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Your step-by-step guide to worry-free wedding planning

If the thought of organising a wedding terrifies you or like many people, your spare time is limited, there are endless templates, guides and wedding books now available to help you coordinate your special day.

However, with so many resources on offer, the trick according to Shannon Donovan, Wedding and Events Manager from InterContinental Sanctuary Cove Resort, is to source the right kind of advice. Advice that will help you to make smart decisions early in the planning process.

Shannon believes one of the most important decisions when it comes to wedding planning is selecting your venue.

“Selecting a venue that offers everything in the one location for you and your guests, is the key to seamless wedding coordination,” Shannon said.

“A venue like InterContinental Sanctuary Cove Resort offers couples five-star luxury accommodation, an award-winning Wedding Chapel, 4.2 hectares of lush tropical surroundings for stunning wedding photography, six different wedding packages for more than 10 indoor and outdoor locations, plus a team of on-site wedding planners, audio visual specialists, chefs and wait staff – to ensure your celebration reflects your unique love story.”

“To have wedding support and a network of industry contacts at your fingertips in the one beautiful location, takes the stress out of wedding planning.”

Our wedding guide below demonstrates just how important it is to select a venue that supports the overall planning process.               

12 months in advance

  • Establish your wedding budget
  • Create a master checklist or spreadsheet of things to do or keep a record of, including dates, vendors, expenses and guest list. This may not have too much on it at the start but will be fleshed out as you go!
  • Source wedding day ‘design inspiration’ from Instagram, Pinterest, wedding magazines and websites. InterContinental Sanctuary Cove Resort has a gallery of stunning wedding day snaps for you to peruse on Instagram at ‘interconsanc’ or search for posts with the hashtag – #intercontinentalsanctuarycove
  • Decide on your bridal style – modern elegance, princess perfection, bohemian beauty, vintage inspired, casual chic or beachside babe.
  • Choose your wedding party including your bridesmaids, maid of honour and your groomsmen.
  • Draft a guest list
  • Pick a wedding theme, which ties into your bridal style. A theme will help guide your decision on the venue and wedding date. Consider a springtime garden party or outdoor marquee, a wintery indoor event with a formal three-course menu or luxury summer Lagoon Beach Pool celebration. 
  • Select a venue capable of accommodating yours and your wedding guests’ needs from start to finish, and that offers a ceremony and reception space reflective of your individual bridal style and wedding theme. Ideally located near theme parks, the Sanctuary Cove Village with boutique shops, restaurants, cafes and a cinema – InterContinental Sanctuary Cove Resort is an iconic luxury wedding and holiday destination.
  • Hire a wedding planner to help with all the details. The resort’s team of experienced wedding planners are more than happy to help you with your checklist of items.
  • Confirm your vendors for photography, videography, floral arrangements, entertainment, hair and makeup and officiant. The weddings’ team at the resort has an extensive network of suppliers you can lean on.

Nine months in advance

  • Send a ‘save the date’ to your guests. Consider doing this earlier if people are travelling interstate or from overseas.
  • Speak to your venue about reserving hotel rooms for your guests and group rates on accommodation.
  • Select your wedding dress. InterContinental Sanctuary Cove Resort has partnered with iconic bridal designer, Vera Wang to weave bespoke exclusives into your search for the perfect wedding dress! As an InterContinental bride, you’ll receive $2,000 off your dream dress, a complimentary raw edge veil and complimentary appointments at Vera Wang’s Sydney boutique.
  • Plan and book your honeymoon.

Five to six months in advance

  • Send your wedding invitations and consider including additional information with the invitation such as a wedding website, a wedding hashtag or details about the venue.
  • Order your wedding cake.
  • Schedule your beauty, hair and make-up appointments prior to the big day and for the big day. Finalise and re-confirm availability for all of your vendors.

Three months before

  • Select and finalise your menu, floral arrangements, reception centrepiece or theme details with your wedding planner. The resort’s team of highly experienced chefs and wedding planners can help you to infuse bespoke catering options and showstopping centrepieces for your special day.
  • Purchase your forever wedding rings.

One month before

  • Run a final check to confirm your appointments, vendors, wedding dress (if it’s being custom made or ordered), guest numbers and liaise with your venue on your final event numbers.

One week to go

  • Book a spa treatment, visit to the hair salon … and get super excited about your big day! We recommend Champions Beauty Hair Day Spa, located just a 5 minute stroll from the resort.

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