Reflecting on Engage!24 Nemacolin

If you’ve been following Tara Faye Events for a while, you’ll know that one of our most valued long-term international relationships is with Engage! My longstanding collaboration with Engage! includes acting as creative director at two previous events in Ireland, where we were able to give some of the most talented wedding and event pros from around the world a taste of what makes destination weddings in Ireland so special. I have also been honoured to be included as a speaker at previous events. The first Engage! summit for 2024 was held a few weeks ago, and Tara Faye Events was once again represented. We couldn’t wait to share some of what our team learned and experienced at Engage!24 Nemacolin!

Just like previous Engage! events, Engage!24 Nemacolin stood out as a testament to excellence, drawing 350 of the world’s foremost luxury event professionals from over 15 countries and 30 US states from 3-6 June 2024. For our team, this summit represented not only a high point of creativity and expertise but also a platform to elevate standards within the industry. The event’s focus on fostering meaningful connections and exchanging cutting-edge insights underscores its pivotal role in shaping the future of luxury weddings worldwide. And Tara Faye Events was proud to be part of it!

Overview of Engage!24 Nemacolin

Set against the backdrop of a distinguished resort spanning 2,200 acres, situated in Farmington, Pennsylvania, Engage!24 showcased an incredible mix of inspiration, ideas, connection, and strategic learning. The summit was meticulously curated to facilitate networking opportunities and knowledge sharing among attendees. It attracted a diverse cohort of 350 attendees, comprising top-tier wedding planners, luxury venue managers, designers, and industry innovators. We were certainly in good company!

Each day at Engage!24 Nemacolin was structured by a carefully orchestrated schedule featuring keynote speeches, workshops, and interactive sessions designed to inspire and educate. The summit’s global reach was palpable, with participants converging to explore new trends, refine techniques, and forge collaborative partnerships that transcend borders. Nemacolin’s reputation for hospitality and its stunning natural surroundings provided an ideal backdrop for the event.

Highlights of Engage!24 Nemacolin

The Engage!24 Nemacolin summit unfolded over three spectacular days, each brimming with enriching sessions, dynamic workshops, and unforgettable networking events. From the moment attendees arrived on Monday, they were immersed in an atmosphere of creativity and luxury.

The summit began with a warm welcome and registration at The Grand Lodge, where guests received a curated assortment of gifts, including custom denim jackets and essential oil rollers. Monday night set the tone for the event with a Wildflowers-themed party among Nemacolin’s beautiful hills. Attendees enjoyed a surprise drone show and concert, followed by an after-party featuring cosmic bowling and axe throwing.

Tuesday’s schedule was packed with insightful general sessions and workshops led by industry luminaries. These sessions offered practical advice on business growth, innovative design trends, and new marketing strategies. So inspiring! During the afternoon, attendees indulged in a picturesque French garden luncheon, complete with grand chandeliers and fine china, accessed through towering 11-foot trellis archways adorned with lattice panels and gigantic paper flowers.

But the highlight of Engage!24 Nemacolin was undoubtedly the gala on Wednesday evening. Set in a cathedral in the clearing, the event epitomised grandeur and elegance. The décor would certainly have been at home in a luxury destination wedding in Ireland! As guests sipped sunset cocktails by the lake, church bells tolled and a procession of bagpipes led them into the magical forest cathedral. The setting, transformed using nearly 200 mature trees and 800 plants, was nothing short of enchanting.

Inside the glass tent, adorned with greenery, white flowers, and silver details, attendees were treated to details reminiscent of stained glass windows, crafted by TPD Design House. The evening began with a stunning performance of Hozier’s “Take Me to Church” by Elan Artists, followed by a sumptuous first course featuring Calvisius caviar and truffle potato chips. The gala’s ethereal ambiance, combined with the exquisite menu and decor, created an experience that will be cherished by all who attended. And as if all that wasn’t enough, we had a surprise performance by none less than the legendary Diana Ross!

Making Connections

Networking is a cornerstone of the Engage! Summit experience, and Engage!24 Nemacolin was no exception. The event provided incredible opportunities for our team to connect with industry leaders, fellow planners, and creative professionals from around the globe in a collaborative atmosphere.

Engage!24 Nemacolin was a transformative experience for the Tara Faye team, providing invaluable insights, inspiration, and connections. The summit reinforced the importance of continuous learning and innovation in the luxury wedding industry. We are immensely grateful for the opportunity to participate and for the incredible experiences and knowledge gained. Until next time, Engage!

Slán go Fóill,
Tara

Top 5 Summer Destination Wedding Ideas 2024

Ireland, often referred to as the Emerald Isle, is a breathtakingly beautiful destination, known for its lush green landscapes, friendly locals, and great cultural history. What better place to celebrate the love and unity of two souls than in an amazing location in Ireland? I wanted to list 5 of the top summer destination wedding ideas for 2023 in Ireland, offering inspiration for couples seeking a truly unforgettable and unique experience.

