Entertain Like Royalty at The Event Factory & Event Factory Studios!
Julie Kanehl (author)
Location(s): The Event Factory, The Event Factory - Hudson
Walking into The Event Factory is like stepping out of real life and into a fairytale. It’s true. From the outside you would never know that an entirely different world waits beyond the doors. Located at 7565 Hillsborough Avenue in Tampa, on the outside it looks like a small boutique in a strip plaza. But just like any magical story worth its salt, you’ll find that you can’t judge a book by its cover. Inside, you and your guests will find yourselves immersed in a 50,000-square-foot facility that has been transformed into a gorgeous new world. Like walking onto the set of a high-end production, The Event Factory has created a detailed and elegant setting where your event will take center stage, and you can be the star.
What’s better than one magical place to celebrate your Quinceañera, your wedding or your corporate event? Two! Event Factory Studios, located 12306 S.R. 52 in Hudson, Florida, is an enchanting, freestanding facility that sits on seven acres of Florida woodlands, offering guests an exclusive and private experience in addition to the creativity and décor that waits inside. Alicia Snow, CFO and Event Coordinator of the Hudson location, will help you plan your royal gala. The Diamond Ballroom and Chapel can seat 190 guests. Event Factory Studios is an 11,000- sq.-ft. country-club-like facility that offers the same level of service and expertise that the guests of the original Event Factory in Tampa have come to expect.
The Event Factory has created a stress-free, all-inclusive event solution by creating a magical world that is both spacious, yet indoors and away from Florida’s unpredictable elements. Thinking of every detail, the professionals who created The Event Factory make it their top priority to make your event a success. The Event Factory packages include access to one of their fully decorated ballrooms, catering by one of their many trusted vendors, non-alcoholic beverages, photography, videography and DJ services. It’s affordable, and they’ve even left off the gratuity and service fees. There are packages for nearly every budget, every size event, and they even offer payment plans so that every girl can feel like royalty, even if she doesn’t have a diamond tiara.
Christina, who had her wedding at The Event Factory, says, “We had a beautiful wedding at the Event Factory! It comes pre-decorated and it’s like walking into a fairy tale. I could not have been happier with the service we received and the quality of the pictures. The greatest part of everything was that most of the services that were needed were included in the package we booked. We only had to book an officiant and buy bouquet flowers and boutonnieres. We have over 200 pictures of our wedding and they look very professional and tasteful. I would highly recommend this to anyone that is looking for any easy way to plan your wedding. It was simple and I didn’t have to stress over finding 20 different vendors to do everything.”
The Royal History
Owner Harry Simon Jr. was raised in St. Petersburg, didn’t set out to create one of Florida’s premier event venues, but that’s exactly what he and his wife Carmen ended up doing! The history of The Event Factory began when Simon was just a teenager who was fascinated by some of the new motorized figures that he had seen at a local Christmas shop, which focused on elaborate train sets. Soon he was creating his own animated figures and the very same Christmas shop that inspired him soon began ordering from him and teaching him how to share his business. Simon’s company grew quickly and before long his list of clients included Walt Disney Parks, Sea World, Busch Gardens, Cypress Gardens, and Spencer Gifts, to name a few.
Simon’s sets were elaborate and beautiful, and people approached him wanting to use his showroom to for special events, weddings and elaborate dinner parties, which led to him opening The Event Factory in 1996. The Castle Ballroom was complete in 1998, and people loved it. It wasn’t until Simon met and married his lovely wife, Carmen, (they had a Disney themed wedding in the Castle Ballroom where each of her bridesmaids got to be one of the princesses!) that they realized that they should create a one-stop-shop by bringing everything under one roof.
People wanted to have all kinds of events at The Event Factory, so they created packages for those events as well. Whether you’re planning a huge corporate party, like Home Depot and Busch Gardens have done for their employees, are planning an anniversary party, a prom, a Bar Mitzvah or even a child’s party, The Event Factory has created a package for it.
The Event Factory and Event Factory Studios host more than 200 events per year and have positive reviews on wedding sites such as The Knot and Wedding Wire.
Entertain Like Royalty
Complete with dressing rooms, private photography studios, and even a rental facility for gowns, The Event Factory will have you feeling like a princess on your day.
If you love the idea of making a grand entrance into your reception on a Cinderella carriage that emerges from the fog, or holding court over your entire entourage with a view that will make sure that you don’t miss a thing, while still being front and center, you’ll love this venue. Or if arriving in an open-air Hummer is more your speed, they’ve got that too. You can incorporate your personal style into their jaw-dropping soundstage and create exactly the event you’ve imagined.
The Tampa location features The Castle Ballroom, which can seat between 200-500 guests comfortably, and the Celestial Swan Ballroom, which is for a slightly smaller event, making this the perfect venue for any King to marry his Queen, or for any princess to come of age. In fact, two Tampa Bay Buccaneers have had their weddings here! There’s a beautiful chapel inside, and a walkway reminiscent of an English garden or an enchanted forest to guide your guests through the evening, from ceremony to hors d’oeuvres and cocktails to the reception.
“Most of the people who come to us, use our chapel once they’ve seen it,” says Simon. “We designed the chapel and each of our ballrooms to have state-of-the-art sound equipment, and created a places where our photographers and videographers would be able to capture the day without being in the way of the ceremony or blessing.”
Each ballroom envelops guests into a story, as they move seamlessly from ceremony to cocktail hour and to the reception without having to step foot outside. Speaking of cocktails, you can bring your own alcohol and hire your own bartender! (If you don’t know one that’s ok, they’ve got a long list of excellent ones). If you’ve ever planned an elaborate event, you can appreciate the kind of savings that this can mean on the budget.
While each ballroom is set up for a royal affair, and completely ready for your guests, many people choose to personalize their event, and The Event Factory makes it easy. They have a few popular themes at the ready, including Phantom of the Opera and Hollywood Glamour. However, Event Factory can create whatever theme you’d like – the sky’s the limit, really, because that’s the beauty of the entire concept. It can be whatever you need it to be, but most people’s favorite part is that it’s already perfect the way it is.
If you are celebrating a momentous occasion or special event, The Event Factory and Event Factory Studios will help you create an experience that you and your guests will never forget. Hurry in for a tour, as dates are filling up fast at both locations!
The Event Factory’s location is 7565 W. Hillsborough Avenue in Tampa. Event Factory Studios is located at 12306 S.R. 52 in Hudson. For more information or to schedule an appointment to tour either facility, please call the Tampa office at 813- 806-0026, visit the website at www.TheEventFactory.com or you may email TheEventFactory@verizon.net.