The Best in West Coast Florida Weddings

The Best in West Coast Florida Weddings

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Black and White Damask Re-Creates a Non-Traditional Holiday Celebration

End-of Year Party
Tampa Garden Center

Each year, TZ Insurance here in Tampa Bay, seeks to find a fresh new approach to its annual holiday party. Catering By Robert / Event Concepts. FL was offered the opportunity host this 300-person event at the Tampa Garden Center.

All tabletop decor came from our in-house inventory because the client was willing to work with whatever we had to offer in-house without extra charge. That way more money could be put toward interactive entertainment.

The 30 guest tables were comprised of three different centerpiece/color schemes ranging from all black with accents of red to white with splashes of similar colors on the rest of the tables.

We worked with a committee when planning first started nine months prior. Eventually it ended up in the capable hands of Lisandra, who worked with us on a color scheme that focused on the black damask pattern with a touch of red. She created companion signage that directed guests to various activity areas of the center.

Most of the focus was on the casino area. DeLite Entertainment arranged for the gaming tables, slot machines, casino decor, and the illusionist show right after dinner. 

Because of the large number of guests expected, there were two sign-in tables with names in alphabetical order. A red carpet welcomed everyone into the casino area.

A fun photo area was set up in the small parlor near the front entrance. 

During the social hour, our staff hand-passed an assortment of hot and cold hors d'oeuvres which included mini meatballs with pretzel handles and shrimp cocktail.


We set up two bars: one double bar in the casino area and the other inside the main room. The casino area was so large it spilled outdoors.


Inside the main ballroom (these pictures taken with the overhead lights on) we formally set the guest tables for a buffet style dinner. Chair covers were all white so that the tables themselves would stand out.

One of our designs featured a black cloth topped with a damask runner, red napkins and two small red hurricanes on either side of a brandy snifter.

Another alternating look was a white cloth with three runners and three of our varying sizes of glass cylinders. Each contained submersed red rose petals and a floating candle. Napkins were black.


A third centerpiece option was our tall eiffel towers with white ostrich feathers coupled with our "sea feathers." The tablecloth was black with a red runner and red napkins.


To conserve on space, we positioned the two buffets on the dance floor area. They were removed after dinner for dancing. The dj and prize tables were located on the stage.

We loved "reviving" some red satin valences we hadn't used since the 1990s. 

Red uplighting was installed by DeLite Entertainment and gave the room a warm red glow.

Because guests were involved in a variety of activities after dinner, we hand-passed miniature sweets including chocolate dipped berries AND candy canes.

It was a sweet ending to a super holiday party!

Planning, Coordination, Design, and Catering: Catering by Robert/Event Concepts . FL

DJ Services, Lighting, Entertainment and Casino: DeLite Entertainment

Cuban Flair at the St. Pete Beach Community Center

Sarah and Armando
St. Pete Beach Community Center
Selected Photos from Off the Walls Photography*

Among the many amazing roles Sarah's mom, Shelly, holds in life, being her daughter's wedding designer was one she enjoyed most. From detailed tabletop decor to a sultry ambiance through lighting and music, Shelly created a tropical nightclub atmosphere for Sarah and Armando's waterside celebration. 

The family chose the St. Pete Beach Center because of its graceful setting overlooking Boca Ciega Bay. The addition of lots of live tropical trees from A1 Foliage, helped create the upbeat Cuban bistro.

This wedding is a reflection of the many wonderful elements our clients bring to the table to embrace family, heritage, and friendship. 

Shelly enlisted the help of friends and florist Linda O'Brien in assembling multi-element guest table designs. Some featured cigar and small crate boxes filled with bright flowers and vivacious tropical flora; others were tall with sweeping palm branches with a touch of peach gladiolas.  

This was a result of many months of collecting Cuban and wine elements to intersperse throughout the reception. Each table featured a Havanna burlap runner with a bottle of wine, table number inserted in a banded set of wine corks, burlap wrapped candle, and a special picture of the couple. We added in our brown napkins and chair ties for an "old vintage look." A sparkler favor with a set of matches was set at each place setting.

Everywhere you looked, there were flowers and flora that personalized every aspect of the wedding.

Yes, Pinterest was a big resource for Shelly, but she shared many of her ideas with us in emailed picture files. She also took pictures of her hand-made creations so we could keep them as a guide in helping with set-up the day of the wedding.

Red, yellow, copper, and slate colors added texture the cake as well as other display tables. After many months of planning (including a mock up sample table at one of our client open houses,) Shelly was confident that Sarah and Armando would approve. 

Even their cake from Publix was decorated in coffee beans to fit in with the theme.


Prior to the ceremony on the plaza of the St. Pete Beach Center plaza, the couple enjoyed leisurely picture-taking at the beach near their hotel. Since they wanted to spend more time with family and friends immediately following the wedding, this cut back the formal photography session. 

The ceremony aisle was lined with brightly colored rose petals, Sarah's anxious mom, Shelly watched as her two small boys led the processional for their big sister.

Sarah's proud dad escorts her down the aisle.

A1 Foliage created a natural tropical background for the ceremony.

During the social hour, our staff offered a variety of hand-passed tropical treats to the guests. This included  black bean and mango salsa in phyllo cups, mini beef empanadas, Cuban crostini's, and Gazpacho soup shooters.

Once guests found their way into the main ballroom, a cork-trimmed board held hanging place cards in alphabetical order.


 Guests were able to write out "marriage advice" for the couple's 10th and 20-year anniversaries.


We were excited to be able to add in many of our in-house props that matched the theme. Our designer-coordinator, Kent Billiter incorporated extra tropical flowers to the buffet.



So many sweet memories were created for Sarah and Armando on this day.

Planning, Design, Coordination, and Catering:

Rental Trees and Uplighting - A1 Foliage

Wedding Cake - Publix