With the New Year upon us, we thought it would be fun to share with you some of the new trends we’re expecting to see in 2018 for events. Just like fashion event styles change over the years. For a timeless event we suggest sticking with classic ideas and adding a few trendy ideas to wow your guests. Here are some of those new ideas we’re excited about for 2018:
Menu Trends – Our Executive Chef Jeremy Godish is seeing some of the culinary trends from the west coast starting to make a rise here on the east coast. Here are a few in particular:
- Artisan Cuts of Meat – Some of those cuts would be Shoulder Tenders, Las Vegas Strip and Merlot Cut.
- Different Types of Grains – Chefs are using Spelt Berries, Farrow, and others in place of your traditional grains.
- African Spices – If you attended Zoofari this year, Chef Jeremy used an array of African Spices in the dishes served.
- Poke – Poke is a Hawaiian specialty made with raw fish, typically tuna. This trend is popping up in Columbia with a few restaurants featuring poke on their menus.
Interested in one of these ideas, but don’t see anything on our menu? Just let us know. Chef Jeremy is happy to come up with some custom menu items for your event.
Colors – While there is never a wrong choice when selecting a color scheme for your event, these trends can help get you started with your vision for your event. This year we’re seeing more texture and designs than just colors.
- Metals – Metals like Silver, Chrome and Copper will remain prevalent in 2018. You’ll also start to see the mixing of different metals.
- Blue Hues, including Navy – We’ve started to see lots of blue and white floral prints, from fashion to china vases and place settings. Navy is often used for that classic look, but adds more color than black.
- Iridescent – This color features pearlescent blue, green and pink. Adding iridescent colors to traditional colors will give a whole new appeal while keeping an old-fashioned feel.
- Marble – Marble made its debut in 2017 and is expected to continue its popularity into the New Year. When mixed with wood and greenery, this classic stone brings an element of elegance to the rustic trend we’ve seen for a few years.
Design Ideas – Event design ideas typically relate to those elements that complete the vision for the event, such as linens or floral.
- Velvet Linen – Velvet can add richness to the room, however to make it standout and not be too heavy we suggest using it on a few key tables – like for cake or dessert, takeaways, etc.
- Geometric shapes – Using a consistent shape throughout your event can help tie it all together from invitation to program to centerpiece.
- Greenery – We’re seeing more floral centerpieces and accents feature simple greenery. This can be a great way to bring the outdoors in.
Themes Expected for 2018 – We’ve consulted industry professionals and publications and listed a few of the new themes that they are predicting will make an appearance in 2018.
- Vege-centric Cuisine – More customers will be asking for dishes with vegetables as main course and looking for spreads of shared plates rather than a progression of courses. This trend has already kicked off with the use of vegetables in décor.
- Mix of Industrial and Rustic Styles – This theme encompasses some of the ideas mentioned above with the use of metals, sharp edges and clean lines on décor pieces and metal mixed with wood. The trend blends modern with the old. The café lights we have in the Ndoki Lodge and Safari Camp fit perfectly with this theme!
- Ethereal Elegance – Characterized as extremely delicate and light, ethereal elegance typically features light colors or white with an airy feel and open drapes. Another idea along these lines is “uber elegance” this theme features extremely fancy, black-tie/formal wear featuring gold color and elegant food service style.
- Festivalization of Meetings/Conferences – The general outline for meetings and conferences doesn’t change. However, selecting venues that are more interactive and collaborative is becoming more common. Along with that are experiences like live music performances, art exhibits and going offsite can spark new interest and ideas. Meeting planners are looking for ways to tap into attendees professional and personal interests. (If you ask us, the Zoo sounds like a great off-site venue to entice your employees to the next meeting or conference!)
- Minimalism – In contrast to the Uber Elegance theme the minimalist trend focuses on less is more by making the most out of carefully chosen design elements that all serve a purpose and can work together to create a larger design statement. You’ll see a focus on one design element, a limited color palette, natural lighting, focus on food presentation and selecting an interesting venue as highlights of this trend.
- Local, organic and sustainable – This remains prevalent in 2018 with green events, a focus on creating a connection with the place and locally sourced food is a current trend in the restaurant industry that has spread to events as well. Our onsite event caterer, Service Systems Associates, is committed to quality, sustainability and supporting local farmers. SSA participates in the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Program and Tuskers, the restaurant at Riverbanks is a 3-Star Certified Green Restaurant.
Don’t let all of these ideas overwhelm you! What’s most important is that you pick details that you like. These are just meant to act as idea starters if you’re feeling stuck in an event theme rut. We’re happy to help you work through your ideas. We work with all different types of events every day and have seen quite lots of designs, so use our expertise!