Known for his inventive work and trademark over-the-top flower creations, David Beahm is one of America’s top event designers. David has designed countless weddings for celebrities and corporate clients like Victoria’s Secret Beauty, Christian Dior, and Louis Vuitton – and his events are often the most talked-about parties in New York.

“I moved to NYC in 1995 to pursue a career on the stage and was subsequently side-tracked by special events,” David says. “Six years after arriving in the Big Apple, I was tapped to design the ‘Wedding of the Century.’ Since then, I’m proud that my company is sought after to produce events worldwide.”

Breakers’ Dream Maker: David Beahm
Photo by Films by Francesco

With a mother in the arts and his father in the hotel and restaurant business, a passion for being creative was in David’s blood.

“I have been a florist, photographer, waiter, sous chef, wine sommelier, actor, singer, dancer, and taught music for five years,” David laughs. “I started wiring flowers for bridal bouquets in my Godparents’ flower shop by the time I was fourteen.”

And in case you were wondering, that ‘Wedding of the Century’ is none other than the sensation matrimony of Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas!

Q: Where does your inspiration come from?
A: While my heart and passion live amongst the flowers themselves – my inspiration with a potential client almost always beings with a “fabric Rorschach test!” This is a technique I developed over the years to help my clients verbalize their personal style – a task that can be very overwhelming for a bride or groom.

So much about a client’s personal style can be gleaned from their reaction to a variety of fabrics: Did the client respond to a heavily embroidered taffeta? If so, I might follow the path of vintage roses and peonies on gilded pedestals for a traditional, elegant aesthetic. Did the client think the new contemporary fabric with a graphic print was fabulous? That may yield an evening that employs monobotanical explosions of white phalaenopsis orchids poised atop custom Plexiglas pedestals.

Enjoy some of David’s favorite images from events his team has designed…

Breakers’ Dream Maker: David Beahm
Photo by Brandon Lata Fellici Studio & Sean Lata

Q: What’s in: What hot new trend do you see emerging for 2012 weddings?
A: The return of tulle! I know some of my colleagues would shudder at the thought – ‘Did he say tulle?!’ Yes, I said tulle! No, your wedding does not need to look like an overly frothy confection from the 80s. When it is properly used, implemented into the décor, tulle can create a dramatic statement that hearkens back to the late 10s early 20s when romance ruled.

I recently had the opportunity to create a bouquet for a fabulous bride who was not afraid to think outside the box. With all the confidence of Grace Kelly, our beautiful lady skillfully floated a 15’ long bouquet of hand-wired, fragrant stephanotis, roses, hyacinth and gardenias complete with ribbons of love-knots enveloped in a cloud of white tulle (below). It was stunning and unforgettable.

Breakers’ Dream Maker: David Beahm
Photo by Gruber Photographers

Q: What’s out: Any trends you could leave behind?
A: Without a doubt – the sweetheart table. You and your new husband or wife are going to be up-and-about all night – dancing, cutting the cake, taking pictures, and visiting with your guests. I regret that an empty table is a bit of a sad sight. We implore our couples to have a head table for the bridal party or a table for the two families to come together over dinner. With this approach, if you need to make an escape throughout the evening, it is not nearly as obvious to your guests and your presence is not so keenly missed.

Q: What advice would you give to a bride who wants a traditional wedding with a modern twist?
A: My advice to this bride would be to embrace her traditional aesthetic – there is absolutely nothing wrong with tradition! However, she should also consider “moments” during the celebration where she can create something fun and unexpected for her guests that is also a reflection of her and her groom. Is her escort card table a delectable floral creation that’s completely over-the-top? Does she switch into a fabulous colorful gown for dancing? In addition to wedding cake – does she have a candy and dessert bar filled with her and her husband’s favorite sweets? The possibilities are endless…

Breakers’ Dream Maker: David Beahm
Photo by Brandon Lata Fellici Studio & Sean Lata

Q: Give us three of your favorite weddings must-dos.
A: 1. Honor your guests’ presence. They are not obligated to attend your wedding and many of them are taking a precious night (or even a weekend) off to celebrate you. Make it a priority to spend at least a moment with each guest to thank them for being an important part of your special day.

2. Pamper and care for yourself prior to the big day. With all the planning and logistics – sometimes the most well adjusted client forgets to take a moment to breathe. I have been known to coax a bride out of my office directly to an acupuncturist or reflexologist to refocus their energy the week of the wedding.

3. Trust your team. From venue to flowers and band to videographer – you should have hired your wedding team because you believe in and trust the quality of their work. On the flip side of that (we, as your artists) want to make sure all of your dreams are realized. Our goal is to live up to our reputation for quality all the while honoring your vision as our client. Micromanagement on the day of your wedding only serves to make you more anxious when you should be enjoying the experience. Allow your team to do what they do best – create magic!

