By Brian Sodoma
Las Vegas’s mega-attractions and contrasting natural desert landscape lend themselves to great team-building experiences for business groups. Here are five special — and fun — team-building offerings that can help any company retreat go from boring to bonding.
Embrace Vegas Stories
You’re a member of a friend’s Las Vegas wedding party, but the night before the big day, you take in some Vegas fun. Entrusted with the ring, you awaken the next morning to a rude, foggy surprise: The ring is missing! Now, a corporate team must help you find it.
More and more offerings like Escape Chambers’ “The Morning After” completely customized team-building experiences by wrapping them around unforgettable Vegas storylines. Strategists can take you to Strip locations or modify a room or resort location to your needs. It’s very much an “only in Vegas” experience for your corporate team.
Madame Tussauds Las Vegas
Yes, a team-building program involving wax figures of iconic and current pop culture personalities is certainly different. In 1999, the first U.S. Madame Tussauds location opened in Las Vegas. Many, however, don’t realize the attraction also offers full accommodations for corporate meetings, gatherings and team-building events. Corporate teams can enjoy some productive fun or a casual company outing with Grumpy Cat, Donnie and Marie, and Justin Bieber doppelgangers all in attendance.
Las Vegas, Natural Oasis
There was a time in Las Vegas’s history when the city was best known for its natural greenery and (by high desert standards) plentiful water. “Las Vegas” is Spanish for “the meadows,” and the city started its life as a lush oasis stopover for frontiersmen who enjoyed its abundant desert springs.
You can recapture this history only 10 minutes from the Strip and a few minutes from downtown. The 180-acre Springs Preserve offers botanical garden tours, a re-creation of a Las Vegas streetscape circa 1905, a sustainability gallery and a butterfly habitat, not to mention indoor and outdoor meeting spaces.
The Preserve’s staff can design team-building exercises, interweaving them with tours and educational experiences. Business travelers who visit here will definitely get a glimpse of a side of Las Vegas history that’s all too often obscured.
Chase Your Boss On A Dune Buggy
With buggies suitable for ages “4 to 104,” the SunBuggy Las Vegas ATV Tour Company can accommodate up to 1,000 people for a fun — and messy — team-building adventure.
SunBuggy runs shuttles from the Strip to its company headquarters about a half-hour away, near the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. After providing a brief safety lesson, the operator shuttles business groups to sand dunes only 10 minutes away. There, participants can attempt to best a top posted time or chase down the boss’s buggy. Those less inclined to push the envelope can merely take a leisurely tour of the area and enjoy its stately mountain views.
Adventures In Bulldozing
Las Vegas is the sort of place that encourages visitors to try new experiences, so when demand for bulldozer driving (yes, you read that correctly) cropped up in corporate America, a local entrepreneur happily delivered.
Only a few minutes from the Strip, Dig This Las Vegas is a heavy-equipment playground for those in need of their bulldozer fix. It’s a perfect place for team-building exercises. You and your colleagues can drive real bulldozers, excavators and track-type loaders.
Accomplish team missions as you learn to maneuver your ’dozer, stacking 2,000-pound tires and playing “bucket basketball.” Team digs are available for groups of between five or six on the low end and up to about 125 on the high end. Groups larger than 18 should book at least a few days in advance.
Brian Sodoma is a journalist who covers business and health. He lives in Southern Nevada.