In celebration of the 2020 BC Wedding Awards last night, we reminisced about this Sea to Sky Gondola wedding for Tripti and Addison that we submitted for Best Wedding Planning under 75K.
Let me share the story with you…
It was August 10th, 2019, just past 6 AM on Tripti and Addison’s wedding day. My phone lit up, I had missed a call from the venue. Why, would they be calling me at this time? All I could think was what’s wrong? I call the number back and hang up quickly in complete shock. Their venue, the Sea to Sky Gondola, had been vandalized and had their gondola wire cut that morning. They were no longer able to host the wedding.
Before calling the couple, the venue manager and I compiled a few options and settled on a new venue in the Squamish area that happened to be available on this busy weekend – The Executive Inn and Suites Hotel.
I call the couple to share the unfortunate news, our PLAN B venue choice and new plan in place ready with their permission to move ahead. Although emotions were high, the couple agreed with this new plan.
With a year of planning for their gondola wedding, we had under six hours to contact their guests, rent décor from additional suppliers, create a revised timeline and recreate a design plan that would work for a whole new venue.
What grew from a small vendor team of vendors to double, we are beyond grateful for everyone’s efforts and generous offerings to make this wedding still happen for them.
With the wedding party’s assistance, we were able to contact all 100 guests and inform them of the new plan and we were right back to regular scheduling.
While we executed the changes behind the scenes at the hotel, the gondola staff drove up the windy forest road to the gondola to collect the food to create the wedding menu and collect the last décor items that were left up there after the rehearsal the day prior.
The couple shared their first look (and many emotions) outside the hotel followed by photos of them in the forest and at the base of the mountain close to the gondola for a similar backdrop. Erin, their photographer went above and beyond to create a similar feel and look for their photos despite the many challenges we faced that day.
While the reception design took shape, we borrowed all the florals meant for the tables to decorate the ceremony space and bring that bold pop of colour into the space. The couple exchanged vows in an intimate room surrounded by family and friends. There was a lot of tears and laughter. Although it wasn’t the suspension bridge entrance and the deck overlooking Howe Sound, it was an unforgettable moment becoming husband and wife.
Tripti and Addison wanted time with their guests – something that was their priority and very rare for a couple to have on their wedding day. With this new plan and the limited set up time we had due to rental deliveries we extended cocktail hour and the couple enjoyed that time with their guests.
Before inviting guests to their seats, I snuck the couple into the reception space for a room reveal. There they got to see their vision come to life and take a moment alone together. It was everything she had hoped for. Tripti changed into her traditional indian saarii before joining her husband for their grand entrance.
The emcee announced them, guests stood and cheered for them.
Guests enjoyed the same family style menu we had tried at their tasting months back thanks to the chefs and gondola staff transferring everything from what they could at the gondola to the hotel.
Speeches were completely candid, the dancing went on far later into the night and we high fived and hugged at the end of the night.
Driving home after 2 AM on the Sea to Sky highway, tears rolled down my face. I was exhausted but so grateful.
Today was a great reminder that it isn’t what the wedding looks like but it’s the people that you fill the room with and the experience that makes it unforgettable.
Tripti and Addison, I will truly always remember this day and the joy that filled that room celebrating you both. Thank you for trusting me with your wedding day! To the many industry friends that texted their support to us and offered to assist, thank you!
Wedding planning: Sweetheart Events | Beth Barr
Photography: Erin Fraser Photography
Original Venue & Catering: Sea to Sky Gondola
Plan B Venue: Executive Inn & Suites
Beauty: Faye Smith Makeup & Hair
Flowers: Celsia Floral