It just doesn’t get any more romantic than a winter wedding in the snow. Cozy firelight, hot toddies, and a natural backdrop of white that makes for endless color possibilities make this chilly season a delightful setting for the sweetest, most intimate of ceremonies.
After another fun and exciting summer season in Tahoe South, we find ourselves basking in the warm sun outdoors, feeling refreshed by the cooler, crisper air. And we begin to enjoy a bit of the calm that the fall season brings to Tahoe. The aspen leaves in the Tahoe Basin begin changing colors, adding a striking golden contrast to the blue hue of Lake Tahoe and dark green pines that dot the Sierra Mountains. It’s a majestic backdrop for a beautiful fall wedding in Tahoe. Here are a few of our favorite spots in Tahoe for a fall wedding.
Sporting an engagement ring with something other than a diamond at its center? Looking for wedding attire that will show off your tattoos or compliment the bold color of your hair? Thinking you’d like to rock an edgy wedding theme with, maybe, black lace, costumes or top hats and sequins? We’ve got the Tahoe South wedding venue for you. Here are four solid reasons to hold your offbeat wedding at Hard Rock Cafe Lake Tahoe.
Party All Weekend at Hard Rock Cafe
Located inside Harveys Resort and Casino and within walking distance of the heart of Tahoe South, Hard Rock Cafe Lake Tahoe is perfectly situated in the middle of all things fun — from live music to shopping to golfing to skiing, and of course, cards and slots. The atmosphere in the Cafe is a combination of chill and excitement, which also makes it an awesome venue for your bachelor and bachelorette parties, as well as your rehearsal dinner. Effortlessly carry your offbeat wedding theme throughout. And having all of your wedding activities in the same venue eliminates stress for out-of-town guests. Everyone can find a room nearby, so they can indulge in some delicious adult beverages without worrying about making it back to another hotel.
An Offbeat Wedding with a Star-Studded Guest List
Not many people can say they took a photo with Elvis at their wedding. Okay, maybe it’s just his trademark scarf and bell-bottoms. Either way, your wedding guests will have fun taking selfies with rock n’ roll memorabilia, like only Hard Rock Cafe can do. And if you secretly love buzzwords like “rustic” or “lodge-inspired,” but the only way you’ll consider making them a part of your offbeat wedding theme is if you can pull it off in an authentic way, then Hard Rock Cafe Lake Tahoe is just what you’re looking for.
Dig In to Everyone’s Favorite Classic Cuisine
There’s a time and place for über fancy food, but that place may not be at your offbeat wedding. If you feel nothing hits the spot like classic, all-American cuisine done just right, then Hard Rock Cafe Lake Tahoe food is exactly what you want your wedding guests noshing on. Scrumptious apps, mouthwatering burgers, sammies, fresh salads, even smokehouse delicacies like ribs, pulled pork and roasted chicken can all be on your menu.
Weather is No Match for Hard Rock Cafe Lake Tahoe
Hard Rock Cafe Lake Tahoe is a great choice no matter what time of year you are planning your offbeat wedding. If a winter wonderland wedding is what you’ve been dreaming of, you’ll be delighted to know that the Cafe is just five short minutes from Heavenly Ski Resort and other popular winter activities. If the warmer seasons are more suitable for your offbeat wedding theme, pack your flip-flops because Hard Rock Cafe Lake Tahoe is also only 1000 yards from beautiful, picturesque Lake Tahoe.
Lake Tahoe Destination Weddings are Beautiful Any Time of Year
Tahoe South is nationally recognized for its iconic scenic beauty and year-round outdoor recreation, as well as its appeal as a memorable and affordable place to host destination weddings. USA Today named Lake Tahoe among “eight prime locations for a destination wedding on a budget” (Aug. 2015) and Destination Weddings and Honeymoons listed Lake Tahoe No. 13 for the “Best Wedding Venues in California” (March 2015).
These esteemed designations are probably due to the fact that, in Tahoe South, couples can choose from an array of lakefront, mountain side, boutique, and intimate venues for their destination wedding to accommodate the gamut of budgets. And Lake Tahoe offers wedding guests tons of amenities, accommodations, dining and attractions (that all happen to be a part of a $500 million revitalization in South Lake Tahoe), which make it ideal for destination weddings. While there are many venue options for your wedding day, seven properties in particular said “I do” to major renovations, which alone account for $140 million in improvements. Here’s a run-down of what’s new and what’s coming in Tahoe South:
Brand-New Ballroom at Edgewood Tahoe
Ceremonies at Edgewood Tahoe range from expansive to purely personal and can take place on the lakefront deck, or in the North or South rooms in the existing clubhouse. And scheduled to open in June 2017 is the $100 million Lodge at Edgewood Tahoe with its 3,000-square-foot ballroom. Each space can accommodate 100 to 250 guests and is inspired by the natural beauty of the surrounding lake, mountains and golf course. Winter weddings offer couples complimentary house wine, champagne and draft beer.
