Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado: A Santa Fe Treasure

We have a lot of love in our hearts for local wedding professionals, and that’s definitely no secret. Though, every once in a blue moon, one comes along that really steals our hearts. Whether it’s a dedicated florist, an open-hearted wedding officiant, or a venue that treats every guest with the utmost respect, there are a few wedding professionals in New Mexico who truly stand out. Which is, of course, the case with Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado.

While Santa Fe is inherently luxurious, the resort is genuinely the pinnacle of splendor. Nestled on 60 acres of secluded land, and with views of the Jemez Mountains, the entire space welcomes in couples with the familiar scent of piñon woodsmoke. Though, surrounded by the rugged, mountainous beauty of the Santa Fe wilderness, the inside of the resort is quite the opposite.

Beautifully manicured grounds and luxurious accommodations await. Located near the beautiful groves of old cottonwood trees that cast their ancient shadows over Tesuque. Serene and exclusive.

-Carl, guest

With several space choices for your wedding, each different setting offers flexible seating options to ensure every wedding party is comfortably provided for. Plus, Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado is revered for its culinary expertise, and even offers locally engaged couples the option of having a completely custom menu cultivated by their top-notch team, just for them.

Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado specializes in bringing cherished wedding dreams to life, which is what makes their venue stand out from all the rest. It’s not the unparalleled beauty of the resort, or their team of wedding experts who are there to help you from planning to execution, or the fact their space is intimately secluded while only being 10 minutes from downtown Santa Fe’s shops and galleries, or even the pool or opulent spa. What places Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado above all else is their dedication to manifesting the wedding fantasies of engaged couples, and how they treat each person who walks through their doors with kindness and respect.

{But some gorgeous inspo from a breathtaking venue never hurts, right?!}

95764a94-802d-4225-a05f-fc01dfad5fc1.jpg

ac87459d-2929-465e-b173-22b1cab9642d

e2f72224-8414-4545-a2de-33a951b0cbf5

ed5d49f1-b1ee-4402-be91-a29829d28854.jpg

3d7ba7a3-7b82-4d24-8667-23bc3c2ec0ec.jpg

Perfect Wedding Guide wedding planning design inspiration budget floral bouquet arrangement New Mexico Albuquerque greenery Santa Fe flowers natural organic local

Advertisements

Turquoise Tenderness: Southwestern Styled Shoot

Turquoise, ristras, and adobe — does it get any more New Mexican than that!? We’ve been sending so much love to our home place recently, what with the venue features and      wedding spotlights. But it seems like we aren’t the only ones who have caught the bug and are showing more and more appreciation to this beautiful state! Briana Nicole Photography, one of Albuquerque’s finest wedding professionals, channeled her inherent creativity into a gorgeous, Southwestern-vibe styled shoot that we are absolutely swooning over.

Yes, we would have adored this shoot because of its New Mexican vibes and the heart behind the process, but what makes is it that makes this shoot so special to us? Briana Nicole Photography collaborated entirely with local, wedding experts to bring this styled shoot to life. Each facet of the shoot was cultivated lovingly by our local pros, and that reveals something very special about New Mexico, besides the turquoise, ristras, and adobe: community.

It’s not the first Southwestern-inspired work of art to exist, and it surely won’t be the last, but Briana Nicole Photography and her team of hardworking, dedicated vendors made something new and beautiful from the vein of inspiration that has been touching hearts for centuries. So, if you want to pay homage to our stunning landscapes and rich culture, these are the wedding professionals to call! You can rest assured in their ability to incorporate New Mexican style into your wedding in new, fresh, and deeply appreciative ways.

Scroll on to contact these vendors, get lost in some incredible Southwestern wedding inspo, and hear what Briana Nicole has to say about the shoot.

BNP_0425BNP_0460BNP_0496BNP_0571

I love this beautiful state we live in — we have some of the most spectacular views and amazing culture surrounding us daily. With this shoot we really wanted a Southwestern vibe, but more importantly a New Mexico vibe, too. The Hyatt Regency Tamaya was a perfect location because their resort has an amazing view of our Sandia Mountains and their entire resort is covered in Navajo art and pottery. Black Bow Events styled our tables with chile ristras and turquoise accents, and Maggie’s Wedding Cakes provided a perfect tribal designed cake that tied the whole look together. Our beautiful bride wore handmade turquoise jewelry from Larry Martinez Jeweler, and we took their portraits with the open desert as our background. I’m so thankful for the amazing team of vendors who contributed!

