David Beahm on Planning a Destination Event
Apr 9, 2013
We are thrilled to have David Beahm share with us his top 10 tips on planning a destination event! David is one of America’s top event designers – known for his inventive work and trademark lavish flower creations, he has designed countless weddings for society, high profile and discerning clients, including Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas, as well as a host of celebrity and Fortune 500 corporate events. An expert at transforming venues here in the United States, David also designs events for clients around the world. His destinations collection features some of the most luxurious and exclusive properties in the world, setting the stage for any event a client can imagine.
Here are David’s 10 tips for planning your dream destination event:
1) Shake things up – when embarking upon a destination event, taking your guests OUT of their element, will provide them (and you!) with memories that will last a lifetime.
2) Before booking – when deciding upon a destination venue, consider the average age of your guests, their locations, and the convenience of travel to the final destination, as well as what they will encounter when they arrive. This will impact who is able to attend and who must decline.
3) Location is everything – for foreign destinations, take note of the importation restrictions/duties and taxes for the country of choice. Remember – these often “unexpected fees” can impact a budget dramatically.
4) Don’t forget your passport – be sure to determine and inform your guests of any VISA or expiration requirements well in advance of travel.
5) Accentuate the positive – when planning guest activities or even when choosing the favors, call upon local resources to heighten your guests’ experiences of their trip. Going to Auberge du Soliel? A wine tasting experience for your guests is a must!
6) Honor your guests – remember that for a destination occasion some of your guests may be utilizing their precious time off to attend your event. A welcome basket and personalized handwritten note starts every event off on the right timbre.
7) Mother Nature does not take requests – Are you dreaming of an event with mounds of peonies, then you must select a date for your event in the Spring. Out of season flowers (when available at all) are only available at a premium. (Oh! Need we mention? ALWAYS Have a rain plan or a “Plan B”)
8) Life happens – The one sure rule – hiccups happen. No matter how many lists and plans you have, something unexpected will occur. Promise yourself that you will laugh and no matter what challenges happen, nothing, will deter you from a joyous celebration.
9) When the doors close…. Throughout the planning process, continue to ask the question: “What do I want guests to say as they leave my event?” This singular question will continue to inform your thought processes and help you make the right decisions – and will help you tell the story you want to tell.