Breakers’ Dream Maker: David Beahm
Photo by Christian Oth Studio NY

Q: The Breakers has an immense history and some amazing architecture – How would you use this to inspire you and your events at the hotel?
A: Starting my business in New York, I’ve learned over the years that you can embrace an immaculate and intricately decorated venue in one of two ways…

1. Embrace and enhance the existing décor. If you are being married in The Circle, honor the sophisticated interiors with a flowery ceremonial space draped in luxurious swaths of diaphanous fabric. Surround the space with gilded and crystal candelabrum and the romantic glow of candlelight. Traditional whites, creams and pastels should abound.
2. Juxtapose the existing décor with a completely opposing aesthetic. If your reception is in the Mediterranean Ballroom, fill the space with sleek, modern lounge furniture, avant-garde floral creations, and funky textiles. Utilize professional lighting to draw focus to magnificent décor focal points and keep the energy of the room going. Don’t be afraid to celebrate with a splash of joyous color!

Breakers’ Dream Maker: David Beahm
Photo by Christian Oth Studio NY

Q: What’s the most important piece of advice you can offer a bride and groom?
A: There is an inordinate amount of time and energy that goes into the planning and details of a wedding: from where Aunt Molly is going to sit – to the ribbon used to tie the programs. However, Murphy’s Law even applies to weddings: something WILL go awry at the last minute. It could be that the limos are late, or your makeup artist drops red lipstick on that gorgeous white dress.

Here’s the thing we try to remind our couples – no matter what goes askew on the big day, the only thing that really matters is that you and your partner are together in love and joy to commit to each other for a lifetime. At the end of the day, doesn’t that mean a whole lot more than whether or not the Best Man shows up in wrong tux? And after all, that’s why you hire an amazing planning team to solve such silly problems!

Breakers’ Dream Maker: David Beahm
Photo by Brian Dorsey Studios

Q: How does a wedding at The Breakers differ from those at other venues?
A: A venue, no matter how beautiful (and indeed The Breakers is oh-so beautiful) is only as good as its representatives. I have worked in many, many hotels and resorts over the years and my favorite properties also happen to have the very best in terms of service. The Catering and Sales team at The Breakers are advocates for the couple and are constantly thinking outside of the box to make each and every event different and special. That is an amenity indeed.

David Beahm Design
529 West 20th St., Suite 11 West
New York, NY 10011
(212) 279-1344
Contact: Christina Matteucci, Executive Director
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  1. Tamatha Corners Mar 08, 2012 / 01:26 pm

    Hey thank you so much for the article!

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It started with Posh Paper, a boutique paper company, in 2003. Today, Heather Lowenthal and her Posh Parties clan are known throughout South Florida as the Posh Party Girls.

Breakers’ Dream Maker: Heather Lowenthal

“I like to think I built the business through the details. In the beginning, I specialized in everything from invitations and save the dates to favors, gift bags and all of the special touches that make a party personalized,” Heather says. “The relationships that I made with premier hotels and vendors throughout South Florida, including the very exclusive Breakers hotel in Palm Beach, allowed me to take the business to the next level.”

Q: What’s the most important piece of advice you can offer a bride and groom?
A: Don’t stress about planning your wedding – embrace it. Enjoy every moment of your planning process and your entire wedding weekend. This is the kick-off event to a lifetime of love & happiness together!

Q: What is it like planning an event at The Breakers?
A: Amazing! Everyone is so wonderful from the moment you arrive until the moment you leave. The staff goes above and beyond to make planning an event both fun and memorable at the same time. It is a pleasure to work with such outstanding people at such a first-class organization, and I consider myself an extension to their entire professional team.

Enjoy some of Heather’s favorite images from her events at The Breakers…

Breakers’ Dream Makers: Heather Lowenthal

Q: Where does your inspiration come from?
A: For me daily inspiration goes beyond being entrenched into today’s wedding business. I get inspiration from everything from home decorating magazines to songs I hear on the radio. I like to be inspired by the little things, which we can incorporate into the perfect party.

Breakers’ Dream Makers: Heather Lowenthal

Q: What is the most important reason your clients cite for choosing The Breakers?
A: The most common response I get from my clients is: LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION! You can’t beat Palm Beach any time of year, and The Breakers is a premier destination.

