So you just got engaged and you’re looking for the most perfect place on earth to have your wedding. Most will agree the beach is indeed at the top of a very short list of amazing places. Whether the beach is made of stones, pebbles, or soft sugar white sand like the 32 miles along the Alabama Gulf Coast, the beach is undeniably a place where Cupid can usually be found. Love seems to blossom and thrive among the sea oats and palms that grow in coastal environments. With seagulls serenading from overhead and the occasional dolphin school splashing just off shore, the beach is definitely romantic by nature. Having your wedding ceremony in this perfect outdoor chapel will take a little planning, but it is not out of reach.
Here are ten reasons why you should make the beach your wedding destination location::
1 A BEACH WEDDING IS ROMANTIC AND NATURALLY ELEGANT
The beach is simply romantic by nature. There’s nothing quite like spending a day on the warm sand, feeling the Gulf breeze on your skin as the waves kiss the shore. It’s a bit like a fairy-tale venue, but its located right here in Alabama. Who wouldn’t want to say “I do” in such a special place with the Gulf of Mexico as the perfect backdrop? Whether you’re planning to hold your ceremony on a beach in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach or Fort Morgan, be sure to check to see if there are any reservations or permitting requirements. There are a few guidelines for using Alabama State Park beaches. They aren’t unreasonable, but brides-to-be should definitely start here when making plans to hold a wedding ceremony on a state park beach. If you plans include holding a wedding on a private beach near your beach house or condo, you should first check with your rental management company and be sure to follow their guidelines. Sunset Properties will be happy to quickly get you in touch with the right folks when you stay with us.
2 YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER WILL CAPTURE SOME FABULOUS PICTURES
They say there’s a time and place for everything under the sun. Beach weddings are no exception! You already know the beach is the perfect place for your destination wedding, but what about the timing? And the sun? Although there is actually no bad time to take pictures at the beach, great photography often depends on lighting. And what is a better form of lighting than the sun? Whether you’re wanting a morning, mid-day or evening wedding, we want your wedding photos to be amazing! To help make sure your pictures reflect all the love you and your partner share on your special day, contact the good folks at Sun Shots Photography or Chasing the Son Photography. They will work with you to determine your goals for your wedding album. They will meet you at the beach or your location of preference and make every effort to capture your memories just the way you want them done.
3 OBTAINING A MARRIAGE LICENSE IS SIMPLE AND CLERGY ARE AVAILABLE
Because Bay Minette is the Baldwin County Seat, our courthouse is just a short drive from our fabulous beaches. Licenses are issued Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:00AM and 3:00PM. It’s a good idea to check out all the guidelines on getting a marriage license in Baldwin County, Alabama by following this marriage license information link. Do you need a minister? With so many churches around the island, Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan are sure to be home to a minister or clergy member who will fill your need. For a list of local churches, check with churchfinder.com or contact our Gulf Coast Convention and Visitors Bureau to find the perfect person to lead your ceremony.
4 AWARD WINNING CATERING IS JUST A CLICK AWAY
You can’t plan a wedding without planning a reception. And what’s a great reception without great food? Orange Beach Concierge and Chef David Pan area ready to help you. Chef Pan, First Place winner of the 11th Annual National Shrimp Festival Restaurant Challenge, and his team are not only local favorites, but favorites among island guests, as well. In addition to winning the Restaurant Challenge, Chef Pan and his team will host the 47th Annual National Shrimp Festival Wrap Up Party. Need a place to hold your rehearsal dinner or reception? Check with Tillie at Orange Beach Concierge. They have an event space at The Wharf that just may be the perfect venue for your gathering.
5 ACCESS TO THE BEACH BY CAR OR AIR IS EASY
With Interstate 10 about 30 miles away and Interstate 65 only about 60 miles away, accessing the Alabama Gulf Coast by automobile is pretty easy from just about anywhere. Once you exit off an interstate, Gulf Shores Parkway (AL Hwy 59) and the Baldwin and Foley Beach Express Highways make getting onto our island a breeze. Did you know we have an airport, too? Yep! That’s right. Gulf Shores is home to a wonderful airport. If your favorite mode of transportation is by air, Jack Edwards International Airport may just be your first stop in our area. No matter how you get here, we know that once you arrive with your special day just ahead of you, you will not be disappointed. Will you need transportation once you get here? Limousine and taxi services are available on our island. Contact Luxury Limo if you need an elegant ride for you or your wedding party. If a not-so-formal mode of transportation is what you desire, consider any one of fine taxi services .
