18 Corporate Event Ideas In San Francisco That Don’t Suck
Published by Josh Hirsch.
Coordinating a corporate event can often feel a little overwhelming. Choosing just the right event to please everyone in your office, coworkers traveling to the city from other offices and a handful of your most loyal clients? If not planned correctly, it could be a recipe for disaster. These 18 San Francisco corporate events will impress your out-of-town coworkers and keep your clients re-upping their contracts.
Tips to Help Plan Your San Francisco Corporate Events
We kind of know what we’re doing when it comes to planning corporate events in San Francisco. Here is a list of tips to help you decide on which type of event will best fit your corporation:
- Try to find a location that can accommodate large groups of people
- Help out-of-town coworkers truly understand the magic of the Bay Area by booking events that highlight local culture and cuisine
- Choose an event that will engage and connect employees
- Impressing out-of-town clients? Go big or go home; you’ll want to ensure your no. 1 pick will keep your clients — even after your contract is up
Welcome out-of-town coworkers and clients with a brief historic overview of your city — all while snacking on some iconic San Francisco foods.
Our food tours are designed to inform and educate but most of all, entertain. You’ll get to wander through one of the city’s neighborhoods while hearing stories about the people and cultures that made San Francisco the city it is today.
Choose from one of our public tours (Chinatown, Mission District or North Beach), or create your own tour or custom cooking class.
When it comes to escape rooms, the ones in San Francisco are on a whole different level. Yes, you get to choose your theme and then spend the next hour solving puzzles and clawing your way out of a locked room — but the challenges at PanIQ are professionally produced and feel like you’re actually living the challenge.
Choose from themes like prison escape, psycho and geek.
PanIQ is so popular even a few celebrities have gotten in on the action. Seth Rogan, Chris Evans and Gerard Butler have all tried their luck at making it out alive.
If you’re looking for a more traditional ‘trust fall’ corporate outing, look no further than the Pacific Leadership Institute. Their Fort Miley Adventure Ropes Course allows you and your team to work together to make your way through an obstacle course in the treetops. The best part is that this course is appropriate for those who might not feel comfortable participating in an extremely athletic activity. You can choose from three different programs, like a 3.5-hour program that will take you into the treetops — or a similar one that keeps you closer to the ground.
OK, this one is super inventive and creative. How many times have you participated in an actual guac-off? Yeah, that’s what we thought. Your team starts by dividing into sub-teams before creating their own guac recipe.
Throughout the guac-a-thon, participants will need to compete to win points through mini challenges, such as guac trivia, storytelling battles and more. It’s kind of like Next Food Network Star without the Food Network while working with only guacamole.
You can even add optional unlimited margaritas to your corporate event package if you want to get really feisty.
If you want your team to start embracing their creativity more, check out the art classes at 3 Fish Studios. These aren’t your basic painting classes.
Choose between collage and printmaking classes. Your crew will learn a new skill while thinking out of the box to solve creative challenges.
Are you trying to impress clients? Do you want your team to class up their acts a little? Do you want to drink a bunch of wine?
The San Francisco Wine School offers corporate events that will help your team learn the nuances of wine tasting — all while snacking on some delish eats. Your team will walk away full of knowledge, food and high culture.
Sometimes your team just needs to tackle a project from a different angle. Upside down!
Office Meet Yoga brings yoga right into your office. Your team won’t even need to hang their OOO signs to participate in this one. A yoga instructor will explain the similarities between yoga and tackling challenges in the workplace. You’ll learn how to stay soft and flexible and that it’s OK to change your mind.
What better way to celebrate your team’s successes than on a boat? San Francisco Bay Boat Cruises has a 30-passenger boat (appropriately named ‘Wine Therapy’) that will sail your crew around the bay. The cruise totes itself as the only floating wine tasting room in San Francisco.
You can also enjoy snacks, such as crusty baguettes, cheese and chocolate.
One way to get your team to bond is through karaoke.
Karaoke is the universal unifier. No matter where in the world you live, odds are you’ll find coworkers blowing off some steam by belting out off-tune versions of Bob Dylan’s Lay Lady Lay. Why wait until after work to treat your team to some release?
Mint Karaoke specializes in group karaoke — you won’t find any of those small booths here. Get your group working together to create the best teams for a karaoke battle. Or, just have a little fun with each other.
Sometimes the best way to bond is to do so through helping someone else. Your team will have a newfound respect for each other after you spend a few hours volunteering with senior citizens kids or for the environment. They can even create a custom event for your team.
Other companies to entrust HandsOn with their corporate events include Google, Airbnb, SAP, Levis and Kaiser.
Urban Putt isn’t your average putt-putt golfing course. It’s more like mini golf on steroids. You’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time while wandering through this course. From Day of the Dead imagery to steampunk themes, you’ll be surprised and delighted by every room.
And if you really want to crank up the fun? You can even enjoy a few beers on the course, too.
Another great option for corporate events that plan to welcome out-of-towners, City Hunt creates scavenger hunts specifically for the purpose of team building.
You’ll get to explore the city and some of its most iconic areas, including Fisherman’s Wharf, Embarcadero and Chinatown, while solving riddles and finding clues.
Another escape room is Palace Games. Top Escape Rooms Project named this spot the best escape room in the country, and it holds the no. 2 spot on TripAdvisor for the fun and games category in San Francisco.
Choose between the Great Houdini Escape Room, the Roosevelt escape Room and the Edison Escape Room.
You and your coworkers will need to work together to escape World War I with Teddy Roosevelt or even the Palace of Fine Arts in the Presidio!
If you’ve got a team that is dying to geek out during their time in San Francisco, book a tour of the Cal Academy of Sciences. One of the most prestigious schools for science in the country, Cal Academy is also home to a pretty cool science museum.
All within Cal Academy’s walls is an aquarium, planetarium and natural history museum. The tour takes you behind the scenes and teaches you all about the museum’s secrets. They also offer a VIP night life experience that includes free drinks.
Everybody knows that improv is a skill that’ll help you come out of your shell and learn how to keep saying yes to support your coworkers.
Secret Improv Society takes this to the next level. The same group that created an award-winning improv comedy show (replete with Oreos and a full bar) can teach your team how to gain confidence and improve communication — all through improv.
You could take a graffiti tour of San Francisco. Or, you could create your own graffiti in the streets of San Francisco. Discover the art of graffiti and its cultural and historic significance in relation to the City by the Bay.
If you want to take things even further, you could always sign your team up for a hip-hop workshop to learn about the history of hip hop while learning some sweet moves. This workshop also includes a lesson on spray paint tagging.
After the day is over, you can take your piece of art back to the office to hang on the wall.
Discover some of the coolest tech available to the world — and learn about the history of technology at The Tech Interactive. If your team needs a little innovator inspiration, this is the place to go.
With exhibits such as the BioDesign Studio, Cyber Detectives and Reboot Reality, your team will be able to unleash their creativity in new and exciting ways.
Want to just celebrate and have a little fun? The best place for fun is on a boat. In fact, it is scientifically proven that it’s impossible not to have a great time on a boat.
Want to challenge your team at the same time? Bass Tub Charters will take you fishing and then assist your team in preparing a meal that everyone can enjoy together — all in front of the backdrop of some of the most scenic areas of the bay.