Repeat Success: Driving Impactful Community Connection through Retreats

How Hampton saved hundreds of hours by developing a repeatable event strategy for its founders' retreats with Marco

  • 9 vendors hand-picked and secured by Marco
  • 57 satisfied attendees
  • 4 additional retreats booked after the first time working with Marco

“If you're a company looking to create unique experiences for your customers, members, or team, and you don't have that expertise internally: Marco is an excellent thought partner.” ­- Jessica Lowenstein, Head of Community and Events at Hampton


Hampton is an exclusive, invite-only network for high-growth founders and CEOs. The community currently includes 300+ entrepreneurs including Archer’s Brett Adcock, Morning Brew’s Austin Rief, and Fresh Clean Tees’ Melissa Parvis. Members meet monthly and enjoy year-round access to in-person retreats, an active Slack community, and additional perks and resources. 


Memorable retreats are critical to the Hampton member experience — but incredibly time-consuming to execute

When founding Hampton, Sam Parr was inspired to provide mutual support for entrepreneurs with communities where high-growth founders and CEOs can contribute to each other’s personal and professional growth. For a quick snapshot on the impressive pedigree of Hampton in-network founders, the average revenue per member company is roughly $23 million

As a result, Hampton’s experiences needed to comprehensively exceed those of its closest competitors, especially when it comes to in-person community events. For instance, monthly dinners keep members connected with nearby peers, while local adventures help execs connect with one another on common interests like hiking, skiing, and fishing. But it’s the Core Group Retreat that members find most valuable for building long-lasting professional relationships. 

In fact, Hampton founder Sam Parr calls these retreats “group therapy for entrepreneurs.” As a result, sign-ups have skyrocketed for 2024 retreats and beyond. However, as a lean startup itself, the Hampton team has limited resources to devote to event planning. 

Jessica Lowenstein, Head of Community and Events at Hampton, stepped up as a one-woman team to organize upcoming retreats— but quickly ran into two barriers:

  1. Diverse cohorts — With retreats for executives in a variety of industries, including both bootstrapped and venture-backed startups, Hampton needs a repeatable strategy to scale its operations and give Jessica more bandwidth to focus on building community across these cohorts.
  2. Time-intensive planning — Retreats are the most impactful way to build connections, but with countless moving parts and a lean team, there weren’t enough hours in the day to plan and execute these crucial events. For Jessica, just one retreat demanded 60+ hours. 

She recognized that Hampton required a larger, specialized team to successfully orchestrate numerous retreats, ensuring each event remained innovative and captivating. In her search for event planners, she discovered that while many relied heavily on technology, using online booking platforms and digital communication tools, they often lacked the personal touch that Hampton sought to preserve. This is where Marco, a company that expertly combines advanced technology with a human touch, stood out as an ideal partner. Marco's approach of integrating high-tech solutions with personalized engagement was perfectly in sync with the needs of Hampton's rapidly expanding founder community, providing a unique balance that set them apart in the industry.

“I wanted to be able to focus on working with the facilitator and building relationships with our members who were there. I didn’t want to worry about whether the buses were arriving or if rooms were set up in the right way.” 


Marco handled the nitty-gritty of retreat planning, from ideation to execution — including establishing traditions for community-building 

Starting with its Core Group Retreat, Jessica worked directly with Marco team members Molly and Court to define goals for the retreat, craft an itinerary, and bring their vision to life. Marco helped Jessica to: 

1. Simplify end-to-end logistics

Marco plans everything, even submitting a list of recommended venues — with considerations like distance from the airport and local weather forecasts. Once the actual retreat came, Molly and Court managed all of the hour-by-hour logistics (e.g., managing transportation, liaising with vendors, etc.) to ensure every step went off without a hitch.

2. Enhance the member experience 

With Marco handling logistics, Jessica and her team could focus on being present with the Hampton members and helping them connect. On our end, we help plan outings like group hikes, mountain bike excursions, and dinners with tailored menus. Instead of worrying about details, Jessica was free to focus on the quality of the retreat experience and its core value: community.

3. Iterate on one-of-a-kind connections  

Marco also helped Hampton add unique value to the events, including playlists for each retreat — to drive excitement before the event and create a fun and engaging atmosphere. One of the most important aspects that Marco implemented was the retreat ritual.

The first two events Hampton hosted with Marco went off without a hitch, and more importantly, attendees formed meaningful connections that strengthened their professional networks.

“Marco’s team focused more on the event operations and logistics, which meant we were able to be present through the different sessions with the Hampton community and focus on the little special moments.” 



With Marco, Hampton has a framework for upscale founder retreats — and saves 60+ hours of work per event

Thanks to Marco's network of vendors and event-planning expertise, Jessica has the bandwidth to step away from the behind-the-scenes stress and be present throughout the retreats. She points to these benefits of the time and money savings:

  • More bandwidth for community building before, during, and after the retreat.
  • Low-lift, scalable strategy to make future planning for Core Group Retreats easier.
  • Ability to grow Hampton sustainably with a lean events team.

On the member side, Hampton community members enjoy memorable, event-packed retreats — without scheduling snags or reservation mishaps. The best part: the benefits compound over time.

Looking forward, Jessica knows Marco will remain a valuable resource for planning Hampton’s events and is excited to continue the partnership. 


“It was so helpful to have a dedicated partner for this event. We're working with Marco again for our retreats in 2024. Their expertise on scheduling, vendor relationships, menus, and more is super valuable.”


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