Best Ever Conference 2022
Updated: Feb 17
Who am I? Why do I make these? What is the Best Ever Conference
Welcome to another of my magical adventures
If you are new here, my name is Alex. I am a real estate investor, a conference junkie, and a photographer. I've been attending these types events for the last 5 years and I always carry this big fancy camera with me and I shove it in everyone's face and then come home and create these epic photo blogs the likes of which you have never seen before. I make these stories crazy long because I like long dense nuance and think our culture's race to the bottom of the attention span is a terrible thing we are doing to ourselves and maybe I'm the only one, but, maybe not?
“When life itself seems lunatic, who knows where madness lies? - Don Quixote
This event, the Best Ever Conference is in Denver Colorado and it's geared towards commercial and multifamily real estate investors, I am not the official photographer for the event, I just do this for fun. I also captured the 2020 event in the same way. If you want to invest in larger scale real estate assets, this is the place for you!
This was my first event as part of the Climb Capital team, a group of veterans turned investors focused on buying RV parks in the Sunbelt and Gulf Coast (Yes, that's a plug, invest with me!)
Let's get to it
I arrive on a Thursday
I flew into Denver, went to the hotel, promptly left the hotel and went to the Biggerpockets headquarters for an annual party. BP is where I first learned how to invest in real estate so that community is near and dear to my heart. I've also shot the BiggerPockets Conference twice now, and I'll be shooting that again this October. Always happy when I can see my people here.
THE Mindy Jensen!
The party was sponsored by Aloha Capital who seem to sponsor every great party at every conference I go to
I have this thing for taking pictures of people taking selfies. You will see this as a recurring theme
Leka - If you're in the real estate investing community and you don't know Leka, you aren't in the real estate community. #bigfacts
Michael and Suzy - Long time internet friends that I got to meet for the first time this weekend. Fantastic people! They run Adventurous REI and basically travel the world while buying real estate. If you want FOMO, find them on social
Sterling Chapman - host of the Rent Roll radio podcast, real estate buyer, and owner of a smile that just won't quit. Very good dude
Did I mention that this is a very professional event?
My buddy Herve deserves a better picture than this, but these are the sacrifices you make for being friends with an antagonist like me
My story with Matt Faircloth started about 4 years ago now. When I met him he had just closed a 200 unit apartment and was way out of my investing league, I committed hard to shoving my life into his life and adding value every chance I get. Since then we've done a ton of video and content projects together and we run into each other about 4 times a year.
I tell you all that to tell you this, we all choose our social circles. If you put forth true effort and carefully choose your social circle and you'll be able to design any life you want.
This is another Matt, but this one is the result of a poorly chosen social circle. He's annoying, very hard to like, he has no sense of style, he lives in IOWA (why?!?), he epitomizes the dumb marine stereotype, and he's a GRUMP.
We spend about 80% of our time at conferences relentlessly insulting each other and it's one of my favorite things.
When I lived in Las Vegas I started a meetup that become a staple community for the area and still goes on there to this day. One of the OG members was Neil Henderson, an extremely nice dude, a private capital raiser, the host of the Road to Family Freedom podcast, and a good friend.
He broke his arm while cage fighting, so I had to babysit him this weekend.
This is the second "Alex Felice is my best friend" shirt Mindy has gotten, and she might get one every year for the rest of her life
The whole point of my photography is to give people pictures of themselves that they love.
Last year at BPcon21 I took this epic photo of Alexandra dancing on Bourbon street and when I got to the office I found she had a print of it out in the lobby!
Alex and Dave
This is Zach, and long time BP community member and a good friend of mine. Zach believed in my video skills before even I did and he gave me confidence when no one else did. This is something I will never forget
I snapped this picture of Zach and Mindy hugging and I realized I took nearly the same exact shot 3 years ago at BPcon2019 This sort of phenomenon happens in photography once in a while, I'll get two unplanned candid's that are nearly identical. Look at these pics and tell me an explanation for this other than magic.
Anson Young and I met last year. He's a prolific content producer, author, and seems like a good dude but it's too soon for me to make that claim. He will have to work harder to win my affection first.
Which brings us to Friday
The Conference is always JAM packed with great content and high level thinkers
A quick story of personal growth: In 2020 I came to the Best Ever Conference and I was still very new to multifamily, I was a little less mature, and a little less confident in my ability to perform well in this business. Plus, this can also be a daunting event because so many people here are high achievers with massive financial success who take the whole weekend very seriously. The culmination of these factors drove me to self defeat a little bit in the form of dressing down too much, wearing my ripped jeans and pink t-shirts, and acting a bit too rebellious. Similar to how a person might angrily claim "I don't care, I don't need this" to an opportunity they do in fact need, but are petty to try and rise to the occasion.
I'm not generally like this, I prefer to put in maximal effort all the time, but I don't like to dress in suits to create an illusion of success. Finding a balance of being authentically me while stealing leaving room for growth has been an interesting lesson.
We held it down at this bar for a while catching up and planning the future
Networking and drinking go together like drinking and networking
A signature Alex Hughes pose!
Brandon and I met the normal way that people meet. You see someone on the internet looking for exciting podcast guests and you apply then when you do go on their show and they later say you are by far the best guest they have ever had.
His show is the Gorilla State Investing podcast
We only talked about a month ago and then we get to meet in person, I have a feeling our paths will cross a lot over the next decade.
Kent Ritter, a very popular guy but I only met him briefly
Whatever I said, I'm sure I deserved this
My name is Matt and I'm a grump who only makes grumpy faces and everything I say and do is grump related. I probably named my kids Grumpley and Grumperson
The hotel we stayed at was the Gaylord Rockies resort and it was absolutely lovely. I try to take pictures at the hotels these things are at so you can get a feel for where we are. I stayed at the Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville for BPcon2019 and it was equally as nice.
I might have to check out some others!
I take this style of panorama with my drone everywhere I go. This one really didn't come out to my liking, but it's the only one I got.
This is Caitlin and she works for Aloha Capital. We have been friends for ~3 years now and I you will find her at all the big events. Having her around makes my job as a photographer very easy.
If you're looking for portfolio lending, she might be the one you should call!
Tait is gorgeous, his girlfriend is gorgeous, he's a pilot, he's a real estate investor, he travels the world constantly, all of which makes his social media feed produce a dangerous amount of jealousy. Anyone with a life this awesome could be expected to get away with being human garbage but not Tait, he's humble, pleasant, and sincere.
It's infuriating how much I like this dude.
I used to be a party animal who loved going to loud night clubs.
We got to this place around 9pm, and as the night went on the music got louder and the crowd got bigger, something I hadn't experienced in a while. As we exited, around midnight, the place had been filled with young 20 somethings and there was a long line to get in.
I felt old.
I met Esther (on the right) this evening with Matt and we gave her a proper military greeting. An evening of endless verbal abuse.
White Claw smiles