Also known as one of the culinary capitals of the US, New Orleans is a great place for elopements simply for the dining options it offers, especially if you’re looking to relish some amazing delicacies you can’t really get anywhere else.
If your tickets are booked and your bags are packed, here’s a little help to make sure your stay in the city before and after your elopement is full of deliciousness.
Keep reading to discover some the unforgettable New Orleans classics that you absolutely need to try when you’re here, and places that make them the best.
If you love foods that are packed full of flavor, New Orleans has everything you could ever ask for. One such flavorful dish are gumbos, seafood stews that have long been a staple of southern eating.
For starters, don’t forget to give the gumbos at Gumbo Shop a try- from the classics to the some others with delicious twists- you’re in for a good surprise here, and that’s obvious considering how this place has won the ‘Best Gumbo’ award every time.
If you’re talking about breakfast foods you absolutely wouldn’t want to miss out on treating yourself to some delicious beignets- the traditional New Orleans favorite!
This deep fried pastry is sprinkled with powdered sugar over the top and tastes absolutely divine, and if you’re looking forward to tasting it, Cafe Beignet is the place to be! Best of all, this place has an amazing menu that serves so many other delicious breakfast items too- you’ll actually be spoiled for choice here. If you’re a fan at all of breakfast treats and you find yourself in New Orleans for any reason, including your elopement, you’re not going to want to skip out on visiting this place.
If seafood spells love for you, and oysters are your weak spot, you definitely won’t be disappointed when you’re here.
New Orleans is famous for its unique traditional seafood dishes, and is the home to some of the best chargrilled and charbroiled oysters in the country.
Felix serves some of the best plump and delicious chargrilled oysters, and the place is pocket friendly too. If you’re looking to taste some authentic charbroiled oysters or just purchase a kit that helps you make them yourself, Dragos is the place to visit.
If you’re in New Orleans, you definitely wouldn’t want to miss out on tasting the Bananas Foster, another staple and trademark of the area.
One of the most loved desserts, and there’s nowhere better to sample it than at Brennan’s.
This dramatic dessert tastes amazing, and after you’ve had your fill, you’ll be left with a smile on your face! Don’t be surprised if you find people who have dined elsewhere to arrive at Brennan’s just for dessert, it’s that good. We already featured Brennan’s in our piece on the best romantic restaurants for the newly married couple in New Orleans!
Whether you’ve heard of Po’boys or you haven’t, make sure you don’t miss out on giving them a try when you’re in New Orleans, and Johnny’s Po-Boys helps you do just that!
Known for being the oldest Po’boy restaurant in the world, this place serves the classic and rich Po’boys that will tickle your taste buds. Choose from their extensive menu or try one of their specials, you won’t be disappointed. These down south staples might have you coming back for another trip!
Napoleon House is a must visit if you’re looking forward to try mufalettas, the quintessential New Orleans sandwich which is packed with cured meat and cheese and is slathered with a tangy olive salad and is heated to intensify the flavors.
Don’t be fooled by the idea that it is just another “sandwich” - you can try, but you can’t finish one yourself - that’s how filling and hearty it is! You absolutely won’t find another sandwich quite like it outside of the city, so while you’re there, be sure to grab one
For More tips on must see and do in New Orleans, click HERE.
Thinking about eloping but don’t want to go the typical “Vegas” route? While Las Vegas has practically become synonymous with eloping, there are plenty of other magnificent locations to tie the knot.
There’s a few, we would argue, that are even better than Vegas, and we’ll be taking a look at each of them here. Sure, Vegas has its charms, but if you’re looking for a truly unique, unforgettable romantic getaway, you’re going to want to check out our selection!
Camp Wandawega: Elkhorn, Wisconsin
Now, Wisconsin is certainly not a name you’d ever think would be associated with romantic getaways and elopements, but don’t let that deter you. If you’re looking for an experience closer to nature, with beautiful retreats in a rustic setting, Wandawega is your winner.