A Fairytale Castle Wedding

Ireland is home to numerous historical castles, each with its own unique charm and character. For a truly magical wedding experience, consider exchanging vows within the ancient walls of a castle, surrounded by the beauty of Ireland’s landscapes. From the romantic Ashford Castle in County Mayo to the stunning Lough Eske Castle in Donegal, these magnificent venues offer a sense of history, grandeur, and sophistication that will leave a lasting impression on you and your guests. To complete the fairytale setting, incorporate traditional Irish elements such as handfasting or Celtic knot designs into your decor and attire.

A Seaside Soirée

The Irish coastline boasts some of the most beautiful and dramatic coastal landscapes in the world, making it an ideal destination for a romantic seaside wedding. Imagine exchanging vows on the sandy shores of Inchydoney Beach in County Cork or the breathtaking cliffs of Moher in County Clare, with the Atlantic Ocean as your backdrop. For a truly memorable experience, consider hosting your reception in a nearby local pub, where you and your guests can enjoy traditional Irish music, dancing, and hospitality. Complete the seaside theme with nautical-inspired decor and a menu featuring the freshest local seafood.

A Rustic Countryside Wedding

For couples seeking a more laid-back and intimate affair, a rustic barn wedding in the picturesque Irish countryside is an excellent choice. With a variety of charming barn venues to choose from, such as Ballyvolane House in County Cork or Horetown House in County Wexford, you can create a cozy atmosphere that celebrates the natural beauty of your surroundings. Incorporate the rustic theme into your decor by using vintage farm equipment, hay bales, and wooden pallets for seating, while adorning the space with wildflowers and greenery. A delicious menu featuring locally sourced ingredients and a selection of local craft beers and ciders will perfectly complement the rustic theme.

A Blooming Garden Wedding

Ireland’s lush and fertile landscapes provide an array of stunning garden venues for a romantic summer wedding. Consider hosting your celebration at the beautiful Powerscourt House and Gardens in County Wicklow or the enchanting Mount Juliet Estate in County Kilkenny. Surrounded by flourishing flowers and verdant greenery, these gardens provide a picturesque setting for a charming outdoor ceremony and reception. Enhance the garden theme by incorporating floral motifs into your stationery, attire, and decor, and consider serving a botanical-inspired menu featuring edible flowers and fresh herbs.

A Traditional Irish Homestead Wedding

Celebrate your love and commitment in the warm and welcoming atmosphere of a traditional Irish homestead. Venues such as The Millhouse in County Meath or Ballymagarvey Village in County Louth offer a unique and intimate setting, combining the charm of a bygone era with modern amenities. Embrace the authentic Irish experience by incorporating traditional elements such as Irish lace, Celtic knots, and Claddagh rings into your decor and attire. Treat your guests to a hearty feast of Irish favourites like soda bread, boxty, and Guinness stew, accompanied by lively traditional music and dancing.

Ireland offers a magical and unforgettable setting for your summer destination wedding in 2024. With its captivating landscapes, historic venues, and warm hospitality, the Emerald Isle provides a plethora of options to create the wedding of your dreams. From castles and homesteads to gardens or seaside venues, you will not be disappointed to host your summer wedding in one of these amazing destinations. Although, if these ideas didn’t work for you, check out my blog post with ideas on other great European wedding destinations.

Slán go Fóill,

Tara

Photos by Lisa-ODwyer-Photography

How to Dress up Your Church Entrance

Dressing up a church entrance is a great way to welcome guests to your ceremony and provide a picturesque spot for wedding day photos. One of the ways I love to dress up the entryway is through stunning floral designs that envelope the archway or stand on each side of the beautiful front door.

When it comes to floral décor for church entrances, each is unique in its own way. From the flowers and greenery chosen to the overall shape, there are ways to make each special. Here are some of my favourites to inspire how you dress up your church entrance:

Green and White

A traditional green and white wedding can stun and this floral entryway shows just that. Something I love about floral decoration is that it can truly be anything you want and any shape you can dream of.

Add a touch of natural beauty by having your florals and greenery crawling up the archway of the church door in a way that makes it seem almost as if the carefully curated decoration grew there!

Autumnal Selection

One way to make your floral arrangement on your church entryway stand out is by going with the season. For obvious reasons, it is best to source flowers that will grow in the season you wed in. But for aesthetic purposes, it can also add to the mood of the season.

Along with this, work in some colours that are indicative of the season itself. Like in this case, pops of warm oranges bring out the feeling of Autumn in the air.

Wildflower Wonder

A fun way to incorporate the place you’re holding your wedding is by including wildflowers from the region. If you’re aiming to have a pop of every colour, start with a base of greenery and then piece in flowers in each of the tones you want.

