My husband and I recently took a ten day, 3100 mile road trip that included Oregon, Idaho, Montana, and Lake Louise & Banff, Canada, (Love those Canadian Rockies!!) .
While in Banff we visited the Fairmont Banff Springs Chateau which is an exquisite castle-like property nestled in the Rockies with spectacular views. As we explored the property, we discovered staff setting up for a wedding reception. What I liked was the simplicity of the décor. They were allowing the room to be the star by keeping the table decorations minimal with white candles and single flower stems in glass vases.
As we were sipping an adult beverage in the beautiful lounge area and gazing out the windows, just outside to our left a wedding party assembled to have their pictures taken using the Mountains as their altar. A young bride with six attendants; the bride was in ivory and all her attendants were in long white gowns. Watching the photographer and wedding planner methodically move through the photos and then finish the ceremony set up was fun.
We didn’t get any pictures of this…I didn’t want to interfere with their festivities. Their photo ops were spectacular (even if it was brrrr…cold!).
We continued our exploration of the hotel and came upon a String Quartet with Fiddles setting-up for one of the receptions. Their sound was amazing; a blend of classic songs, country and bluegrass.
My research revealed Banff has an International String Quartet Competition every year. I love that! I’m tracking down the bands name and will report back when I get it.
Montana greeted us with the perfect Fall weather. Having dinner on the deck of the Whitefish Lodge overlooking Whitefish Lake, Montana we began chatting with the couple at the table next to us. Turns out they’ve been married for 41 years. Out of the blue, the gentleman told us they owned a wedding venue in Winthrop, Washington specializing in rustic vista and barn style weddings. I do so love these serendipitous moments!
Here’s just a couple of photos of their Gardner View Ranch:
Above: The River Ceremony View
Below: The Pasture Ceremony Venue
Rick and Jan Fulcher are passionate about their wedding ranch and are adding lodging to their venue’s amenities. Jan mentioned as she helps mid-life brides plan their weddings, she notices their intention and awareness make a significant difference in the quality of their ceremonies. I’m excited to visit Gardner View Ranch in the future and see this beautiful venue first hand.
Check out their website here:
A couple of nights later sitting on the same deck, my husband pointed out that The Lodge at Whitefish Lake also had three wedding venues available and all had incredible views of the lake. Here’s a few photos of the resort and lake.
You can visit their website here: http://www.lodgeatwhitefishlake.com/
On the final day of our trip I was doing some shopping in downtown Ketchum, Idaho and found a store, The Gardens Sun Valley with really good merchandising (I’m a sucker for stellar merchandising). While cruising through the store, I overheard the owner, Taylor Sturges talk about a wedding for which she was busy prepping. Turns out, Taylor has been featured in multiple wedding blogs and magazines. I could see why, she’s got style!
We spoke about the Mid-Life Bride category and the opportunities these brides present. I love that the first “accolade” on her Taylor’d Events page is from a Mid-life couple (photo below). Wow….I LOVE her dress!
Taylor shared that the Sun Valley area is mostly a destination wedding locale. Knowing Mid-Life Brides opt for destination weddings frequently I’d say check out Ketchum and Taylor. They’re an awesome combo.
Here’s a few examples of Taylor’s work:
See Taylor’s store and learn more about her services here: www.thegardenssunvalley.com
Our trip was full of fun, beauty AND wedding synchronicities. Meeting friendly, passionate and capable wedding professionals I can share with all of you makes me happy!
Have a wonderful place or experience you’d like to share?