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Destination I Do: Your Ideal Resort Wedding

Wedding At Kona Kai.
If you’re one of the thousands of couples who put a ring on it this season, you’re likely also entering the New Year with some thoughts as to where to officially tie the knot.

It’s not just the holiday season. It’s “engagement season” – a term that has been coined in the US to mark the period when proposals spike. And that period starts sometime around Thanksgiving and lasts into February, where 40 percent of annual engagements occur (according to So if you’re one of those “happy couples,” you’ve got some planning ahead of you in 2019 that starts with booking your wedding venue. Here, we give some suggestions, based on the kind of celebration you’re looking for, who you are collectively as a couple, and what amenities you value.


The Just-Us Couple: Kona Kai Resort & Spa [San Diego, CA]

If you’re one of those couples not looking to host a giant wedding, Kona Kai Resort & Spa, located on the secluded Shelter Island, has all kinds of opportunities for romantic “just the two of us” moments for those looking to elope. While, yes, the resort offers many options for large weddings, there are just as many beautiful spots for smaller groups – consider the Circle Patio or a ceremony right on the beach. Afterward, enjoy your time together as a newly married couple at the SpaTerre in their special Couples Room or snack and sip in a private cabana by the adults-only pool.

Destination I Do: Your Ideal Resort Wedding
© Carina Skrobecki

The Hipster Couple: The Edgewater Hotel [Seattle, WA]

Seattle has been a music Mecca since before Nirvana and Stone Temple Pilots burst on to the scene, but the ’90s definitely cemented the city as a destination for music lovers and young creatives. The Edgewater Hotel borrowed that idea (and a few names from their own celebrity guest list that includes the likes of Led Zeppelin and Kiss) to create their Rock ‘N’ Roll suites. These two suites pay homage to the Beatles and Pearl Jam respectively and serve as the ultimate wedding suite for music-loving couples. Along with some of the coolest digs in the city, the hotel also offers some prime locations for a Seattle-style wedding, meaning a venue that offers both chic cityscapes and a view of Puget Sound and can accommodate both the most traditional and most alternative couples. To top it off, expect amazing surf and turf options from Six Seven.

The Couple Looking to Also Vacation: La Playa Beach & Golf Resort [Naples, FL]

If you’re one of those couples that is looking to really double your special day as a something of a pre-honeymoon vacation, consider La Playa Beach & Golf Resort. This is a resort that appreciates the quieter joys in life, like lounging in a private cabana by the pool or paddle boarding on the Gulf, just an arm’s distance from dolphins while the on-site weddings team prepares for your big day. There’s also a plethora of other active pastimes that can be enjoyed with your guests, including parasailing, wave runner tours, surfing excursions and more.

The Adventurous Couple: Gateway Canyons Resort [Gateway, CO]

Imagine red rock mesas and grazing horses beneath endless blue skies. That’s the gist of Gateway Canyons Resort. This award-winning resort in the heart of Unaweep Canyon offers all the luxury of a four-star resort with the rustic charm and adventure of a working ranch, so expect its wedding venues to vary from elegant Mission-style ballrooms to breathtaking outdoor locations. With their Red Rock Romance Package, you get three nights in one of the Casita Suites located at the base of the Piñon Mesa as well as a 50-minute massage, private dining experience, and a daily activity. The only thing you’ll have to worry about in between your private helicopter ride through the mountains and hiking the red rocks is if the best man has a speech prepared or not.

The Nautical Couple: The Portofino Hotel & Marina [Redondo Beach, CA]

From the marina to the ocean views to the seals that call the peninsula home, water is an extremely common theme rooted to this chic hotel. Featuring suites with four-poster beds, clawfoot tubs, chandeliers, and billowing white curtains, the resort is reminiscent of the French Riviera, making it the perfect romantic destination for a nautical wedding. The property offers plenty of one-on-one activities like complimentary beach cruiser bikes for exploring the 27-mile oceanfront trail or taking some surfing lessons. When it comes time for the big moment, it’s time to hit the water, either in with a small group on the deck of one of Redondo Beach’s many charters or on the seaside lawn for larger groups. With the Finishing Touch package, you receive a free champagne toast if you book your rehearsal dinner or farewell brunch with the resort.
The Edgewater Hotel // Gateway Canyons Resort // Kona Kai Resort & Spa // LaPlaya Beach & Golf Resort // The Portofino Hotel & Marina

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