Resort Weddings

image_specialOne of the things many resorts have focused on over the last few years is hosting weddings. Some see it as an absolute necessity and there are some who want nothing to do with stressed out and frazzled brides or their moms. But with Generation Y being almost twice the size of Generation X, and the number of weddings nearly doubling in recent years, the benefits often outweigh the headaches.

Strangely enough as I talked with Carley Roney—who started theknot.com with her husband, David Liu, fifteen years ago—none of those demographic figures were a consideration for starting the business.

After their own harrowing wedding experience, Carley and David saw an opportunity to modernize and streamline the process of putting a wedding together. A far cry from its humble start, theknot.com now employs over five hundred people throughout the world and also has thebump.com and thenest.com. Their specialty is connecting future brides and grooms to local vendors. It seems to be working remarkably well, because a staggering eight out of ten brides have registered with the knot.com and over 20 million brides have now "graduated" (the knot's term) from theknot.com.

"Resorts are a great venue because they line up with many of the current trends that are taking place in the industry," Roney says. "It used to be that people wanted to be very formal: now people are looking to make weddings more personal and intimate. Resorts tend to provide that type of setting. Also photography has continually become a more important component of the wedding experience, with candid shots proving to be very popular. Resorts provide the country setting with natural backdrops like fields or a lake. In those environments you can get classic shots, like the couple walking along the beach with a sunset in the back, plus natural lighting is unbeatable, so outdoor services are very popular."

Chris Ashbach fromElbow Lake Lodge (the lodge was featured by the knot as one of the top ten places to have an outdoor wedding) concurs. "We have a rock that is used as the backdrop by the lake along with a mini lighthouse down the shore. Couples are able to get amazing photos."

Lee Byram from Elbow Lake Lodge said, "We focus on making the wedding a hassle-free experience by being a one-stop shop. We have a network of caterers, photographers, and florists that we can send the deciding party to. We love hosting weddings. It is very fulfilling to be part of a celebration that expresses a couple's love and commitment for one another."

Kent Hintermeister from Long Lake Lodge (which hosted over twenty weddings last year) concurred and added, "People really seem to enjoy the natural setting for their wedding, although we have plenty of space indoors if the weather becomes undesirable."

Carley also mentioned how weddings are becoming almost a family reunion of sorts, with friends and family being more spread out in our mobile society. "Oftentimes weddings are affairs that lasts a couple of days. Destination weddings are very popular, whether that is the Caribbean or a resort in Minnesota. People hang out for a couple days after in a festive atmosphere enjoying each other's company in an ideal setting."

To research outdoor weddings or join in discussion boards, visit theknot.com .

Five Major Wedding Trends from theknot.com:

Bold Colors

White is no longer the only color option in weddings. Whether vibrant combinations (like navy and fuchsia) or singular pops (like turquoise or yellow), color is a major player in many wedding motifs.

A Vintage Feel

We're seeing a trend of brides moving away from stuffy formality and opting for more casual, yet still elegant, wedding. Laidback and natural are becoming the new norm.

Personal Themes

Couples are really using their weddings as a way to express their personality, such as tying in their favorite hobbies (like fishing, sailing, etc) or infusing details from their background (like their college sports teams) to the décor theme.

Weekend-long weddings

With guests traveling in, brides are now choosing to plan multiple events surrounding the actual wedding to entertain family and friends. Think after-parties following the reception, Sunday brunch before everyone heads home and a variety of other fun activities suitable for families with children.

Break the rules

Antiquated etiquette is out the window. Moms walking their daughters down the aisle, puppies in the bridal party—do what makes you happy!

 

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