Over the past few years the camp has actually made a name for itself tailoring parts of its grounds for couples looking for something off the beaten path. Cozy log cabins, lodges, and even treehouses can be found in its expansive woodlands. What used to be Wisconsin’s best kept secret is becoming one of its finest attractions!
This quaint coastal town has long been a destination spot for anyone looking to experience the charm and beauty of the south. Not coincidentally, its charms lend it to being an amazing place to hold an elopement ceremony.
Fine dining, brimming with art and culture, plenty of entertainment, and of course, a flawless romantic setting, Savannah is simply a couple’s dream. If the glitz and glam of Vegas isn’t exactly your thing, Savannah will appeal to more classic sensibilities while still being full of fun, excitement, and romantic moments!
Typically thought of as a honeymoon spot, Maui is the perfect setting for the whole ceremony if that’s what you’re looking for. Why not make the entire wedding a honeymoon?
Maui is famous for its absolutely breathtaking white sand beaches, seaside attractions, paradisaical resorts, and minimalist aesthetic. It’s truly a place to go if you want to “get away from it all.” Here, it’s all about the beach, the sun, and the romance!
Beyond the attractive ambience of the island alone, there is more than enough to keep an adventurous couple occupied: rock climbing, surfing, cruises, snorkeling, ziplines, helicopter tours and more. You certainly won’t be bored.
Treehouse Point: Issaquah, Washington
Like a quaint forest village from a fantasy movie come to life, Treehouse point has been making a name for itself over the past few years as a premiere retreat and small wedding venue. Nestled in the midst of gorgeous woodlands, it features an array of unique fully decked out cabins built up in the trees, as well as more traditional options. There are even lodgings on the water.
For the full holistic experience, there are spa, yoga, and massage options available in and around the area: a stay at Treehouse is meant to be full of romance and relaxation. If you’re looking for a downright magical experience, you can’t go wrong with Treehouse Point.
Thorncrown Chapel: Eureka Springs, Arkansas
Another rustic romance spot less for retreats and more for very intimate elopements and weddings. This beautiful, obscure chapel rests in the forests of Arkansas, and is another contender for best elopement spots you might never have heard of.
It has that same magical, otherworldly feel as Treehouse Point, with plenty to do nearby, including tours and hiking opportunities. If your idea of a perfect elopement is an advertuuous getaway, you really can’t go wrong exploring this one of a kind chapel.
Bear Flag Farm: Winters, California
A self-proclaimed luxury estate, this farm-turned-paradise has made a name for itself in the wedding world in the last few years. They now specialize in hosting weddings and other events, and offer several magnificent attractions, including their own vineyard.
Of course, Bear Flag Farm is best known for the gorgeous photography options it offers: it is the perfectly picturesque kind of place you would expect to see only in movies. The rolling farm hills of the California countryside are all yours to share with your significant other!
No talk of elopement destinations would be complete without mentioning New Orleans. With its rich culture, gorgeous locales, numerous entertainment and dining options, and famous chapels, parks, and museums, it is quickly becoming the new name synonymous with “elopement.”
Areas like the French Quarter are becoming world-renown for the quality of the events hosted in the area, with unbeatable fine dining, romantic settings, and of course, professional elopement services that are unmatched anywhere else.
Vegas Isn’t Your Only Option
So whether you’re planning on going out to the West Coast or heading to the bayous down south, you don’t necessarily have to settle for Vegas. There are plenty of amazing elopement options all over the country, you just have to find the one that’s right for you.
After an engagement comes wedding planning. From the venue, the food, flowers all the way down to the table placements there’s a lot to think of.
For some however, they bypass all of the traditional wedding planning and decide to elope. Somewhere in that planning process is the decision on who will be taking pictures on your big day.
There’s a lot to consider when preparing for your wedding day. This is arguably the longest photoshoot of your life. More specifically, we’re focusing on tips for the groom to best prepare for a long day of looking picture ready.
