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Tying The Knot

Traditional meets trendy for modern Colorado brides.

With an unmatched level of luxury and customer service, The Broadmoor bride can have confidence that every detail of the weekend will be taken care of.

With an unmatched level of luxury and customer service, The Broadmoor bride can have confidence that every detail of the weekend will be taken care of.

If you or a loved one have a wedding on the horizon, you’ll want to brush up on the latest trends while you are still in the planning stages. The ideas are plentiful to make your day extra special and fresh, but according to local experts, Colorado brides still lean hard on tradition and have managed to blend trend with the tried and true throughout every aspect of the event.

Location, Location, Location

Colorado itself is considered something of a destination wedding location even though we’re not on a secluded tropical island with nowhere to go but the pool, beach, or bar. With so many things to do in and around Colorado Springs, wedding-goers can get in a round of golf, a beautiful hike, a trek down snow-covered slopes, or relax at the pool, all without having to tack on any extra days for the trip. And choosing a venue that can facilitate some of these activities makes for easy planning.

The Broadmoor is an elegant candidate for this all-inclusive option. It combines a beautiful setting for a wedding with facilities that can manage events from small gatherings to grand affairs, and guests can enjoy a multitude of amenities during their hotel stay, including golf, spa services, zip lines, pools, and much more. The Broadmoor also offers wedding services at its wilderness properties, including Cloud Camp, The Ranch at Emerald Valley, and Fly Fishing Camp for a truly unique experience.

“It all comes down to service,” says Krista Heinicke, public relations and communications manager at The Broadmoor. “We believe it’s important to really connect with the bride and groom and their families to create the experience they are looking for. It’s not just a day. It’s an entire weekend, and we have lots of options and solutions to accommodate any plan.”

Heinicke says wedding couples are requesting more culturally diverse menu selections in keeping with national trends, and The Broadmoor’s world-renowned chefs have embraced that challenge.

For a completely different feel, vintage is trending, and if that’s your vibe, check out Uriah Werner’s Loft Music Venue in Old Colorado City, with spaces called the Loft, the Vault, and the Collective. The connected buildings date back to the 1890s, and with the use of all three, a bride and groom can tailor their day however they choose up to about 140 people.

“Brides are really loving the urban vintage feel of a brick warehouse you might see in Chicago or New York City,” Werner says. “And with the various packages we offer, they can do their own DIY wedding and still get a lot of services from our staff, which helps ease the stress on the bride and family.”

Werner says they host some 100 weddings annually, but because the venue is so customizable, every affair is quite different and beautifully representative of the couple.

Couples who are planning a more traditional church ceremony but also want the quintessential Colorado backdrop will gravitate toward The Club at Flying Horse. Located in the popular Flying Horse neighborhood in the northeast part of town, the venue offers a magnificent view of the mountains and several party options, including outdoor patios, smaller indoor spaces, and a large ballroom that also showcases a view of the mountains. The club has its own boutique hotel and a few villas for guests as well as an attached golf course, pool, and fitness facilities.

“We have a very different style of architecture,” says Diane Bice, special events director. “Everything is very Tuscan, and brides really like that it’s different.” Bice says they host many local couples, but about half of their weddings are people who grew up in Colorado Springs and have chosen to come back for their big day because of the destination appeal. “It’s so beautiful here,” she says. “I think it’s just a big draw for out-of-town guests.”

Whether you are searching for an all-inclusive location or something completely flexible, wedding experts advise focusing on a few key factors before choosing the venue. Rates, capacity, and availability are all key factors, and you should also inquire about parking; facility extras, such as tables and chairs that can impact your budget; and restrictions that, in the end, might strike a venue from the list.

Top Trends

Even as tradition prevails in some aspects of the wedding, trends will impact the scene this year in the form of more vibrant colors, bold attire, and anything sustainable. Here is a rundown of the more popular ideas coming to weddings this year.

GOING GREEN: Eco-friendly details and sustainable weddings are all the rage, and this includes minimizing the carbon footprint of the celebration and recycling everything from the flowers to the attire. Couples are also choosing invitations printed on recycled paper.

FOOD FOR ALL: Heinicke says The Broadmoor long-ago embraced vegan and gluten-free preferences, so it’s just not a big deal anymore; however, couples are more conscious than ever about their guests having a great experience, so variety in the food and drinks are more important than ever.

NEW HUES: From fashion to flowers, color will play a huge part in weddings this year, and that is good news to event planner Sarah Viera, who says white on white and greenery with white has been overdone. Sunset hues are making their way onto the scene as dried flowers or fresh blossoms that are little more unusual. And look for edible flowers to add color and brighten up salads, cakes, and even water and cocktails.

FLOWY FASHIONS: Gowns are looser and less structured with soft, sheer touches. Experts are predicting 2020 to be a big year for sleeves but also for flowing fabric. And, for men, navy is still the frontrunner to overtake black even in tuxedos.

LOCKS OF LOVE: Make way for barrettes and combs. Traditional veils will still prevail at the actual ceremony, but Viera says, hair accessories adorned with pearls, rhinestones, or other colorful touches help the bride make an entrance at the reception.

MICRO-AFFAIRS: Couples are opting for smaller, invitation-only events that promise to be more intimate and personalized and deliver a big guest experience. It might be more stressful to cull down the list to the 40 or so people who get invited, but the budget per guest can be higher, making for a celebration that really delivers.

SELF-SERVE SIPPING: A new take on the manned bar station, guests can serve their own beer, Champagne, or signature cocktail and dress it up with their choice of mix-ins and garnishes.

VIP ENTERTAINMENT: Bands and DJs are not going away, but brides and grooms are amping up the fun with secondary entertainment to wow their guests. These include photo booths, guest sketches, interactive stations, and even magicians.

SUDDEN EXPOSURE: Viera says film photography versus digital is making a comeback although the classic images still reign. “There is something so special about capturing the groom when he first sees his bride coming down the aisle,” she says. Still, photographers are predicting more photo sessions on honeymoons and even days before the actual ceremony to cut down on stress on the big day.

THE GIFT OF GIVING BACK: This newer trend is making its way onto bridal registries and into ceremonies. A couple may ask for donations to be made in their name to a favorite charity in lieu of gifts or they may choose to make a splash to end their reception with an announcement that in lieu of party favors, a donation has been made to a meaningful charity as a thank you for guests joining them on their big day. “Guest experience is huge right now,” says Viera. “It’s all about making the guest feel welcomed and thanked for coming.”

The Modern Registry

The traditional wedding registry completed at the local department store has been impacted by consumer behavior for the past several years, and the ease of online shopping, trend toward group gifting, and social media are playing a part in what’s new and different.

“More and more couples are already living together and have already acquired things,” says local wedding planner Sarah Viera of Sarah Viera Events. “I think younger couples are more into experiences, but I think you need a mix of both.”

Viera advises her couples to register for more traditional items at stores like Crate and Barrel and Pottery Barn because there are many things to choose from in varying price ranges. Then, they can also register for experiences at online sites such as Zola or Honeyfund, which also offer group gifting options. She also advises against registering for gift cards. “People want to give something,” Viera says. “If someone wants to give cash, it will be given in an envelope with a card, and that is perfectly acceptable, but no one wants to give a gift card.”

Another trend, especially for couples that own a home together, is to ask for guests to help fund a major home improvement. Viera says this is a great way to send the message that they already have household goods, and guests can rest easy knowing their money is going toward a project that will last for years to come.