In the three years since Katy Arrington took over as Senior Catering Sales Manager, Maderas Golf Club has become an increasingly popular wedding destination in San Diego.
In fact, 2015 is primed to be a record year for Maderas as the club is on pace to host, even exceed, 50 weddings for the first time. And bookings are already taking place for 2016.
Arrington took some time recently to provide some insight into weddings at Maderas and what makes them special.
What are a few reasons Maderas has become more popular as a wedding venue?
We’ve been consistently renovating the facility since I was brought on as a wedding specialist. The Maderas experience is highly personalized. We’re emphasizing that with each client, and we’re a rare venue that the catering manager stays with you from the beginning to the end.
What does that entire process encompass?
I sell the wedding and then stay with you through the whole process, meaning tastings, planning, diagrams and everything. I’m your one point of contact throughout the entire event so I establish really good relationships with all the clients. And the planning can be anywhere from six months up to 18 months. The bigger the wedding, the more in advance people tend to plan, and I’m happy to be a resource for them.
That relationship building extends beyond the wedding as well. We’ve celebrated people’s anniversaries and them having babies. They become endeared to the club.
What are a few wedding trends you are seeing?
People are choosing other days of the week besides Saturday. We’re seeing Friday weddings and Sunday weddings. We give small incentives for people to book on other days besides Saturday. But there’s not the stigma of Saturday only anymore. Saturday is definitely prime, but sometimes Friday or Sunday can work just as well for a wedding.
What role is social media playing in the wedding experience now?
We’ve really increased our emphasis on the web site – www.maderasweddings.com – with a focus on social media. We frequently update our photos and we have a sales assistant posting to Pinterest so people can see photos of the great new things we’ve done. We’re also encouraging our photographers to post and all of our vendors – florists, etc. – to post their work on Pinterest.
Amazingly, brides look at that a lot. It really helps them visualize their special day and gives them ideas. They can request things they like, including vendors, who they’ve seen online.
Maderas can host weddings for anywhere from 50 people up to 250. What about Maderas’ size makes it unique for a wedding venue in San Diego?
Our size is a huge selling point for us. We’re at a size where it’s affordable enough for some people to buy out the club for the day and have full reign of the club. A lot of brides don’t want to see other brides on their wedding day so it allows our whole staff to focus entirely on them and their event, which makes their day very, very special.
And we’re one of the few locations that actually thinks about the groom. We do a nice little area for him and the groomsmen. They can watch sports and relax, or golf. We have lots of golfers. They sometimes even the golf the day of – if the bride allows it. (Laughing.) We’ve actually had several grooms golf, shower and go to their wedding.
We offer a private experience, and the parking is easy, and our staff is really focused on the couple. It’s a welcoming environment. We don’t do hundreds of weddings a year here, so each one we do is special and you get the VIP treatment.
And the range of weddings, culturally, that Maderas can host is unique as well …
We’ve done Ethiopian, Persian, Vietnamese, Filipino, Hispanic – basically any ethnicity you can think of. And kosher. We’re a kosher facility. That’s a big one, especially when it comes to catering. A rabbi comes in and supervises the cleaning of the kitchen and the cooking of the food. Everything has to come in brand new and sealed, including dishware. We have a rental company that helps us with that. It’s very encompassing. It’s a two- or three-day process. There are dietary considerations as well.
Finally, the next update to Maderas wedding experience is the bride’s suite. What can you tell us about the project?
We have a bride’s suite we call La Casa, the little house. It’s a space where the bride and her bridesmaids can ready for the day in privacy.
There will be a makeup counter, a makeup chair and a form where the bride can hang her dress which she gets ready and does her makeup. The form keeps the shape of the dress is great for photos. We’re adding some nice patio furniture, an umbrella and fire pit outside as well.
We’re also upgrading all the kitchen appointments, including a new coffee maker so it feels like their little home, their little house. And we’ve ordered a bunch of furniture and décor. It should be completed by mid-May and will be a great photo opportunity for the bride and the bridal party.
To contact Katy Arrington about booking a wedding or event at Maderas, call 858.217.2564 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also find more information at www.maderasweddings.com.