Better Together – Once Upon a Destination

VENUE: LUTON HOO

PHOTOGRAPHERS: JOE & STEVEN

Next up in the “Better Together” spotlight is the one and only, Seyi Olusanya from Once Upon a Destination.

We’ve worked with Seyi on a quite a few events now over the last few years. Each of them immaculately designed and orchestrated in Seyi’s unique style. She is a pleasure to work with, and a truly inspirational woman. We’ve featured one of our recent weddings with her here today; Nike & Afolabi had an extravaganza of a wedding, photographed by Joe and Steven. They did an amazing job!

I caught up with Seyi recently to find out a little more about this wonderful lady and what was involved in making Nike & Afolabi’s wedding so special.

What is it about “Once Upon a Destination” that makes you different from other planners?

OUAD is unique in the sense that as an event and lifestyle management company, we specialise in creating truly amazing experiences for our clients in idyllic locations around the world. Our weddings typically run over 2-4 days interwoven with fun packed activities, tours and events that makes each client’s wedding a unique experience. We go to great lengths to ensure that the client experience is world class and memorable. This goes beyond just our clients but extends to their guests.

What is your passion?

My passion is to draw out my clients’ dreams and desire and create an experience that stimulates the five senses. I just love when I see the expression on my clients’ faces and know that we have gone over and beyond their brief. I am so passionate about the design & client experience aspect of my work. People matter to me and I am often told that I spoil my clients.

What was your brief for Nike & Afolabi’s wedding? – how did you make all the magic happen?

Nike attended a destination wedding I did in Cape Town and I think she made up her mind then that when the time comes she will be using our services. She contacted me as soon as Afolabi proposed and from our first meeting over lunch (a lot of the planning was done around food, she loves her food! I don’t know how she is able to remain so slim). I knew she was very confident in our ability to create an amazing experience. She wanted a classy but fun event over so many days. We spent a considerable amount of time together bouncing ideas and later came up with the concept of an exclusive wedding in the English countryside. She already had her heart set on the prestigious Luton Hoo which made for the perfect setting for our countryside wedding. I then enlisted the assistance of my ‘A’ team of vendors, after many meetings, appointment and clocking up thousands of air miles. Nike and Afolabi are based in Nigeria and so am I now.

The events of the weekend started with a rehearsal at the church followed by intimate rehearsal dinner for the bridal party and immediate family at the award winning Paris House nestled in the historic Woburn Abbey Estate & owned by Michelin star chef Phil. Upon arriving at Paris House, the wedding party were treated to a cocktail master class which was a perfect ice breaker to the evening. After dinner the bridal party then were picked up by a party bus equipped with its own bar and familiar Nigerian afrobeat music playing to get the young ones ready for a night of dancing and conviviality at an exclusive Mayfair Nightclub.

Day 2 began with games, a picnic and BBQ event. The boys played a game of football against the girls. The day ended with a formal jazz dinner in the Romanov Suite with entertainment by Jazz artiste Porter Shields for the couple and their friends while the parents hosted their close friends at Shaka Zulu.

Day 3 was the wedding day which began with wedding ceremony that was attended by notable socialites. An intimate wedding breakfast for 300 guests (where I come from that’s intimate!). And the grand finale was a concert/after party with a 13 piece live band, 3 popular guest artiste and the guests dancing into the wee small hours of the morning.

One quirky fact about you!

I absolutely love unusual chunky jewellery. I have been known to make friends with the most unexpected & unlikely people.

We can’t wait to work with you more Seyi and we’re really looking forward to the Ghana wedding at the end of 2015!