You’ve got the guest list and maybe even the venue narrowed down, but you could use a bit of help with the rest. Whether it’s a wine tasting or a wedding, you want your event to be special.
All around the Bay Area, event planning and event coordinating companies work hard to do just that. These 20 businesses can make any corporate event, birthday, wedding or other celebration shine.
Laurie Arons Special Events
A Bay Area event planning staple since 1994, Laurie Arons Special Events is spearheaded by Arons herself. She has more than 600 events under her belt, from weddings to high society events and everything in between. Her client list does include celebrities, though she and her team are ready to serve anyone in the area.
U & I Event Design
Planning a wedding can be stressful. Don’t do it all yourself when you can call the staff at U & I Event Design. Just some services they offer for grooms and brides-to-be include arranging photo shoots, setting up and taking down reception décor, recommending vendors, budgeting, venue decisions and theme selection. The team will also help with other events besides weddings, too.
Barbara Llewellyn Catering & Event Planning
Serving the Bay Area for 30 years, Barbara Llewellyn Catering & Event Planning can fill guests’ stomachs and then entertain them with party activities. The catering menu changes by season and theme, and guests can opt for food stations or a pre-set menu. With Llewellyn’s help, organizing a charity gala, company event or a private party is a breeze.
Events of Distinction
The team at Events of Distinction are more than just party planners. They’re also coaches who offer clients the opportunity to learn how to plan an unforgettable event. Joyce Scardina Becker — who has written a book about wedding planning — leads the company with the help of Dana Becker and Sarah Kern Possick.
With clients like Deloitte, Firefox, San Francisco State University and Dolby, Inspire Productions’ expertise shines through. The company can entertain small crowds or audiences of thousands. The team will help you delight guests with catering services, get help finding a good venue, request stage shows and live performers, and rent any equipment you need.
Alison Hotchkiss Rinderknecht leads Alison Events. Although based in the Bay Area, Rinderknecht and her team have planned parties, weddings, corporate events and more all over the world. She’s also published two books on wedding planning.
Having planned events for more than 20 years, Linda Van Kassel at Simply Events has done everything from planning Fortune 500 corporate events to bridal showers, fundraisers and wine tastings. Van Kassel offers three packages depending on how involved she’ll be:
- Icing on the Cake — minimal involvement in an event
- Piece of Cake — more involvement in an event, including the day of the event
- The Whole Cake — the most involvement possible, including planning and design
Henna Garden Events & Entertainment
For a more lighthearted gathering, Henna Garden Events & Entertainment provides props, live entertainment, fun graphics and theme planning. Renda Dabit, the company’s founder, has been in the business for nearly 30 years — she initially founded the company as America’s first henna studio.
Planning a private party or a conference? Erica Events can help. Founder Erica Becks works with event specialist Tamiko M. Garner to make these corporate gatherings a success. Both women have more than 20 years of experience between them, and Becks herself has organized fundraisers, trade shows, product launches, executive level meetings and more.
Each member of the team at Morgan Events (which includes founder Morgan Doan, event manager Fran Wells and event director Shalien Izzi) has more than a decade of experience arranging corporate events and weddings. Doan has served at the International Special Events Society of Northern California as its president and is a Certified Special Events Professional through the International Special Events Society.
Tiffany Francies Events
Once known as In The Name of Love Events, Tiffany Francies Events was founded in 2008. Francies herself mostly works in the Bay Area but has arranged a destination wedding or two for her clients. She and her team start with a home consultation to discuss the wedding and then will begin making concrete plans from there.
Focusing exclusively on Southeast Asian weddings and celebrations, Amrit Dhillon-Bains is the face behind Anais Events. She can design wedding invitations and stationery from scratch (including for corporate events), set up the décor, take care of travel logistics, provide event staffing, make a menu and find caterers, choose a venue and track a budget. Dhillon-Bains also plans destination parties.
A corporate event marketing company, Wilsonwest is led by founder and president Cindy Wilson, environmental designer Ken Swyt and director of operations Nick Rossi. An event can be a marketing experience, and Wilson and company understand that, as they will “connect the people and the message through pre and post activities and…audit to measure results.”
Jane Hammond Events
Founded in 1975, Jane Hammond Events has assisted clients with all kinds of events, including casino parties, school fundraisers, dinners, political rallies, banquets, reunions, graduations and holiday parties. Jane Hammond is the company’s founder, and with her team, she provides services such as production, lighting, music, entertainment, drinks and food.
The team is also very active in raising money for several causes. They’ve sponsored girls softball teams for more than 25 years and also sponsor children through Children International.
McCalls Catering & Events
The team at McCalls Catering & Events arranges venue selection for high-scale public and private events such as parties, nonprofit fundraisers and company gatherings. The team is connected to some of the biggest restaurants in the state and can organize some incredible catering services, too.
A’Reve Event Production
Having received the Thumbtack Best of 2015 Award, A’Reve Event Productions (the company names means “a dream”) does mostly weddings and corporate events. A’Reve has managed bigger events with up to 500 guests. You’ll never be without your event planner when the big day arrives, either, because they’ll be around from start to finish to oversee the party.
LUX Premier Events & Concierge
Between LUX Premier Events & Concierge owner Ann Thai and junior planner and assistant Anne-Marie Pawlicki, the women have more than 30 years in the event coordinating business. Corporate services include client gift packages, team-building, holiday parties and concierge.
Aurice E. Guyton Events
A California native, Aurice Guyton has spent time in Central America, Europe and Southeast Asia. Her cultural understanding is one of the inspirational touchstones at Aurice E. Guyton Events. She can arrange scavenger hunts, corporate retreats, grand openings, training meetings and seminars.
Kate Siegel Fine Events
Kate Siegel spent years working for acclaimed event coordinating companies before jumping into the business herself with Kate Siegel Fine Events. She gets to know her clients first to give each party a personalized touch. She can connect future newlyweds with vendors and even speedily set up a weekend gathering. Siegel also runs Kate Siegel Designs, a company that makes gifts for brides-to-be.
Brightfire Events has its own studio to handle most client requests, including décor and invitations. This place of inspiration is also where the team plans weddings, nonprofit events and corporate gatherings.
As Brightfire says: “Your event is an extension of your user interface and user experience. It’s a chance to show off the non-digital you and open up your brand to be expressed with face to face interactions and sharing.”