINABILITY EFFORTS CONTINUE
As part of the industry-leading Sands ECO360 program, The Venetian Resort created the Green Meetings program to help minimize the environmental impact of an event. This program’s newest initiative is an innovative recycling program to keep disposable COVID-19 face masks out of local landfills. As part of this pilot project, the discarded masks are collected on-site at The Venetian Resort and Sands Expo, and sent to a recycling facility where they are separated, shredded and densified into a crumb-like raw material. This material will be used to make repurposed products such as composite lumber for shipping pallets, railroad ties and composite decking. This project will help provide “proof of concept” for such recycling, to encourage others in the meetings and hospitality industries to replicate the program.
THE VENETIAN CLEAN COMMITMENT
Through our industry-leading Venetian Clean Commitment, The Venetian is prepared to host live and hybrid meetings safely, by providing a highly controlled and organized environment, using health and safety protocols that constitute best practices and are compliant with state requirements and guidance.
With more than two million square feet of meeting and exhibition space, and more than 300 configurable breakout rooms, attendees have plenty of space to spread out as they come together to learn, experience and network – the foundations of the live meeting experience.
Additionally, the resort has created the Venetian Clean Guide to Meetings, a comprehensive set of protocols that contemplates the entire customer journey and provides guidelines on delivering a highly controlled, organized, and safe environment for meetings and events.
“These new Venetian Clean guidelines and best practices, which incorporate the latest Nevada state guidance on public gatherings, will provide the proper guidelines, as we work in partnership to plan for meetings, conventions and tradeshows in a safe environment in 2021 and beyond,” said Allison. “There is much at stake in ensuring the safe return of meetings to our city. The annual 2019 impact of meetings, tradeshows, and events in Las Vegas was $11.4B, and supported 68,000 jobs.”
For more information on the Venetian Clean Guide to Meetings, please visit venetian.com/meetings.