Wedding Details Big and Small: Occasion Services Spotlight

You’d think that after watching the magic unfold from the Occasion Services & Events team at so many of our wedding shows, we’d be a little bit used to it by now, right? Wrong. Even via the digital world, we still find ourselves trying to catch our breath when we stumble across one of the many seemingly impossible, absolutely fantastical weddings Occasion Services & Events manifests all the time like it’s no big deal.

So, honestly, it’s pretty understandable that we do some occasional, light stalking of their team’s Facebook and website. Now, we agree, it’s a completely different experience to sit back and watch many hands flurrying about in unison as they, somehow, turn ballrooms and backyards into dreamscape wonderlands. But having the option to be spoon-fed photos of their mesmerizing decor at our fingertips? Well, now, maybe the internet isn’t such a dark place after all.

There you have it, the whole truth. We happened upon this fresh and fanciful wedding when we were Facebook stalking Occasion Services & Events, and we’re not afraid to admit it. Lively vines serpentining down long, farmhouse tables; accents of eucalyptus and greenery tucked in every possible corner; a delicate wooden arbor to frame the happy couple during their vows. How could we not share it?

With not a cloud in the sky, but plenty of rainy eyes, Brenna + Landon were married in our very own Santa Fe. Occasion Services + Events, with the help of some dedicated local wedding experts, made their wedding day as pure and invigorating as the couple’s love story. To book their team for your own celebration, you can contact them here.

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Photographer: Kayla Smith Photography

Florist: Bloomstream Flowers

Cake: American Pie Bakery

Venue: The Club at Las Campanas

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2018 Four Seasons Connection Luncheon Recap

Okay, so maybe we’re a bit nostalgic, but is that so wrong? Especially since we’re only a few days into 2019, and here in New Mexico, 2018 was one of Perfect Wedding Guide‘s best years yet. We had wedding shows, luncheons, and parties galore, plus relationship building, contest-throwing, giant giveaways, and more. The only way to rectify our desperate reminiscing is to start look eagerly toward our upcoming events, which we’re definitely doing, don’t get us wrong.

But before we jump ahead, we have to spend at least a moment discussing the experience of our Four Seasons Connection Luncheon that was in December of 2018. Because that’s exactly what it was — an experience. Four Season‘s unparalleled elegance, the crisp, clean air of Santa Fe, and Alena Bard LLC.‘s wisdom all combined to create a truly moving afternoon.

Lucky for us, Keara Lloyd Photography was there to capture every moment, too, from the first course to the last lingering conversation. The former being, if you can believe it, warm quail on a bed of roasted fennel salad, decorated with a complimentary beet puree, roasted almonds, and white balsamic glazed blueberries. Then came the duel entrees: slow braised short ribs with green chile mashed potato, and chorizo and macadamia roasted Chilean sea bass.

Accompanying every bite was a light and refreshing sparkling wine that prepared the palette for our team’s personal favorite, the dessert: strawberry trifle with sponge cake, vanilla and Chantilly cream. The only thing that rivaled the dessert’s sweetness was the absolute treat of hearing local wedding planner Alena Bard LLC. share her knowledge to the group of local business owners. She talked finding your purpose, holding onto it, and weaving passion and self-compassion into your business practices. We walked away feeling filled to the brim with inspiration and delectable cuisine.

The best part of being positioned between local engaged couples and the businesses who serve them is being able to spoil both parties. For our engaged couples, it’s through our giveaways, wedding shows, online tools, print guide, etc., etc., etc. And for the local wedding professionals, who work so hard to elevate and evolve Albuquerque + Santa Fe’s market, it’s through indulgent, invigorating, innovative days like this.

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2018 Diamond Dash Wedding Show Recap

Did you hear about the absolutely magical, high-energy, fun-filled, spectacular something that happened this past October? We hope you did, or even better, we hope you were one of the hundreds of local, engaged couples and wedding professionals who joined us for our 2018 Diamond Dash Wedding Show!

Every year, we have the opportunity to host what is essentially a giant party, here in Albuquerque, for all our local engaged couples who are in the throes of wedding planning. And yes, we host lots of parties and wedding shows, but this one is the Diamond Dash, which makes it inherently special. See, if you don’t already know, this particular wedding show gets its name from the culminating moment of the show.

After engaged couples spend the day in the Hyatt Regency Downtown‘s vast and beautifully curated ballroom, chatting with local wedding professionals, winning prizes and coupons off services, watching a couture bridal fashion show, and spending their $500 in PWG Bucks, then comes the actual dash for diamonds.

This year, we invited 5 brides-to-be from the crowd of hundreds to come and don the signature aprons and tiaras required to jump into the baked goodness. Kindly made by Cake Fetish, the glamorously towering black wedding cake had, of course, diamond jewelry (valued at over $1,000) along with four other prizes hidden inside.

