Haute Secrets Dallas: Event Planner Extraordinaire, Hamilton A Sneed

Photograph by Maxine Helfman

Always impeccably dressed with a keen sense of style, one takes notice when Hamilton A Sneed walks into a room and it’s by no coincidence that his luxury marketing and event firm, HAS Events has quickly become a go to for premiere event management, marketing consulting and celebrity gifting. As founder and principal of HAS Events, Hamilton creates events that are personal, memorable and interactive by combining over 15 years of experience in events and marketing with an impressive curriculum vitae. Having the opportunity to travel and live internationally influenced both Hamilton’s interpretations of style and luxury while establishing a successful segue into building strategic alliances with some of the world’s top brands.

In a highly competitive market, Hamilton’s innovative marketing methodologies and ability to always exceed client expectations are what sets HAS Events apart from its competitors. Realizing the marketing power of events, he meticulously creates settings that send a targeted message wrapped in a luxurious and elegant package. Each component involved in designing a HAS Event transforms into a sophisticated medium of communication that promotes an environment of influence perfect for branding. 2016 will be a busy year for them with over 25 events already confirmed including benefits, brand anniversaries and the planning of over 15 events in recognition of the 30th Year of Service for Hope’s Door, one of the most significant social affairs of the year in Dallas.

As well as creating fabulous events, Hamilton tirelessly dedicates his “free time” to philanthropic endeavors all over the city. He has worked as a National spokesperson for National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC), currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Dallas Theater Center and acts as Board President for THE FASHIONISTAS. Strongly believing in being a notable advocate for his community, he also supports additional organizations including, Hope’s Door Inc., St. Philips School & Community Center, Treasure You and Family Gateway.

So the next time you find yourself enjoying a fabulous event in Dallas, you could be experiencing a Hamilton A Sneed Event. Haute Living was lucky enough to catch up with him and ask what are some of his favorite picks around the city.

Where were you born: Galveston, TX

How long have lived in Dallas: Raised here; lived in Tulsa, OK and London, UK for several years before returning to Dallas.

Neighborhood: Raised in South Dallas; currently live in Downtown Dallas

Occupation: Event Planner

Favorite Restaurant: Asador is one of my absolute favorites of the moment – the farm-to-fire approach and use of farm fresh ingredients is bar none; along with Paul Martin’s American Grill. Those are two places you’ll find me these days.

Best Sushi: Tei-An. Period.

Best dessert: Any restaurant that has a NY Style Cheesecake or Cheesecake in general!

Best Sunday brunch: I have always loved Sunday brunch at La Duni (the original on McKinney) or Toulouse but I’m currently obsessed with YOLK at One Arts Plaza (they are BYOB)!  

Best place for a power business meeting: YOLK at One Arts Plaza opens at 6am on the weekdays and that’s where I take most of my business meetings during the week.

Favorite shopping venue/boutique: Salvatore Ferragamo at North Park Center, of course; they are the only shoes I wear!

Favorite place to buy jewelry/watches: I don’t really wear a lot of jewelry and the few watches I do own have all been gifts but if I had to choose I love wearing my pieces by SHONA. I wear a lot of her men’s bracelets.

Best Spa: The Ritz Carlton. From Dallas to Laguna Nigel, the Ritz has the best spa experience.

Favorite Charity Event: That’s tough because we are involved in the planning of so many charity events throughout the year. For 2015, my favorite event was the annual Hope’s Door, An Evening of Hope Gala: A Night in Morocco. We’ve worked on this event for the past few years and in 2016 we’ve got some big surprises planned! Another favorite this year was an event granting the final wish of the late Ashleigh Range and helping to raise over $130K specifically for Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research. My dear friend Dee Simmons asked us to help grant this wish and Tricia Sims opened her lovely Preston Hollow home for this event. It was an incredible night of pure giving with no pomp or circumstance and an event I will always remember.

Favorite Cultural Institution: Dallas Theater Center. The DTC continues to challenge its audiences with thought-provoking theater each season.

Best Gym/Athletic Facility: LOL! (My friends will get a kick out of this)

Best Massage: Ritz-Carlton Spa 

Best Limousine/Driving Service: I take UBER most places but when a client needs a limousine or car service for an event I always call Sean McGinty of My Private Driver. They are the best!

Best Museum/Exhibit: I love the Kimbell Art Museum in Ft Worth-it’s one of my favorites! JM Gallery though has had some incredible exhibits over the last year, I especially love the current show Embracing Contrast featuring Rob Aikey, Ann McIntyre and Scott Shubin. I just bought two of Ann’s pieces and I love them both!

Describe your city in three words: Philanthropic. Cultural. Changing.

Favorite historic/legendary place to see or explore: Dealey Plaza in Downtown, which is the location of the assassination of JFK. I recently visited when a friend came to town and it’s one of the most iconic Dallas landmarks.

All-around favorite spot in Dallas: Highland Park Village (HPV) is my “haute spot” from the fabulous shops, restaurants and changing landscape. Plus who doesn’t love doing some fabulous window shopping, enjoying a margarita at Mi Cocina or grabbing a chai tea latte at Starbucks. It’s HPV!

Best Aspect of Dallas: Entrepreneurship is everywhere and warmly embraced by the community at large. I also love our philanthropic spirit and ever-changing cultural programming, especially in the Dallas Arts District.

How do you spend your downtime? LOL! Downtime? I love to travel and explore other cultures and cities, but if I need a quick escape I’m usually shopping at the Salvatore Ferragamo boutique or dining out with friends. Other times, I’m relaxing at home.

What Dallas social event do you look forward to all year? I plan so many, but I also get to attend some of Dallas’ most notable events. I always look forward to the Dallas Black Dance Theater’s Annual Founder’s Luncheon in January, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society St Valentine’s Day Luncheon & Fashion Show in February, Mad Hatter’s Tea in April and the Hope’s Door An Evening of Hope Gala in November. Those are four events that I try never to miss!

Biggest Accomplishment: One of the biggest accomplishments and what a lot of people may know me for is co-producing (with Annika Cail of 521 Events at the time) Dallas Rocks 2008 for the Diamond Empowerment Fund with Russell Simmons. However, I must say that I am most proud of our continued work with our incredible non-profit clients having raised upwards of $4MM to support some incredible causes and organizations across the city.