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Getting Ready for the Bachelorette Weekend

I’ll admit that trying to juggle working at Here Comes The Guide, moonlighting as a floral assistant, and planning my sister’s bachelorette party/bridal shower for the past 6 months has been exhausting. As a reward, I decided to treat myself to a little relaxation before gearing up for my sister’s event.

My favorite day spa is Burke Williams, and it just so happens to be on my way home from work. If you haven’t been to Burke Williams Spa, you are missing out, my friends. This is the mecca of day spas. As their website says, “Our singular purpose is to immerse you in our soothing waters, luxurious surroundings and gracious hospitality.” Trust me: they live up to this every time I go there.

Burke Williams SpaLast night I had an eyebrow wax, bikini wax and an express facial. My aesthetician, Sadie, was so amazing that I’m already planning another appointment with her! Bikini waxing is not my favorite thing in the world, but when you’re going to be in a bikini most of the weekend, I consider it a must. I had mentally prepared myself for the pain that comes with the usual bikini waxing, but when Sadie was done I didn’t even know she had started! That was definitely the least painful bikini wax I have ever had.

The express facial was a soothing way to end my my session, and my skin has never looked so healthy. After my appointment, I retired to their locker room/relaxation haven to soak in the spa whirlpool and let all my stress melt away. It was the perfect ending! Today, my skin is glowing and I feel recharged enough to go to play hostess for the weekend.

While I was at Burke Williams I couldn’t help but think how fun it would be to bring all your bridesmaids there for a day of pampering. I highly recommend you check it out. They have locations in San Jose, San Francisco, Mission Viejo, Pasadena, Sherman Oaks, West Hollywood, Orange, Santa Monica and Torrance. I also just learned that they’re getting ready to open up a new location in Danville.

Denise Posted by Denise on Aug 20, 2008.
Filed under Bachelorette PartiesBridal Beauty AdviceSpas and Pampering

North of Wine Country: California’s Secret Clearlake Wedding and Event Venues

While I’ve lived in the Bay Area for 30 years, I took my very first trip to Lake County only recently when I rented a house on Clearlake for a much-needed family vacation. Now that I’ve finally visited, though, I’m already starting to wonder when I can return to this peaceful region north of the wine country. Of course I managed to scout out some ideal wedding ceremony, reception and rehearsal dinner sites while there. A couple of my new favorite places:

Makiivka EstateMakiivka Estate: Owner Jan Attard’s mission to create a taste of old Europe amongst California’s vineyards has already been achieved in their lovely ranch house, but I learned there are even bigger plans for this property. Situated on a picturesque stretch of organic farmland near Lakeport, Makiivka Estate will soon boast a reflecting pool, a spa and an olive grove for outdoor ceremonies. Proceeds from events will benefit an orphanage in Makiivka, in the Ukraine. Jan refers to this location as her “passion in progress,” and I’m confident that this passion of hers will quickly become the highly sought-after wedding venue she envisions.

Chapel at Terrill CellarsTerrill Cellars: If you get a thrill finding places off the beaten path, you might be just as drawn to Terrill Winery as I was. The Tuscan-style grounds include an adorable 22-seat chapel right next to their tasting room. Guests can stay in nearby Kelseyville, where we found a charming vacation rental with sunset views overlooking the entire lake.

I imagine that saying your vows in a place as quiet and natural as Clearlake can be a spiritual experience. If you’ve discovered some of your own wedding locations in this region, let me know so I can have a good excuse to go back.

Allison Posted by Allison on Aug 18, 2008.
Filed under CeremonyHoneymoons and TravelLocationsReceptionsRehearsal Dinner

All-Inclusive Honeymoons for under $300 a Night?

My boyfriend and I are planning a trip to Europe next September, so I’ve been spending a lot of time at the travel magazine section of my local bookstore. While checking out an article on Italy in the July/August edition of Arthur Frommer’s Budget Travel magazine, I found an interesting little promo on budget resorts that I just had to share with you.

Sandals Resorts, known for their all-inclusive honeymoon packages, is building a new series of hotels geared towards couples on a budget. A new Grand Pineapple Beach Resort just opened up in both Antigua and Jamaica, and they offer packages that start at $252/night! After the wedding bills become reality, I imagine that price sounds just about right for newlyweds. And with the all-inclusive deal, you don’t have to worry about a thing. Just relax and enjoy the sunshine—that is, if you make it out of your room!

Grand Pineapple Beach Resort in Jamaica

Denise Posted by Denise on Aug 15, 2008.
Filed under Budget Wedding IdeasHoneymoons and Travel

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