This month got off to a festive start with last night’s wedding, a 200-guest shindig at the Hilton Glendale. The Hilton is nicely located just north of the main drag, Brand Blvd., walking distance (if you’re a New Yorker – a mini-workout if you’re an Angeleno) from Americana, and close to markets and shops.
The bride and groom were – and I know EVERYONE says this – very sweet, and meticulously organized. The groom had a surprise for his bride as well: He serenaded her with a 7-piece mariachi band backing him up in style. The mariachis, Mariachi Cuicatlan, were excellent BTW – the best I’ve heard all year.
Shirvan Design, led by the hardworking Arsine, created all the flowers – very simple, elegant, with sophisticated colors of light green and deep orange. I collected the small vases with votives at the end of the night for returns – if the location is within a certain-mile radius of our HQ in the Valley (yeah, I’m a Valley girl!), we do various rental returns for clients. It’s a big relief off their list and we also get to hobnob with our fellow vendors a little more too.
The clients did something very smart: Knowing that they wanted guests to take the centerpieces, they bought plexiglass/plastic cylinders from the flower mart downtown, and Arsine and her team at Shirvan filled them with beautiful floral displays. Then guests took them home (after pouring some of the water out – the bathroom was quite busy towards the end there) without big worries about breaking the cylinders on the ride home. The vases were high quality and you’d never be able to tell they weren’t glass – and had nearly the same weight and heft.
Sal Suareza has been DJ’g since he was a kid – and it shows. A DJ has a tough job: Manage the feel of the room, the mood, MC without being overbearing; and be flexible with time constraints and last minute surprises or scheduling issues. Sal handled all of these beautifully. He’s a friend of the groom, the icing on the cake. Honestly, I think DJs are the most important investment you can make in your event (well, along with a coordinator, ahem…). You can’t just buy a fun atmosphere, or a feeling of good will, off the shelf – you have to invest in a person who can create that.
And now, the cake. From Porto’s. Red Velvet. Cream Cheese Frosting. Yes, I had a special moment with this cake when I ducked into our staging room off the main event space…just me and the cake. Mmmm!
And finally, the staff at the Hilton Glendale were professional, organized, and efficient. They only had 1.5 hours to turn over the space for my clients, and they hit the ground running. I also like the warm sconce lighting and the high ceilings – the carpet pattern is classy and neutral, so it’s easy to make a variety of color schemes work.
The dancing lasted to the very end. I’m no photographic genius (CLEARLY.), but I did manage to fiddle with my camera and get a clear shot of the dance floor despite the dimmed lights. This is what you like to see at the end of the night – people still kickin’ it. (Yes, I just said “kickin’ it”).
Pro photos from Karen Leah Photography will be posted as soon as I get ’em. I’ll enjoy reliving the event – and I thank assistants Eve Blum and Emily Insley for their help. Good job everyone!