MAY 2015

ConventionSouth magazine is the leading resource for meeting planners who book all types of events, conventions, conferences and group travel in the south.

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M A Y 2 0 1 5 ⎜ ConventionSouth ⎜ w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m 11 concept of the boutique property has been around since quaint, historic inns were first introduced in Europe. In today's market, that concept has evolved from small, eclectic properties to iconic boutique structures that embody service, design, innovation and quality while maintaining a sense of play, experience and revival for guests, according to Fran Kiradjian, founder and chair of the Boutique and Lifestyle Lodging Association. "The demand for both boutique and lifestyle hotels continues to rise as travelers in general want more from their travel providers," she said, adding that this trend certainly encompasses business travel and events. "There is an interesting evolution happening in corporate travel in that the pendulum is swinging back to focus on the comfort of the plush hotels — more now than ever focusing on the healthy mindset and a great experience for business travelers." Appealing for many groups looking to avoid the "cookie cutter" hotel meeting experience is the fact that boutique hotels often have the flexibility to provide groups more individualized amenities and service. "They are not tied down to a policy and procedure manual that must follow guidelines," Kiradjian said. "In boutique hotels, top management are more involved in decisions made by a group manager." For Ian Swain, president of Swain Destinations, the Mansion on Forsyth Park in Savannah, Ga., fit the bill for the company's annual awards show to celebrate the success of team members with preferred partners present. "With smaller groups like ours, I will try to ‰ F E A T U R E : B O U T I Q U E H O T E L S A Flair For The Extraordinary By Selena Chavis The Boutique Hote s 700 Drayton Restaurant at The Mansion on Forsyth Park in Savannah, Ga.

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