Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : September 27th 2015 Contents B2
Sunday Guardian www.guardian.co.tt September 27, 2015
RHONDA KRYSTAL RAMBALLY
Kevin Thomas wears many hats. He s a
baker, a chef, a wedding co-ordinator and
an events planner.
From a distance he can tell that a napkin
needs to be straightened. Thomas is a stickler
for detail and accuracy and attributes this to
the time he spent working in a five-star envi-
He s proud of the strides he s made from
being general assistant at a local fabric store
by day and a bartender at night, to working
onboard the popular Royal Caribbean cruise
ship for four years.
"There were events every week on the cruise
ship," he said.
"There were lots of platinum parties and
so on, and I was involved in everything. And
one day, I said maybe this is something I
should start doing."
Thomas returned to Trinidad and worked
at several local hotels before branching out on
Today, he is the proud owner of Le Jardin
Wedding and Events Planning, a company he
started in 2008. Le Jardin, which means garden
in French, was chosen because Thomas loves
You name it, he can plan it. He s even plan-
ning his own wedding, which is scheduled for
It all started when Thomas planned his sis-
ter s wedding. There was no turning back.
"I used to work onboard a cruise ship so
I gained the experience of being in five-star
setting. The things that we do here in Trinidad
aren t really up to mark so I try to bring my
international expertise in all that I do."
About the service industry here and abroad,
Thomas said, "It is totally different.
"On the cruise ship, we are bound to say
Thank you or Can I help you?
"In Trinidad and Tobago, we don t hear
He said these common, polite exchanges
can make a guest or client feel comfortable
and at ease.
The 32-year-old Sangre Grande resident
gets the most joy when his events pan out
smoothly. The Sunday Guardian met with
Thomas at his home-based office in the East,
where he spoke about the services Le Jardin
offers, the outlandish requests by brides, and
the rewards of being an events planner.
All about execution
Being a wedding planner is not an easy job.
It seems glamorous, but it s a job that requires
patience, understanding, creativity and organ-
Thomas sometimes gets the task of co-
ordinating all aspects of a couple s big day.
This can include choosing the appropriate
theme and colour, assisting the bride with her
dress and shoes, planning the menu or finding
a suitable location. A wedding planner even
provides a shoulder for the bride to lean on
when the couple has fights and disagreements.
And Thomas has provided his shoulder many
But he has found that most brides today
come to him already knowing what they want.
It s just for him to tailor their ideas according
to budget, weather and other logistics, if need
be, and execute something he enjoys.
Thomas does small to large-scale weddings.
He s done too many to count and has learnt
about different religious ceremonies and tra-
He said, "I don t like to turn people away.
I try to work with people s budget and advise
"For me, it s not about the money. It s all
about the end result and knowing that I was
able to execute to the best of my ability."
He said some clients have budgets from as
little as $3,000 to as much as $300,000. For
this year, Thomas has already done weddings
for about ten international clients.
"As a professional, I will tell you what will
work and what will not work. We tailor people s
budget. It s not that our prices are fixed. Once
you tell me your budget, your ideas and views,
I will advise you on what we can offer."
He said some clients come in with the
"wow" ideas but have a small budget. And
while he does not like to disappoint, he said
he tries his best to accommodate them in
every possible way.
He joked about one client who wanted a
wedding reception during the rainy season in
an open deck. He advised against it but she
was adamant. Thomas obliged...the rain fell.
Le Jardin, a one-stop shop
Thomas takes pride in his company s name
and brand. "We are about quality. It is what
sets us apart from the others."
With the support of his family, Le Jardin
does its own catering and baking. And he s
the head chef and baker. Le Jardin offers a full
range of services from small to large weddings,
parties, corporate events, meetings, seminars,
rentals, catering, cakes, DJ and photography.
Thomas said, "We do full events and services
but if you come to me and say you just want
catering or décor, we will definitely offer that."
He s had one client who spent $300,000
on décor. Another spent $60,000 on fresh
"I like to feel out my clients, get a better
understanding of their likes and dislikes and
ask questions before I start pulling things out
of the basket."
He said it makes the job easier when clients
come with their own ideas. Asked about the
role of the groom-to-be, he joked that all they
ask about is cost.
Kevin...a man of many talents
Facebook---Le Jardin Wedding & Events
For me, it's not about the money. It's all
about the end result and knowing that I was
able to execute to the best of my ability.
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