Woman of the week is a series that will focus on women in our industry as they share an insight into their thoughts on careers and fashion...
This week we talk to Laura Notarbartolo. Laura founded Italian Special Occasions DMC three years ago and specialises in creating bespoke special events in Italy for the corporate and private markets, with a strong focus on culture and local traditions. She has spent many years working in Rome, London and Barcelona, gaining great expertise in the travel industry.
How long have you worked in events/how did you get into the sector? Almost 15 years! After studying in London at Westminster College Tourism Management and Business Management, I started in the hotel industry... later worked as a tour operator and then for a Destination Management Company. There I had the chance to travel a lot, develop different country product offerings, and extend my experience in both planning and operations.
How do you deal with any lapses in confidence? Smiling, concentrating on what has to be done, speaking to people in a confident manner. We all have lapses in confidence - and I think it’s good to have it! It makes you more efficient in the long run.
What is the best event you have worked on?
Honestly, I liked them all! But, I have to say that a personal highlight was a Gala Dinner that we organised for a Kérastase Product Launch - where we created a parallel Renaissance-Kérastase journey. It began with the arrival of the guests at the exclusive location of Il Borro, where actors dressed in costumes from the 1600's welcomed the group. There was an immediate full immersion in the past thanks to the Renaissance setting, the passages played by musicians, the performance by the actors and their interaction with the guests. It was so satisfying to watch the facial expressions of the participants and see how much they were enjoying it.
What is your favourite item of clothing in your work wardrobe?
A beautiful long and colourful dress from Hermes!
If you could get rid of one item of traditional 'suitable for work clothing' forever, what would it be?
Favourite place to shop for work pieces?
I love to lose myself in Rome or Florence, where I can find shops that create handmade and unique pieces.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
Never give up, work for what you love, work hard, and the passion you have, will drive you to success.
How important is a work life balance - what is your favourite thing to do outside of work?
Playing with my children and travelling around the world when I can with them. If you teach them how important it is to travel, they will grew up with a 360 degree vision of life. Travel can change the world. That is my passion.
Last Instagram picture?
It’s a picture of Rome and a short story about urban incentives, linking to a recent blog article.
If you could create or work on any event in the world, what would it be?
Product Launch, Team Building and Congress this is our expertise and we love working on it!
How do you ensure you are the best version of yourself?
Learn always something new, never think you know everything, because it is not true. That is the reason why I love the vents world. Every project is different from another and it is always a new experience.
One thing that would surprise people about you:
I love fairy tales!
What is the last event you attended as a guest?
The International Luxury Travel Market in Cannes, it was a great inspiration.
What's your next event/project?
A team building event in Sicily, all about sensory activities!
What one piece of advice would you give to people looking to get into this industry?
Don’t be scared to bring up your ideas, the event world needs innovation!