When you see a beautiful photo of a wedding or special event at The Treasury on The Plaza, you don’t often get to hear about all of the wonderful people who come together to make that event a reality. One of those special people is Katy Hurtig and her incredible team of St. Augustine wedding planners at Coastal Coordinating. We recently got the opportunity to sit down with Katy and ask her about her business and her wedding planning advice for newly engaged couples. Along the way, you’ll see photos from some of the fantastic weddings that Katy and her team have planned at The Treasury on The Plaza!
Q: How did you get started in event planning?
A: I actually started event planning in college when I worked for an art museum and then I did my college internship in weddings. I always knew that event planning was my passion from a young age. My goal was always to start my own company. A few years after working for hotels I knew it was time to go on my own.
Q: What changes have you seen in wedding planning from when you opened Coastal Coordinating in 2006 to today?
A: Weddings are always evolving and changing. That is what I love so much! In the 10 years that I have been a wedding planner, trends have changed from weddings being very traditional in every aspect, to being more reflective of the personality of the couple. Weddings are now more about what makes each couple unique.
Q: Tell us a little bit about your team and how it has grown since you first started out on your own. What is your role and level of involvement in every wedding?
A: I currently have a team of more than 10! I have six day-of coordinators, including myself, plus two office assistants and a set-up staff. 10 years ago it was just me, and now I have a whole team to help Coastal Coordinating be successful. All my coordinators have trained with me personally and they all have a lengthy background in weddings. They are all top notch and care so much about our clients! My role as the owner is very hands on. I touch all of our weddings in one way or another. I personally coordinate about 70% of all of the weddings.
Q: There are so many wonderful St. Augustine wedding planners. What makes Coastal Coordinating unique?
A: I think what makes us unique is our customer service and availability. We have late evening hours and weekend hours to fit the needs of our clients. Also, we always do one surprise for every couple at their wedding. Maybe it is adding on a specialty linen sweetheart table that they wanted, or helping them with RSVP Management. We want them to know how special they are to us and we try to give them everything they wish for.
Q: What are the biggest benefits of having a wedding planner?
A: We are there for them from the beginning of the event until the very end. We not only save them some money along the way, but we can save lots of stress as well. There are so many little details that tend to fall through the cracks when you have never planned a wedding before. We are there to anticipate these moments and make sure every detail is taken care of.
Q: How do you assist your clients with creating and sticking to a wedding budget?
A: We help clients from day one with creating the budget. Having a detailed budget broken down by each vendor helps them be able to stick with their overall budget as they get to each step in the planning process. We will also realistically let them know how and where they can save money.
Q: Tell us a little bit about the packages you offer. Which is the most popular package, and how do you help clients determine what package is right for them? What is the price range for your packages?
A: We have 3 packages that can be customized. Those packages are Day of Wedding Planning, Advisory Package, and Full Wedding Planning. The prices start at $900 – $3000+ depending on the package and how many add-on services that they want. I honestly tell people what package works best for them based on what they need and what they already have. My most popular package is the Advisory. My couples love the extra help along the way!
Q: What is the one thing that you see your clients struggle with the most when it comes to selecting their venue? What are the most important questions you think they should ask when they speak to a venue representative?
A: The hardest struggle when picking a venue comes down to dates and their overall vision of the evening. Some important questions to ask are date availability, how many total hours they can rent the venue for, how many events are held at the venue per day, and if there are any discounts for Fridays and Sunday weddings.
Q: What qualities or skills do you think are important for newly engaged couples to consider when starting to look for their St. Augustine wedding planner?
A: Response time is key. Also the planner’s availability. You don’t want to hire someone that is only available while you are at work. It is important for the client to trust the wedding planner from the start. They will be working together for quite a long time!
Q: Do you have a most memorable moment from all your years of coordinating weddings and events?
A: One of my favorite wedding moments was a few years back when Fantasia Barrino from American Idol made a guest appearance and sang the couple’s first dance song. It was so special and memorable for them!
The Treasury is open and available for in-person tours, weddings, and events!
Our commitment to the health and well-being of all those who walk through our doors continues to be top of mind 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
All staff and vendors are required to wear masks during events, and during any other customer interactions, which include meetings and tours.
Before our venue opens each day we disinfect the venue with a fogger machine. The fog is used to reduce the number of airborne microorganisms while it applies disinfectant to all surfaces immediately.
We are proud to announce that we have invested in and installed the Air Scrubber by Aerus into our Air Conditioning’s Ventilation Systems. This system combines high-intensity UVC lighting with a state-of-the-art process that destroys over 99% of airborne and surface contaminants. This is the same technology that was built for NASA and is used on the International Space Station.
We also have a designated team member who oversees the continuous disinfecting of high touched areas through all events.
Watch the video below to learn more about the steps that we are taking to ensure the health and safety of all of our couples and guests!
Our promise to you is that we continue to evaluate, invest, and implement the newest technologies to ensure the safety of everyone who comes to celebrate with us.