Romantic Lakeview Rooftop Ceremony at The Landing
Landing Resort & Spa is a full-service resort and spa with comprehensive wedding facilities. With $20 million in property investments, the resort includes the Grand Rooftop Terrace and the Lakeview Ballroom, both with exceptional views of Lake Tahoe for the most majestic of destination weddings.
Shoreline Wedding or Airy Ballroom Bash at Beach Retreat & Lodge at Tahoe
Beach Retreat & Lodge at Tahoe offers three options for wedding ceremonies and receptions, having invested $8 million in the property in recent years. The Lakeview Ballroom in the new conference center accommodates large, formal affairs in any season seating up to 250 guests. The event space features large glass doors that bring light into the room and open onto an expansive outdoor deck. In warmer months, lakefront receptions are steps from the resort’s beach. The Boathouse on the Pier, perched above the lake, hosts intimate wedding parties, brunches and showers.
Mountain View or Lake View — Your Choice at Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel
Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel has dedicated $8 million in renovations and upgrades to all 400 two-room suites, lobby and event space. The nine-story all-suite hotel is the largest only full-service hotel in South Shore, making it perfect for hosting destination weddings. The property provides two new outdoor ceremony locations, the Pool Deck Patio overlooking Heavenly Mountain and the Balcony Suite Deck with a lake view. New additions to the wedding venues include ceiling enhancements, carpeting, 800 banquet and chavari chairs, linens, sound system, wallpaper, lighting, portable bars and dance floor.
Say I Do at One of the Top 20 Mountain Wedding Venues — The Ridge Tahoe
The Ridge Tahoe recently invested $3 million to expand wedding and conference capabilities in the renovated 3,700 square-foot Castle Rock Event Space to complement the resort’s 300 guestrooms, amenities, on-site recreation, dining and spa services. Wedding Wire Magazine recognized the Ridge Tahoe among the “top 20 mountain wedding venues in the country” (December 2015). Situated at 7,600 feet, overlooking the Carson Valley, the resort hosts an average of 120 weddings and events throughout the year — a popular choice for destination weddings. The Ridge Tahoe provides wedding packages that include accommodations, custom menus, an array of dessert concepts, floral arrangements, photography, music, hair/makeup and on-site spa treatments.
Say Your Vows Aboard a Lake Tahoe Vessel
Zephyr Cove Resort has many options for wedding ceremonies and receptions. Lake Tahoe Cruises operates two vessels year-round, the Tahoe Paradise and M.S. Dixie II accommodating up to 25 and 300 guests respectively. The resort brings the lake into the ceremony with beach venues for warmer spring or summer months; and in winter the Zephyr Cove Restaurant transforms into a cozy, intimate venue for ceremonies and receptions.
Where Alpine Meets Elvis at Hard Rock Cafe
Located in Harveys Resort and Casino, Hard Rock Café boasts a full-service planning facility with a rock ’n’ roll and alpine ski lodge atmosphere. This venue displays memorabilia from iconic musicians and accommodates ceremonies, receptions, rehearsal dinners, wedding brunch, and bachelor/bachelorette parties.
What kinds of places make for the best destination wedding? Places like Tahoe South, of course, that offer endless opportunities for fun and adventure, or just kicking back and relaxing. But who has time to play group activity leader when you’re getting married? We’re here to help. Here’s our Top 10 list of activities to keep wedding guests entertained at your destination wedding in Tahoe South (you might recommend to your guests that they book a couple extra days here to fit it all in!):
Summer Fun #1: Millions of beaches. Beaches for me.
Wedding guests will find no shortage of postcard perfect beachfront on Lake Tahoe, and with 300 days of sun a year, what better way to spend them than at the beach. Tahoe South has easy access to several public beaches to keep wedding guests entertained, like Pope, Baldwin and Lakeside to name a few. If being on the lake is more their style, they can rent a kayak, SUP, power boat, or jet-ski from onsite marinas at Beach Retreat & Lodge at Tahoe and Zephyr Cove Resort. Or start up a rousing game of volleyball on the resorts’ private beaches.
Summer Fun #2: The air up there.
Being on vacation for a destination wedding is the perfect excuse to try something new. Epic Discovery at Heavenly Resort is an adventure-seeker’s playground with ropes courses, zip lines and gondola rides. Or guests can get once-in-a-lifetime photos of Tahoe from 1,000 feet high above the lake as they sail through the sky on an exhilarating parasailing ride. Zephyr Cove Resort will keep wedding guests entertained and get their adrenaline pumping while providing the most incredible, unparalleled views. (Tip: Go early in the morning to catch the sunrise as well as save a bit of money.)
