Friday, May 14, 2010

Experient Assists Clients with Relocation after Nashville Flooding

TWINSBURG, Ohio — As historic flooding of the Cumberland River leaves Nashville and other middle Tennessee areas reeling since the May 3 inundation, Experient, the source for integrated meeting and event solutions, has been hard at work assisting its clients whose events are affected.

Among the events impacted by flooding is the Romance Writers of America's 2,000-person Annual Conference, scheduled for July 27 to 31 at Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center.

With Opryland's beautiful indoor atriums slowly draining from ten feet of water and the venue closed for the next 90 days to assess the flood damage, Experient stepped up to assist RWA with relocation.

Linda Walter, CMP, strategic account manager with the Experient St. Louis office, immediately began the search for a facility suitable for RWA's event.  Within 48 hours, Walter researched and negotiated a contract with the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort in Orlando, and the document was signed by mid-afternoon May 5.

According to Allison Kelley, CAE, executive director of RWA, "the deal we got would not have been possible without our relationship with Experient.  Once other groups received notice of cancellation from the Opryland Hotel, there was frenzy to book rooms elsewhere.  Not counting the hotels in Las Vegas, there are less than 30 hotels [in the U.S.] that have adequate meeting space and the double rooms we need.  Linda Walter has been working around the clock, and with her help and the fact that Experient has a standard contract already in place with the Swan Dolphin, the deal was easily done."

"The team at Gaylord Opryland should be commended for their pro-active approach to helping groups make the move as seamless as possible for the attendees and exhibitors," said Gary Schirmacher, Experient senior vice president, strategic account services. "The focused work that both the Gaylord Opryland and the Walt Disney World Swan/Dolphin team did for RWA allowed us to get the deal done very quickly, which greatly helped attendees who were anxiously waiting for the announcement of where the conference would go.  High levels of communication between all parties were essential in this process being so efficient."