There’s not much content geared toward the groom, can you believe it? So, here are the top tips for grooms to prepare for their wedding day photo session:
1. Decide on a hairstyle.
Many photographers ask that their clients pay mind to their outfit choices. Given that we’re talking about preparing for a wedding, that tip is self explanatory. We’re focusing on the smaller details, like deciding on a hairstyle. It’s key to decide on a cut and style that will last through an entire day. You don’t want to start the day looking fantastic and then see you hair fall flat and disrupted by the reception. Practice makes perfect here. Do a test run of your desired style using the products that you’ll be using the day of. This will ensure your hair will hold, and avoid unexpected reactions like rashes to the products.
2. Tame your facial hair.
Whether you are partial to a beard or prefer a clean-shave face, it’s important to make sure you’re perfectly groomed on your wedding day. With your photographer getting shots at all angles, you want to ensure you have the closest shave, or trim as possible. Brands like Harry’s offer a variety of razors and shaving products that will guarantee the closest shave, no matter your preference. Much like with your hairstyle, take the time to master your shaving regimen and ensure that you won’t have any nicks or cuts after your wedding day shave. Better yet, you won’t have a single hair out of place.
3. Brighten your smile.
A wedding is an occasion of love and happiness, which hopefully translates into smiling. With the focus of the day being on you and your bride-to-be, give yourself an added boost of confidence with a whiter brighter smile. From getting your teeth professionally whitened, to trading in your standard paste for a whitening toothpaste like Crest 3D, there are endless options to eliminate those coffee stains.
4. Be well rested.
This may seem obvious but getting a decent amount of sleep can make all of the difference. I’m not talking the night before, you should try to rest up weeks before your big day. Stress can take its toll on us without realizing it, even altering our appearance. Get plenty of sleep and perhaps indulge in some exercise to help work off any hidden stress.
Even though we typically think of destination elopements as spontaneous, almost impulsive acts of passion, there’s still a little bit of planning that goes into one if you want everything to go off without a hitch.
They key to a wonderful elopement is knowing the right time to do certain activities, and how to get to where you’re going in the first place.
We’ve put together a little timeline to take some of the headaches away and act as a guide for your elopement planning.
Why It’s Crucial to Plan Ahead
You want your elopement to be as stress-free as possible, right? Doing a couple hours of planning can save days worth of headaches in advance.
Even though elopements are typically smaller than weddings, there’s still a lot that goes into one if you’ve invited some friends and family and want to treat them to a good celebration. Then there is simply the importance of holding your ceremony at the right time so that it doesn’t interfere with other activities you have planned.
A properly planned destination elopement is something that can make what could be a monumental series of headaches and hiccups into a streamlined series of connected events that fit like clockwork.
Start with When You’re Holding the Ceremony
This is the centerpiece of your celebration, of course. But there’s a lot to think about other than where to have it and what to wear. The when can be almost as important, and here’s why: the lighting.
You want to avoid having a wedding ceremony of any kind fall exactly at noon or even an hour before or after. There’s a reason why it’s so desirable to have intimate photography done at sunset: it not only looks beautiful, but it makes getting incredible shots that much easier.
If you really want your elopement photos to stand out and have perfect lighting, you’re going to want your ceremony either in the morning or early evening (approx 1 1/2 hours or 2 hours before sunset), especially if you are planning to have a good portion of the ceremony outdoors. Nothing worse than a bride and groom squinting into a camera or harsh shadows across their face.
Once you know when you want to hold the actual ceremony, you can plan the rest of your day and night accordingly.
Preparing for the Elopement Ceremony
With all the fanfare surrounding the actual elopement, sometimes it’s easy to forget that you have to actually prepare “day of.”
Specifically, makeup and hair for the bride is extremely important. Even if you are going for an extremely casual, carefree elopement with minimal fanciness, the bride is going to want to make sure she’s looking her best, which means an hour or two of prep time.
