The Great Destination Wedding!
Joanna Rensing Bailey, Joanna Bailey Weddings
Once upon a time, a Destination Wedding was a luxury enjoyed only by the rich and famous. The image of a stunning bride on the grounds of a European Villa gracing the glossy cover of Martha Stewart Weddings or Grace Ormonde Wedding Style left us all wanting their life, if only for a few days. Today, however, the opportunity for any couple to plan their dream wedding in a location other than their home exists in spades.
I am often asked, “How do you plan a wedding remotely?” As a rule, I always visit the location shortly after it’s been chosen. Once a couple has chosen their perfect spot, we determine whether or not a traditional venue is a wise choice, such as a hotel or resort. If traditional does not work for a client, we go outside the box. Having planned weddings in the middle of fields, abandoned barns, quiet and untouched islands, outside the box can be fun, wildly successful and so exciting! Once the venue has been chosen, we set about to locate our vendors. Modern technology is the best friend to any resourceful wedding planner. Through email, internet research and a few good old fashion phone calls, all of a client’s needs can be met.
Another question that is a constant is, “How do you find the right people to work with and how do I know the pricing is fair?” This is the test of even the best wedding planner. As you may imagine, some destinations offer more variety (and therefore competitive pricing) than others. If you are choosing a more traditional venue, in additional to the resources your wedding planner will have, the on site event coordinator is going to have a bevy of credible, local vendors that you can choose from. Should you choose to forgo the traditional and venture to the unique options, the sky is the limit. So many fabulous options are mobile, and can either be shipped to your location or brought in with you. Imagine a regionally authentic, custom menu to offer your guests, and the local musicians offering their hometown flair.
The remaining, and often primary, question I get is “How can I ask my family and friends to travel?” Unless you still live in your hometown, and all of your family and friends live there as well, your friends and family will be traveling. For a substantial number of couples, for their friends and family, this already is a destination wedding of sorts. So, the question is, are your guests traveling to Kansas City or the Dominican Republic to share your wedding?
Enjoy the opportunities at your fingertips. One of the first things I tell a couple when the planning process begins is to dream big. And, more often than not, your $50,000 budget can serve you just as well in Hawaii as it can at home. Key factors in planning a successful destination wedding include time of year, location, guest count and vision. Dream big, and ask your self “why not?”!
Joanna Bailey Weddings is an award winning, full-service boutique wedding planning and design firm. Combining a unique combination of Southern charm and modern sophistication, the Joanna Bailey Weddings design team delivers a personalized approach to your wedding day. Joanna Bailey Weddings has grown rapidly, designing custom weddings at home, across the country, and around the world. For more information, please visit us online at http://www.joannabaileyweddings.net/
Joanna Rensing Bailey