With their cake-diving gear on and ready to go, and the rest of the crowd anxiously awaiting the victory, the five awesome ladies tore into the beautiful cake and one by one, pulled out their prizes. We love the competitive spirit that comes out when diamond jewelry is involved, so when this year’s festivities resulted in some harmless catfighting, we were thrilled.

Check out all the incredible details from every vendor through the lens of Photographic Perspectives below, and take a peek at the live action with the incredible recap video from Glory Ranch Films! To register for the next Diamond Dash Wedding Show, click here!

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2018 Wedding Gallery Recap

Since our last wedding show of the year has, tragically, already come and gone, we think it’s only fair to spend a little bit of time reminiscing on one of our favorite shows of 2018. While all of our Albuquerque + Santa Fe wedding shows are things we celebrate and enjoy, my personal favorite of the year was the Wedding Gallery show at Sandia Resort and Casino.

On the sunny morning of August 5th this past year, our Perfect Wedding Guide team arrived bright and early at Sandia Resort to watch the magic unfold in one of their most grand ballrooms. And let us tell you, folks, it really did. We got to watch — and lend a helping hand, of course — as dozens of vendors filled the room, bringing their best decor, goodies, flyers, and free stuff to one space for you, our local couples.

The theme of this year’s Wedding Gallery show was jeweled elegance, and my gosh, was it rich. Bright golds and silvers complimented the deep maroons and greens, blues and mustards throughout the ballroom. Every vendor carefully coordinated their corner of the space to showcase and showoff all the enchanting things they can make possible, and it came together in the most cohesive, jewel-toned wonderland you can imagine.

After the mingling and connecting of local vendors to the hundreds of engaged couples who graced us with their presence, then came the fashion show. With styles from Suits Unlimited for the fellas, and Bridal Elegance by Darlene for the ladies, every couple got a New York worthy dose of in-real-life wedding fashion inspiration, that was also tied in with our overall theme for the event. Velvet, vintage couches headed the runway, and Brad with King Mobile Music lit the stage to perfectly illuminate the fine details on the gowns and tuxes.

Lastly, there were, of course, tons and tons of giveaways and prizes. With free goodies from venues, florists, officiants, and more, so many couples walked a way with a spring in their step after winning some serious discounts and freebies.

We couldn’t have done it without our incredible sponsors, or the amazing couples whose love stories are what make the whole day worthwhile. So, from the bottoms of our hearts, thank you!

(Especially to Sandra + her team at Photographic Perspectives, for capturing the glamour with her magical photography powers!)

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5 Rules For Choosing A Wedding Venue

Here at Perfect Wedding Guide, we get to work one-on-one with Albuquerque’s best florists, officiants, photographers, and the like, every single day. So it’s safe to assume that we might know a bit more about weddings than your average Joe or Joanne. While we like to think that we’re somewhat of experts though, we always turn to our local vendors for the real knowledge. When you need to know who the best wedding professionals are — turn to us. For the nitty gritty wedding planning details — we turn to them.

Like when our local officiants dropped some serious education on us about why hiring a professional is so important for your wedding. Or when Gypsy Trail Hair + Makeup gave us some incredible tips for your wedding day hair care, and Beth Waldron Photography told us why your photographer thinks you should hire a wedding planner. There’s such a wealth of knowledge in the Albuquerque + Santa Fe wedding community, and we’re just here to harness it!

Which is why we’re so happy to have this super helpful info from the delightful Embassy Suites, on the whats, whys, and hows, of choosing a venue for your wedding day. Of all the wedding professionals you hire for your ceremony, your venue is going to be up there in the top three most important. Because, well, it’s going to set the tone for the whole day! So it pays to know how to choose the venue that’s right for you, your future spouse, and your budget.

Without further adieu, we’ll let Jonathon, with Embassy Suites, tell you how to do that — he’s the real expert. (Photos by Alicia Lucia Photography.)

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1 | BACKTRACK.

 

A lot of times, it’s good to start things “backwards,” if you will. Start by putting a rough budget together. Guestimate how many guests you think will attend. The number doesn’t have to be exact, and details may change throughout the duration of your planning. But it’s good to have some kind of  number in mind before you even walk into a venue for pricing.

2 | EARLY BIRD GETS THE WORM.

If you can help it, try to start venue shopping at least a year out from your special day (or as early as you possibly can). Choosing a venue is one of the biggest decisions you’ll make in planning a wedding. You want to give yourself enough time to explore your options and find the best fit for you.

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3 | ASK, ASK, ASK!

Any time a question pops into your head, ask away! Our motto here at Embassy is that it’s better to ask as many questions and obtain as many answers early on than to be stressed out and asking on your special day.

4 | KEEP IT IN WRITING.

Planning a wedding can be exciting, but it’s not without its difficulties. You’re going to have so many details in your head at any given time throughout the planning process that a detail may slip here or there. A best practice is to back up all your details in writing – either via e-mail, via handwritten notes, etc. Whenever you sit down with your coordinator in person, or even when you speak to him/her over the phone, have your notes in front of you.

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5 | LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION!

