Looking for your perfect wedding location is exciting. We get that. And now that you’ve narrowed down your choices to a select few, you so want to get down to the nuts and bolts of making your decision.
It’s at this point, however, that you need to remember something extremely important: picking your location is not just a fun part of the planning process, it’s also a business transaction.
The key to choosing your perfect place and negotiating a contract once you make your decision is knowing what to ask your contact at each location. We’ve put together that list of questions for you.
Here’s our advice: Negotiate what you want, make sure every single thing that is important to you gets written into your contract, and don’t sign until you’ve reviewed it thoroughly. Getting it all in writing will ensure that you can get hitched without a hitch.
Luckily, a creative artist has given us an alternative: the Custom Ring Bowl. Have the bowl customized with words that are special to you and your fiancé (yes, anything you want!) and then later display it in your home. And, at just $22.50, you’re not going to break the bank. It’s a lovely reminder of a very key moment in your lives.
Because, really, were you going to put your ring bearer’s pillow on your bookshelf? Probably not.
Life’s been a bit stressful lately and so my husband and I decided to get away, just for one day and one night, to focus our minds on nicer things. Given that Napa is only 30 minutes from our house, it seemed an inspired choice.
But…where to go? There are so many options in the Napa and Sonoma Wine Country, both for wedding locations and for lovely places to stay. We decided, just this time, to forgo the spa/resort route (though, I love me some spa!) and instead chose the super-cozy and yet boutiquey Cottages of Napa Valley.
Within minutes of entering our sweet, private cottage—complete with small (and yet well-outfitted) kitchen and sitting area, I knew that this would be my new recommendation for a honeymoon location in the Napa area. The Cottages are just the perfect spot for those first few days after your wedding: You have everything you need to stay inside and not see the light of day for as long as you want, but, if you do decide to leave your getaway, it’s close to tons of great wineries and restaurants. And, it’s well priced for the region.
We indulged in a wonderful in-cottage couples massage, which the folks at the Cottages of Napa Valley set up for us. The friendly Cottages staff also made our dinner and lunch reservations (we had fantastic meals at Tra Vigne and Brix respectively) and gave us helpful, insider tips for the best places to do some shopping and wine-tasting (we loved Nicholson Ranch – which, by the way, is a great wedding location, too).
Bonus: each morning, a large basket of yummy baked goods, fruit and juices from Bouchon Bakery is delivered with the day’s paper. A lazy morning, husband at my side, book, coffee, baked goods close by…That’s about as relaxing as things can get and just what we needed.