Luxury. That attractive word that has slipped into every pore of our lives – and found a way to slip into weddings as well. At the last year’s congress where about two hundred exclusive event planners from all over the world gathered, every workshop and every panel had a common phrase – luxury. There was so much talk about luxury in weddings that I was a little tired of that word if you will be honest. On the other hand, I’ve met colleagues who don’t talk to clients at all if their wedding budget is under a million dollars. And that’s what they say without blink of an eye. One of these same colleagues recently organized a wedding for the sister of a Qatari sheikh, and although we were unable to find out the budget itself (this is highly confidential information at these levels), we saw a five-minute video showing the lapse of building a 15,000-square-foot village that lasted six months and the results of that project was a wedding dinner on the glass floor while a cold river flowed beneath the guests- which in hot sandy Qatar was an inconceivable challenge for the planner and an absolute attraction for guests who are incredibly hard to impress. The walls were surrounded by jewels and with literally tens of thousands white orchids while guests were served filtered gold water with gold particles. Well, we could definitely call that a luxury wedding!
After all – what does a luxury wedding mean and what does it have to have in order to be considered as a luxury? There are as many answers to this question as there are people in the world – because for each of us, luxury is something different and just like beauty, in the eyes of the beholder. This definitely does not simplify things for us, but we are going to think the most general we can, Truth or Lie, and try to figure out the characteristics of luxury weddings.
Truth or Lie?
For a wedding to be luxurious, it must also be extremely expensive. To be honest -true. By some international standards, if we are not talking about hundreds of thousands of euros, a wedding is not categorized as a luxury. With this, we close the topic of the expected. Let’s go into a little detail now ….
At luxury weddings flowers must be at every corner, to say it in the simplest way. I dare to say – a lie. Although, if you type “luxury wedding” into Pinterest, you will get hundreds of pictures with floral installations that give you a headache, but a bunch of flowers does not necessarily mean luxury. Of course, at most lavish weddings you will have incredible amounts of flowers at every corner, including toilet décor to emphasize luxury, but I would say more attention is paid to details in the décor, such as silk, hand-drawn tablecloths specially ordered and designed by Japan conceptual artist from which Donatella Versace orders silk for her brand. That’s the luxury at a wedding. The point is not that it costs unimaginable lot that is for us, ordinary human beings, out of the budget, but the point is that it is difficult to obtain and has a story to tell.
A luxury wedding is mostly held in unusual, exclusive and preferably unique location. A hundred times true! By default, such locations cost a lot, but the point is that it is “hard-to-get” – by no means hotel, possibly a palace where no one has managed to get married so far (I’m just waiting to see when we will have our first space wedding and how that wedding dress will look!) and preferably a private island where each guest has their own villa with a butler. The trend of weddings, which has been popular for the last few years where newlyweds rent a whole cruise ship where each guest has two cabins – one for sleeping and staying and the other for luggage is now a slight passé, not to say shabby because it is a wedding which you will have to set aside several million euros. The point is to be first and original. This is, in the circles of the real rich, the definition of luxury.
At luxury weddings, guests are provided with an experience or service that they would not normally imagine at a wedding. Absolutely true! Anyone can have fireworks or lobster on the menu. I will also give you an example. Recently, one of my former clients was at a five-day wedding in Mallorca, where every morning, together with the breakfast of a king, they had a pagoda in which nurses from a private clinic gave a cocktail infusion of electrolytes and vitamins that eliminate hangovers in 15 minutes so guests may continue to party. I’m telling you most seriously. Well, it’s a luxury at a wedding.
At celebrities and other luxury weddings, privacy is valued above everything else. Absolutely true! The trend of taking a mobile phone at the entrance to a wedding ceremony and returning it only on departure has become more and more present at luxury weddings. Yes, there will be a time when the newlyweds will post pictures of their special day, but on the wedding day itself they want their guests to relax and have fun without scrolling and posting. And do you know who will be most grateful for 10 hours without a cell phone? Those same guests. It’s a luxury.
I could write to you about luxury at weddings until tomorrow. But the point is that luxury is a very relative term, so those from high society will consider, for example, a menu with organically grown meat and home-grown vegetables very luxurious because it is “hard to get” for them, while for us it is completely normal. So, don’t bother too much with the definitions of luxury in wedding – you can bring a touch of luxury with personalized gifts, top Croatian wines and a slightly different menu. And I don’t mean grilled steak or shrimp – few years ago, for one of my richest clients with the very exclusive venue we served – a hamburger and French fries for a dinner. All the food was homemade and organic, that was the only requirement. So now you say- who’s crazy here?