Hosting a Productive Corporate Retreat on Florida’s Captiva Island
"The first thing you need for your corporate retreat is a goal — worry about the location second."
When you’re looking for an ideal location for your executive meeting or corporate retreat, Florida’s Captiva Island is a good choice. While the island is peaceful and beautiful, it also offers easy access from Southwest Florida International Airport (Fort Meyers) and Tampa International Airport.
Sea Oats is a large luxury estate – in fact, the largest rental home on Captiva Island, with accommodations for up to 30 guests – its design is ideal for bringing guests together for productive, even inspired retreats. And while location and facilities are extremely important elements of a retreat, there’s one thing that’s more critical: why you’re hosting your corporate retreat.
Corporate Retreats: Location is Second
While selecting the right location for a corporate retreat is critical, setting your goal for the retreat is the first and most important determination. Once your goal is clear, everything you need to prepare for your retreat will follow.
As soon as your goal is set, you’ll need to select your location. To ensure the most productive retreat, you’ll want to involve the hosting location’s staff in much of the planning process. Sea Oats’ staff members have a thorough knowledge of the island and experience working with the local services our corporate guests may need.
Planning the agenda for your corporate retreat, however, is up to you. While we’re not professional retreat planners, we are happy to share some of the tips our clients have said made for successful retreats. (See the bottom of this article)
Once you’ve set your goal for your retreat, then it’s time to secure an excellent location so you can begin planning activities and exercises for your event.
Location for Comfort, Productivity, Results
While many guests enjoy the luxurious seclusion of Sea Oats for destination weddings and family reunions, businesses and organizations also mention the onsite amenities designed to enhance our corporate guests’ productivity.
The combination of comfort and orderly calm makes an ideal setting for business planning.
Individuals find each newly decorated room embraces a fresh style and modern feel, while the overall impression is one of a boutique resort.
In addition to ensuring your attendees have immediate access to all the business services they need, our concierge and planning services help corporate guests make the most of their available free time.
A Break from Planning: Ruminate in Style
Located on nearly four acres, Sea Oats’ guests enjoy stunning sunrises from the dock overlooking the Roosevelt Channel, and unforgettable sunsets from the private beach on the Gulf of Mexico.
Most guests say shelling and simply walking on the beach are their personal favorites, but Sea Oats also features onsite activities and amenities for those who want a little more variety, including:
- Swimming pool
- Tennis courts
- Kayaking, boat dock
Do This, Don’t Do That for Your Best Retreat
Some of our corporate retreat guests have shared a few retreating planning tips over the years. You might appreciate their advice.
- Hire an outside facilitator. Most organizations say this makes for the most productive retreats. A seasoned facilitator can help plan the retreat, develop the agenda, set realistic goals and expectations for the session. (Your facilitator should have absolutely no interest in the decisions to be made or matters to be discussed.)
- Don’t reinvent the wheel – find out what has worked for others and adopt the ideas that you can use. (Some of our guests say they follow a meeting planning or industry forum to glean ideas.)
- Make sure each of your participants will be free to speak openly in discussions. Your guests’ comfort will contribute to their productivity at the retreat, and ultimately, your company will benefit from their best insights.
- While your guests’ comfort is paramount, you don’t have to go overboard on icebreakers or team-building activities. Presumably, all of your guests are adults, and they understand the purpose of the retreat is to improve your company’s operations.
- Determine whether you will need an outside party to handle minutes and meeting notes. (In many cases, the Freedom of Information Act will require this.)
- If you have entertainment or outside presenters, make sure their role is clear. You’re probably paying top dollar for their services – make sure they earn it.
Contact us to find out if Sea Oats Captiva Island is the right setting for you and your company’s retreat. Our staff, after managing the Estate for more than 15 years, has worked with many local businesses, associations, and service providers. They are willing and able to offer recommendations for the best service providers in the area to help our business guests get the most of their meetings on Captiva.