Today’s wedding planner interview is with Bettina Benizri, Owner and Head Planner of Busy Bee’s Events, based in Miami, Florida! Enjoy:
Tell us a bit about yourself and your company.
My name is Bettina and I am the owner of Busy Bee’s Events. A little bit about myself is that I once upon a time thought I was going to be the next millennial Ally Mcbeal of the big and bad New York City but everything changed the moment I volunteered to plan an event for my association. I always had a knack for planning, even during my pre-law years. My dad was always a planner in the family and he and I would always bond over planning our day in our leather bound planners (back before Iphones). Of course after starting in this industry, I quickly realized that becoming an event planner means so much more than just planning. I’ve become a person’s event budget analyst, mediator, negotiator, venue agent, and even sometimes a friend.
Read the full interview after the cut!
How did you get into wedding planning?
I was first exposed to the wedding world through an event management internship and from there, I just knew that this is going to be my future. Once I realized my passion for weddings and events, I ran with it, I called all of the top planners I believed I could learn a lot from and went through many highs and lows being an assistant but the first time I ever worked in a wedding, I was just thrown into it. I think that’s the best way to start in this industry, it’s definitely not according to movies or shows, and nothing you can study in a book, it’s all about experiences and becoming quick with not only your actions but your thinking as well. Something I really respect in all planners is the mind frame that no matter what happens there will always be a FAST solution.
What’s your favorite part of the job?
My favorite part of the job is the people I meet. Of course all of my clients are amazing but also meeting venue coordinators and other vendors that truly make the experience one thousand percent better. I’ve met some truly amazing and like minded individuals that have really shaped me and my planning style!
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned, and would pass along to other new wedding planners just getting started?
My biggest lesson is to start your company slowly (if you have the financial time). It is a lot of work starting your company in any industry especially the wedding industry. There is a lot of competition so you need to know what sets you apart? My first step as a planner starting my own company was to answer a simple but very important question every entrepreneur should ask, “what sets me apart from the rest?”
My answer is that I am driven and ambitious and always look into the best interests of my client. If my client wants an elephant as a grand entrance, then I will deliver an elephant for a grand entrance! I truly make it my number one goal to make sure the clients have a stress-free wedding planning experience.
What are your hobbies or non-work-related activities?
My favorite non work-related activities include but not limited to taking my dog to the dog beach, trying out new local coffee shops, and going on date night with my partner in crime, Martin.
Any great stories from working with a client?
Are there any great stories from working with a client? Oh absolutely. My number one story I tell my clients is my Hurricane Wedding. Last year, I had a wedding set on an island for over a year and a half with such a sweet bride. A week before the wedding there was an impending hurricane, since we haven’t had a relocation of wedding due to weather in ten years, I wasn’t too worried…but then it happened. The Monday before the wedding everyone in the south Florida region was evacuating, including vendors for the wedding (and myself!). The dreaded phone call on Tuesday arrived saying that we have to relocate the wedding because the island is evacuating all of its inhabitants! Now mind you, this wedding was partially destination for the groom’s side because he is Vietnamese, so we had to find somewhere not only for the guests to stay but also a new venue for the wedding to take place!
The wedding was still going to happen and no matter the venue I called, they wouldn’t take the wedding because they had a fear for what kind of damage their venue might suffer after a category four hurricane, it all seemed to be pointless until I spoke with Christina from PGA. I guess she heard something in my voice because as the whole hotel is evacuating and closing up for the impending hurricane, she was rendering a BEO (Banquet Event Order) for our wedding in three days. And believe it or not, that Saturday after the hurricane, it was the most beautiful day and the wedding was perfect!
What is your current favorite color combination?
This is a hard one since it changes weekly. This summer, I am loving bold colors on a simple linen. I have a lot of clients this summer wanting that simple Mediterranean feel and I love it!! Incorporate bold colors like greens or blues in the glassware and chargers, and a different colored silverware like gold, paired with beautiful and simple oranges and pinks in the centerpieces and its impact is like no other!
Are there any trends that you absolutely love or would love to see brides leave behind?
The new trend that I absolutely love is the sweets table! Not only are couples having cake but they’re having some sweets too! I love the sweets table because now you can really personalize your desserts. I have had so many couples bring from their own home country’s desserts to share with their guests! It is such an amazing way to combine both of your backgrounds on one table, I am a huge fan!
What tips or advice can you give to couples who are in the midst of planning?
Biggest Tip I Can Express is: Always Stay Calm. There will be points throughout the process where you will be overwhelmed with so many options and vendors but remember that it will be okay and you will have the most amazing wedding with the one you love, especially if you have a Busy Bee planner.
Thanks Bettina! For more information about Busy Bee’s Events, please visit their WeddingLovely Vendor Guide profile.
Do you have any questions or comments for Bettina? Add them to the comments below!