The RSVP Symposium in Madrid was an unforgettable event for me (as an Independent Celebrant) looking to network, hone and improve my craft. As a wedding celebrant who is fortunate to travel around the world conducting ceremonies, attending the symposium was an opportunity that I couldn’t miss and exceeded my expectations leaving me feeling inspired and energised. Actually, it was so good, I’ll bring it up at any given opportunity and tell everyone about it. Also, I’d never visited Madrid before and it was magical. The architecture, the art, the light, the food – so much to love!
The theme of the symposium was “The Long Haul”, co-produced by A-Típica, and hosted by Christina Rhodes of Black Rabbit Projects.
The symposium featured an impressive line-up of speakers from the wedding and event industry, all armed with knowledge, experience and anecdotes to share with us. Ceci Johnson, the renowned entrepreneur, artist, editor, and speaker from the powerhouse design agency Ceci New York, kicked off the first full day with her talk titled “The Road to Success is Not Always Paved: Lessons in Developing a Luxury Brand.”
Edgar Zamora, the founder and lead designer of Revelry Event Designers, spoke about “How to get to the Next Phase in Your Career.” Jennifer Johnson, the owner, operator and chief dreamer of Epic Presentations, gave a talk titled “We Are the Lucky Ones,” where she shared her personal experiences and hopes.
Colin Cowie, the lifestyle guru, television personality, author, interior designer, and party planner, was the first speaker on stage on the second day. His talk, “A Journey to Success: The Principles and Protocols that Got Me to Now,” gave us a glimpse of his journey. Earlier that morning when we had had a brief conversation and he said to me “you have a heart that is bigger than Madrid” my day was made.
Apart from the speaker sessions, the evening events at the Symposium were equally impressive.
The welcome party held at the Mandarin Oriental Ritz Madrid was a flamenco affair, where attendees enjoyed great food, great wine, flamenco dancers, and singers.
The second evening was “Money Heist,” which saw two hundred delegates walking through the streets of Madrid in red boiler suits some of whom were wearing Dali masks. The event, held at Rosewood Villa Magna, was fun filled and great entertainment with delegates running around trying to solve clues so that they could get to the loot.
The final evening was held at the Four Seasons Hotel Madrid, but more on that later.
The Symposium locations were at a variety of exceptional venues in Madrid, allowing attendees to experience the city’s rich culture and history.
The Mandarin Oriental Ritz Madrid was beautiful and perfect for a city center wedding,
while the Casino de Madrid was the perfect setting for the two days of talks with its grand architecture.
Rosewood Villa Magna was the location for the “Money Heist” evening,
and the Four Seasons Hotel Madrid was the location for the final evening.
The highlight of the symposium was the much-anticipated gala dinner and Global Awards 2023 ceremony, held at the Four Seasons Hotel Madrid.
The tables were named after legendary artists including Monet, Rembrandt, Van Gogh and Basquiat at which I was seated.
and the entertainment was provided by powerhouse bands, ‘The London Essentials’ and ‘The Aston Band’, they were both so freaking good.
The Awards Ceremony, hosted by Shaparak Khorsandi (comedian, speaker and author; a friend of RSVP Shappi also hosted the awards at the Bridelux Symposium in 2021) recognised RSVP favourites, and brightest in the wedding and event industry. The winners included:
I have to mention my travel friends, Stuart Wood and Eric Veroliemeulen, who made this trip even more memorable and ensured that I did not get lost which I’m sure will be reassuring to my family and friends. At least I think so!
Thank you to the RSVP team who organised the Symposium. Their attention to detail, patience, and tireless efforts to create a truly unforgettable experience for everyone was very much appreciated. From the great line-up of speakers to the exceptional venues and evening events, every aspect of the symposium was executed with precision and care. In addition, they are lovely and always make you feel welcome and taken care of.
Attending the RSVP Symposium in Madrid was a unique opportunity that Independent Celebrants should experience. With an impressive line-up of speakers, great networking and exceptional venues, the event left me feeling inspired, energised and filled with new ideas to take my craft to the next level.
I cannot wait for the next one. Bring on Venice!
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Fabulous event and lovely to share it with you Jennifer.