I've always been enthralled by the big, splashy but tastefully done dream wedding. You know how I love small intimate weddings, Las Vegas destination weddings and even Vegas elopements (couple only), but there is something about the big luxurious celebration on a couple's special day that is breath-taking! In a recent article The Knot, shared 5 ways couples spend big on what they are calling 'luxury weddings'. The qualifier for 'luxury' is a wedding that costs more than $60K. So what are these five trends?
1. They hire professionals: 54% hire a professional wedding planner and 79% send out professionally designed 'save the date' announcements. There are no do-it-yourself projects for these couples. They hire people who know where, what, when, why and how and have the connections with other professionals to pull it all together.
2. They spend big bucks to get the location and the date they want for their wedding. Saturday is by far the most desirable day of the week and surprisingly according to The Knot, September is the most desired month for luxury weddings. In Las Vegas, I'd have to say that month is October with April a close second due to the lovely temperatures. Keep in mind there are just so many Saturdays in a month or even two months and professionals may adjust their price accordingly. Another expenditure for the couple is accommodations. Many of their guests and the wedding party will need overnight (or multiple nights) accommodations and those charges may end up on the couple's tab.
3. The couples have many BFFs and tend to have larger wedding parties. The average wedding party for a luxury wedding is 12 people total. I recently had a wedding with 18! This means extra costs for the couple: attendant's gifts (89% buy for bridesmaids and 86% buy for groomsmen), plus more than half pitch in to help with the cost of hair and makeup on the day of the wedding. By the way, the average cost of a bridesmaids dress is over $200 and the average ensemble for a groomsman comes in at right at $200. But even luxury couples are asking their wedding parties to shell out some cash.
4. The celebration lasts longer. They keep the party going, beginning with bridal showers, and bachelor parties. Then rehearsal dinners (by far the most popular wedding related event) and 94% of luxury weddings have one, but also a day-after brunch which is quickly becoming the most popular add-on event. The average number of events for a luxury wedding is five. The more events, the longer the wedding lasts, the more dollars spent.
5. They want to have fun! Of course, they want to have fun, we all would/do especially if we're spending this kind of money! The average dollars spent is at an all-time high of $480 per person for a luxury wedding. Why? It's all about the guest experience with the descriptors used being 'fun' and 'classic'. They want their guests to feel both timeless and exciting. Another interesting note is today's couples are looking for more traditional looks and less artsy elements.
I've had the honor of officiating many beautiful weddings (no idea of the cost) and depending on where you are reading this post, you'll see a couple of those. The background with white roses in the hedge was a fabulous wedding held at the Las Vegas Mandarin Oriental in April – wedding planner @greenorchidevents.com and photo @j.annephotography.com. And the great photo of the couple dancing under the chandelier was an incredible wedding held on an acrylic bridge across a pool and lined with candles at Red Rock Resort; wedding planner @schemeevents.com and photo by @gomoxiestudio.com.