One of the most vital aspects of a successful, productive business is having a strong company culture. And a strong company culture depends on robust relationships among coworkers, where people feel connected to each other and invested in one another’s success. There are all kinds of ways to facilitate these connections, but one of the most effective is to organize fun, engaging company outings. Luckily, if your organization is based in or around the Bay Area, you’ll have an easy time coming up with fun team outing ideas in the Bay Area.
There’s so much to do and experience in this part of California — boundless cultural vibrancy, creativity, diversity, access to natural beauty, political passion, and more. Plus, fantastic weather means you can enjoy nearly anything the area has to offer year-round. The options for team outings are practically endless, and you can find many of the best options on Peerspace. It’s impossible to list them all here, of course, but we did our best to choose the absolute best options, with plenty of variety. Here are our top 10 picks for the best team outing ideas in the Bay Area.
1. Try a Team Build Workshop
The Crucible, based in Oakland, offers Team Build Workshops in the industrial arts. That means welding, glass-fusing, flameworking, blacksmithing, jewelry-making, plasma-cutting, woodturning, and other ultra-cool creative skills. They can host as few as six people or as many as 150. In addition, they can provide a catered lunch or wine-and-cheese reception to round out your day. Their workshops are an amazing option for groups who enjoy problem-solving and creativity — those who want to come out of their team outing with something tangible to show for it.
2. Rent out a private movie theater
What better way to bond than sitting back, eating tons of popcorn, and watching a great movie together? It’s even better when you’ve got your own private theater. Here’s one private screening room that can accommodate as many as 50 guests. Not only does it have a full theater, but there’s also an 800-square-foot lounge with a large wet bar, cocktail tables, and more. One guest called it a “great place with amazing atmosphere,” while another deemed it a “fantastic hidden gem in SF!” We think this is one of the best team outing ideas in the Bay Area.
3. Enjoy a jazz performance
According to the location’s website, BIX is “variously described as a civilized speakeasy, a supper club, and an elegant saloon.” Its warm, intimate vibes are amplified by nightly live performances of jazz. Many of the region’s greatest jazz musicians have performed at BIX. Whether they’re really into jazz, or they just enjoy the great ambiance and craft cocktails, your team will have an incredible time getting to know one another on an outing to BIX. If you’re interested, be sure to make a reservation.
4. Host a catered dinner with a view of the city
Combine a delicious meal with a fantastic view of the San Francisco skyline. It’s the recipe for a successful team outing, and this space has both. The view is truly the star of the show here, but the home itself — with massive windows, soaring ceilings, luxurious furniture, and eye-catching art all over the walls — is nearly as impressive. Your team will spend a fabulous evening here and come out of the event with stronger relationships.
5. Participate in a team-building cooking class
Hands on Gourmet hosts “interactive cooking parties” that “allow people to get to know each other in a comfortable, familiar setting.” Not only will they learn how to cook new dishes from professional chefs. But they’ll also gain major rapport with one another in the process. There’s something for just about every taste: they offer five seasonal menus from a variety of different cuisines (e.g. Mexico, Thailand, Italy, France, and Morocco).
6. Appreciate the Bay Area’s natural beauty on a group hike
If your team comprises athletic and nature-loving types, a hike is always a great option. And with many parks situated a short drive from the Bay Area’s main urban areas, you can look forward to the best hikes and natural vistas in the world. There are so many possibilities here, but some of our favorite hikes include Angel Island, the Dipsea Trail, and, of course, the Muir Woods. Whether you take a more strenuous hike or go in a more laid-back direction, hiking is a classic bonding activity for a reason: it works! It really does bring people closer together — and it’s one of the best team outing ideas in the Bay Area.
7. Find your way out of some of the best escape rooms in the country
Escape rooms are an amazing opportunity for team-building, especially if you find the right one for you and your team. And Palace Games is widely considered to be the best escape room company in the United States. However, their escape rooms are difficult, though, so don’t choose this outing idea unless you’re up for a major challenge. They offer the Great Houdini Escape Room, the Roosevelt Escape Room, and the Edison Escape Room — all with different aesthetics and features. Collaborative problem-solving outside of the workplace environment is an ideal way to build camaraderie among employees. Best of all, they even offer virtual experiences. Which, let’s face it, is a great option if you and your team don’t feel comfortable out and about or if your team is remote.
8. Collaborate on a project at a beachfront retreat
If you’ve got a project to complete — but seriously need to get out of the office — here’s a terrific way to get it done. Bring everyone to this gorgeous beachfront home to enjoy the sun, sand, and surf as they work. You can even take advantage of the space’s breakout rooms, whiteboards, and projection screens to do actual work. But make sure you spend time together outdoors! That’s pretty easy to do at this home, as it boasts about 1,000 square feet of elevated outdoor deck space. As a matter of fact, we think anything that involves the beach is automatically one of the best team outing ideas in the Bay Area.
9. Explore the city with an unusual scavenger hunt
Go in a completely unexpected direction with CLASH San Francisco. These are some majorly fun and energetic scavenger hunt competitions that involve lots of running around and taking wacky photos. Companies like Google, Lyft, Fitbit, and Eventbrite have all enjoyed team-building experiences here. And CLASH is a whole new take on team-building, and it’s majorly popular. In fact, it’s garnered five stars on Yelp.
10. Get out on the Bay
One of the greatest things about the Bay Area is, of course, the Bay itself! And an excursion with Captain Kirk’s San Francisco Sailing is a perfect way to appreciate it. They can accommodate anywhere from one person to 24 people for more structured or casual events. There are three types of boats, all of which sail from points like Sausalito, Alameda, and San Francisco itself. Best of all, your team will have the opportunity to learn sailing skills or just hang out on the water. And it’s especially fun when they race other boats!
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