 

Always keep the location of your venue in mind – even more so if many of your guests will be travelling from out of town. How accessible is your venue? Is it easy to find? Also, if you will be hosting your ceremony and your reception in two separate venues, just make sure to factor travel time into the equation. For venues that are farther apart, always plan ahead for unexpected hiccups. An accident on the highway one hour before your reception may lead to your guests frustrated and sitting in traffic.

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Nativo Lodge: New Mexican Wedding Venue Spotlight

You probably already know this, but at Perfect Wedding Guide, we get to work face-to-face with hundreds of local, small businesses at our networking events, wedding shows, Elite Awards, coffee meet ups, and a whole lot more. Although, despite this simple fact, it’s true we’ve been accused of favoring the members of our PWG family over others. And we think we know where this belief may be coming from…it’s because our vendors and members are the best in Albuquerque + Santa Fe!

When you work with the best local wedding businesses, it’s easy to seem a bit biased towards the hardest working, kindest teams and experts. But we can assure you, we love working with any and every small business in New Mexico, and we don’t discriminate. It just so happens to be that the wedding professionals we work with the most, also happen to be some of the highest ranking and most well-loved around.

Take Nativo Lodge, for example. When their team of wedding experts and event coordinators joined the Perfect Wedding Guide family, we were over the moon. Because, while we adore all wedding businesses, one very real, very obvious bias we have is for New Mexican vibes and venues. Every inch of Nativo Lodge is covered in our distinct southwestern charm, and the venue as a whole draws heavily on Native American influences to pay homage to indigenous people. And, each individual room in the spacious hotel + venue was designed and painted by local, Native American contemporary artists.

The bounteous and fertile culture of our home state is what sets us apart from the mainstream wedding community, what with their penchant for minimalism and all. Of course you can find perfectly beautiful blank canvas venues in New Mexico, but incorporating the history of your home into your wedding day? Well now, that’s how you get a truly memorable, personal, and intrinsically unique celebration.

Luckily for us, local photographers Loren X Chris captured the perfect example of a wedding day with unparalleled richness and love at the Nativo Lodge. Alex + Mike tied the knot with their dearest loved ones and southwestern opulence abound.

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King Mobile Music: King of Parties in Albuquerque

Here in Albuquerque, our Perfect Wedding Guide team is probably best known for the handful of wedding shows we throw throughout the year. The most popular one being, of course, the Diamond Dash. Though, on the day of the wedding show, our favorite part actually comes when the curtains close on another high-energy, super fun Sunday — when we get to see hundreds of couples leave the Hyatt Regency Downtown with bags full of free goodies and prizes, and giant smiles on their faces.

We can only take a small portion of the credit for those happy couples though, because most of the magic happens on stage. Yes, we’ve got the bridal fashion show, but more importantly, we’ve got Brad from King Mobile Music up on stage with a mic, and a slew of jokes and games to get everyone pumped up.

My fiancé and I met with Brad through a recommendation from our photographer because we had mentioned that our dream wedding reception was A LOT of fun and a had every guest dancing. Let me tell you, Brad delivered. From the very beginning as the guests were arriving, he was mingling and chatting with everybody. And then as soon as it was time for the reception, he was ready to turn it into a great party! He was out on the dance floor with everybody and he kept the party going the whole night.

-Kayla, local newlywed

The team at King Mobile Music is so much more than a group of DJs, and they’ll tell you that themselves, too. As entertainment professionals and wedding experts, King Mobile Music offers couples things that they didn’t even know they wanted — like two DJs, instead of just one. With two experts there for each wedding, the King Mobile Music team ensures that one can keep the music flowing smoothly, while the other interacts with the audience to keep spirits high, and feet dancing.

Plus, with customizable lighting packages available for engaged couples, King Mobile Music is kind of a one-stop-shop for all your wedding entertainment. Their team is responsible for lighting the Dîner en Blanc the last several years — an event which typically has over 800 attendees — so you can feel confident in their lighting equipment and abilities. Because, if we’re being real, Dîner en Blanc is probably the most legit event in Albuquerque, which makes King Mobile Music pretty darn legit, too. (So legit we’re still using the word legit as an adjective because their team impresses us so much, we forgot it wasn’t 2014 anymore.)

From now until the end of the year, King Mobile Music is offering engaged couples six free uplights with their wedding music + lighting package. Which is a $300 value — as if they aren’t already doing so much for the local wedding community here! To book the King Mobile Music team  and ensure that your special day is the most fun wedding you’ll ever attend, you can contact them here.

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King Mobile Music made our wedding day so memorable. They were dressed professionally, handled themselves well and most of all made our wedding so much fun! We incorporated Jewish traditions into our reception which KMM had no problem leading. They handled the Hora dance better than any DJ’s on YouTube videos that I have seen. Honestly I think EVERYONE was on the dance floor. We did not have to worry about the timeline because they kept us on schedule. They even made sure guests gave us time to eat!!! We appreciate everything they did for us. We definitely recommend them for your wedding.  

-M, local newlywed

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