Meet Our Founders: Chaika Events Owners Elena Moiseeva and Olga Bury Share The Secrets of Their Success

Chaika Events will be celebrating its 10th anniversary next year, which is a great reason to tell you more about our amazing co-founders and directors, Olga Bury and Elena Moiseeva. They know how to plan the perfect party, solve any event crisis and throw an elegant soiree at short notice - and now they're sharing the secrets of their success with us all!

How This All Started

Both Olga and Elena come from a communications background. Olga was working in sports PR and marketing, supporting brand partnerships and promotions at huge events such as Formula 1 and the G4 Challenge, FIFA World Cup 2010 and the UEFA Champion's League. Elena had a career with the advertising agency Grey, part of WPP Group, gradually moving from simple product launches to complex event production.

Both of them found events fun-filled and exciting. "The event business is the most positive activity one can think of: kids keep their birthday memories for their entire lives; each wedding day is the event of a lifetime; and a video made at a family celebration will be treasured for years," explains Elena. Olga agrees, "I love making people happy and I believe that it is important to live your life to the full and celebrate every day." That's where the company's motto - #CelebrateToday – originates.
Our founders, Olga and Elena

Chaika's Most Memorable Events

Their agency started, like many other event businesses, with a blessings of one happy client who spread the word about our services and brought more new clients to the business. "People started booking us, loving our ideas and the way we work", remembers Elena. A decade later, Olga and Elena proudly look back at over 800 parties, celebrations, festivals, public events, product launches and charity galas. Of course, certain projects are more memorable for each of them.

Elena's list is long and diverse, "I definitely have great recollections of some of our projects, like recreating my favourite Studio 54 on a tiny Italian volcanic island, a Game of Thrones themed party at Stationer's Hall, a teenage birthday with British wrestlers (who turned out to be the nicest people ever) a pagan wedding ceremony for a nature-loving couple in a London Wetlands Centre, and a wedding in a Scottish haunted castle." However, her absolute favourites are the three themed Christmas events they arranged between 2014-2016. "We started organising immersive events five years ago, long before they became a major trend, so I'm particularly proud of them", explains Elena.

Olga's favourite projects are all international events. One of them was hospitality management and event programming during the Montreaux Jazz Festival, including gastro-tours and Swiss chocolate tastings. Another memorable event for Olga was a private birthday party in Disneyland Paris - Chaika Events managed to privatise the themed park giving unique access for their small group and arrange amazing kids entertainment with Disney characters. And of course, she couldn't not mention the jubilee celebration staged in the Marbella Club. "We hired the entire exclusive villa and booked Boney M as the headliners for the night," Olga remembers.

Some of Elena and Olga's favourite events, including private party in Disneyland Paris, Christmas Spectacular show in London and Game of Thrones themed party.

Sources of Inspiration

To create bespoke events, Chaika are always looking for new hot trends and sources of inspiration. Olga loves 20th century architecture, design, furniture and art. "I adore meaningful objects full of history and the passion of the people who made them," she explains. Elena admits that she's more of a 1980s -1990s kind of a girl, with music being her main source of inspiration and David Bowie, Blur, Suede and Radiohead in her playlist. "Sometimes I wake up rushing to turn on the song I need to listen to straight away!" Elena shares.
I adore meaningful objects full of history and the passion of the people who made them.
Both of them also love travelling and find inspiration in meeting new people and learning about new cultures. "I think this kind of experience is important to developing open-mindedness," explains Olga, who has been lucky enough to travel around much of the world. Her next dream destinations are Rwanda and Uganda where she plans to see gorillas on safari. Elena prefers wild and quiet places for her trips, "I've seen many documentaries and TV series about Arctic and Antarctic and now I'm dreaming of visiting sub-zero places." For travel inspiration, she's subscribed to the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute's Instagram account. "I am so proud of the guys working there; they are not only doing great research work, but also have fun and joke about what they do. An amazing international team and breathtaking pictures!"

