Hometown Receptions for Destination Weddings
by Kerry Leedy , KL Wedding Designs LLC
Destination weddings are becoming popular with couples today, and why shouldn’t they? Many brides
(and grooms) dream of an intimate wedding in a beautiful setting. However, one problem many couples
face is how to include friends and family without asking them to spend an arm and a leg for travel. The
answer is very simple. Throw a destination themed-reception in your hometown when you return!
Saying your vows on a cliff top in Hawaii?
Throw a luau reception complete with hula dancer, fire dancers, and maybe even the traditional roasted
pig. Greet your guests with orchid leis and dance your first dance to Israel Kamakawiwo’ole’s version of
Somewhere over the Rainbow.
Declaring your love on a white sandy beach?
For your centerpieces, fill a glass bowl with sand and seashells and place a white pillar candle in the
middle to give off a romantic glow. Instead of place cards, attach a piece of paper with your guests’
names on it to a paper cocktail umbrella and stick them in a piece of Styrofoam covered with sand to look
like a beach. Hire a steel drum band to play during cocktail hour and serve island drinks like pina coladas
A small ceremony in a vineyard?
Give miniature bottles of wine as your favors. Have your baker decorate your cake using champagne
grapes and have bowls filled with grapes placed around the room. Use old wine barrels as cocktail tables
and consider deep reds and burgundies for your color palette.
To have and to hold at a snowy ski resort?
Set up a hot chocolate bar at your reception where guests can choose from different types of cocoas and
marshmallows. Drape areas of the room in white linens sprinkled with glitter to look like snowy
mountains and use lighting with a blue tone to give the room a cooler feel.
Jet set wedding overseas?
Send guests invitations that look like passports. Serve food traditional to the country where you were
married, incorporating that country’s wedding customs in your theme. For example, if you were married
in Scotland, have bagpipes playing in the background when you are introduced to your guests. Follow
other traditions such as the bride placing a penny in her shoe, and maybe even have the groom wear a kilt.
Whatever themes you decide on for your reception, have a slideshow of pictures from your ceremony to
play so guests can feel they were there. The wedding couple can even wear what they wore the day they
got married to relive that magical day all over again. Every bride would love a reason to wear her
wedding dress again!