Briana Nicole Photography

BNP_0385-EditBNP_0501BNP_0607BNP_0679BNP_0750BNP_0867

Planner | Black Bow Events
Photographer | Briana Nicole Photography
Linens | Simply Decor + Events
Venue | Hyatt Regency Tamaya 
Cake | Maggie’s Wedding Cakes
MUA + Hairstylist | C. Johnson Makeup
Dress | Bridal Elegance by Darlene
Tuxedo | Suits Unlimited
Bride | @__katrina__anne
Jewelry | Larry Martinez Jewelry

Perfect Wedding Guide wedding planning design inspiration budget floral bouquet arrangement New Mexico Albuquerque greenery Santa Fe flowers natural organic local

Albuquerque’s Most Beloved Bakery: The Cake Boutique

Florists, officiants, and DJs, oh my! We say this a lot, but planning your wedding really is quite the task. You’ve got vendors to meet and book, aunts and uncles to invite (or not invite — we don’t judge), shoes to find, makeup trials, gowns to get fitted — and that’s not even the half of it all. So if you’re feeling inundated, we understand. And we’re here to offer you some relief, as there’s one delicious treat waiting for you in your near future: your wedding cake!

When you choose The Cake Boutique for your cake, the whole process is even sweeter, too. For over 5 years, The Cake Boutique has been serving Albuquerque + Santa Fe locals the most delectable confections for their special day, knowing full well that your wedding celebration is one of the most important moments of your life. Creating custom wedding cakes (or cupcakes and cookies!) is The Cake Boutique‘s speciality, and working with every couple’s budget is of the utmost importance to their team.

Which is why we value Birdie, a wedding cake expert from The Cake Boutique, and her advice so highly, and over the years, we’ve compiled some incredible tips and tricks from her. Luckily for you, we aren’t in the business of hoarding industry secrets. Remember when we said we understand what an incredible feat it is to plan your wedding? We truly meant it, so we’re here to share everything we’ve learned, with some gorgeous cake inspo to boot!Andaluz-16

The best advice I can give to those blushing brides is to prioritize where the wedding cake will fit into her perfect day. Hopefully she can then create a budget for what she would like to spend on the cake. For example, if flowers are not high on the list of where she wants to make the most lasting impression from her day, she can then allocate fewer funds towards the purchasing of flowers to allow her more design options for her wedding cake!

SScanyon-4

Here’s one of the thriftiest wedding cake hacks ever:

Instead of creating one extravagant cake that can feed all of your guests, have your baker create a small cake, which is meant for the cake cutting, pictures, and feeding a few guests. Then, have a simpler, easy to cut sheet cake that can be hidden in the kitchen and cut up afterwards for all of your wedding guests to enjoy.

Alicia Lucia Photography

And another wallet-saving tip!

You can also utilize a dummy tier out of foam! Many bakeries can help achieve the look of a multi-tiered wedding cake for less, by substituting decorated foam tiers in between real tiers of cake. This will be a huge blessing to your bank account… Trust us!

2f7faa08-199e-43d0-a91d-f515981176b6

And some final words for all couples, regardless of cake preferences:

My words of wisdom for brides out there would be to just be a little bit selfish when planning her wedding. I’ve met with so many brides who get caught up in trying to please all of the different people in their lives. Trying to consider everyone else’s thoughts and opinions when it comes down to what will be right for them will only lead to undue stress.

00ec4510-65f2-43b0-8936-4704376d13da

 

Perfect Wedding Guide wedding planning design inspiration budget floral bouquet arrangement New Mexico Albuquerque greenery Santa Fe flowers natural organic local

To Boudoir or To Not Boudoir? 5 Reasons Every Bride Should Have A Shoot

Not every wedding trend is going to be your jam, obviously. Maybe you opted for deep, jewel tones instead of the traditional muted hues and pastels. Maybe you went totally 1940’s classic chic as opposed to the rustic, burlap-and-lace vibe. Or maybe you threw out the whole wedding, and instead had a styled elopement! {Like this — totally one of our favorites.} Isn’t that the great part of weddings? How truly collaborative and customizable the whole experience is?

