Meet Casey Watson, Director of Sales at Linden Row Inn. As a recent engaged bride herself, she knows all about planning during a pandemic. With so much experience and knowledge, you’re in excellent hands with Casey!
If you care to share, how did you get to where you are now?
I started my career in events with a degree in Hospitality and Tourism and a concentration in Event Planning at Virginia Tech (Go Hokies!). After graduation I worked in events onboard cruise ships for Carnival Cruise Lines and once I was ready to move back to land (or get my “land legs” back as they call it) I headed to western North Carolina where I was an Event Coordinator at an Italian-style vineyard. Here I helped plan public, private and corporate functions including weddings. Wanting to move back home closer to family I stumbled across this opportunity at the Linden Row Inn where I have now been for the past 8 years and call my home away from home. I am now the Director of Sales at Linden Row helping sell our beautiful property for social and corporate events including weddings of course but also group meetings, conferences, and more.
What makes you or your business stand out and why should a couple hire you?
The Linden Row Inn is truly a hidden gem in Downtown Richmond. The property pre-dates the Civil War and has been used for several purposes over the years to include family homes, a school for girls, apartments and, since 1988, a functioning hotel. Our Garden Courtyard event space is located on the backside of the row homes that overlook Franklin Street and cannot be seen from the street level so most are not even aware that this beautiful oasis in the center of Downtown Richmond exists. With ties to Edgar Allan Poe the property is rich with history and romance has always flourished at Linden Row making it the perfect destination for wedding events.
We are able to offer the best of all worlds for a fantastic wedding weekend: Hotel accommodations for your guests, seven uniquely appointed Parlour Suites which are regularly used as a space for wedding party to get ready, honeymoon night and hospitality spaces. We offer a unique outdoor event space different than your typical hotel, in-house catering to take care of all food & beverage needs alongside event space package options to host all celebrations on-site for convenience for your guests which include rehearsal dinners, welcome receptions, wedding ceremonies, cocktail hour and reception as well as farewell brunches the day after to say goodbye to everyone. We also offer packages to host each of these events individually including small, intimate Elopement events, but what better way to spend as much time with all of your closest friends and family than to have everyone all in one location celebrating all weekend!
What’s your favorite thing about working in the wedding industry?
My favorite thing about working in the wedding industry is meeting all of our couples and their families. Throughout the wedding planning process we really get to know the couple and any direct family members that are involved in the planning details, but then come the weekend of the festivities when friends and family start to arrive to check in to the hotel, we then get to meet those nearest and dearest to you. Because we are a hotel and are hosting your guests throughout the weekend this makes it not only fun for your guests, but also fun for our team at Linden Row.
Additionally, I really just love the vendor community here in Richmond. Its such a tight-knit group of really wonderful people that care most about making your wedding everything you dreamed it could be. There are many vendors in the Richmond area that I truly call friends and know that in a pinch I can give a call and they will help me find a solution for any of our couples. I cant wait until happy hours can resume so I can see these friends again in person with these friendors!
What’s your best piece of advice for couples planning a wedding?
Take your time to enjoy each part of the process: Enjoy being engaged! Think about your vision and what is important to you for the big day that really represents you both. If there is a vendor that can only do one event a day or has limited availability after choosing a venue (think band, photographer, etc.) reach out to them first to secure and the rest will start to fall into place. Pace yourself in planning and book each part of the day piece by piece so you can enjoy the process instead of being overwhelmed trying to do it all at once.
What’s your favorite moment during a wedding?
The vows and the speeches for sure! Personalized vows really get the tears flowing for me haha. These are two opportunities during an event where you both get to outwardly share your love for one another in front of those nearest and dearest to you and then they get to do the same in return.
How do you de-stress?
Trash TV all the way! After a long work day I love to head home and decompress by watching anything on Bravo and RuPauls Drag Race. I just cant help it, I love the drama.
What’s your favorite food/dish/cuisine?
I absolutely love Thai, Vietnamese and Greek food. If I could just eat at Sabai, Mekong or Stella’s here in Richmond every day, I would! Even better, Id love to just transport myself to Thailand, Vietnam or Greece but those are post COVID-19 dreams.
What are your top three favorite movies (or books)?
Any Quentin Tarrantino movie! In particular I love the Kill Bill series, The Pulp Fiction, Django Unchained, and True Romance. I love his dark humor and production style.
What’s a fun or unusual fact about you?
It would be a surprise for people to know that I have competed in power-lifting competitions. While during the pandemic this took a bit of a back seat now that I am getting vaccinated I am excited to start my programming again and sign up for more competitions in the future.
What’s the best concert you’ve ever been to?
I have two favorite concerts that I have been to: The Weeknd who I saw in Washington, DC at the Verizon Center (Now the Capital One Arena) and The Dirty Heads who I saw here in Richmond at the National. The Weeknd is my favorite artist and I just loved hearing him live but the Dirty Heads concert at the National was more of an experience due to the layout of the venue. I miss the standing room area at the National which creates an intimate atmosphere as the perfect place to enjoy a concert.
Do you love to travel?
I absolutely love to travel. Some must-see destinations include the ruins in Ancient Greece, Angkor Wat in Cambodia, Mt. Fuji outside of Tokyo, and the Grand Palace in Bangkok.
Do you have a pet?
Yes! I have two pets, Lane (named affectionately after the Virginia Tech Football Stadium), who is our 8 year old, 80 lb. rescue that I adopted when I lived in North Carolina and Blue (named affectionately after the Old Dominion University Mascot, my fiancés alma mater), our 8 year old, 10 lb cat rescue that my fiancé and I adopted right after we got engaged in January 2020.
Anything else you want our followers to know?
My fiancé and I got engaged on our first international trip together to Tokyo in December of 2019. I knew immediately that I had to get married at Linden Row and we quickly booked a date for October 2021. We wanted a long engagement and at the time October 2021 was relatively open as far as booked events. Had I known what 2020 had in store I might have chosen a different time of year haha because October 2021 is definitely now our busiest month to date, but I am so excited to get married at my favorite venue in Richmond to my favorite person with our closest family and friends.