- for the second time -
It was a proud and happy group of Pink Iceland travel and wedding planners that was called on stage to receive the Tourism Innovation award presented by the president of Iceland.
It was in November 2012 that Pink Iceland received the Iceland Tourism Innovation award for the novelty of offering tourism services tailored to queer people. At that time we had just started planning weddings for our target audience and couldn't have imagined where we'd be 10+ years later. Now in November 2023 Pink Iceland received the same Innovation Award for the second time, this time for the work we have done in putting Iceland on the map as a preferred destination for weddings and elopements.
Photos from our first weddings started to appear on social media around 2012. It was considered new to see same-sex couples in such photos since it was only two years after the legalisation of same sex marriages in Iceland. Instagram was all the rage and pictures from us spread around the world. Soon we started getting inquiries from heterosexual people asking if they could use our services and our clientele started growing.
In 2014 we planned 40 weddings, the majority of which were for heterosexual couples. We were advised at that time to tone down the queerness, or simply start another company that would be less 'gay' to attract a bigger audience. We didn't.
We will never know how many couples decided not to work with us because of our visible queerness. But we do know that we would not have wanted to work with them.
Now, more than 11 years since our first wedding, we, together with an ever-growing team of wonderful staff, have organized over 1000 weddings, including 418 in the last three years. We are proud to have played a significant role in putting Iceland on the map as a destination for weddings, which has led to the fact that today we can have 11 people working full time as well as a number of contractors who rely on projects from us.
The decision of the jury was unanimous when choosing Pink Iceland as this years recipient and in the reasoning of the jury says:
"By reinventing itself and creating great value for the country and the people, the company deserves nothing less than receiving the Iceland Tourism Innovation Award again just over ten years later. If the next ten years are anything like the innovation that has been created at the company in the last ten years, Icelandic tourism is looking forward to a bright future."
We have certainly changed and evolved as a company, but the values we've held from the beginning have not changed. Without them we might be bigger, who knows? Would we be as proud? Probably not.
Thanks for this beautiful recognition ❤