Okay but wait, before we get carried away talking about how much we love weddings, there’s one wedding trend that truly transcends all personal aesthetic choices: boudoir photography. It’s a bit controversial, sure, but regardless of your style, there’s space in your wedding planning for a boudoir shoot. We promise.

Though not every bride-to-be is sold on the idea of getting super vulnerable in front of the lens. {Which, as a fellow shy person, I understand and couldn’t imagine doing it myself.} But when we sat down with one of our favorite photographers, Shannon MacLean from Chandelier Studio, to chat about boudoir photography — her speciality — it totally changed the way we think of the art form.

My absolute favorite part of each shoot is the reveal, because as fun as it is to create ‘pretty pictures,’ creating lasting love for who she is as a woman is far more rewarding.

Shannon, Chandelier Studio

So we asked Shannon to come up with her top 5 reasons why every bride should do a boudoir shoot. Scroll on, friend! You can book Chandelier Studio for your personalized shoot here.

{Not sold yet? Don’t worry, you will be by the reason #5 and can book using the link at the end.}

ChandelierStudio2

 

 

1. Get comfortable in front of the camera. Because let’s face it, most brides are regular human people, and many of us human people feel uncomfortable having our photo taken. Don’t wait until your wedding to try and rectify this anxiety — get cozy with a Canon before your big day and have one less thing to worry about.

2. It’s the perfect wedding day gift. Stuck trying to figure out something meaningful to pass on to your soon-to-be spouse? Not anymore!

3. Capture your ‘wedding bod’ while it’s extra fabulous. Disclaimer: all bodies are beautiful, and your body will be beautiful on your wedding day and on your 40th anniversary. But if you’ve been putting in some extra work to feel particularly perfect on your big day well then, hello! Let’s celebrate that!

ChandelierStudio3

4. Learn posture and posing techniques to look great in your wedding photos. ‘Cause again, there are going to be a lot of cameras trained on you for your big day. We all know our best angles when it’s just us alone in the mirror, of course, but with a boudoir shoot as a practice round, you can learn to manifest those killer poses even outside of your bathroom.

5. The first wedding anniversary theme is paper — gift your spouse with an album! Already got the perfect, meaningful gift for your wedding day? Not a problem. Have your gorgeous photos made into an album or print, and ta-da! You’ve got the first anniversary covered ahead of time.

ChandelierStudio1

Book Chandelier Studio for your wedding + boudoir shoot here!

 

Perfect Wedding Guide wedding planning design inspiration budget floral bouquet arrangement New Mexico Albuquerque greenery Santa Fe flowers natural organic local

Local + Lovely: Albuquerque’s Favorite Wedding Show

SNAG YOUR TICKETS HERE!


 

Okay, so maybe the Diamond Dash is actually your favorite wedding show. Which makes sense — where else do you have the opportunity to dive into a giant wedding cake and dig around for diamond jewelry? {No, seriously, is there somewhere else you can do that? Because we’d love a shot at it ourselves…} But the Wedding Gallery Wedding Show is my personal favorite, and I’ll tell you why.

First, Sandia Resort and Casino — the famed location of the Wedding Gallery — provides the perfect backdrop for the event. Each little corner and crevice is filled with local wedding professionals who have dedicated their entire Sunday to making the wedding planning process a little bit easier for you. Sounds like a wedding show, right? Well, what makes the Wedding Gallery different in this aspect, though, is how each booth is meticulously curated.

Last year’s theme, for example, was greek chic. When our team walked into the ballroom and saw not only the stage for the couture fashion show, but each local professional‘s hard word and dedication to this theme, our jaws dropped. As the morning continued, our jaws stayed on the floor with every impeccable detail that was added. From Black Swan Events‘ multi-table spread, to Gypsy Trail Hair + Makeup‘s boho-greek space, not an ounce of the ballroom was left untouched by love.

For the discerning couple, this is the place to do your planning. Some of the vendors even recruited one another to ensure their booths were perfectly enticing and aligned with the theme. Not only was it magical to watch this greek chic dream suddenly solidify in reality, but witnessing the wedding experts build each other up made the whole day unreal. And isn’t that the whole point of a wedding show? To see how local businesses can take a vision and bring it to life, while working together with the other wedding experts on the big day?

{Oh! I almost forgot to mention — the cocktails, food stations, wedding inspo, VIP bridal couture fashion show, giveaways, games, and prizes are pretty incredible, too. But you probably already knew that.}

See you there!


