Tuesday, March 15, 2011

10 Things to Consider when Planning your Outdoor Wedding

Everyone knows the first rule for planning weddings and commitment ceremonies: location, location, location. And, whether you’re a local who enjoys an ocean view from home or work or a bride-to-be who rarely sees the ocean all year, an outdoor wedding venue with a waterfront view is a wedding dream come true.

Did you know that Marina del Rey plays host to more than 600 weddings each year? Sure, we’d venture to say that we’re experts. Our very own wedding planners weigh in on how to plan the perfect outdoor wedding without any surprises on the big day.

1. Let nature set the scene. By having your wedding outdoors, you are not only securing a venue but also a breathtaking, natural environment. “Brides tend to forget that the outdoor scenery is stunning enough for guests… brides and their coordinators should merely enhance their natural scenery by adding simple touches, like smaller, personalized centerpieces for the reception and minimal décor at the ceremony,” said Patrick Rafferty, social specialist at Hornblower Cruises & Events, Marina del Rey.

2. Embrace a One-Stop-Shop. Having an in-house wedding coordinator on your team will minimize surprises and ensure your big day goes smoothly. Be sure to look into what services and arrangements are available at the venue you have selected. At the California Yacht Club in Marina del Rey, for example, an expert coordinator can take care of your every last wish.

3. Track the forecast. The weather isn’t always very considerate. Thankfully when planning for a wedding in Marina del Rey, forecast isn’t your number one concern. The Marina boasts year-round temperate weather with light breezes and some sun, reducing the chances of wet or scorching hot surprises.

4. Choose a Venue to Match Your Style. Sure, weddings on the beach often evoke images of flip flops, Hawaiian shirts and sandy toes. But, have you considered venues off the sand that might fit your dream style – whether it’s vintage wedding on the lush hillside of Burton W. Chace Park or an elegant wedding with top-notch service at The Ritz-Carlton, Marina del Rey?

5. Offer something for everyone. When guests receive an invitation to an outdoor wedding destination, the first thing to cross their mind: where to stay nearby the wedding venue and within their budget. “In Marina del Rey, there truly is something for everyone,” said Janet Luna, Director of Event Planning at Marina del Rey Marriott. “Every price point can be accommodated. From room nights under $100 to luxury accommodations, it’s important that brides give every guest an opportunity to fully celebrate the big event. ”

6. Consider everyone. Your wedding is a huge affair with people coming from all walks of life. Make sure to keep everyone in mind when planning your outdoor wedding—from Baby Niece to Great Grandpa. Consider tents or paper umbrellas to shield the guests from the sun and have iced water on hand. If you really want the ceremony to be in the open, perhaps hold your reception indoors so all can share in your love.

7. Create plans convenient for travel. When planning rehearsal dinners, bridal brunches, or even bachelor and bachelorette parties at destination weddings, minimize complications by planning them near the location of the wedding ceremony. Marina del Rey offers a host of restaurants, bars and lounges within a one mile stretch to host all your wedding-related celebrations.

8. Don’t forget the paperwork. Though perhaps the least exciting of all wedding preparations, obtaining the proper licensing is key to securing the date and facilities for your wedding. At Burton W. Chace Park, for example, a permit must be acquired for all events. Visit the Los Angeles Department of Beaches & Harbors website at labeaches.info for more information.

9. Keep the sendoff in style. When planning your send-off, consider a bridal getaway on a luxurious sailboat. Why not take advantage of the water? “In recent years, we have seen this sendoff style become more popular with couples looking to make a lasting impression on guests,” said Stephanie Ginzburg, senior events producer at FantaSea Yachts & Yacht Club.

10. Leave it to the experts. Have you talked your local CVB about their recommendations? The CVB is a great place to begin your planning because they’ve seen weddings at all venues – and can recommend the best place to fit your dreams. Check out Marina del Rey’s site for weddings and to request a free wedding planning package.

1 comment:

  1. It’s good to know about these ten things to consider when planning your wedding. Last month, I had arranged my sister’s wedding at one of outdoor wedding venues Chicago and invited all our family and friends. We all enjoyed a lot at wedding.