Something Blue

A stunning floral piece like this is a great way to design a simple but elegant look for a church entrance. Along with this, the two-pillared shape makes for a floral frame for each of your guests’ wedding day photos.

The saying goes: “Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue.” And an entryway like this certainly pays homage to something blue.

Will you have a floral-decorated entrance at your church ceremony? Dress up your church entrance in a way that is fitting to your personality, and remember to enjoy every moment of your big day!

Slán go Fóill,

Tara

Images by Story of Eve , Anee Atelier and Greg Finck

The Traveler’s List of Must Haves for an Irish Destination Wedding

Planning for a destination wedding in Ireland brings excitement and anticipation, but it also raises the question: What should travelers pack for this magical adventure? To ensure you’re well-equipped for every moment of your journey, here’s a list of must haves for an Irish destination wedding:

Layers, Layers, Layers

Irish weather is famously unpredictable and you can’t let a little rain dampen your spirits! Pack layers like sweaters, light jackets, and scarves to stay cozy during outdoor ceremonies or exploring the countryside. Bring a quality raincoat or a compact umbrella to stay dry and stylish, whatever the weather.

Sturdy Shoes

From cobblestone streets to rugged cliffs, Ireland’s terrain demands durable footwear. Opt for comfortable and waterproof shoes to keep your feet happy during all your adventures.

Formal Attire

Dress to impress for the wedding ceremony and any related events. Whether it’s a black-tie affair or a casual gathering, be sure to pack appropriate attire to celebrate in style. This includes a light (or heavy) jacket for unpredictable weather and comfortable shoes for dancing.

Sun Protection, Medication and Toiletries

Yes, it does shine in Ireland! Pack sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat to shield yourself from the sun’s rays, especially if you plan on exploring the lush landscapes or enjoying outdoor festivities. Don’t forget your essentials, as well! Pack any necessary medications and toiletries, as well as a basic first aid kit, to ensure a comfortable and stress-free stay.

Adapter Plug

Ireland uses a different plug type (Type G) than many other countries. Ensure you can charge your devices by bringing a universal adapter plug along for the trip. This is definitely one of the most important must haves for an Irish destination wedding.

Camera or Smartphone

With its picturesque landscapes and charming towns, Ireland is a photographer’s dream. Capture every magical moment with a camera or smartphone to cherish for years to come.

Travel Insurance

Peace of mind is priceless. Consider purchasing travel insurance to protect yourself against unexpected events like flight cancellations or medical emergencies.

Cash and Cards

While credit and debit cards are widely accepted, it’s always a good idea to carry some cash for smaller purchases or in case you encounter businesses that don’t accept cards.

Sense of Adventure

Above all, bring an open heart and a sense of adventure. Embrace the beauty, culture, and hospitality of Ireland as you celebrate love in one of the most enchanting destinations on Earth.

Whether you’re a bride, groom, or guest, preparing for an Irish celebration requires thoughtful consideration of the unpredictable weather, rugged landscapes, and cultural experiences that await. By providing your guests with this packing list, you’ll help ensure that they’re well-prepared for your destination wedding in Ireland and can fully enjoy the adventure!

Ps. Are you planning your destination wedding in Ireland? Fabulous! Be sure to find more Destination Wedding Trends and inspiration here.

Slán go Fóill,

Tara

Images by Brosnan Photographic 

Summer Must-Haves for a Destination Wedding

Summer is the perfect time to host your destination wedding, but there are some things you’ll want to keep in mind when planning your big day during the busy season. These are just some of the summer must-haves for a destination wedding.

Outdoor Venue

The weather in summer is something worth taking advantage of and an outdoor venue will allow you to do just that! Picture yourself on a stunning beach, basking in the beautiful sun on your big day. If you’re not much of a beach person, gardens, vineyards, or even lush green mountains are fabulous choices. And, of course, I always recommend the stunning nature of Ireland for a dreamy and memorable wedding trip!

Clear Communication

When it comes to travel plans for your destination wedding, summer requires clear communication between you and your guests to get everyone there. As one of the busiest seasons for travel, your guests will want to know well ahead of time how to find their way to your country or location of choice.

This could even mean working out plans to travel as a unit of people rather than completely separate if that is the best way to keep all of your guests together.

Planned Accommodation

Just like you’ll need to communicate ahead of time for travel, planning accommodations will also make everything smoother during the busy season. Hotels can fill up fast during the summer travel season, so knowing your venue well in advance will need to be a top priority. As soon as you have that venue set, let your guests know!

Perhaps consider finding a hotel within a reasonable distance of your venue and see if you can book rooms for each of your guests as a large group so everyone is in a closer space.