SNAG YOUR TICKETS HERE!

 

88539bee-cc81-4b1a-9b6f-1929fa5e8710d173f5a8-9a9f-4060-ba4e-2214e0b16a36f52dd880-f3ae-4ccc-9584-6c8c929c7df52bfddaab-3ca1-4889-80fd-287e10fc7f627b6cc653-fa1e-4421-82b8-3859831f062615ecf94a-3817-4bf3-89ad-7758352666a84b1f7c01-617b-474b-8df5-5335b3c14fca92d82e1f-fa13-4cd2-b044-29a096dfa7ecThank you, Photographic Perspectives, for the gorgeous photos from our 2017 Wedding Gallery Show!

 

Perfect Wedding Guide wedding planning design inspiration budget floral bouquet arrangement New Mexico Albuquerque greenery Santa Fe flowers natural organic local

Basic Invite: Anything But Basic Vintage Stationery

Ah, yes, save-the-dates — one of the very first steps in the wedding planning process, with the actual wedding invitations following on their heels. That initial leap into planning one of the biggest events of your lives together can actually be pretty nerve-wracking, if you ask us. Especially when that step involves proof-reading and sending out hundreds of paper products with potential spelling, time and date, or design errors to all your closest friends and family…

Luckily, with Basic Invite, you can lay these fears to rest! {And if you didn’t have anxiety about your wedding invitations until we mentioned all the possible mistakes then, well, our sincerest apologies for the emotional roller coaster.} Since 2006, Basic Invite‘s team of highly creative, highly talented designers and artists have been dutifully handcrafting customizable, vintage wedding invitations, save-the-dates, announcements, photo cards, and basically everything else stationery related from their home base in Saint George, Utah.

Sure there are plenty of options for custom, online stationery design nowadays, but there’s something about Basic Invite that truly sets them apart. Or maybe it’s not one particular thing, but a conglomeration of their attributes that, together, can quell any bride-to-be’s anxiety around the intimidating permanence of paper products. Take their customer service, for example. The moment you click over to their website — which is super intuitive and clean, also — a little window pops up, offering brides the option of live-chatting with one of their team members.

Or even better, their custom samples. Basic Invite is one of the very, very rare invitation companies that will send you and your fiancé a sample of your handcrafted designed stationery before you order. Not only can you physically hold the invite or save the date in your hand to check for texture, color, and design perfection, but you can proofread it once more then, too. Just in case.

Then there’s all the free stuff too! We’re big fans of free things, as are most normal human beings, and Basic Invite is actually chock full of free goodies. Like their all-new wedding websites, which are 100% customizable, just like their invitations. Pop in your wedding details, photos, maps, and all other info your guests would possibly need, all in one convenient spot. {Because, sigh, there will undoubtedly be at least a handful of guests who lose their invitations and have to ask for all the details again.}

All this said and we still haven’t even mentioned the custom options! {Over 40 different envelope options, and over 800 different wedding invitation sets. Yeah, you read that right.} But at this point we’re starting to sound a bit like obsessive fangirls, so we’ll let you, lovely engaged couple and blog-lover, check them out yourself at their site here. Try to not get too obsessed after scrolling through their gorgeous designs — but if you do, we won’t hold it against you.

Vintage Botanical 6File Apr 28, 4 26 37 PMGeneric-SuitePhoto Nov 14, 3 48 13 PMRaised Foil 2Vintage Botanical 3 Square

 

Perfect Wedding Guide wedding planning design inspiration budget floral bouquet arrangement New Mexico Albuquerque greenery Santa Fe flowers natural organic local

Best Outdoor Venues in Albuquerque

Here’s the thing about New Mexico: it’s very easy to forget how lucky we are living in this state, especially when it comes to the weather. {Yes, we know it’s been pretty toasty lately, but take a trip somewhere a little closer to sea level and you’ll be missing the dry heat, we promise.}

It’s true that our lovely desert climate — minus the windy spring season — is relatively mild all year long.  Even when it rains, seasoned New Mexicans rest assured knowing it’ll only last 5 minutes, 10 maximum. Which, obviously, makes this state one of the best places for an outdoor wedding! If we had to guess, that’s probably why we’re blessed with so many options for outdoor ceremony and reception venues.

