Environmentally & Socially Responsible Event Planning * Consulting * Staffing * Catering

What our clients say about us...

  • “You have extraordinary attention to detail. You took care of the little things (like the place setting utensil twine and the food platter you sent up to the girls’ room) that we didn’t even think about. We’d be able to tell future clients to feel confident that everything will be taken of with style, even the things they may not have thought of beforehand.” – John, on his wedding

Friday, January 8, 2016

Catching up on 2016: 2015 in Review (Part 1 of ???)

Awesome, I'm finally sitting down to write a blog post.  Its been a horribly long time and I have to say its been healthy.  There is no better way than to close off 2015 with this post to kick off 2016. 

In retrospect 2015 was quite a blur despite my good memory.  Last time I posted it was in May and after September everything seems to have hit a fast forward all the way to a crazy Cuba trip, a quiet holiday and unplugging from all things internet, event planning and expectations for the holiday.

Lessons from Cuba

I'll get right to the point here and say yes I had a horrible time.  I very quickly learned that I am not an all-inclusive resort person and trying to go against better judgement and fit into such a role is NOT FUN.  

Taking this as a learning lesson for Simplicity I reaffirmed the following when it comes to service:

Its all about expectations. Managing others and your own. If you're at a place that is touted as "Four Star Resort" managing ones own expectations is key.  Ie.  Don't be fooled by the ratings.  I know this sounds a bit trite, but when you're at an all-inclusive resort that doesn't include running hot water in the first two rooms you've had to fight to get exchanged, the experience only goes down from there.
Saying the food is good at this resort when all the reviewer tried is based on the soup is just plain ridiculous and should be taken with a grain of salt (soup?).

Eye contact is everything.  The eyes say a lot about a person and when you have that momentary glimpse with someone in the service industry holding eyes, scanning the room and checking in with those making eye contact with you goes without saying.  Unless you were at this resort.

Trying harder.  This goes without saying when you know you've made mistakes, but its telling when your staff suddenly try harder when it coincides with "High Season" where prices go up and the resort fills up with more people.  This leaves your existing guests (who've been there since before "High Season" notice the sudden shift and this leaves them all the more jaded to your services.

Volume doesn't make up for quality.  It goes without saying that food at the resort wasn't exactly stellar.  (It also probably didn't help that I, as an Event Catering professional was there.)  Regardless quantity doesn't make up for quality.  This coupled with the poor quality control of drinking water sanitation (hands pushing ice into a decanter isn't sanitary) left me literally feeling unsettled (in the tummy and as a hospitality professional) for days and about a week after I got back home.  

In review of the photos I took there is a marked end to the photos I took about 4-5 days in.  By that point I'd tried everything on their menu, finally gotten hot water in our 3rd room and simply just wanted to go home.   #CamagueyNeverForget

More to come in a bit (Fingers crossed)

Truly a Magician of Paper...


This is the work of a good friend of mine.  Alex is a wonderful friend and his work has really opened my eyes to the possibilities of origami and events.   Whether it be cards, set pieces or table decorations I'm all for it and looking forward to a way to incorporate it into Simplicity's event designs.

I am more than happy to start 2016 with a plug for a wonderful artist and friend.  Check it out folks!