Light and Breathable Attire

If you know your heart is set on a summer destination wedding, then it is likely your big day might be a bit warmer. Keep an eye on the typical weather of the destination and start to plan your attire accordingly. This doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice the gown of your dreams! There are plenty of gorgeous wedding gowns that will look incredible at a summer destination wedding.

However, if your heart is set on a heavier gown, opt to have multiple outfits for the different pieces of your day. This could include preparing light and breathable attire for the longer reception that will take place after your “I do” moment.

Remember, the most important part about planning your big day is you, so focus on what will make the process most enjoyable to you. Happy summer destination wedding planning!

Slán go Fóill,

Tara

Image by Aspect Photography

Love at Adare Manor: Chris and Lucy’s Real Irish Wedding

When Christopher Lawlor and Lucy Corrigan matched on Bumble in 2019, neither one of them had any idea of the epic love story they were beginning, nor the fact that it would end in a brilliant Irish wedding at Adare Manor. With incredibly busy professional lives in New York City (Lucy is a lawyer and Chris is an entrepreneur and co-founder of an AI infrastructure company), it took months before they were able to meet for their first date.

When it finally happened, the two met at a wine bar (Compagnie du Vins Surnaturels) and immediately lost track of time, talking about everything from food to music to family. Their relationship took off and the two began to enjoy dates all over the city (many to see the New York Philharmonic).

Suddenly, the new couple found themselves in a city completely halted by Covid. When remote work became mandatory, Chris and Lucy made the decision to travel to Philadelphia to visit Chris’s parents “for two weeks”, unaware that two weeks would turn into five months! As soon as the restrictions lifted, it was time for Chris to “meet the parents” in Lucy’s hometown of Dublin. When all family and friends were introduced and all approvals were met, Chris took Lucy to Park City, Utah where she was met with the ultimate relationship test: three months of ski season. Lucy passed with flying colors and Chris proposed a year later, on a beach, Lucy’s much preferred location.

When I met with Lucy and Chris, it became clear that it was Lucy’s desire to share the beauty and warmth of her home country with all of their combined loved ones. Lucy said this about choosing Adare Manor: “We chose Adare for two reasons. The first is we genuinely think that it’s one of the best hotels we’ve ever stayed at and the second is… we wanted an Irish village where people could show up and all be in one place, close together.” With guests coming from all over the world, Lucy and Chris said they loved nothing more than the idea of their friends and family bumping into each other on the streets of Adare Village.

In the same spirit, Lucy and Chris wanted to cultivate an environment of reunion and laughter, creating memories their guests would keep for a lifetime. With everyone coming together, friends and family from both sides and from different countries, the couple wanted the atmosphere to be a mix of both formal and casual, to go from black tie to full Philadelphia Eagles attire within 24-hours (a hilarious moment that actually happened). Lucy said: “We could have easily gotten married at City Hall, but the opportunity to have all of the people we love come together in one room was too good to pass up. The vibe across the three days was about providing the space, the time, and the drinks for people to see friends and family they don’t normally get to see.”

Though there were many fashionable moments throughout the three day wedding celebration, when the time came to walk down the aisle, the bride wore an Elie Saab gown (that she fell in love with during a serendipitous try-on at Elizabeth Taylor’s old townhouse off 5th avenue!) and Chris wore a Saman Amel tuxedo with a La Bowtique bowtie.

With the vows completed, the new husband and wife exited the ceremony, walking down the aisle to the iconic soundtrack of Star Wars. The reception was brilliant, with everyone out on the dancefloor, including Lucy’s 91-year-old grandfather! Beautiful speeches were given, wedding crashers were escorted from the party by loyal friends, and a wedding cake made out of wheels of cheese (created by Lucy’s favourite cheesemonger) was enjoyed by all.

As a wedding planner, it is a dream to work with such a fun-loving, adventurous and beautiful couple as Chris and Lucy. It was an absolute pleasure to spend time creating a space where Dublin and Philadelphia could come together in an iconic celebration of Chris, Lucy, friends, family, love and cheese.

 

Slán go Fóill,

Tara

Event Planner: Tara Fay | Venue: Adare Manor|  Photography: Greg Finck | Engagement Rings and Wedding Bands: Zameer Kassam | Bride’s Rehearsal Dinner Dress: Zuhair Murad | Bride’s Rehearsal Dinner & Wedding Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Groom’s Rehearsal Dinner Jacket: J. Mueser | Groom’s Rehearsal Dinner Trousers: Ralph Lauren | Groom’s Rehearsal Dinner Shoes: Magnanni | Brides Wedding Dress: Elie Saab | Bride’s Second Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier | Groom’s Wedding Tuxedo: Saman Amel | Groom’s Wedding Shoes: To Boot New York | Groom’s Wedding Bowtie: La Bowtique |