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Meet Hovik Harutyunyan of Harutyunyan Events

Today we’d like to introduce you to Hovik Harutyunyan.

Hovik, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Growing up in an Armenian household, hospitality and entertaining were the centerpieces of not only my culture but also family life. My mom was the consummate hostess. Her entertaining was always gracious and inspired – like watching a superheroine in action. It ultimately sparked my passion and love for planning celebrations.

At UC Berkeley, I worked as an assistant event planner for a few different catering companies and campus organizations. This founded my formal training in culinary operations and event logistics. After graduation, I got a corporate event planning position at a PR firm and the rest, as they say, is history. In 2017, Harutyunyan Events opened its doors.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I think my biggest challenge to date has been the leap of faith to open up my own business. I knew being a business owner would not be easy, but I was definitely surprised at how much harder one has to work. You soon realize that you have to be great at not only event planning but also running a company – basically two full-time jobs. It’s a lot of multi-tasking and juggling of roles, which can be stressful and draining. It also feels like a rollercoaster – some days you feel on top of the world and other days you just want to quit. Whenever I feel overwhelmed, that’s my sign to remind myself why I started in the first place. It’s also a good reminder to take a step back and express gratitude for everything that is working. Overall, I have a much deeper appreciation and respect for business owners.

Harutyunyan Events – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
We have two rules that define everything we do:

Rule 1: There is no substitute for the best.

Rule 2: There is no substitute for Rule 1.

Our clients trust us to turn their life’s most important moments into spectacular celebrations so we take the utmost pride in our work. This trust is our inspiration to always deliver the highest quality of results. We plan every event detail with meticulous attention (my obsession with organization); inspired design (my love for art and fashion); creative solution (my Economics and Math background from UC Berkeley); and passion for world-class hospitality (my love for entertaining since I was a little kid).

Providing great customer service is never enough; we are always aiming to “Wow!” our clients (and their guests) at every corner.

What is “success” or “successful” for you?
To me, success is finding meaning, purpose, and fulfillment in your work. When your work is the culmination of what you love to do; you’re best at; and, makes a difference in people’s lives for the better, I think of that as “being successful.” There’s no better sound in the world than hearing your clients tell you how their event was one of the best days of their life.

One of my favorite parts of my job is the opportunity to work with such talented and interesting individuals. Nothing is more thrilling than watching a thoughtfully curated team of premier vendors come together to turn our client’s vision into a reality. It’s like watching an orchestra perform a masterpiece. I sometimes imagine it’s what Lumiere, from Beauty and the Beast, is feeling when he sings “Be Our Guest” to Belle.

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