Wedding planning is tough. It’s stressful, it’s expensive, and it’s easy to get lost in the mess that is peonies and Excel sheets. It is so important to take some time for yourselves, regroup, and enjoy the process. If you are planning a wedding, where you have several out of town guests, take a staycation and “be a guest” in your city.
Most people don’t tour the city they live in. They get into their routines, their social circles, and life happens. Stop by the visitors center, do an online search, and actually take the time to tour your city. You’ll be amazed at what you will discover. Pick a few of your favorite places and let your guests know. They will totally appreciate the insight into your lives and your city.
When you start planning your staycation it is important to tell everyone you will be unavailable. Tell your family, friends, vendors, and employers that you are on vacation. If you have a wedding planner I’m sure they would be more than happy to take over communication for a few days. Check into that swanky hotel that you have had your eyes on and enjoy yourself. Turn it all off and relax, have fun, eat good food. If you have pets bring them with you. No one wants to incur additional pet sitting fees, or be worried about their fur babies while on staycation.
I would recommend taking your staycation about six months from your wedding. Depending on how long your engagement is, you will more than likely have a bit of a lull here. You will have secured your major vendors, hired your planner, and have a general idea of how your wedding will feel. If you wait to take your staycation closer to the date you run the risk of scheduling conflicts with all of the other festivities that come before the big day and you may find it more difficult to unwind.
Remember the point of this is to regroup, reconnect, relax, and enjoy your time without all of the stresses of having to leave town.
In a city full of history, fabulous food scenes, and outdoor activities, Richmond is one of the best central areas to vacation in and around in Virginia. So whether you’re a diehard foodie or outdoorsy guru, there is literally something for everyone in the River City.
THINGS TO DO
• Head up to Church Hill and visit St. John’s Church where Patrick Henry delivered his famous “Give Me Liberty or Give me Death” speech.
• Enjoy a sunset picnic at Libby Hill Park.
• Take a walking tour of Hollywood Cemetery. The history, the famous residents, and the views are well worth it.
• The Poe Museum is a quick stop on your way around town. The house and gardens are quaint, and a must for literary lovers.
• Rent some bikes and ride down the canal to Belle Isle, Tredegar, the T-Pot Bridge (T. Tyler Potterfield Memorial Bridge), and the Capitol Building.
• Catch a show at The National or a movie at the historic Byrd Theatre.
• Shop around in Carytown at all of the cute boutiques, gift shops, and cafes.
• Walk around the Fan to find secret pocket parks and admire all of the adorable row houses.
• Rent inner tubes and float down the James River.
• Mountain bike through the James River Park System and Pocahontas State Park Trails.
PLACES TO EAT
• The Fancy Biscuit, Southern staples and specialties
• Foo Dog, Asian street food experience [GF available]
• Wong Gonzalez, a Mexican meets Asian mashup [GF available]
• Comfort, country-inspired comfort food
• Mama J’s, homecooked soul food made fresh
• Graffiato, inventive and modern Italian cuisine
• Millie’s Diner, seasonal eclectic fare served up diner style [GF available]
• L’Opposum, playful French menu with craft cocktails
• Stella’s, rustic and modern Greek delights [GF available]
• Dutch and Company, Virginia-inspired seasonal dishes
• Perly’s, creative Jewish deli on traditional favorites
• Lunch or Supper, innovative American eats
• Tarrant’s Cafe, upscale all-day American fare [GF available]
• Proper Pie, New Zealand-style savory pie with some sweet stuff, too
PLACES TO DRINK
• The Veil Brewing, modern brews
• Ardent Craft Ales, a brewery, taproom, and beer garden
• Legend Brewing Company, full service restaurant and brewery
• Hardywood, eco-minded brewery and taproom
• Triple Crossing Brewing, tasting room with light menu
• Strangeways Brewing, quirky brews
If you are looking for things to include in your welcome bags, or suggestions for your guests, let me know. I would love to give you some more ideas. My specialty and my passion is with guest and client experience.
Photo Credit: Zayas Imagery
Venue: Quirk Hotel
Cards and books: Quirk Gallery
Florals: Florals by Geoff
Hair: Phawn Lane at The Beauty Lane
Makeup: Rachel Shrader at Elle Style Studio
Sweater and Slip: Ulla Johnson and Elizabeth Few Studio from Verdalina
This shoot was published on Tide Water and Tulle Travels.
As always, I would love to chat.