Some of you may have been here in the winter months, some of you may have heard various stories about it, some of you my think that it is the same as the summer. It’s hard to believe that here in Kos, the winter months are cold, rainy and very windy (well the wind doesn’t change much form the summer to be honest). I am sitting here in my office listening to the crack of the logs on the open fire, and the dog snoring on the couch. There is silence outside (apart from the wind), and little traffic. This is winter in Kos. You may get the odd moo from a lowing cow in the nearby fields, or an excited bark from a neighbour’s dog as his owner returns home from a café where he has been playing backgammon, but simple silence and tranquillity reign.
The winter arrives with a sudden thump – one minute we are still drinking cocktails in an open-air bar, and hosting a lovely wedding on the sand, the next minute it is 6 weeks until Christmas!! The mad frenzy of fun is upon us before we even realise, and then just as quick as it starts, it is over and we are taking the trees down and the decoration. The mulled wine has been drunk, the last chocolate has been sneakily pinched. Time for some serious work now!!
We do a lot of preparation work in the winter months for our forthcoming season. All the bars and restaurants, shops and boutiques, whilst closed, lead everyone to thinking about what they can do for the next summer season. Personally, from a wedding-planner’s point of view, I am getting all the details organised, booking all of the details needed for each wedding and getting to know new venues and cracking the best deals with our suppliers so that we can pass on the great discounts to you. I am able to visualise your big day in my mind’s eye, the timings will be etched on my finger-tips, the decoration and colour scheme live in my heart long before the aeroplane carries you to our pretty island. I have my checklist written down, albeit with numerous amendments as our couples’ ideas develop and grow. Everything will be in place just waiting for you to arrive and enjoy your big day.
Some days in the winter there is a flurry of activity to deal with, with new enquiries, other days I have time to work on the weddings we already have booked. Contracts need writing and sending out, quotes for services need formulating, and questions from nervous brides as they are counting down to their big day. There is never a dull moment!!
Our social media needs to be kept up to date – we know how much you all love seeing the photos from our past weddings. This takes a lot of time, especially with the rather unreliable internet services on our little rock in the sea. Advertising has to be put in place, the timing, visual affect and wording being appropriate for the media that it is being carried through. The accounts need to be kept up to date and tax returns filed. Believe me, winter is by no means lazy!
As the season approaches, we start to create our beach set-ups, photograph the local beaches and pick our perfect spots for ceremonies. The sea tends to be fairly rough in closed season, so the morph of the beaches change as the years go by. We must make our decisions as to where to hold your beautiful ceremonies depending on how the coastline of Kos has changed. Sometimes a beach that wasn’t in the top three becomes the most beautiful, and sometimes one that was just perfect for a wedding becomes black from the volcanic sand pushed over from nearby Nissyros. Sometimes a beach gets taken over by one of the All Inclusive hotels that are springing up all over the place. All of these factors need to be taken into account when making plans for our lovely brides and grooms, so that we can provide the best service possible.
Trust our judgement, trust our eyes and what they see – imagine looking through the eyes of a wedding planner and you will see a whole different world – potential and beauty that can be created with a few simple items, or a beach that looks gorgeous to the naked eye but is impossible to erect an archway on as it is on too much of a slope. All of these things have to be taken into account, and if we make our work look easy, without stress and problems, then you know that we have done our job properly – leaving you and your guests to relish every moment of your special day and night.
All in all, you may have thought that in the winter we don’t do a lot, as the hotels etc are closed, but in actual fact, it is the winter that is the engine room for the summer. We are preparing every little detail that is presented to you when you set foot on our gorgeous island, ensuring that you have the best possible holiday on our little oasis, sitting proud in the sparkling Aegean Sea.
Happy winter everyone!