6 YOUR DRESS CAN BE AS FORMAL OR AS LAID BACK AS YOU ARE
One of the most special things a bride does in preparation for her wedding day is choose her dress. So many times, her dress sets the tone for the whole affair. One of the coolest things about a beach wedding is you dress can be as individualized as you are and your wedding will still be perfect. What do I mean? Well, if a formal wedding is what you’re heart is wishing for, then you’re in luck. Reach out to one of our local wedding planners, get your chairs and red carpet aisle scheduled and wear that spectacular formal gown as you cross a beautiful Alabama beach like a princess on your way to meet her prince. If your style is a bit more laid back and you’d rather be barefooted on the warm sand as you say your vows with your sweetheart, well, that will work great, too! About the only thing I haven’t seen (so far) is a mermaid wedding. Would you like to have a mermaid wedding? If that appeals to you, again I say: the beach is the perfect destination wedding location to make your special dream come true!
7 FLOWERS AND WEDDING DECORATIONS ARE AVAILABLE LOCALLY
While the beach, itself, sets a perfect backdrop for a fantasy wedding, you’re probably going to want to dress it up (even if only just a tad bit) with some flowers and maybe a few candles. You’ll probably want to get some gift baskets for your wedding party or special guests, too.
Gulf Shores and Orange Beach are home to some of the most talented florists anywhere. The skilled staff at Flowers by the Shore has been serving the Gulf Coast for over 20 years. Check out their website for pictures of their colorful bouquets, cut flowers, fine wines and gift baskets. The staff there is so accommodating! After all, you don’t stay in business for 20 years in a small town if you don’t have excellent customer service.
Another option for flowers and gift baskets is All Island Flowers. Browse their website to see the most popular floral arrangements currently trending on the Gulf Coast. If you want to add a little color to your special day, either of these florists should be able to get you just what your heart desires.
8 ENTERTAINING YOUR GUESTS AT YOUR RECEPTION IS A BREEZE
So you have the perfect reception in mind. You secured your venue or outdoor space and you have the caterer all lined up. What about the music? Sure a live band would be great, but if that’s not quite the option you were looking for, how about a live DJ? Gulf Shores’ own Damon Collins – Event Disc Jockey has been entertaining wedding parties for over 20 years along the Gulf Coast. As an owner of three FM radio stations, he has the experience to help make your event fun and entertaining. And boy does he bring the music! He has more songs in his music library than most of us can count. He also offers a karaoke option and is very easy to work with. Lighting and speakers are all provided. Check out his interactive website and, go ahead, start to choose your special music for your special day.
9 YOUR HONEYMOON STARTS THE MOMENT YOU SAY “I DO”
Think about it. Your honeymoon really does start the moment you say “I do”. No traveling required. You’re already here! And you’re married to your best friend in the whole world! Most people have their weddings somewhere else and drive to the beach for their honeymoon, but you made the great decision to do it all in one place. You chose to share your special beach destination wedding with your guests and now it’s time for you and your spouse to have your special time together. Sunset Properties has an extensive list of rental properties available for your stay both before and after your wedding. Would your whole wedding party like to stay together? Check out Wit’s Inn or Fort of Fun or Sea Turtle . These amazing beach homes sleep from ten to twenty people comfortably. Would you prefer your guests stay in the same building but not in the same home? Consider reserving several condos at The Dunes or The Indies. But what about your own special place for after your wedding? We have a couple of suggestions for that, too. Of course you could reserve your own private one bedroom condo at The Dunes or The Indies. You might like Beachview 223 or Moorings 414. If you’d rather spend your first week as a married couple in a beach home instead of a condo, give Rookery 1902 and the Boathouse a look. Need more suggestions? Just contact us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be happy to help!
10 YOUR BEACH DESTINATION WEDDING IS MORE AFFORDABLE THAN YOU MAY THINK
So I’ve given you a list of reasons why you should hold your beach destination wedding in Gulf Shores, Fort Morgan or Orange Beach. You’re probably saying, “That all sounds nice, but what about my budget?” I know every wedding has a budget and every bride and her family face those issues. What if I were to tell you that your Alabama Gulf Coast Beach Destination Wedding may be more affordable than you think? Consider this: no matter where you say your vows, you’re probably going to hire a caterer, buy some flowers, and plan a reception with a special venue and entertainment. You have to buy a marriage license and you’re probably going on a honeymoon. I propose to you that with careful planning that you can have it all right here in south Alabama and you can have the wedding of your dreams. If checking out all the links in this blog seems like too much work, I have one more suggestion: Gulf Shores Wedding Chapel. This wonderful little venue located in north Gulf Shores has it all. Maybe all you need to do is contact the good folks here, let them guide you in your planning, and dress up, show up, and get married.
Planning a wedding is a stressful time for any bride. Destination weddings can be a challenge for anyone. Here in Gulf Shores, Alabama, however, we are ready to help you make your special day an amazing dream come true. At Sunset Properties, we are interested not only in making sure your accommodations are perfect for you and your wedding guests, we also want your wedding day and honeymoon stay to be the absolute best they can be. If you’re looking for some memorable romantic things to do while you honeymoon with us, check out our blog Top 10 Most Romantic Things to do in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan for suggestions.
From all of us at Sunset Properties, congratulations on your engagement and we look forward to seeing you on your happy day!