Breakers’ Dream Makers: Heather Lowenthal

Q: Give us three of your favorite weddings must-dos.
A: 1. Have a blast – this is your wedding! Planning your wedding should be fun, enjoy each step of the way
2. Make each decision count. Take your time in choosing your A-Team for your wedding – you will be happy in the end. And of course, hire a planner!
3. Make it personal. Adding personal touches along with way and creating a wow factor for your guests will differentiate your wedding from the next. This can be achieved through the cuisine, the décor and all of the little details that go a long way.

Breakers’ Dream Makers: Heather Lowenthal

Q: How does The Breakers history and architecture inspire you and your events at
the hotel?

A: I think the Breakers represents timeless glamour – whether you want to have the most classic affair or a trendy contemporary one. There are so many different rooms and areas throughout the hotel that lend themselves to such a wide variety of design; the possibilities are endless! It will make a memorable place to return to for years to come.

Breakers’ Dream Makers: Heather Lowenthal

Q: How does a wedding at The Breakers differ from those at other venues?
A: The level of service and quality is above and beyond. You truly can be stress-free and enjoy your wedding weekend without a worry.

Posh Parties & Paper
Heather Lowenthall
561.302.0702
heather@poshpartiesonline.com
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  1. Ray Roman Jan 28, 2012 / 01:05 pm

    Heather is a true professional and her work is AMAZING!

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By 11-years-old, Valerie Romanoff has played an array of instruments, mastered the electric guitar and considered herself a musician – knowing full well there was no other job she’d rather hold. Now the CEO of Starlight Orchestras in New York, the guitarist, composer and producer is living the dream and making dreams come true.

Starlight Orchestras' Valerie Romanoff

After college I got involved in the music scene in New York City, and soon found there was a need for good quality music for weddings. Our band developed a style that was unique to the wedding industry, and we created a prototype that became Starlight Orchestras,” Valerie says. “Our entire approach was based on the challenge ‘How good can it get?’ And we continue, 20 years later, making it better still with every single wedding.”

Q: What is it like performing at an event at The Breakers?
A: I will never forget the first time I performed at the Breakers. We had come from New York and were in the ballroom doing a sound check in the afternoon before the event. The band assembled onstage, and we began singing and performing “Lovely Day,” by Bill Withers. All of a sudden, across the room, a wall of curtains began opening! And there before us was the vast ocean; slightly turquoise, sparkling in the sun, bouncing with waves not 5 feet from the window. I caught my breath; I could not believe the power, the majesty and the beauty. Those qualities are evident throughout the hotel and banquet spaces. The Breakers is one of my most favorite places to perform.

Q: Where does your inspiration come from?
A: My inspiration comes from the excitement and the “energy” surrounding a party. We, as bandleaders, feel this excitement brewing, and can sense what songs and musical choices the crowd will love. The interaction between the musicians and the guests is like magic; something new and different is created every time. I am also inspired by the musicians and performers I work with, and the joy that happens when we are onstage together.

Enjoy a few photos of Valerie rocking out with Starlight Orchestras’ best…
Starlight Orchestras

Q: How does The Breakers history and architecture inspire you and your events?
A: Driving up to the entrance of The Breakers I often envision the grand parties of times past, and I am inspired to recreate moods with music that reflect different times in our history. For example, at a recent Charity Gala at The Breakers I had 10 violins lining the corridor as guests first arrived, and we performed a repertoire reminiscent of a Palace Ball at Versailles. I could see how our music affected the emotions and even the stature of many of the partygoers. It was exciting!

Starlight Orchestras

Q: Do you have a favorite ballroom to perform in?
A: The Breakers has ballrooms in a wide variety of sizes and styles. The Starlight Orchestras are a great match because our ensembles also come in a wide variety, and pair well with the options available at the hotel. We have small trios that can play in the courtyard, six piece jazzy combos perfect for a dinner dance in the Magnolia Room, a 10 piece dance band for a wedding in the Venetian Ballroom, or a 15 piece blow-out party band rocking the Ponce de Leon room for one of Palm Beach’s top galas.

Starlight Orchestras

Q: What’s the most important piece of advice you can offer a bride and groom?
A: Try to really enjoy your wedding is to be in the moment! My advice to our brides and grooms is to choose your team of wedding professionals and do all the planning ahead. Communicate fully in the months and weeks before your wedding, and then on the big day, just let it go and be in the romance, the magic, and the fun!

Starlight Orchestras

Q: How does a wedding at The Breakers differ from those at other venues?
A: I recently was a guest at an event at The Breakers and the service, the ambiance, the food, and the staff blew me away! There are so many wonderful things about being part of the team when I work there, but being a guest showed me the other side, and increased my appreciation of the venue.

