We had the good fortune of connecting with Adri Loughmiller and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Adri, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Even though I have a business degree, I didn’t have an entrepreneur mindset to begin with. After finishing college, I’ve worked for a big resort for 9 years. My husband and I moved to another state due to his military career, and life has taken a tragic turn. I became a widowed single parent with a young baby girl. Working full time just wasn’t the right fit in that situation. As a part of my healing journey, I did a lot of personal development and self-care work. Attending the Gary Barnes Breakthrough Business Mastery Bootcamp a few times and being around other small business owners sparked my interest in starting my own business. My priority is spending time with my daughter as she is growing up. I realized that being an entrepreneur is the best way to ensure that I can be there for my family, have a flexible schedule, and have control over my calendar while I am able to do what I love to do – plan weddings and special events. .
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
My passion is to create exceptional experiences for life’s special occasions. At Luxe + Love, we believe that weddings and family celebrations are beautiful expressions of what’s in your heart: Love.
I came to the U.S. as an international student 19 years ago to complete an internship in the hospitality field at The Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, Colorado. I genuinely had a passion for wedding and event planning, and I ended up working at the hotel for 9 years. The tragic loss of my first husband while he was on active duty in the military completely derailed my career plans, and I found myself as a single parent of a 4 month old baby 10 years ago. It wasn’t easy, but I had great support, and within just a couple of years I was planning events again. Going back to work for a big property and working a full time job wasn’t the right fit with a small child. I did freelance work for a while and helped with several projects in the surviving military community. This is the time, when the Angels of America’s Fallen Angel Gala was born, an annual fundraiser for an organization very close to my heart. I managed to grow the event to over 500 attendees within 5 years with only a small core team. After a couple of years of self-care, healing, and self-development, it was clear that my absolute desire is weddings, so I launched Luxe + Love. It’s a boutique wedding planning company where I can build on my storied 20+ years of experience in the hospitality and event planning field in both Europe and the U.S.
My venue focus sets me apart from others, and I take pride in being an expert at select venues such as The Broadmoor Hotel. Quality over quantity and memorable over average are a few of my core principles, and this is what my brand represents. I believe that there is more to a special event than the careful selection of food, music, and décor and what the venue looks like. I like to focus on how the wedding couple or the person being celebrated feels during the event, and how they live and experience their special moments. This is why creating and crafting the experience as a whole becomes key. I am also partnering with experts that can help with the self-care and the emotional aspects involved with life changing events like weddings. My goal is that my clients are at peace during the entire event planning process with minimal to no stress.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I live in Colorado Springs, and my favorite spot is definitely The Broadmoor Hotel & Resort as well as their wilderness properties: Emerald Valley Ranch, Cloud Camp, and Seven Falls. Sitting at the lake with a cocktail and appetizers from the Hotel Bar is a very nice spot to enjoy gorgeous mountain views, followed by dinner at Ristorante Del Lago. I also love to support local small businesses. My favorite ones are Streetcar 520, Shuga’s, Loyal Coffee and Wayfinder Coffee Co. I am a huge fan of chocolate, so Cacao Chemistry downtown is a must for treats. For recreation, I would take my friends up to the top of Pikes Peak, to the Royal Gorge Bridge & Park. We would unwind with paddle boarding at Rampart Reservoir, hiking the trails in the North Cheyenne Canyon, and mountain biking in Garden of the Gods and Red Rock Open Space. I would definitely take my friends to Aspen for a few days, visit the Maroon Bells there, and walk around downtown, window shopping and checking out the small art galleries.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would like to dedicate my shoutout to my 10-year old daughter, Emma, who encouraged me to launch my business when I thought I wasn’t ready. There are so many people who would deserve credit and recognition in my story. I am thankful for the entire surviving military community and their supporting organizations. Being a suicide surviving military widow allowed me to build strength and resilience, and shaped me in ways I never imagined. I’ve been on a personal development and healing journey during the last couple of years with my life coach, Beata Seweryn-Reid, my RTT therapist and coach, Sarah Griffiths, and my business coach, Gary Barnes. I am extremely grateful for their mentorship, love, and guidance. I would also like to recognize Joe and Shelli Lewis, Founders of Angels of America’s Fallen. I am blessed to have their support and friendship. They believed in my vision and passion for the Angel Gala 6 years ago, and the event turned out to be the most magical black tie fundraiser and celebration each year. My husband, Russ Tellup, also deserves credit for his love and support and for urging me to take care of myself, and ignited my personal development and healing journey. The process sparked my motivation and determination and became the catalyst to starting my own business.
Other: For more information about Angels of America’s Fallen please visit: www.aoafallen.org
Maria Randolph Photography, Susannah Dowell Photography, Kip Pears Photography, Jennifer Snyder Photography