How to Plan a Destination Wedding That Will WOW Your Guests

Your wedding day is all about celebrating the love between you and your partner. But let’s be honest, it’s also probably the biggest party you’ll ever throw. Not to mention, a rare opportunity to get all the people you both love in one place. Even more so for a destination wedding, where you’ll be in a unique setting having a once-in-a-lifetime experience. So why play it safe? If you’re the kind of couple who loves to be a little bit extra, then this is your moment to shine with unique details, extravagant décor, and completely over-the-top wedding ideas that people will be talking about for years to come. Here’s how to plan a destination wedding that will wow your guests.

Make it a unique travel experience

One of the best things about a destination wedding is that it’s a chance for guests to immerse themselves in a new or favorite place in a unique way. So why not create the kind of experience that they normally wouldn’t be able to enjoy? One of the best ways to do this is with the venue. Exclusively hiring out an iconic or historical site at your destination immediately ups the wow-factor, especially if it’s usually a private space. For example, a castle, a museum, or a historical house. Outdoor spaces are also an option, especially if they have incredible views, whether they’re in a famous garden or a national park.

To really plan a destination wedding that will wow your guests, infuse the destination culture in other ways too, such as the cuisine, the entertainment, or elaborate favors. You can also plan special experiences before and after the wedding day, depending on the location.

Go big or go home

For a wedding that wows, bigger is always better! The sheer scale of an installation can become a breathtaking talking point (not to mention looking incredible in photographs). Think huge floral displays that transform an indoor space into a garden, walls covered with flowers or greenery, opulent chandeliers, dramatic centerpieces, or an aisle lined with trees. Suspended floral installations are always a bold statement, drawing the eye up and creating a feeling of splendor. The sheer number of flowers is also a factor – imagine being surrounded by sweet-smelling blooms everywhere you look as you say “I do”! For a destination wedding, it’s important to work with an experienced luxury destination wedding planner who can not only help to conceive these kinds of show-stopping ideas but will also have the vendor contacts to execute them flawlessly.

Personalize the experience for your guests

No matter what budget you’re working with, personal details are the key to really elevating your guests’ experience. It starts with a thoughtful and indulgent welcome gift – always a great idea for a destination wedding as it sets the tone for the whole weekend. Consider your guests’ comfort and enjoyment in every possible way, from including some of their favorite foods to having the DJ play their favorite songs. Destination weddings often have a smaller guest list, which really allows you to get personal. For example, instead of generic favors, give each guest a different gift. (With a handwritten note, of course!)

Invest in entertainment

Want to really blow your guests away? Entertainment is the key! Whether it’s a star headline performer or surprise interactions through the evening, entertainment will delight your guests. Think acrobats and aerialists, ballet dancers, synchronized swimmers, opera singers, drag performers. You name it! Instead of just serving champagne, have waitresses circulate wearing hoop ‘skirts’ holding flutes of bubbly. Hire a magician to circulate amongst the crowd. Instead of having a string quartet play at the ceremony, hire a full orchestra or a choir. This is also a chance to showcase your destination’s signature music, dance, and art and showcase it.

Make a big entrance (or exit)

When you plan an over-the-top destination wedding that will wow your guests, it should end on a high note! For example, surprise your guests with an extravagant firework display or confetti canons. Or make your grand exit in a unique way, such as on a boat, in a helicopter, or even a motorcycle. A dramatic entrance is another option and will have your guests in awe.

The key to an over-the-top destination wedding is really to let your imagination run wild. Get creative and push the boundaries! Not all ideas are do-able, but it only takes one to make your wedding stand out in people’s memories forever!


Image by Christian Oth Studio