Starlight Orchestras
Valerie Romanoff, CEO
(212) 595-0999
Website | Personal Site | Twitter | Facebook

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1 comment
  1. Joey Fago Jan 13, 2012 / 04:35 pm

    This was not the first time my family has used Valerie and The Starlight Orchestra and that’s why there were no options when choosing a band my wedding! Valerie and The Starlight Orchestra are without a drought amazing. My bride Jamie and I learned from my mother Elizabeth when planning my wedding the only things that are really important are FOOD and MUSIC everything else will fall into place but as long as you have the best food and music people will have the time of their life and I have thank you cards from some of our quest that thank us for letting them be a part of it and saying the food and music were outstanding. My bride and I danced till 1:30AM and so did our guest, the performance is like a private concert and they get so involved that the music runs through your veins.

    Thank you again Valerie and The Starlight Orchestra you made our day that much more memorable.

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With a successful catering company, a new book and a wide array of celebrity followers, you would never guess that celebrated New York Caterer Peter Callahan used to be an investment banker.

Breakers’ Dream Maker: Meet Peter Callahan

“In my mid 20’s I very spontaneously left Wall Street to start a small catering co. The owner of the firm said I was the dumbest person he ever met to leave his company and all the future affluence it afforded. For a while I thought he was right….” Peter remembers. “Then, a creative streak I didn’t know I had kicked in — and I started dreaming up all sorts of new party food, bar designs, trays and buffets in ways nobody had ever seen.”

Since then, Peter has ignited the party world and is well known as the originator of the mini comfort food trend that has swept the wedding world. And – his new book, Bite by Bite: 100 Stylish Little Plates You Can Make for Any Party, shares a bunch of his delicious recipes.

Q: Your new book recently hit the shelves – congrats! Tell us more about it.
A: I hadn’t planned on doing a book, but Martha Stewart, who has always been fabulous to me, kept asking when was I going to do a book, and next thing you know I had a book!

Q: What is it like planning an event at The Breakers?
A: Planning an event at The Breakers is the ultimate plum job; it doesn’t count as work being surrounded by such fabulousness! And there are so many different location possibilities it is like 10 locations on one!

Q: Where does your inspiration come from?
A: My inspiration comes from everyday life and it pops into my mind randomly like a vision.

Enjoy these images from some of Peter’s favorite treats…

Breakers’ Dream Maker: Meet Peter Callahan

Q: Keeping in mind The Breakers tropical Palm Beach climate, give us three fun hors d’oeuvres you’d create for cocktail hour.
A: -A plantain cone with ahi tuna tartare is the perfect Breakers hors d’oeuvres — tropical cone topped with scoop of light diced jewel tone seafood.
-Lobster cucumber petit four under glass — this hors d’oeuvre with its individual glass dome has old-world glamour.
-Cod taco with papaya paired with mini rum punch in mini hurricane glass.

Q: What’s in: What hot new trend do you see emerging for 2012 weddings?
A: I see interactive stations becoming more part of receptions, before dinner perhaps a top chef seafood station where people have an array of ingredients and they construct their own dish.

Breakers’ Dream Maker: Meet Peter Callahan

Q: What’s out: Any trends you could leave behind?
A: I could easily say goodbye to chocolate fountains!

Q: What advice would you give to a bride who wants a traditional wedding with a modern twist?
A: Pick a great color to be a part of the event – it elevates a wedding. You can even do hors d’oeuvres trays and waiter neckties in this palette. Also, consider a combination of square tables and rectangular trestle tables for dinner.

Breakers’ Dream Maker: Meet Peter Callahan

Q: Give us three of your favorite weddings must-dos.
A: 1.Tons of passed bite size hors d’oeuvres
2. A surprise for after dinner, whether it’s a hot unexpected DJ, fireworks or a fun specialty cocktail or drink station
3. Seat everyone tightly both at the dinner tables and in the room as it makes for a much more energetic party

Q: What’s your take on edible to-go wedding favors?
A: Edible to-go wedding favors are here to stay! Mini pies, donuts, or whoopie pies to-go are fun, but the key is to package them beautifully.

Breakers’ Dream Maker: Meet Peter Callahan

Q: What’s the most important piece of advice you can offer a bride and groom?
A: Enjoy your engagement and wedding reception. Make the whole process of planning a joy. And above all — eat at your own reception!

Breakers’ Dream Maker: Meet Peter Callahan
Photos by Mel Barlow

Q: The Breakers has an immense history and some amazing architecture – How would you use this to inspire you and your events at the hotel?
A: One of my favorite things in Palm Beach and The Breakers is travertine stone. This coral imprinted stone is grand and speaks of the ocean. So I would have trays made of travertine for passing hors d’oeuvres and bar tops made from travertine.

Callahan Catering
(212) 327-1144
info@callahancatering.com
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Book

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