Engage!11 The Grand Del Mar
In May 2011, Engage! headed to sunny San Diego for a chic celebration with many new West Coast attendees. It was a stunner from the start, with a Monique Lhuillier inspired fresh floral wedding gown by designer Karen Tran taking center stage in the registration lounge, and a powerful crimson, noir and ivory color scheme promising something different. Recognizing the need to identify first-time attendees, the ‘bling ball’ name tags were introduced. Each attendee was presented with one bling ball for each Engage! event they had attended, which has become a popular hallmark of the event to this day. This was also the first Engage! to sell out entirely on social media, and celebrated speaker Cindy Novotny of Master Connection Associates challenged attendees to amp up their business: “Can you sell out in two tweets?”
The rustic glam welcome party was held on the Aria Lawn, designed by Revelry Décor and floral maestro Eddie Zaratsian, showcased an array of fun food trucks, and an energetic dance band from Elan Artists also wowed the discerning crowd with a 3-story Earth Harp performance. During the general session iconic designer Monique Lhuillier spoke with former Brides EIC Millie Martini Bratten about the creative process, and Carley Roney shared the latest luxury wedding research findings from The Knot.
During an elegant white, gold & crystal inspired seated lunch, held under a Moroccan-style beauty by Raj Tents, wedding cake diva Sylvia Weinstock led a demonstration on her signature sugar flowers while imparting life and business advice. Breakout sessions included branding by triple threat of Harmony Walton, Lara Casey and Jasmine Star; an intimate look by stationer Ellen Lehr into her family-owned legacy business; and celebrity planner Diann Valentine, who celebrated uniqueness: “Be a gateway for your clients to be themselves.” Optional follow-up sessions included legal advice for creatives, and a session on the psychology of selling.
The stunning gala dinner was planned by Mindy Weiss in partnership with Mark’s Garden and Revelry Décor, who wowed with black and white velvet custom linen that matched the event’s official pattern, towering crimson rose centerpieces and mirrored accents. The capper: A 25-piece band from West Coast Entertainment and an after-party complete with a visit from the Fat Burger food truck!