A Top Wedding Planner Reveals Her Favorite Vendors In New York City

Gourmet Advisory Plaza Hotel weddingGourmet AdvisoryAn example of an ornate, romantic wedding inside the Plaza Hotel in NYC.

Getting married in New York City can be a nightmare.

The sheer number of vendors, boutiques, florists, musicians, and locations to choose from means that New Yorkers who are tying the knot can be overwhelmed.

"First of all, New York weddings are more expensive than any other part of the United States," Harriette Rose Katz, founder and president of Gourmet Advisory, an upscale event planning and party coordination consultancy, told Business Insider. "Secondly, there's a lot of great competition here."

That intense competition led Katz to dip into her knowledge of the event industry to start The Chosen Few. Just like the Michelin Guide for restaurants or Consumer Reports for gadgets, Katz hopes that The Chosen Few will help brides and grooms choose the absolute best NYC has to offer in catering, décor, entertainment, invitations, lighting, music, photography, and more.

"I've been in the business for 35 years," Katz told us. "And it's such an unregulated business. Anybody can be a party planner, anybody can be a florist, or a caterer, or whatever. I thought it was time for someone to say these people are not only the best at what they do, but then also why they're the best."

Katz plans to keep her picks as up-to-date as possible and make sure that her list showcases companies that display excellence, artistry, and professionalism across every category.

"I give my stamp of approval to every single [company] that's in here," Katz said. "They cannot be in here if I have not worked with them over and over and over through the years, and if they're not fundamentally great."

You can find out more information at The Chosen Few website. The full 2014 group of industry leaders is below.

CATERING

Stephen Starr Events - Brings the dining experience of STARR restaurants to the world of catering and special events.

Restaurant Associates - Operates in over 100 locations and provides food services to museums, performing arts centers, aquariums, corporate dining, educational facilities and off-premise events in NYC, Boston, Hartford, Atlanta, DC, Philadelphia and Toronto.

Creative Edge Parties - Caters corporate events, cocktail parties, formal weddings, and intimate gatherings.

DESIGN

Diana Gould Ltd. - A full-service design house, their artists, designers, and craftsmen work together to create a beautifully-coordinated event.

Frank Alexander - Known for being able to transform any environment into an exquisite and unexpected setting. He is able to quickly envision a space's potential and turn them into unique design opportunities.

DeJuan Stroud Inc. - Event design and décor studio specializing in opulent floral décor and event design.

FLORAL

Mark Rose Events - Designs flowers and arrangements for wedding receptions, corporate galas, charity balls, as well as for residences.

Ed Libby & Co. - Designs flowers and arrangements for weddings, receptions, and parties.

GENERAL

Total Entertainment - A team of event producers who create social and corporate events.

Untouchable Events - A full-service entertainment company, producing corporate events, benefit and corporate galas, Bat Mitzvahs, weddings, fashion shows, and birthday parties.

INVITATIONS

Alpine Creative Group - Creates custom stationary and invitations with specialty print techniques including, engraving and letterpress. They use both graphic designers and illustrators to create their designs and can produce on a variety of materials such as hand made paper, thick mounted custom paper, beveled edges, plastic, leather or glass.

Fancy That - A custom invitation company in Manhattan that specializes in unique invitations that represent their client's personality, taste and style. They offer a large selection in many styles, from letterpress to engraved, 3D to musical, in a variety of fonts, colors, fabrics, and designs.

LIGHTING

Frost Productions - A lighting company that provides everything from conventional stage lighting to video décor to media services to venue spotlight. Also offers chandeliers, custom shades, and custom lighting fixtures.

MUSIC

Marianne Bennett Presents: Element Music - A boutique production company that provides talent and ensembles including dancers, choreographers, singers and musicians

Starlight Orchestras - A live music production company that performs complete and unique productions, including wardrobe, musical arrangements, computer technology, audio equipment, and more.

PHOTOGRAPHY

Michael Jurick - Photographs events, portraits and is the senior house photographer for the Bowery presents. He also uses venues and iconic locations in NY for his photographs.

Gruber Photographers - NYC photography studio that photographs events using a photojournalistic, documentary-style. They have a team of photographers who have captured high profile weddings, events and bar mitzvahs.

TENTS

Stamford Tents - Provides tents, temporary structures, flooring, lighting and climate control with a focus on high quality products and customer service.

Starr Tent - Provides tent pavilions, tension tents, canopies, and clear span structures for events in NY, Westchester, Connecticut, Long Island and NJ. The tents can be enhanced with marquee walkways, floor coverings, dance floors, band platforms, window sidewalls and raised plywood flooring.

VENUE

Crystal Plaza - A mansion appointed for all types of events - weddings, mitzvahs, or corporate business affairs. It has a dining room, ballroom, and abundant garden decorated with sparkling crystal chandeliers, Juliet balcony, and priceless antiques.

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