Which Style is Best for You?
Meeting and conference facilities usually offer several types of seating configurations to accommodate needs. Here are "rules of thumb" for popular seating styles, and the seats required to set them up, in a sample room size.
Seating capacity for a freestanding theater or when chairs are in rows without tables, typically one seat per 9 square feet. This 1,000 square foot room handles 100 seats theater style.
Seating configuration of tables and chairs in a rectangular or semicircular shape with one end left open toward a focal point.
Seating capacity when chairs are set behind tables, typically one seat per 15 square feet. This 1,000 square foot room handles 70 seats classroom style. Good for large meetings & taking notes.
Seating configuration with tables arranged in a square with an open middle, chairs are only on the outside. This selection is ideal for sharing ideas in small groups of 20-40.
Seating capacity for a room set for meal functions, typically one seat per 12 square feet. This 1,000 square foot room handles 80 seats banquet style. Great for small group discussions or dinner!
Seating configuration with chairs placed around all sides of the table. In this illustration, the tables are double width; i.e. tables placed together allowing extra room in a boardroom style set-up.
Reprinted from TRIPinfo.com's 2008 Destination & Meetings Guide, updated 07/2011.