Isn’t the idea of a picnic usually better than the reality? All that packing up of food, things that leak, squashed fruit, ill-fitting containers, the debate over practical plastic glasses or elegant ones that inevitably break. It’s the truth: great picnics are made of dreams. Reality is usually far more prosaic.
But no more. You can have your dreamy picnic and eat it, too!
Juwana Abu-Zeinah, an interior designer, is the owner of Runaway Picnic, a company that she founded as a response to COVID in May 2020. “I realized that people wanted an escape from the stress and social isolation of the pandemic. We started our business with the goal of de-stressing and enjoying life, even for just a moment, and with a touch of luxury.”
Abu-Zeinah has organized luxury pop-up picnics for birthdays and date nights, and for clients who just want to do something different in the great outdoors. Clients choose the location and theme and leave Abu-Zeinah to do the rest.
Each picnic lasts two hours and set-up comes with a bottle of organic, sparkling non-alcoholic drink and a charcuterie board, as well as plenty of design savvy that includes tableware, candles, napkins, silk flowers, blankets, and cushions. “We can do in-house charcuterie boards large enough to feed the whole party, or we can work with local restaurants and catering companies to provide more such as cakes, dessert platters, fruit, salads, or sushi. Anything that doesn’t require heating,” she explains.
For those after a boutique luxury experience, the add-ons are limitless. A butler? Yes please. Hand-calligraphed menus and custom signage? Why not? S’mores, balloons, live music, and a professional photographer to create lasting images of the occasion? A picnic with a nautical theme, on your yacht? Yes, that’s all possible.
“I started this for myself and my family,” explains Abu-Zeinah, “but passersby were so curious and interested, I decided to launch the experience for others to enjoy.”