We had the good fortune of connecting with Karen May and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Karen , we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
When I started Scottsdale Private Event Venues it was by sheer terror it was not planned. I had always wanted to be an entrepreneur but I just never did it I thought being an entrepreneur wasn’t for everyone and I thought I was everyone. I as well-loved the corporate atmosphere and the camaraderie and the steady paychecks and bonuses. I also liked to stay in my comfort zone I was great at my job I loved so why start something new. My employer at the time was using my employee info and using my credit and my identity to borrow and steal from everyone in the Arizona event industry. I found out only by process servers showing up at my door to serve me about loans he had taken out in my name. So that is how SPEV came about I needed to do something and quickly. I felt I had done it all and had always loved doing fabulous events in venues. Running your own business and being in control of how you spend your time is amazing. I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.
What should our readers know about your business?
Some dreams are designed from birth, others are stumbled upon by accident. That’s how Karen May, Founder, and CEO of Scottsdale Private Event Venues and Scottsdale Hangar Parties, sees her rise to success. What started as a series of unplanned events led her to be one of the premier event planners in Scottsdale, Arizona. It has been an amazing experience working with some well-established events, but I knew I wanted to work somewhere I could have more creative control. I introduced Scottsdale Private Event Venues and Scottsdale Hangar Parties in 2017 after becoming bored stiff working in Ballrooms. I am incredibly proud of my dream to be able to offer a blank canvas or the full package as many of our clients alter the space to meet their needs. Karen is known for her elite and unique private parties, and it’s something she takes very seriously. Whether it’s a national company or a well-known celebrity, safety and privacy are top of mind for her and her team. Together they strive to provide the utmost privacy, free of paparazzi and possible party crashers. While it’s not all glamourous, Karen lives for the moment her client walks in and is amazed by the results. Her unique twist on venues, layouts, and entertainment has set her apart from others in the industry. Her reputation precedes her, and the community is taking notice. She was recently recognized with the Smart Woman in Meetings 2019 Award for her significant impact in the meeting industry. Karen is looking forward to what the future has in store for her and her business ventures. She hopes to continue working with innovative companies that have big and bold visions as she does. “There are a lot of opportunities coming my way, so I’m very excited for what’s to come.”
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I am an old school girl and was born and raised here so I like to do more than just the clubs. One of the first things I always do with my out of town guests is a Desert Hummer Tour with STELLAR ADVENTURES HUMMER AND ATV/UTV TOURS. They take you deep into the desert where you will experience the thrill of navigating through seasonal creeks, sandy washes, rocky slopes, and flat desert trails. It is amazing and everyone so far has loved it including the youngsters. Depending on the time of year The Phoenix Open, Spring Training or Barrett Jackson are always a must. Zinc Bistro at Kierland commons for a fab salad and a glass of wine then people watching or shopping. Sunday Brunch at Richardsons – home of the green chile potato – debuted in 1988, and features New Mexican-style fare. On Sunday its always about the Carne Adovada & Eggs. Desert Botanical Gardens is gorgeous and has 5 designated walked trails that are curated. Summertime is the perfect time to tube the Salt River and hang out at Butcher Jones. At the ebd of the day Prickly Pear Margaritas on the patio at The Phoenician best view in town. A night at the Rusty Spur then head over to Handle Bar J’s or Old Town. A day trip to Sedona then Jerome is always fun. Saint Pasta at Linger Longer Lounge with the Jersey boys Jersey boys Joe Cetrulo and Racan Alhoch
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Haute Dokimazo changed my life when I met Liz Tom and Nicole it was love at first site. The “Hauties” have been HDing their way across the country helping corporations and industry icons rethink their employee and client engagement. For decades, the formula has been: how many people can you cram into a ballroom (more and more success!), bore with a PowerPoint and pretend to inspire with an overpriced keynote speaker. HD is anything but that. Instead, you’ll find inspiration from other participants in small sessions, sharing problems, and solutions that will change the way you work. The facilitators share their best practices, then the participants get to share theirs, too. Questions happen throughout the session, and conversation is ongoing. It’s like having a coffee break for a full hour, dedicated just to the topic you wanted to learn and share about. Haute Dokimazo because everyone has a story to tell – but too often, we don’t feel like we have permission to share it. Stories are at the heart of any great business or brand. Stories are part of what makes us human and allow us to connect and break down barriers. Haute Dokimazo Strategy Sessions are facilitated Spontaneous Think Tanks™ that put the power in the hands of the people. You. We are the first business consultation experience that doesn’t just give you some framework that we’ve sold to other companies; we create your framework with you, based on the objectives and personality of your organization. Haute Dokimazo proudly offers the first, best, and only Spontaneous Strategy Session in the world. https://www.hautedokimazo.com
Dana Gibbons Photography Arabella Photography