Planning an outdoor wedding: advice from an events graduate

As Scotland seems to be getting used to the idea of (apparently, we’re still hopeful) warmer summers and the occasional heat wave that actually lasts longer than a couple of days, an increasing number of couples are opting for outdoor ceremonies and even reception parties when feeling particularly optimistic. Planning for an outdoor event can be difficult though, particularly for those who live in an area where the climate does not usually permit outdoor events. Here are our ideas to ensure your outdoor party lives up to your expectations.

Perhaps the most obvious of the advice for planning an outdoor wedding is have an alternative! Try to avoid venues which only offer outside space and instead opt for one which offers a bit of both. Spaces which are easily adaptable are great for this, offering an alternative for your guests in case of, dare we day it, rain.  We love GIN71 in Merchant for this kind of venue. Situated in the quaint and charming Virginia court, GIN71 actually run their bar across the court yard but have an indoor, easily accessible function suite too (not to mention toilets!). What could be more charming than taking over a court yard for the day? A tepee or stretch tent is another great alternative to a completely outdoor wedding, the offer all the comforts of an outdoor venue, but with the feeling and opportunity of being outside.

Another important aspect of planning for an outdoor wedding is considering the catering! It is not uncommon to forget about the logistics of catering when planning an outdoor event. Things to consider are electricity points, water facilities and cleanliness. Having a buffet can be a good idea at first, but do you really want to leave your Salmon basking in the summer heat? Didn’t think so. Luckily, there are clever business’ out there which specialise in catering for outdoor event. Gone are the canapes and industrial looking food trucks and in are smaller, boutique and quirky food alternatives. With everything from gourmet food to curries there is surely a food van for you.

The last thing we recommend before planning an outdoor event is parking.  For many couples the lure of an open field can be alluring – why don’t we just pitch a tepee there? Well, firstly it you don’t own the field you will need permission and secondly, where are your guests going to park? Parking for the average wedding reception- which is usually about 70-150 people- needs a lot of space. It also needs a lot of organisation. When left to their own devices people will park everywhere and anywhere making for a lengthy and slightly embarrassing situation when your guests try to leave at the same time.

The Most Beautiful Drives in Scotland

Attracting tourists from across the globe, the sheer elegance and raw beauty of Scotland’s rugged landscape is often forgotten amongst locals. From winding, country roads carved into the sides of some of Scotland’s most beautiful landscapes to historical passes which have survived centuries, there is arguably no better way to experience Scotland than going on a scenic drive.  We’ve outlined some of our favourites which we are sure you will enjoy and appreciate just as much as we do.

Glasgow To Inveraray, Via the Rest and Be Thankful Pass

Probably one of the most famous stretches of in Scotland, and for good reason, the Rest and Be Thankful lives up to its reputation. Carving through traditional, rugged Scottish landscape, the Rest and Be Thankful intertwines with the stunning scenery of Loch Lomond to provide a truly extraordinary drive. To add something a little extra to your trip, stop for lunch at the view point in Glen Croe and do exactly as the road demands, Rest and Be Thankful.

Stirling to Inverness

Also known as the “spine of Scotland” the A9 which connects Stirling and Inverness is one of Scotland’s longest country roads. The Telegraphs Ben Ross reported the road as “the most beautiful road in the world.” Now, there is no competing with that, what else can we say?

A8350 Around Skye

The Isle of Skye is often described by travel bloggers as being a miniature version of Scotland inside Scotland with diverse landscapes, versatile environment and abundance of high-end coffee shops, bars and restaurants. Sitting at the junction of the A850 and B886 to the north of Dunvegan on Skye, you’ll find fairy bridge, a stunning bridge encompassed by folk law and fairy tales.

Loch Lomond to Lochgilphead

If you are fan of relaxing loch walks or enjoy an ice cream on the bonnie banks of Loch Lomond, then this is the perfect drive for you. Depart from the stunning shores of Loch Lomond to a less well-known Loch to escape bustling crowds and immerse yourself in the very best scenery Scotland has to offer. Turn off at the A83 at Tarbet a short climb over the hill takes you down to Arrochar at the head of Loch Long, the first of the sea lochs.  Then enjoy the delights that Loch Fyne has to offer including the world famous, Loch Fyne Oyster Bar where you can enjoy the very finest fresh fish.

 

To make your experience even more special, why not indulge in a luxury car from Phantom Scotland.

Hen/Stag Party Ideas For Car Lovers

Forget the dress, the shoes and flowers. In the last weeks of wedding planning it’s all about the hen/stag party! If you are lucky enough to be promoted to the role of primary party planner, you’ll know the stress of filtering through activities to find something exciting, entertaining and unique. Fear not, if your bride/groom loves cars we have you covered with some completely extraordinary activities which are sure to keep your whole party entertained!

A-Team Van Party Pad!

Take a nostalgic trip down memory lane and rent a life-sized replica A-Team van! Great for film buffs and car lovers alike, this van is the ultimate party pad on wheels. With mood lighting and a state-of-the-art sound system it’s the perfect start to any legendary party. Whether you make a night of it with drinks and snacks or simply want to pull up to your venue in ultimate style, the A-Team van is sure to provide a good giggle and a memorable night!

Luxury Scenic Tour.

For those who like something a little more subdued, why not treat your party to a scenic tour of the beautiful Scottish country side. Take our stunning, chauffeur driven Rolls Royce Phantom and enjoy a bottle champagne as you take in the sites of Loch Lomond and the surrounding areas. Relax under the Phantoms star lit roof and recline in bespoke seats before stopping for lunch at a quaint country pub. In the summer months, live out your vintage fantasies in our 1950’s model Buick Riviera. Zip through the Scottish country side with the roof down and the wind in your hair!

Afternoon Tea in Style.

Afternoon tea with a difference. To add a little bit of extra sparkle to your traditional afternoon tea, make an entrance in one of our stunning cars. Enjoy a bit of bubbly on the way (maybe even the way back to!) and be sure to turn heads as you step into your party oozing sophistication and style.

Golf Extravaganza!

For the sports lovers out there (well, and the beer drinkers) take a group of your closest friends and family golfing for the day! Arrange your chauffeur driven pick up in the early morning and set off to your favourite Scottish golf course. Our seven-seater Mercedes Viano provides optimal leg room and plenty of space for your golf clubs so you can sit back, relax and enjoy! Spend the day playing gold, eating and maybe even enjoying a few alcoholic beverages because you won’t have to drive home!