However, their immediate travel plans are much simpler. As travel restrictions are easing, Olga is going to drive to the South of France with her husband and dog. "My friend lives there and I have many happy memories spending time there with family." Elena's got into gardening during the last few months and her hand-sown flower meadow is the best place on Earth for her right now. She's also planning to see more of Great Britain this year, "I have been living here for more than 12 years and still have so much to explore!"
Olga's dream destination is safari in Rwanda and Uganda, and Elena would like to visit Arctica and Antarctica.
Unique venues also can be a great source of inspiration for event concept and styling. Elena's top event venues include London museums, such as the Victoria and Albert and Tower Bridge. We've covered the best London museum venues in a previous blog post. She also enjoys arranging events in historic halls and iconic London hotels. "When we organise events in the Savoy London, I always think about the unbelievable Venetian-style party organised by George Kessler here in 1905. The hotel was flooded with four feet of water and guests were gliding in gondolas around the foyer!"

Olga's more into members' clubs, such as Shoreditch House with its rooftop pool area – a perfect spot for a summer party. She also likes original London hotels. The Standard Hotel has exciting interiors, brand-new event spaces and some big terraces with panoramic views, perfect for receptions and summer night dinners. Another Olga's favourite is The Lanesborough Hotel, a long-lasting partner of Chaika Events. "We've arranged a lot of classy celebrations there, including our recent Gatsby-themed dinner party," explains Olga.
Favourite venues of our founders: V&A museum, The Savoy London, The Standard Hotel, Shoreditch House and The Belgravia Room in The Lanesborough.

Besides work

To manage the hustle and stress of working in the event industry, Elena turns to meditation in her garden. "I try to follow all sustainable and green trends, and my garden is my contribution. There, I grow my own tomatoes and cucumbers, but mostly flowers. I have limited space so I organise a few summer flower collections in planters. I meditate at least half an hour a day, watching bees and other, less familiar insects enjoying my garden."

Olga prefers to swim in her pool or do some yoga to relax. She's also into gastronomy. "My favourite London restaurant is Le Gavroche, many family celebrations have taken place there and I have a lot of good memories connected to the place", Olga comments. At the moment, she studying natural wines and learning more about the principles of wine production. We've discussed that topic in detail with a professional sommelier in one of our recent blogs.

There is also a place for team celebrations and joint workshops in Chaika Events. Both Olga and Elena are keen on educating their colleagues and arranging group activities for the whole team. Over the last few years, the team has attended a group yoga session, visited a mini-pig farm, went to the James Bond exhibition at the London Film Museum and dined in some new restaurants. The girls also share access to a few online courses and audiobooks, exploring new spheres and growing team expertise.
A glimpse at the activities we do as a theme: yoga sessions to re-charge, days out to reconnect with nature, and photoshoots to have some fun and go gaga together.

Key Tips for Creating Successful Events

With many years of event management expertise, Olga and Elena have a few secrets of successful event management to share. "Be open-minded and experience everything for yourself. Go out and see gigs, eat in restaurants, travel the world and look for inspiration everywhere," advises Olga. In her experience, the process of planning an event is as great as being at the event itself. "I enjoy the work process and we always have a good laugh with colleagues during the planning and management of our events."

Elena agrees that the event business is for active and adventurous people. "The secret of a successful event is quite simple, learn as much as possible about the client, dig out the best suppliers available in the market, inspire them as much as you can, and do it quickly." It's also important to remember about the behind-the-scenes part of the job, in her opinion, there is lots of paperwork, many negotiations, and long hours. "You may organise a destination wedding, but hardly see the beautiful island you travelled to. You work with many people and their point of view may be very different from yours. You have to create and re-create, build and re-build to get to the point where everyone is happy. It might be a tough journey, but it is definitely worth it!"

If you want Olga or Elena take over your next party, celebration or wedding, do not hesitate to contact us, and our team will start planning your event right now.