We had the good fortune of connecting with Andrea Eppolito and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Andrea, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
A relentless pursuit of beauty and resilience in the face of any obstacle has been the greatest driver of my success. I truly believe that you cannot beat someone who will not quit, and so every day in every way I wake up committed to making the world a more beautiful place for my clients. Whether I am designing their wedding reception or their dining room, my goal is always to leave their world better than it was before I entered it. I believe that there is always an answer, and always another way to accomplish what we need to do. That has helped me navigate through design challenges, interpersonal issues, and operational difficulty because I really believe that the obstacle in front of us is just a thing that needs to be managed and that there is success on the other side.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I was 13 years old when I learned the transformative value of events and design. A cousin had lost her father unexpectedly before her sweet 16, and the family decided to move forward with the party. When I expressed how shocked I was that we were going to celebrate her birthday not long after her father had passed, my own father said, “Honey, bad things happen in the world, to everyone. And when they do, we need things to look forward to, and things to look back on. That’s why we do things like this – because these are the moments and the memories we need when times get tough.” I was too young to fully understand the magnitude of that statement, but at the same time I had an incredibly visceral reaction to what he was saying. Initially, and selfishly, I manifested those moments in the planning of my own sweet 16. It was through that process that a friend’s mother suggested I look into wedding planning. I entered the industry while still in high school and simply never left. I attended UNLV, and took a number of jobs along the way to hone my craft. At that time, in the mid-1990s, Las Vegas had not yet developed as a luxury wedding destination. But I was determined to redefine the market and approve that a city capable of building these grand resorts and luxury casinos could absolutely produce opulent, elegant weddings and events. My business was founded on the basis of sensory experiences. What is it that you feel when you put your hand on a table? Is it a velvet linen, or a highly polished mirror? What do you smell when you walk into a room? Are there roses, where is the room scented in lilac and lavender? What do you hear, and when do you hear it? The absence of sound is often more powerful than a sound at South when it comes in and an unexpected moment. Everything from what you taste, touch, smell, see and hear informs your experience. If you can engage and entice the senses while delivering a flawless and stealth style of service, you can turn a moment into a memory. Every person in that room is taking in the experience in a different way, and so I use the five senses and services to have individual conversations with every person who enters the space – be it a friend, a family member, or even an employee. These moments can create lasting joy, they can remind you of the past, and These moments can create lasting joy, they can remind you of the past, and they can help you look towards the future that is better than the one you are living right now. Events are transformative. can help you look towards the future that is better than the one you are living right now. Events are transformative. In the early years of my career, my clients didn’t always have the money to create these experiences. I, however, knew the value of a custom menu or an entry piece and I believed in the design enough to where I was willing to invest my own money in upgrades and extras. I knew that I couldn’t sell but I couldn’t shell, and so I began to elevate the market by investing in my own work while I taught my clients and colleagues about my vision and how I wanted to show up in the world. I love producing weddings; they are the core to everything that I do. But the shelflife of that event is only 24 to 72 hours, and I wanted to remind my clients that life is a special occasion. Especially now, with everything going on in the world, it has never been more important to live beautifully. That is how I entered the world of interior design. I wanted my clients to have a feeling of safety, excitement, and joy from the moment they open their eyes to the moment they went to sleep. If your wedding is supposed to be the perfect world as you imagine it, then why not carry that feeling throughout your home? Waking up wrapped in a comforter that you love, opening your eyes to the sound of your favorite song, and holding a beautiful ceramic cup that warms your hand first thing in the morning as you have your coffee… These are all sensory pleasures that can set the tone for the rest of your day. If you start your day off in a well appointed, properly designed atmosphere, that spreads into the rest of your life. When your closet is well designed and laid out, you take pride in getting dressed and putting yourself together. When you look better, you feel better, and you are able to show up for your partner, your children, your friends and your profession as the very best version of yourself. I completely believe in the value of creating the world that you want to live in. My particular set of clients have the ability to experience the best that the world has to offer, and so it is my job to always make every experience that they have extraordinary. How can I turn every day into a special occasion? And when you invite me into your life and allow me to tell your life story through your wedding, how do I make that day better than all of the others when you have the best of everything? That is my job, my challenge, and my joy.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If I had a friend coming in for a long weekend, I would recommend that they stay at either the Bellagio because it is an iconic property, or at the Waldorf Astoria because it has a quiet, upscale sense of luxury. Once they had settled into their suite, and after a relaxing few hours at the spa, we would have to walk or drive Las Vegas Blvd. The lights are extraordinarily beautiful, and playing tourist can be so much fun. Yes as much as I love the city itself, there are so many things in Las Vegas that people don’t get to see. For dinner, we would visit La Strega, one of my favorite neighborhood restaurants. The food is authentically Italian, and the women who run it are consummate hospitality professionals. I would want to drive them through the communities of Summerlin, and for lunch we could jump from sushi and pho in China Town to some of the small, chef-driven concepts that exist off strip. I would love to show them the beautiful residential areas that many people don’t get to see when they visit for a weekend. The mountains of red rock are stunning, and just 40 minutes off strap is Lake Las Vegas. It is a small community built around a man-made lake that is a getaway onto itself.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My husband, Tony Fisher, has always been the driving force of my business behind the scenes. His vision for how we make our living and live of lives is always taking place five years in the future. He has not only been an oracle of our life but the steady hand behind me. He is a champion, a cheerleader, and we are committed equals in every way. Nothing that we have accomplished would exist if we were not in this together.
Adam Frazier (me setting red and pink table) Brian Leahy (White room) Dennis Kwan (throwing petals) Marry Me (Fabrio and Adri)