Wedding venues and wedding catering are partners for life
Being a wedding planner involves having an intimate relationship with wedding venues and wedding catering companies. In fact, many wedding planner businesses are part of wedding catering firms, or depend on a network of wedding venues for referrals. Starting a wedding planning business means getting to know well, and work frequently, with the wedding venues, wedding reception halls, and wedding catering businesses in your area. Planning wedding events professionally, whether as a local or a destination wedding business, also requires an intimate knowledge of how venue and catering managers work, think, and relate to what you as a wedding planner do. Wedding catering remains a huge revenue source for hotels and wedding reception halls, and many offer complimentary wedding planning and coordination services to attract new customers. The movement away from big hotels and wedding reception halls toward boutique hotels, winery weddings, outdoor weddings, and green wedding venues, one of the most noteworthy of recent wedding trends, has adversely affected wedding reception sales at traditional hotels and halls. But novel wedding venues require a well-trained wedding planner coordinator, specialty wedding catering, and precision party rentals. Wedding planning careers today thrive on these challenges. Becoming a certified wedding planner often begins with venue coordination and catering experience. But without significant prior experience, learning how to be a wedding consultant requires expert guidance from a wedding venue and catering master.
Dynamic Wedding Venues Demand Specialty Wedding Catering
Most hotels and wedding reception halls have in-house catering services that customers are required to use. That's one reason reception hall and hotel weddings are so predictable. But imagination and the Internet have vastly expanded the choice of potential wedding venues for professional wedding planners and their clients, and the closely related business of party rentals. Museums, mansions, and off-premises venues used for corporate events maintain online lists of preferred vendors, including planners. This streamlines the wedding reception planning process by ensuring that every catering company on the list has the necessary licensing, insurance, and experience. It may also mean that the caterer and planner selected have worked together at the venue. But beaches, parks, and other outdoor wedding venues are less likely to have a list, and more likely to present logistical challenges. Before booking a novel venue for a wedding reception, it's essential to consult a specialty caterer with the experience and capacity to cater the event. A wedding planning course graduate should always know what to ask. Catering any large party is a complicated production with many moving parts, and a wedding reception is live theatre. Understanding the challenges of kosher food and other specialty catering at unusual venues such as beach weddings is essential for anyone becoming a wedding planner today. For couples getting married, this knowledge is helpful when navigating the vendor list if your chosen venue has one, or for finding the right specialty caterer if it doesn't.
Course Video Tutorial: 'An Award-Winning Caterer Teaches Wedding Catering and Wedding Venues' (37:05)
Ann Lyons, the owner of Melons Catering & Event Planning, has orchestrated show-stopping parties on the beach, in the park, and at mansions throughout the Bay Area. The winner of the nation's top specialty catering award, she has catered dinner for 1,000 corporate guests at San Francisco City Hall, 500 wedding guests under a tent at a historic estate, and 100 special guests for a 'Food Network Challenge' episode taped at Alcatraz Island. Her company is featured on preferred vendor lists at Northern California's most prestigious wedding venues, and she provides expert advice for wedding consultants and couples from all parts of the USA who are designing a West Coast destination wedding. Ann is unsurpassed in her knowledge of party rentals, in the quality of her staff and infrastructure, and in the respect of her peers. In this course video tutorial, Ann teaches Members the business essentials of specialty catering and the distinguishing characteristics of off-premises wedding venues. Her instruction is followed by a guided tour of her busy South San Francisco kitchen as she explains catering preparations underway for a wedding reception at Alcatraz Island.
Learn 12 essential elements of commissioning specialty wedding catering for unique wedding venues:
- What to consider when choosing a hotel, hall, or off-premises venue
- How traditional hotel food and beverage service differs from specialty catering
- How the specialty catering business has evolved in stature, structure, and style
- Steps to follow in choosing the venue and caterer for any wedding reception
- How to access and evaluate preferred vendor lists
- The truth about tastings and having too many options
- How to minimize risks at an outdoor venues
- Why a sit-down dinner is the most economical way to serve your guests
- How caterers customize menus for clients with ethnic or ethical food needs
- Who should manage party rentals and why it's not the wedding planner
- How to find a competent caterer for any destination wedding
- Analyzing catering costs and service options from a wedding business perspective