Destination I Do
Friday, August 5, 2011

Destination Wedding Lake Tahoe: A Summertime Love Affair

Words by Courtney Kellar
Words by Courtney Cox
Photos courtesy of Larissa Cleveland Photography

For some couples, the concept of a destination wedding entails jet setting off to some exotic, far-off location. However, that doesn’t have to be the case. While the definition of a “destination wedding” varies slightly for everyone, we definitely feel a wedding in your home state, but over 100 miles from home, constitutes a destination wedding. This is precisely what Nicole and Richard chose to do for their W-day.

The San Francisco couple could think of nowhere else besides Lake Tahoe, California to start their life together as man and wife. “This particular destination is very special for us because it was our first vacation we took as a dating couple, so it was an easy thought that we would go back,” says Nicole. “I think for us, it wouldn’t have felt right any place else because that is the place we fell in love. Plus it’s so much fun having all your friends and family get together for what feel s like a huge vacation.”

The logistics of getting all their family and friends to Lake Tahoe was relatively simple, since most of them were traveling from either San Diego or San Francisco. “Guests from San Diego flew into either Sacramento or Reno and drove in,” says Nicole. “Luckily we have a lot of friends that live in Sacramento, so many of them picked up our guests.” Mass-carpooling to a destination wedding – I love it!

The couple had no problem finding their dream venue, the Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe. Because they frequently have their summer vacations in Lake Tahoe, they know the hotel’s restaurants and sandy beach well. Nicole had a slightly harder time selecting vendors from afar, but came up with a savvy solution. “It was great because I ended up finding some great blog posts with weddings from the Lake Tahoe area and all the details about vendors were posted.”

What vendors they couldn’t find online, Nicole and Richard had to choose via email and over the phone. While Nicole was initially nervous about this, everything ended up going off without a hitch. “I sent photos to my florist of what I wanted my bouquet and bridesmaids bouquets to look like from a wedding blog I found,” says Nicole. “I also sent her photos of table arrangements I liked and we discussed over the phone different options for the table arrangements.”

It’s always a great idea to send vendors photos of exactly what you like if you’re unable to meet with them in person. That way there’s room for very little confusion. While the couple admits that planning a destination wedding was difficult, they’re positive things wouldn’t have been any easier if they had planned a hometown San Francisco affair. “Planning your own wedding is hard regardless if it’s a destination or close to home,” says Nicole. “But everything will fall into place and do your best to soak in everything you can on your wedding day because nothing prepares you for how fast the day will end.”

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