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"A community of thousands of women influencers and entrepreneurs in creative fields. One week a year, we provide a physical gathering place for that community and then incredible things happen."- ALT Summit
When my pen-pal Michelle asked If I wanted to fly to Palm Springs for a week and attend Alison's Brand School at ALT, I immediately said yes. I mean what's better than a week of palm trees and inspiring women?!?!
We arrive to find the most adorable town surrounded my gorgeous mountains and the most beautiful weather.
We checked in to our room at The Saguaro and started exploring the grounds. The place is full of colorful walls and the ladies attending ALT we're all just as colorful! In LOVE!
The first day we decided to explore and mingle rather than attend any classes.
On Monday, we woke up bright and early because we we're off the see JOANNA GAINES! I was so focused on her speaking that I didn't even attempt to get a photo. She was just as sweet and down to earth as you would imagine.
This is the first year the event was spread across FOUR hotels, rather than just being housed at The Saguaro. The conference offered a free shuttle than ran between the hotels and it was incredibly convenient! There we're classes scheduled from 9am-6pm daily and you could learn about anything and everything! I loved the ALT app that showed you all the classes available each day and then allowed you to select the classes you were interested in attending. The app then added those classes to your agenda which made is super easy to plan your day out and see which hotel you needed to go to next.
I also loved that each hotel had breakfast and lunch provided. Each day a different hotel hosted lunch and we were given a ticket with the time and hotel on it so we knew where to go. For dinner we we're on our own. There were meet ups you could attend that guests we're hosting, but opted to go solo and find wine.
Since we were attending Alison's Brand School, we had one entire day just committed to her, and it was AMAZING! She started out by saying that this was a mind, body, spirit workshop and boy was it. I've attended a lot of business events over the past 10 years and I can honestly say this workshop was the best thing i've ever done for my business. She is the most encouraging person and the workbook is perfectly laid out to help you deep dive in to your business. Michelle and I both left this day with a million new ideas, ways we can better serve our customer and more energy towards our brands. If you ever get the chance to work with Alison, I HIGHLY recommend.
Although the app allows you ti fill every second of your day, it also gives you space to work in some free time. You're getting so much knowledge and making so many new connections that it's nice to take a break and make notes or even take action on some of the things you're learning. I literally walked out of a workshop because the gal speaking had already given me a million ideas and I wanted to put them into action ASAP. So I grabbed my laptop, found a seat by the pool and got to work!
While at the conference I had the idea to launch a series on this blog highlighting women in business that I love. Before I got back home I already had 27 interviews lined up! It's amazing what taking a little time away and being surrounded by so many inspiring women can do for your spirit. You could feel everyones energy and how excited the ladies were to grow or launch their business!
One thing that had a lot of mixed feelings was the whole swag bag situation. Generally at events you get a bag full of awesome goodies from all of the sponsors. This was more of a scavenger hunt. Brands were set up at different hotels, nestled in different rooms. So unless you we're on a mission to find them, you we're getting anything from them. One evening there was a Swag Party. This basically was a room that we could enter, meet vendors, and then pick something from their table. You could get a max of 5 items. To folks who are used to getting a 10 pound bag full of things, this was a major disappointment. On the plus side, this Swag Party allowed you to only choose items that you would actually like, so overall it was probably less wasteful for brands.
Overall it was a great experience and we've already bought tickets for next year!
What to pack?
I always say dress like your brand. I packed dresses, comfy sandals and cute tops with distressed jeans. Nothing fancy, because I, nor my brand, are fancy.
Was it crowded?
Not at all. We waited in line two times.
Since it was spread across four hotels it really made it quite peaceful and not chaotic.
What do I need to bring with?
Some cute clothes.
An ink pen.
Plenty of business cards.
A couple snack bars.
A re-useable water bottle ( theres free water at each hotel).
Would you stay at the same hotel again?
NO. It was gorgeous outside but basically a colorful motel 6. Next year we will stay at The Riviera.
If you have any questions about the event drop them below and i'll answer what I can:)