Summer Fun #3: Hiking, biking and climbing — oh my!
Luckily, it’s easy to keep wedding guests entertained in Tahoe South, because it’s surrounded by incredible hiking and biking trails with amazing views, as well as rock faces begging to be scaled. Outdoor adventures for every skill level await. Incomparable Emerald Bay and Eagle Falls up to Eagle Lake are probably one of the more popular hiking treks in Tahoe South. And whether your guests favor downhill, technical or a tamer, family-friendly paved path, we’ve got a trail for every biker. (Tip: Don’t want to travel with gear? We’ve got you covered with numerous equipment rental shops in the area.)
Summer Fun #4: Or should we say “fore!”
Just as winter weddings will always have guests who are dying to go skiing, summer weddings will always have a demographic that wants to golf, golf, golf. Direct those guests to world-class Edgewood Tahoe. In addition to adoring the breathtaking course, golf enthusiasts will love getting to play a round at the annual home of the American Century Celebrity Golf Championship. Make like Steph Curry and Justin Timberlake and book a tee time!
Summer Fun #5: Live for live music.
The beautiful summer season in Tahoe South brings with it an abundance of outdoor live music to keep wedding guests entertained, whether they enjoy dancing or just listening to local and big-name acts alike. Catch a great regional band in the sand at Lakeview Commons beach or on the deck at Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel‘s Echo restaurant. Next door to Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel is Heavenly Village, where multiple music groups play outside some of the venues and restaurants, or across the street is the Lake Tahoe Outdoor Arena at Harveys, where national acts perform throughout the summer.
Winter Wonderland #1: Hitting the slopes.
Okay. Probably the number-one reason anyone comes to Tahoe in the winter is to check out the slopes. Understandably so, as the Lake Tahoe region has acres of backcountry adventures and more than a dozen ski resorts. Tahoe South is home of Heavenly Mountain Resort — 4,800 acres of skiable terrain and a lively village with shops, restaurants and even an ice skating rink for your snow bunny guests. And when they’re all skied out, Tahoe South does apres-ski how it was meant to be, from cozy fire pits to exciting nightlife.
Winter Wonderland #2: Feeling the need for speed.
Perhaps one of the most exhilarating ways to tour Tahoe in the winter is via snowmobile. Zephyr Cove Resort packages include scenic tours led by experienced guides, which is perfect way to keep wedding guests entertained—with incredible views of a breathtaking, snow-covered Tahoe. And all the gear your guests will need is available for rent to ensure everyone is ready for a safe, cold-weather ride. (Tip: If you’re lucky enough to be in Tahoe South during a full moon, you can even take an evening moon-lit ride!)
Winter Wonderland #3: Bring the fun indoors.
Hard to believe, I know, but some guests might not enjoy playing outdoors in winter, but have no fear — Tahoe South has plenty of indoor fun, too. You can keep wedding guests entertained with cocktails and apps at Hard Rock Cafe Lake Tahoe, located inside Harveys Resort and Casino in the heart of Tahoe South. With tons of rock n’ roll memorabilia, a tasty menu, and thirst-quenching drinks, they’ll have a great time hanging out and enjoying the unique atmosphere (and celebrating your love, obviously). And speaking of casinos, yeah we have a few of those, too, where guests can grab a bite, attend a show, dance the night away in a club or, of course, try their hand at poker and slots.
Winter Wonderland #4: Cruise to Emerald Bay.
If you think cruising Lake Tahoe is a summer-only activity, allow Lake Tahoe Cruises to enlighten you. Your wedding guests can hop aboard a climate-controlled, authentic Mississippi paddle wheeler that meanders into picturesque Emerald Bay for remarkable photo ops. The daytime scenic cruise has been voted “Best Cruise in Nevada” by Nevada Magazine. Guests can also take the elegant sunset dinner cruise for a unique and unforgettable dining experience on Lake Tahoe.
Winter Wonderland #5: Baby it’s cold outside…how about a spa day?
When the temperatures drop outside, keep wedding guests entertained with all the warm fuzzies from a relaxing and rejuvenating spa day. The Spa at The Landing Resort will provide the pampering your guests deserve. Experience one of their signature hydrating facials for that beautiful glow, or let their staff create a custom package for your guests with massages, facials and body treatments. Or if meditation and fitness are more their style, schedule a private group yoga class.
Tahoe South offers so many ways to keep wedding guests entertained while you’re busy, well, getting married. In fact, just hand them this list and I’d say your job is done.