Make sure you make room before the ceremony for hair and makeup. If you work this into the schedule ahead of time, you will save tons of stress when the day actually comes.
If you are having a stylist do your hair or makeup, triple check that they know the time of the day they are providing their service to you, make sure they know how to get to you if you’re not going to them, and above all, make sure you have a backup plan.
Guest Transportation and Venue Location
So you booked a fantastic hotel and you’ve planned a gorgeous little elopement – it won’t do your guests any good if they can’t get there to see it!
One of the least talked about wedding and elopement concerns is guest transportation. Not everyone will necessarily be coming by car, especially if your guests are coming in from out of state, had to fly to the destination, or if it’s taking place in the city.
Are you coordinating a couple buses? Are you relying on uber? Private car rental? Whatever the choice is, make sure you talk it over and plan ahead of time, and ensure that your guests have more than one viable option in case something goes awry.
If it’s the case where many of your guests can’t rely on their own transportation, it’s the bride and groom’s responsibility to see that your guests are accommodated. At the end of the day it’s their decision whether or not to utilize the services, but at least if you organize a shuttle or coordinate something, the option is there.
Venue location is also extremely important. All of your guests should have an easy time finding the courthouse, hotel, or ceremony location, and should have an easy means of double-checking where it is, such as on their invitation or on a social media site such as Facebook.
The location relative to parking and coordinating guests is also important. In the days leading up to the ceremony it might be wise to “scope out” the most important locations for your elopement and make sure they provide adequate parking and if not, suggest alternatives to your guests.
This is an area where the more homework you do beforehand, the less random snafus are liable to happen when you are having the ceremony. Parking can be a nightmare for dozens of people in a congested, unfamiliar area. Ease their burden (and yours) by planning ahead of time!
An elopement should be about romance first and the extras second. A proper schedule will ensure that you can focus a bit more on the former and less on the latter.
Make Reservations at Your Restaurant of Choice
One of the best parts of an elopement is not having to necessarily get tied down with a huge dinner party at a hotel. Instead, you can opt for a more romantic setting with only your closest friends and family, or even just you and your significant other.
The most important thing to remember is that a reservation is everything. The last thing you want is your heart set on a great restaurant only to be turned away. This is especially true of high class, high reputation venues that typically cater to celebrations. They’re bound to be booked, even if it’s off season or the middle of the week.
Even if you expect that there won’t be a problem getting in, you’re going to want to set up a reservation anyway. You don’t want to leave this kind of thing to chance. Also, if you’re celebrating with more than just a few people, any good restaurant is going to want to know ahead of time so that they can be properly prepared.
If you’re elopement destination of choice is indeed New Orleans, we’ve put together a must-have guide for choosing the best restaurant for an elopement dinner.
You’re also going to want to make sure you and your guests have an easy way of getting to the restaurant, so this is another instance of double-checking with uber, your private car rentals, or any kind of other transportation you are coordinating. Plan ahead!
After The Celebration is Over
What couples love about elopements is that they are like a wedding and honeymoon wrapped into one. Just because you just got married doesn’t mean the next day has to go back to the daily routine until the date of your honeymoon. The romance and excitement is just beginning.
There are a ton of amazing world-class restaurants in New Orleans, there’s no reason not to live it up and tour some of the best food the south has to offer. Attend a live jazz show, which are amazing and easy to find in the city, or tour the Mississippi river on a cruise.
With all of the art and culture in New Orleans, you can easily fill a day sightseeing the Historic district or visiting the various museums that pepper the city. Finish the night off with a stroll through the gorgeous French Quarter and stop for some drinks at one of the local lounges.
Whichever venues you decide on, make sure you do it ahead of time. Yes, there’s fun in spontaneity, but what’s even better is not having to stress about details when you should be having the time of your life.
