Boise has long been called the best-kept secret in the Pacific Northwest, but as far as meetings and events go, that may no longer be the case — more and more groups are discovering Idaho’s capital city. Case in point: In 2021, Boise hosted more than 40 in-person or hybrid meetings and events that brought more than 15,000 attendees to the city.
“It seems like more and more people know about Boise,” said Nick Aldinger, CEO of IBL Events, an event management company based in nearby Meridian, which planned some of those 2021 events in Boise. Among them was the LiveRez Partner Conference attended by 300 in-person participants from Oct. 11-13.
LiveRez, a tech company specializing in vacation-rental software, chose to have its 2021 partner conference in Boise, Aldinger said, to show off the beauty of the company’s home — Idaho’s Treasure Valley, which includes Boise and nearby Eagle, where LiveRez is headquartered.
Aldinger said IBL Events worked closely with the Boise Convention and Visitors Bureau to create a safe, three-day event that offered educational workshops and other seminars during the day and, equally as important, fun entertainment in the evenings.
The conference took place at the Boise Centre, Idaho’s largest convention and meeting venue with 86,000 versatile square feet of event space. While the GBAC STAR-accredited facility prioritizes safety and the city of Boise has its own COVID-related safety precautions in place, LiveRez had additional requirements. Aldinger credits the Boise CVB and Boise Centre for their willingness to provide the necessary resources to fulfill the client’s safety requests.
The Boise CVB also worked with the Boise Airport to help make attendees feel welcome as soon as they walked out of the terminals. IBL Events was able to set up welcoming desks at the airport, which is just 10 minutes from downtown, so crews could greet LiveRez participants who were flying in from all around the country. The Boise Airport, with nonstop flights from 28 U.S. destinations, was able to accommodate all the event’s travel needs. “This allowed us to create a kind of a red- carpet feel for everyone flying to the city,” Aldinger said.
The Boise CVB’s collaboration didn’t stop at the convention center or airport, however. From an opening night reception that took over the entire culture-filled Basque Block to Boise Brews Cruise tours to outdoor activities at the Bogus Basin mountain recreation area, the Boise CVB helped IBL Events pack “so many cool things” into LiveRez’s conference, Aldinger said.
“The Boise Convention and Visitors Bureau is a great partner in coming up with creative ideas that showcase the area and all it offers,” Aldinger said. “If we had a time block, they would have a suggestion — ‘Hey, you should look at doing this.’ Working with them is so easy.”
Paid for in part by a grant from Idaho Tourism.