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Destination I Do
Friday, May 15, 2015

A Rustic Lake Tahoe Wedding

Words by Courtney Kellar
Photos courtesy of Melina Wallisch Photography

Carrie & James hadn’t planned on hosting a destination wedding, but after getting engaged and talking about what they wanted for their big day, they realized there was no other option. “We wanted to get married somewhere with beautiful, yet rustic scenery, so Tahoe was the perfect choice,” says Carrie. “Tahoe is a mountain town with a fun, relaxed vibe and we wanted our wedding to have that same feeling. Also, we both grew up going to Tahoe with our families and friends and we have a lot of great memories there.” 

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Once the decision was made, the couple’s guests were definitely on board with a wedding in Nevada. “Tahoe was a great destination for most of our guests as it’s only a four-hour road trip from the Bay Area,” recalls the bride. “And, I think even the guests who had to fly in from other states were excited to spend a long weekend in such a gorgeous place.”

The couple chose not to hire a wedding planner and instead did tons of online research and made multiple visits to their chosen destination throughout the year leading up to the big day. “After doing some research online, we made a trip to look at venues,” says Carrie. “Edgewood was the standout choice. It’s rustic, elegant and set right on the edge of the lake with stunning views both indoors and out.”

With the majority of their guests coming from Northern or Southern California, the couple could rest easy about the travel plans. “We did have a few guests flying in from other states who were a little anxious about navigating their way through the mountains on the drive from Reno airport,” says the bride. “A friend of ours designed a great wedding website for us that included a lot of logistical information for our guests such as maps and driving directions as well as airport shuttle and rental car information.”

In the end, Carrie and James got the elegant, rustic wedding they were after. Perhaps best of all, they have many more beloved memories in Tahoe. “Overall, I think planning a destination wedding was easier than we expected,” says the bride. “Luckily, we were able to make a couple trips to Tahoe during the year leading up to our wedding, so we were able to meet with some vendors and map out the venue in person, which was very helpful in easing my wedding planning anxiety.”

Beyond the wedding, the couple also hosted all their guests for the rehearsal dinner the night before the wedding. A chartered, sunset cruise on the lake was the perfect way to kick things off right. These two were able to execute their vision and have no regrets looking back. In fact, the bride has some final words of advice for other couples planning a destination wedding:

“Plan, but try not to agonize over every little detail. In the end, you’ll only remember special moments from the day and the details just won’t matter. [Also,] write personal vows. We had planned on writing our own vows, but the day before the wedding we still hadn’t. With so much going on, we almost decided to forget about it, but I’m so glad we didn’t. Reading our vows to each other during the ceremony is my most cherished memory from the day.”

Vendors: Photographer: Melina Wallisch Photography, Ceremony/Reception Site: Edgewood Tahoe, Florist: Thran’s Flowers, Stationery: Mavora, Cake: Flour Girl Wedding Cakes, Hair & Makeup: Ember Elorza, Gown Designer: Allure Bridals, Bridesmaids’ Dress Designer: J.Crew, Favors: Tahoe Toffee

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