Before the big day, sit down and plan out a time table for your celebration, including the days after, with all of the relevant times, dates, contact info, travel info, and anything else you and your guests need to make everything run smoothly. This is one of the biggest “secrets” to an unforgettable, flawless elopement. For more information and tips on Eloping, see more blogs here or email us at Info@ElopeToNola.com
For many women, finding the right dress can be one of the most important, and daunting parts of planning that goes into a wedding.
The same holds true for an elopement. Just because you’re looking to save money and have a small ceremony doesn’t mean you have to skimp on the dress. Despite what you may have heard, most women who elope still get a special dress for the occasion, and it can be every bit as fancy and elegant as a typical wedding dress.
We’re here to help you find a dress that’s the right combination of stylish and affordable – perfect for a romantic destination elopement or small wedding!
Finding the Right Elopement Dress
An elopement dress doesn’t have to be this $5000, showy thing, but it also doesn’t have to be informal. The best part about an elopement is you don’t have to stick to the norms and you can think outside the box a little.
Having more freedom with wedding dress choices is one of the best parts of an elopement: you’re also not pressured to invest so much money, because an elopement should focus on the romance and fun, not the extras!
One of the important points to remember in searching for your elopement dress should be comfort. Don’t settle for a stuffy dress that you feel like a fish out of water in. Sometimes simple and elegant beats extravagant by a mile. Besides, part of the fun of an elopement is that you can make it yours: don’t stick to norms if you don’t want to, and choose the dress that best fits your elopement theme and your style.
Dressesonline Women's Bohemian Wedding Dresses Lace Bridal Gown
This simple yet elegant bohemian style dress is the icing on the cake for a perfect elopement. It was modeled specifically for informal kinds of weddings yet still retains plenty of that effortless elegance you want for your special day.
An elopement dress doesn’t have to be a typical traditional white lacey deal with a long train, veil, and sequins, but if your idea of a simple romantic destination elopement includes a white dress for the ceremony, this would be the one to set your sights on.
Ellenhouse Women's 2018 Lace Vintage Country Style Bridal Wedding Dress
Want something a little more classic, but with a lavish twist? This dress from Ellenhouse is fashioned after classic southern ball gown styles, yet has a distinct wedding aura that makes it perfect for any size ceremony.
The simple style accentuated with lace gives this dress a truly vintage feel, which makes it especially ideal for a New Orleans style wedding or elopement ceremony!
Babyonline Women's Double V-Neck Tulle Appliques Long Evening Gown
Looking for something a little more flashy? This dress might be what you’re looking for.
Technically a cocktail dress or fancy party gown, this number caught our eye for its sheer simple elegance mixed with stark color and beautiful design. The best part of an elopement is you’re free to choose how formal you want to go, and if you want to stray from the traditional white wedding dress trope, you can’t go wrong here.
Lace, tulle, flowery yet simple, this quality dress is also extremely affordable. The last thing you want to do if you’re planning an elopement is getting caught up with spending a fortune as you would planning a traditional wedding. You absolutely don’t have to spend a month’s pay just to look stunning when you’re getting eloped. This dress definitely proves that!
Elleybuy Women's Two Pieces Beach Wedding Dresses
Want something good for an outdoor ceremony? There’s nothing more romantic than an elopement in a beautiful park or beach. This dress fits that niche rather nicely!
It’s actually a two-piece style dress, something you don’t see very often at weddings, but it works. With lace and a light gown that’s meant to catch the wind, it makes it a stunning choice for an outdoor elopement.
Lovelybride Elegant Empire Chiffon Bridal Beach Dress
As far as elopement dresses go, if you’re looking for something a bit more spicy and elegant, this one from Lovelybride might catch your eye.
Simple, shoulderless chiffon with a cinched waist and undeniable class, it’s the perfect answer to the quandary of finding a stunning elopement dress for any kind of ceremony. What makes this dress stand out compared to some of our more traditional selections is that this one is unabashedly modern, so if that is your taste, you’re going to love it!
