A Legendary Event: Creators of Legendary Moments
Tony Conway founded A Legendary Event in 1997 with the mission to build a business through excellence, attention to detail and personal service. Concentrating all efforts into making each event one of a kind, Conway has seen his efforts grow A Legendary Event from a small catering concern to a multimillion-dollar, full-service, Georgia-based catering, event décor and floral enterprise that operates throughout the Southeast.
Parlaying 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry, both in the back and front of the house, Conway moved from catering hotel ballrooms to off-premise event planning, and he never looked backed. Amassing a team with an equal passion for customer service, Conway and A Legendary Event deliver ambiances, events and memories that are anything but average to the corporate, social and charity markets. The company celebrates its 15-year anniversary in 2012, and the team remains just as motivated, dedicated and excited to deliver celebrations that are larger than life, and that guarantee satisfaction to strategic partners and clients alike.
“I always say that all we do is make a promise,” expands Conway, who remains CEO of A Legendary Event. “The exceptionally high service, the high-end quality product is just what ties it together, but all we really do is make a promise and our clients really have to trust us to keep that promise.” The intangible nature of what ultimately makes a perfect event also pushes the Atlanta-based team to invest a lot of time planning logistics upfront with clear, consistent and honest communication between the client, A Legendary Event staff and the company’s trusted partners.
The company’s drive to go to any lengths to achieve events with panache and charisma has been evident since A Legendary Event’s first contract pushed the seedling company to establish roots quickly. “It was very much one of those moments where you just say ‘yes’ and then figure out how to make it happen,” recalls Conway.
A colleague of Conway’s contacted him about a major three-day event involving a global healthcare and medical research company with over 1,500 guests per day. At that point A Legendary Event was so recently formed the team hadn’t yet found a permanent catering kitchen, but Conway and the A Legendary Event team rented a local church kitchen to handle all of the food preparation and delivered a flawless experience, especially impressive for an up-and-coming company.
Teeming with Talent
Since its formation A Legendary Event has established a permanent headquarters in Atlanta’s historic Knight Park-Howell Station neighborhood, which was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1997. From here the team provides full-service event planning for gatherings of all sizes. No matter the scope or theme of the event, however, every client is made to feel like a celebrity.
To facilitate its events – which are thrown for clients such as Delta Air Lines, Mercedes Benz, the Woodruff Arts Center, Bloomingdale’s, Coca-Cola, the American Cancer Society, Tyler Perry, Sir Elton John, the Fox Theatre, the Atlanta Botanical Gardens and Jane Fonda, to name but a few – the company employs a team of 48 full-time management staff supported by over 200 part-time and independently contracted specialists. Clients can work with A Legendary Event staff to fill in any or all event facets as needed, as the company provides the full spectrum of beverage and mixer service, buffet décor and floral arrangements, furniture and linen rentals, entertainment, lighting and sound coordination, valet parking, entertainment arrangement and table setting designs.
Clients can also work with A Legendary Event’s catering division to develop customized menus for an event, drawing from A Legendary Event’s legendary staples like arugula and orchid salad or the banana chocolate dome desert, a sumptuous dark chocolate. The catering team is headed up by Executive Chef Liz Cipro, a member of the prestigious Les Dames D’Escoffier International society, and Executive Pastry Chef Ami Dand, who spent many years working at the four-star and AAA Five Diamond St. Regis Hotel in Atlanta. Together, the A Legendary Event team develops menus that incorporate as much seasonal and locally available produce as possible, tailoring every event to be uniquely exquisite regardless of price point.
Feast Your Eyes
The catering operation has been so successful that A Legendary Event launched a food-service operation to supply a select few clients on a daily basis. “We’re always pushing ourselves to do better, and the foodservice operation helps us to keep the kitchen and our staff consistently producing a high-quality product,” adds Conway.
A Legendary Event has earned accolades for everything from prestigious charity balls, fundraising events, custom weddings, corporate social events and even small gallery openings. With over 15 years of world-class galas backing the A Legendary Event team, the pressure is on to consistently produce new wonders and Conway attests that the team is constantly rehearsing and planning logistics to ensure a smoothly executed event.
“I’ll never forget the time a bride’s father told me he hoped the event would be more polished than my shoes,” admits Conway. “Needless to say, I have been waking up early or staying up late to polish my shoes ever since, but I share that story because it’s so true for what we do. Our customers buy and eat and make decisions with their eyes so we have to be totally polished, all the time.”