New LO event space aims to provide 'elevated experience'
The skeleton of a building sits at 3rd Street and B Avenue. Within that skeleton, construction workers — the figurative protein cells of development — are hard at work: building the structure, framing the body and breathing life into what will soon become Beacon Lake Oswego, downtown's latest mixed-used development complete with retail, co-working office space and perhaps the most exciting piece of this new building, a luxury event space.
On the fourth floor, high atop the skyline of Lake Oswego with breathtaking views of the city, Cascade foothills and Mt. Hood, sits Ironlight — Lake Oswego's newest venue for business gatherings, banquets, weddings, parties and any other event you might dream of.
It's the brainchild of three local sisters, Taryn Hatchel (née Haladay), Carey Haladay and Sonal Haladay, who think big.
"We all live in the community, so we're excited to offer something different in Lake Oswego, a place where people can meet and celebrate," Carey said. "We've really been working toward building a new asset for the community."
Taryn, Carey and Sonal are three of the ten family members that makeup 10Branch, LLC, a company that has grown out of the Haladay family — headed by Jay and Renee Haladay — as a project management, capital development and consulting firm where each of its members bring their unique talents to the table.
Within that ecosystem, and inspired by their family's love for gathering and celebrations, Taryn, Carey and Sonal came up with the idea for Ironlight.
"Our vision has always been an event venue that offers an elevated experience," Sonal said.
"Comfortable," "local" and "beautiful" are the three words that best describe Ironlight, according to the trio, but you could also throw in elegant, flexible and comprehensive.
Sonal is a former PR professional with years of experience in marketing and communications. She moved to Lake Oswego with her husband Gavin from New York when the couple decided to settle down and start a family.
Taryn, born and raised in Lake Oswego, left Oregon to attend undergrad at Princeton University before earning her masters in atmospheric science from Colorado State University and working as a wind energy consultant for six years.
Carey is a Portland native who obtained her undergraduate degree from DePauw University in Indiana. She returned to Oregon where she attended law school at the University of Oregon and went on to practice law for nine years, specializing in complex divorce and child custody matters.
During the early planning stages of Ironlight, according to Sonal, they spent a lot of time researching, talking to industry experts and touring other venues to see what they liked and didn't like. They also scoured their memories for experiences that suck out in their mind's eye as events and venues that brought an extra special sense of place and belonging so they could capture that feeling within their own venture.
"We want to have a beautiful space where you come in, and all you have to do is show up, Carey said. "If you want it simple, we can do that. If you want it decked out with flowers and everything else for a big wedding, we can do that too."
Back when the project broke ground in September 2018, they introduced LO resident Isaiah Watson as their head chef, and with plans to open in March 2020, the three co-founders have been working tirelessly to lock down their vendors for food, beverage and other event services.
They recently launched a website introducing their venue to the world and providing mockups of what events might look like when the space is staged. They've been active on social media, curating a gallery of photos that inspire a sense of style and sophistication not necessarily new to Lake Oswego, just perfected.
Some of their partners include Art of Catering, Devil's Food, ChefStable, Vibrant Table and Elephants Delicatessen.
"These are brands that really share the vision of Lake Oswego and bringing really good food into the suburbs," Taryn said.
According to Carey, these partners will be in charge of not only providing catering services but creating an entire dining experiences, which includes making sure that food is locally and sustainably sourced, as well as curating wine and beverage lists that pair with unique food offerings.
The space itself will be 4,000 square feet of open floor plan offering just about any configuration of tables, seating, stage and event flow you can imagine, from wedding and retirement parties to awards banquets and offsite business meetings. A lobby just outside the elevator will provide a space for hosts to welcome their guests into the space. Two decks, the Sunset Deck facing west at 1,000 square feet and the Hood Terrace at 2,300 square feet, offer not only panoramic views but also connection to the natural environment that surrounds the venue. A large sliding glass door between the main event area and the Hood Terrace will allow guests to transition seamlessly from indoor to outdoor. Floor to ceiling windows provide ample ambient light and make you feel as if you're sitting in the clouds.
With just eight months to go until it opens its doors and construction pressing forward, Ironlight is beginning to receive lots of requests for information on what services and space it offers, providing a spark of excitement for the three co-founders.
Being working mothers has provided quite the challenge for Taryn, Sonal and Carey, but they've been determined to bring their vision to fruition, and each of the three sisters-in-law have provided support to each other to complete all the preparations and business dealings needed to ensure they hit the ground running come March. Not only are they co-founders, but owner-operators as well.
"It's been an art form, balancing our family lives, our kids and developing this plan," Sonal said. "A lot of people have said that it's refreshing that we're a family whose running this and that we're actually the people who they're going to be interacting with on a day-to-day basis."
The reception to their design and space has been overwhelmingly positive so far, and the three women are taking feedback from each meeting they hold in order to make sure they come out the gate with a flawless product and experience once construction of Beacon LO is finished.
"I'm super excited about the reception we've gotten from everyone. When we have meetings and bookings, people are coming in and are just so supportive of what we're doing and of the space," Sonal said.
Ironlight will accommodate up to 250 seated guests indoors with the ability to create custom, intimate gathering areas within the space. Parking is conveniently located onsite under the building in addition to an area for ridesharing drop-off/pick-up or valet. All catering and event services, as much or as little as you'd like, will be available on site and through Ironlight as part of its comprehensive list of offerings.
"I think I'm most excited to just start hosting events," Carey said. "I love bringing people together, and I love walking through a crowd to make sure everyone's needs are met and that everyone is having a nice time. I'm looking forward to that."
For more information on Ironlight or to inquire about booking the venue visit ironlightlo.com.
You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.