Obqoo Gorgeous Sweetheart Beaded Lace Appliqued Ball Gown
Our last selection is possibly the most unique one. Your elopement should be special and if you want to go all out and feel like Cinderella at the ball, you should. And you can with a dress like this!
Like something custom made for a fancy ballroom dance party, this shoulderless dress features tulle lace with sequins, a corset style bodice, and a true classic ballroom skirt, for a purely eye-catching fantastical look.
Your Elopement, Your Style
Regardless of the look you choose for your ceremony, the thing to remember is, make it yours! Don’t feel tied to traditional ideas of what wedding dresses are supposed to look like. An elopement is your chance for a romantic celebration of your love with your partner. Don’t get pigeonholed into a “classic” kind of dress if that’s not what you want.
Whether it’s a ballroom look you’re going for, or a colorful outdoors feel, the first principle you should follow when looking for your elopement dress is: does it fit your style? This is your day, live it up! For eloping tips, affordable packages or to find an elopement photographer in New Orleans, contact us at ElopeToNola.com
There’s nothing like a nice dinner with the right atmosphere to set the mood. Good food and an elegant setting can make all the difference if you’re looking for a romantic night out, especially for newlyweds who just married or eloped in New Orleans.
We’ve compiled a list of the best of the best romantic restaurants in New Orleans for you to sink your teeth into.
We start our restaurant tour with Tableau, a trendy eatery located right in the gorgeous Jackson Square in the French Quarter. This restaurant is most known for its trendy style and Creole cuisine, replete with its own tiny theater and atmospheric private dining hall.
Their bright dining area full of chandeliers and ornate furnishings epitomizes class and is exactly what you would want in a romantic setting for you and your significant other. It doesn’t hurt that they have mouth-watering dishes like BBQ Shrimp & Grits, and Grilled Gulf Fish Curry.
Must Try Dessert: Crème Brulee (Less custard and more carmelized sugar!)
The newly reopened historic restaurant located right on Royal Street in the heart of New Orleans, has plenty of luxury and charm, with the food to back it up. Delicious New Orleans favorites like seafood gumbo and barbeque lobster meet new delights, such as their unique take on the Buddha Bowl.
Perfect for a couple looking for a classy spot for a ritzy dinner, or simply to enjoy classic New Orleans at its best.
Must Try Dessert: Bananas Foster (A longtime Brennan’s tradition!)
Specializing in traditional southern food in a trendy modern setting, this restaurant is another gem of the Mississippi.
They locally source their meat and seafood, their roots are Cajun, and they excel at hosting special events, with private and semi-private dining options located right in their restaurant. If you’re looking for classic Cajun food with a romantic setting, you’re in the right place.
Must Try Dessert: Grasshopper Pie (Don’t let the name fool you, if you’ve never had this traditional southern treat, no one does it better than Cochon!)
This award-winning historic restaurant is a New Orleans staple, and the perfect destination for a newlywed couple looking to share a romantic dinner together.
With live music, private dining options, a wine room, exquisite atmosphere and 5-star food, the Commanders Palace might be just what you’re looking for. Their specialty Haute Creole dishes and list of accolades makes them one of New Orleans most famous dining locations.
Must Try Dessert: Bread Pudding (The epitome of New Orleans comfort food!)
Antoine's on St. Louis
Hailed as the oldest French Quarter Creole restaurant in New Orleans, Antoine’s is another historic landmark in the heart of the city that people flock to for great traditional eats.
What began in 1840 as a simple classy restaurant with great food is now an elegant foodie destination with ten massive dining rooms, exquisite furnishings, top quality Creole dishes, and a tradition of quality service. What more could a newlywed couple want?
Must Try Dessert: Peche Melba (Antoine’s signature, it’s just as good as it sounds!)
This Arts District Staple is another Creole and Caribbean food Mecca. Their menu is based around traditional Caribbean folktales and its modern but classy setting makes it another excellent selection for couples looking for a place to have a romantic night out.
