ABC Orlando Goes to Italy for An Afternoon of Wine Tasting

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The Association of Bridal Consultants Central Florida East, held their September meeting in the beautiful Portofino Hotel.  We call it Italy because once you are on property, that is how you feel as if you are in Italy.

Advertising Resorts Shoot at Loew's Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando Resort UOR PBH

This month the wedding and event professionals learned all about wine pairing with meals.ABC-Networking-WM-9.24.15-12

As the guests arrived at the Portofino Hotel, they were greeted by Catering Director Bonnie Garfield.  Bonnie and the ABC co directors made everyone feel welcome.

ABC-Networking-WM-9.24.15-68As the guests checked in, they were welcomed with sparkling wine and appetizers to tantalize the taste buds.


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Event Concepts set up their elegant white photo booth and invited the guests to have fun and enjoy taking those silly pictures that we in the wedding and event industry are so much fun.


When it was time to enter the Venetian ballroom, the doors slowly opened and it was like walking in to a dream.  There were Oohs and Ahhs at the decor.  The linens from ABC member Tracey Smith with Enchanting Events were a delicate ivory color.  The chivari chairs from Orlando Wedding and Party Rentals matched perfectly.


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As we entered the room Steve Dunlop our MC thought he would serenade us with authentic Italian music. How perfect! As we looked around the room there were uplights in hues of purple to match the theme we were going for .


Our luncheon started with our speaker Nancy Lehman explaining the different wines and as we had each entree’ we were able to try a different type of wine.  Nancy educated us on the proper way to hold a wine glass, which foods to pare the wine with and different ideas for planners to offer their clients as they enter a new life together. The ideas were amazing.


First course for lunch was a deluxe antipasto




Our entrée was a chicken rollatini stuffed with mozzarella, sundried tomato spinach with home made gnocchi and fresh brocolini


You can’t have Italian food and not benefit from authentic Italian dessert! Tiramisu anyone?


As the wines were being poured, more and more questions continued.  Truly a great meting learning about how to entertain guests and pair the perfect wine with it.

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Our Co-Directors, Allan, Diane and Rosie introduced the ABC student chapter to everyone.

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The local ABC networking group, is all about education, building relationships with the wedding community of wedding professionals and learning the latest trends! We welcome you to come and check us out at one of our monthly meetings.  Stay, have a meal, share ideas, experiences and more, you will find no other organization that brings you all of this plus education in one meeting!

The afternoon ended with a traditional song, Time To Say Good Bye….

Visit us on our facebook page to keep up with future meetings!

CoDirectors: Diane Jensen, Rosie Moore, Allan Saltman, Mark Kingsdorf

Thank you to all our wedding professionals that helped make this meeting a huge success!

Loews Portofino Bay Hotel

Enchanting Event Designs/Floral and Decor

Treasured Moments Videography

Captured by Elle/Photography

The Invitation Lounge/Menu Cards

Event Concepts/DJ/MC/Uplighting/Photoboothrlando Wedding and Party Rentals

PRP Wines






What is the Difference Between a Venue Coordinator and an Outside Wedding Coordinator

The age-old question is always, what is the difference between the venue coordinator and the outside wedding planner?  The Association of Bridal Consultants (ABC) invited Zhay Robles/Catering Manager at 1805 on the Boulevard and Caitlin Lawler/Wedding Planner/Owner of Plan It Event Design and Management to answer those questions.  Mark Kingsdorf Master Bridal Consultant and Co Director for ABC facilitated the discussion.

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As everyone checked in, the wedding professionals were welcomed to the Crowne Plaza Hotel by Kirk Schenkel,  Director of Catering and Convention Services .  Our wedding professionals were welcomed with a refreshing Mardi Gras Mojito Cooler and the Chef’s appealing choice of appetizers; while we took a moment to network with some new friends and mingle with some old friends.

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Master of Ceremony, Andres Roque of Roque Productions welcomed everyone in to the ballroom with  a festive array of  Mardi Gras  music to get our meeting started.  As everyone found their seats, we had a chance to see the beautiful linens, chairs and centerpieces provided by RJ Glamour and Innovation. The up lights provided by Roque Productions,   enhanced the Peacock theme that we had going throughout the room.

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Allan Saltman ABC Co Director, welcomed all the wedding professionals to our first ABC meeting of 2015.  Allan  took a moment to introduce new Co Directors Mark Kingsdorf, Master Bridal Consultant and Wedding Sales Manager at Mission Inn and Rosie Moore Master Bridal Consultant with 27 Miracles.  After some brief intros we were ready to taste the succulent lunch that The Crowne Plaza prepared for us.

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Rose Robinson of The Invitation Lounge tempted our taste buds with the lunch courses on her peacock themed menus.  The first lunch course was  Herb Seared Duck Breast with Strawberry Risotto and Wilted Arugula.  Once that was completed, our second course was Grilled Petite Filet Mignon and Roasted Jumbo Shrimp with American Sauce, Potato Gratin and Grilled Asparagus.  What a treat for lunch!

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After lunch, our speakers  provided some very good insight to the wedding professionals that attended the meeting on the difference between a wedding venue coordinator and an outside wedding coordinator.

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If you missed this meeting, no worries, we have educational meetings every month.  If you are not on our email list to receive information about upcoming meetings, contact us through our Facebook page and we will be glad to get you on our list. This year is jam-packed with some fabulous meetings that you do not want to miss out on.  Sign up early as soon as the meeting comes out so that you are guaranteed a seat at all our events!

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To end our meeting we had the pleasure of trying the sumptuous cupcakes from Party Flavors.  They showed us their creativity with a Peacock Cake that was too beautiful to eat!!!

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Our dedicated photographer for this meeting Nicholas Sabatino of Michael Anthony Photography and our Videographer Bruce Reynolds of Treasured Moments captured this beautiful peacock/mardi gras themed meeting at the Crowne Plaza.

If you are interested in becoming an ABC member, please let us know and we will be able to help you or you can call ABC directly

Association of Bridal Consultants 

Association of Bridal Consultants Central FL East 

Thank you to our wonderful sponsors!

Venue & Food – Crowne Plaza Universal

Co-Presenter – Caitlin Lawler – ABC Member – Plan It Events

Co-Presenter – Zhaydrix Robles – 1805 On the Boulevard

Floral – RJ Glamour and Innovation

Linens – FL Event Rentals

DJ & Lighting – Roque Productions

Photography – Michael Anthony Photography

Video – Treasured Moments Video Productions (ABC Member)

Dessert – Party Flavors

Menus-The Invitation Lounge

Until next month!

 The Standard for Wedding Excellence……………………………