We’ve seen it all - the most amazing Autumn views in Aspen, ski gondolas filled to the brim with wedding decor, a family of elk right in the middle of a ceremony site, and some of the prettiest rainbows over an afternoon reception at Grand Lake. Mountain weddings are absolutely breathtaking, and we are so lucky that so many of our clients choose the Rockies for their nuptials. Behind the scenes, though, mountain weddings pose challenges that some couples just don’t think about. Consider these five things when planning your Rocky Mountain love fest -
1. THE WEATHER CAN GO LOTS OF WAYS
Who doesn’t LOVE a good mountain view while witnessing the exchange of some sweet wedding vows? Colorado is unique in that most of the outdoor views are seriously UNREAL. If you are choosing a venue with a view, it is always a good idea to have a backup plan. Locals know that one day it can be 80 degrees and sunny, and then the next day is half a foot of snow and wind gusts that will knock your freakin’ socks off. Work with your venue and wedding planner to come up with a backup plan in case of extreme weather. Your guests (and vendors) will thank you!
2. HAVE A VARIETY OF HOTEL ACCOMMODATIONS FOR YOUR OUT-OF-TOWN GUESTS
Most mountain weddings are a ‘destination’ spot for your family and friends. Giving them options with different discount rates will ensure they have a unique experience. If your wedding is in downtown Vail, make sure to include hotels within walking distance to your favorite bars, restaurants, etc. If your wedding is in a small mountain town, a local bed and breakfast would be a fun spot for your guests to enjoy a little R & R. Think outside the box and try to include fun, unforgettable accommodations (and room blocks) for your friends and family.
3. DON’T FORGET ABOUT TRAVEL LOGISTICS
To keep Aunt Jan and Uncle Frank from missing the ceremony, make sure your guests are clear on how to get to the venue - and allow a time buffer for them to do so. Taking multiple gondolas or service roads is NOT uncommon if you are getting married in the mountains, so it’s always important to prepare your guests ahead of time on what to expect. A directions card in your invitation suite or specific details on your wedding website will be KEY! Don’t forget to include signage every step of the way to prevent any wanderers.
4. YOUR THEME DOES NOT HAVE TO BE RUSTIC
A LOT of venues in the Rocky Mountains feature uber-rustic vibes. Log cabins, campfires, wilderness, wildlife, etc. are a huge part of this great state. BUT, guess what, sister? Just because you are in Colorado, doesn’t mean your whole decor theme should be based around wood slabs and tree stumps. Leave the wild outside and dazzle your guests with a glamourous mountain retreat designed specifically with your style in mind. Trust us, your vendors will thank you on this one!
5. WARN YOUR GUESTS ABOUT ALTITUDE + DRINKING
No one wants to see your highly intoxicated cousin faceplanting into the dance floor. The rumors are true - high altitudes CAN mess with oxygen levels if your friends and family are not acclimated properly, causing those drinks to hit a little harder than they might back home. We always suggest a sign at the bar kindly reminding guests to pace themselves and drink lots of water! It is always a good idea to invite your guests up to higher elevations to begin wedding festivities a few days before the big day, so that they have time to adjust (and potentially learn their limits) before you walk down the isle.
Welp, there you have it! These are our TOP FIVE PLANNING TIPS we like to consider when we begin a mountain wedding planning process with a new couple. Take these tips to heart, and you’ll be sure to have the best day of your life!
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