Headed by Chef Nina Compton, this recently-opened New Orleans gem is sure to please any newlywed pair wanting a taste of what the city has to offer.
Must Try Dessert: Roasted Banana Zeppole (A dessert so yummy, it was mentioned in the New York Times!)
Dickie Brennans Steakhouse
New Orleans’ signature steakhouse, Dickie Brennans has been specializing in beef preparation for decades, and is known for its awards and accolades from across the country. Not only are their steaks something to write home about, they also cook up delicious New Orleans favorites such as turtle soup and crabcakes. They also feature a full bar and private dining options.
If you’re looking for upscale dining with a focus on “roadhouse” style eats, a couple couldn’t go wrong making their destination here.
Must Try Dessert: Sweet Potato Doberge Cake (Hulking seven layers of rum-soaked cake goodness.)
Ralph's on the Park
Another renown New Orleans restaurant located in the heart of Mid-City, specializing in luxurious events and parties. Traditional southern fare with an international, refined twist. They pride themselves in establishing relationships with local farmers, and source all of their ingredients right from these small, dedicated farms. They place high importance on the “farm to table” aspect of their dishes, and it shows. Their food is top quality, as is their service.
If you’re looking for an upscale eatery with a diverse selection of great food, with plenty of space to accommodate a party or simply you and your significant other, you can’t go wrong with Ralph’s.
Must Try Dessert: Banana Bread Pudding (A decadent New Orleans favorite!)
We finish our restaurant tour with a French Quarter staple. This fancy French bakery is home to a wide variety of pastries, cookies, cakes, and mouth-watering confections. They’re not a restaurant in the traditional sense, as they only serve brunch, but if you’re looking for a downright magical outing, Sucre is where you want to be.
Stylized as a “sweet boutique,” Sucre has been producing high quality sweet and treats since 2007, and has since become one of the city’s best known landmarks for foodies and tourists, and just about anyone looking for something to quell their sweet tooth.
They specialize in everything from gourmet chocolates to giant decadent cookies (literally Big Awesome Cookies), custom cakes, delicious coffee and more. There’s no way we could pick any one must try dessert: you have to try everything here and see (taste) for yourself why this place has such a high reputation!
For more information on marrying, eloping in New Orleans or hiring an experienced New Orleans wedding photographer, please don't hesitate to contact us at: IbayPhotography@gmail.com
You decided against the big wedding and instead opted for a more fun, intimate adventure at a beautiful elopement destination like the New Orleans French Quarter. You’re not worried about family drama, planning for a hundred people, expensive decorations, or any of that other typical wedding stuff.
But wait, you still need someone to capture those special moments! This is a situation many couples find themselves in. They make the choice to get eloped, forgo many of the typical trappings of planning for a big wedding ceremony, but forget that they still need a professional to man the cameras. Believe me, you don’t want to leave this task up to a local hobbyist or your niece who bought a GoPro last year and who suddenly thinks she’s a star on Instagram.
Elopement photography is almost an art unto itself: often it’s about capturing more candid moments than in a normal wedding. It’s about grabbing those magic moments, the intimate setting, the romantic day trips, the quaint aura of the ceremony, and all the little memories in between.
The Perfect Elopement Setting at the Historic French Quarter
Imagine a place where gorgeous ambiance meets historical class: that’s the New Orleans French Quarter summed up. There’s a reason why this area sees thousands of couples every year for their special destination events, because it offers everything you could want in a romantic getaway.
Active nightlife, exquisite restaurants, fancy boutiques, art, entertainment, and photogenic vistas, all with traditional New Orleans style. What’s not to love?
Capturing these moments is so important, especially for an elopement. If the French Quarter is your dream destination, you don’t want to leave the job of capturing those memories to any second-rate photographer.
