Cold Meetings? Here Are the Best Ways to Warm Up

Five ways to heat up your next event

Let’s face it: We’ve all been to events where the temperature dips a little too low for our liking. Given that it’s more feasible for guests to throw on a sweater in a chilly conference room than it is for them to strip down in a boiling one, meetings are often at a room temperature that’s lower than your personal thermostat might prefer.

Attendees all have different body temperatures and feel comfortable at varying degrees, so what might feel great to one will be nippy to another. That said, there are some things you can try to make sure attendees—and you—are comfortable during your meeting.

Offer warm beverages.

Coffee is a go-to in the morning for many people due to its caffeine content, but its heat can also help attendees stay warm in a chillier room. Making hot drinks available throughout your meeting—morning or night—gives guests the opportunity to warm up if they need to. Remember that not all attendees will want caffeine, so make sure to include other hot beverage alternatives, such as noncaffeinated tea. 

If you want to go the extra mile, serve up ginger tea. Ginger is thermogenic, which means it can boost metabolism and body temperature. So, not only will the heat of the tea make guests warmer, but the ingredients in it will work to bring body temperature up to a comfortable level.

Serve hearty meals.

Many events call for appetizers and small bites throughout the event, but fuller meals might be better for attendees when it comes to dealing with a cool meeting room. Heavier meals that are higher in protein and fat create more work for your digestive system, which in turn can raise your body temperature and make you warmer. For example, instead of a salmon tartare appetizer, opt for a full-on ginger roasted salmon.

Incorporate a warm color scheme.

You might not be able to HGTV your meeting space, but decorating with warmer colors—such as reds, oranges and yellows—can actually make guests feel warmer. Think about the setup of your event and where these colors might fit into it: Bold flowers, centerpieces, name cards and place settings can infuse a little life into more neutral spaces or color schemes. 

If bright warm colors don’t match your meeting purpose or theme, incorporate warmer-toned variants of whatever hues do.

Dress the part.

You want guests to feel comfortable in your event space, but as the person running the show, it’s important that you feel good, too, so you can carry out your work without any roadblocks. The easiest way to prepare for a cold room is to dress the part. Instead of bulking up in sweaters or heavy clothes from the get-go, start with a light layer, such as a short-sleeved dress or shirt, that you can easily build layers on. That way, if you get hot while running around, you can easily take off an article of clothing to cool down, rather than sweat it out. Neutral knit cardigans or jackets are easy pieces to bring along with you and layer well on a variety of ensembles. Silk scarves also make for buildable layers and are compact enough to be easily transportable. 

When all else fails, turn up the temperature. 

If enough attendees are commenting about a low room temperature, it might be time to knock the heat up a few notches. Set up a temperature protocol with your event manager before the meeting, which should include how to get in touch with one another should a temperature issue come up. Even better, consider using an app, such as Marriott’s Meeting Services app, which allows planners to immediately request any room temperature changes without having to leave the meeting.