Their Story: “Our relationship began at a local charity event. We had met a few times previously, but the timing was not quite right. We got engaged in Colorado in November of 2021. We think the area is so beautiful and relatively close to Michigan for ease of travel.”
Wedding Details: we first started working with Melissa and Mike through our ceremony site report in which they identified their top priorities as having a unique mountain setting and to have fun while enjoying the surroundings. Though initially they wanted to stay below 8,000 above sea level (they are from Florida), they soon realized that some of the most dramatic mountain scenery is either around that elevation of 8,000 feet or slightly above it. They ended up loving Beaver Creek for its high-end luxury accommodations and dining. And tough Beaver Creek is around 8,000, they decided to “go rogue”, purchase foot passes and ride the gondola to the top of the 11,440 feet Beaver Creek Ski Resort. On the wedding day, they found their wedding deck to be unoccupied and hijacked it for their tiny micro wedding with just their four kids.
For the other details and logistics: Melissa and Mike stayed at the Ritz-Carlton Beaver Creek where they rented a suite for getting ready. After their first-look just themselves, and then the kids, they boarded the iconic Beaver Creek transportation (yes, its how almost everyone at the resort gets around - just easier) to the base area where they they walked to the gondola & chair lift. After their ceremony, we spent a little time at the top of the mountain before returning to Beaver Creek Village where they popped some bubbly, and poured it in customized glass to cheer their new marriage. Upon returning to the Ritz-Carlton, they had arranged and outdoor table with their in-house restaurant for a semi-private dining experience.
Tips and Ideas: Many of Colorado ski resorts have official wedding decks, venues or ceremony sites that are on top of the mountain. But, they tend to accommodate the large 100-person plus groups. So, when we plan small mountain-top micro weddings at ski resorts, we “go rogue”: purchase chair lift or gondola foot passes, ride as a group to the top of the mountain, walk to a semi-private scenic area at the top, stand around and exchange vows. This works well for both summer/fall weddings as well as winter/spring weddings. But, of course you have to plan for when the gondolas will be operating because they do shut down in the off-seasons for maintenance (which is usually mid-April through mid-June and then again October through mid-November). There are a couple of tips for this type of wedding. First, make sure to have a back-up plan in the event of inclement weather as the gondolas/lifts will shut down if there are high winds and/or lightening. Also plan for gondola transport time in the overall timing/sequencing: it takes time to load and of course time for the ride. Know that the top of the mountains will have lower temperatures than the base areas. So yes - even for summer weddings, bring that sweater, shawl, fur, blanket or windbreaker. We recommend doing a private first-look before heading over to the gondola as the logistics of “herding cats” can be challenging. Then finally, limit your group size to 20 people or less. This is simply for logistics and keeping your group easily together. If this sort of unique Colorado mountain wedding experience is what you are looking for, please contact Wendee to get started planning your mountain top wedding. 🎉