How do you choose though, when they’re all so lovely? Well, research of course. But even then, sometimes a venue seems perfect on screen, but might not measure up in person. Which is why we took the liberty of choosing five of our favorites to showcase here, for you. While there are many more incredible venues in New Mexico aside from these five, these are venues we’ve visited, spent time in, and even hosted events in some! So we can say, with the utmost confidence, that these venues will not disappoint.

{Plus we thew in some of the always invaluable reviews + opinions from local brides too, just in case you need a little extra assurance.}


Casa Rondeña

1606374_400920110041974_37849195_o

Casa Rondeña, a gorgeous and fully-functional winery in the heart of the South Valley, has more charm than you’d think even possible for just one venue. With indoor spaces available as well, the possibilities for indoor-outdoor receptions and ceremonies are {almost} endless!

The venue is absolutely gorgeous, and though we don’t have our professional pictures back, even the pictures our guests took are breathtaking. They went on Facebook where everyone just oohed and aahed over how gorgeous the lawn of the 1629 Club is, and how beautifully everything reflects off the water there.

-Heather, bride

For availability at Casa Rondeña, you can book the venue here.


Prairie Star

Perfect Wedding Guide local vendors Albuquerque Santa Fe New Mexico planning inspo inspiration ceremony tips real wedding couple photography PWG Elite Awards contest competition vote now venue marriage Prairie Star ceremony
Maura Jane Photography

Prairie Star, you beautiful venue, you! The serenity at this venue is very much unrivaled, as the space is nestled in the quiet of the Santa Ana Pueblo and is surrounded by rolling hills of lush greenery. Punctuating the property is the proud adobe mansion, whose regality is also unparalleled.

I choose this venue mostly for the scenery. When I found it, I fell in love. Even better, it’s so reasonably priced compared to other venues. I received so many compliments on the location, it was beautiful. […] I am so incredibly glad I found this place and got to have my ceremony and reception here. Also, it’s very convenient to have a place where you can have the ceremony outside and reception inside!

-Alexandria, bride

For availability at Prairie Star, you can book the venue here.


Hacienda Dona Andrea

Ashley Davis Photography
Ashley Davis Photography

Honestly, of all the venues in all the world, Hacienda Dona Andrea just might be the most romantic. With old-world vibes, hand-crafted details, and stunning views, this venue is a perfectly secluded escape from reality for you and your soon-to-be spouse.

The place decorates itself – the architecture is southwestern and unique. the views are gorgeous and the place is perfectly secluded, yet there is still access to the funky little town of Madrid close by. We couldn’t have picked a better spot for our intimate family wedding. The team at the Hacienda made planning from a distance very easy for us and we were well taken care of. We are truly so happy with our choice to get married at Hacienda Dona Andrea!

-Alexis, bride

For availability at Hacienda Dona Andrea, you can book the venue here.


El Monte Sagrado

100A373402
Chrisi K Photography

Oh, El Monte Sagrado, where to even begin? Photos of the property showcase quite clearly how venerable and awe-inspiring the trees and scenery of the property truly are, but trust us when we say, it’s even better in person. See more from this darling real wedding here.

Honestly, I didn’t know places like this still existed. Besides El Monte Sagrado being breathtakingly beautiful, the customer service was out of this world. I had my wedding here at the beginning of the year and everyone at the resort made sure that my family, friends, husband and I had everything we needed!

-Jillian L., bride

For availability at El Monte Sagrado, you can book the venue here.


Los Poblanos Historic Inn + Organic Farm

LaurenCheriePhotography_0-282
Lauren Cherie Photography

Of course, no list of New Mexico venues would be complete without Albuquerque’s golden child, Los Poblanos Historic Inn + Organic Farm. But the space is famous for good reason — it truly is one of the most magnificent places in our city. With rolling fields of lavender, chic farmhouse architecture, and several different options for ceremony space, there’s no facet of Los Poblanos that doesn’t live up to its reputation.

What an amazing venue!! I fell in love with this place from the first time I set foot on the property. It feels like you are out of town even though you are in the middle of the city. The architecture of the buildings and the surrounding gardens are gorgeous! It is definitely a venue that requires very little in the way of providing your own decor; the venue speaks for itself.

-Catie, bride

For availability at Los Poblanos, you can book the venue here.


 

Perfect Wedding Guide wedding planning design inspiration budget floral bouquet arrangement New Mexico Albuquerque greenery Santa Fe flowers natural organic local