This is one of the greatest issues couples face when planning for a big wedding. Booking a reliable “camera guy” is perhaps one of the biggest headaches outside of the catering. There’s many amateurs out there, and still others just don’t have the eye for the romance and fun of an elopement. You’re looking for a “set it and forget it” kind of service, someone who knows what they’re doing and will transform ordinary pictures into memories that will last a lifetime.
Your elopement photography should be something you can cherish forever. That’s what we at IBAY Photography believe. Our goal is to do all the work so you don’t have to: we provide the tools, we put ourselves in the right places at the right time, we capture all the golden moments (and the silly ones!) and ultimately take the burden of having to worry about your photography completely out of the picture. Your elopement should be about you, no stress, no hassle. That’s why we’re here.
Expert New Orleans Photographers Specializing in Elopements
There are a lot of photographers out there, and many who do weddings as a side gig. We however have perfected the art of attention-grabbing, romantic elopement shots, it’s our specialty!.
We live to capture all of your best moments on film so you can have them forever, without forcing you to break the bank or have to rely on outsiders. We’re located right in New Orleans, minutes from the historic French Quarter itself. We know the area and pride ourselves in delivering top quality service to couples from around the country.
Here’s just a taste of some of our recent elopement shoots.
We work intimately alongside couples to help them plan their day, arrange shoots, and even provide elopement package plans that take care of everything you could possibly want in a romantic destination elopement.
Stunning photography is one of the cornerstones of an amazing wedding or elopement, this is not an area you want to leave to chance. Contact us for more information on how you can have us capture the magic moments in your elopement!
New Orleans is one of the US cities that have been in existence for 300 years! Because of that, there can never be a shortage of a historic and beautiful venue for a small wedding in this great place. There are a couple of new and renovated venues, whose architecture and art qualify them as the best places to pronounce those three magic words, “yes, I do”.
Here is a list of top five memorable spots where you can have that small but amazing wedding in New Orleans.
Bourbon Orleans Hotel
With an amazing history behind it, the majesty of Bourbon Orleans will give the guests a chance to rewrite their own story and even relive it. This is why it is one of the best places for a small wedding in New Orleans. Having begun in 1817 as a ballroom, one of the most historic and unique ballrooms in the city, the hotel has grown to transform itself into one of the best destinations for wedding in New Orleans.
Many years ago, in 1827 to be specific, this spot became the house and state legislative meeting point, with talk going round that one of the candidates for presidency in America, Andrew Jackson announced its candidature at this historic New Orleans spot.
Things have changed so much since then, and this hotel is today listed among the best places for eloping in New Orleans. It gives its guests a unique experience, one that you can only find in New Orleans as well as providing access to the city’s best dining, nightlife and shopping.
This is easily one of the best locations for a destination wedding in New Orleans. Apart from the countless wedding that have been held here, the spot has also played host for various meetings, dinners, as well as receptions.
It is also important to note that the Bourbon Hotel is situated in an adjacent position between two historic landmarks in New Orleans; Jackson Square and St. Louis Cathedral. Guests attending a wedding here will have the best of times as a friendly and experienced staff will be on standby to offer them any type of assistance that they might require. Although they will be within the building, they will not lose contact to the outside world as a complimentary Wi-Fi will ensure they are connected at all times.
Once the serious business of taking the vows is done, the visitors will walk just outside the main doors and have the best of New Orleans nightlife on historic Bourbon Street. There is still much to offer on Royal Street as well - your choices for entertainment and fun are limitless.
Sucre Balcony is also one of the best places for small weddings in New Orleans. Apart from being located at a nice spot, it can also contain a sizeable number to accommodate any sized small event. The salon, for instance, will give the guests a great French Quarter experience with an access to the nice balcony overlooking Conti Street as well as a private dining room.
You can also opt to host your amazing affair at the Front Balcony, where you will enjoy nicely blended cocktails as you enjoy soothing music from the balcony of Conti Street.
If that is not enough reasons why Sucre Balcony is one of the best places for eloping in New Orleans then you can try the private dining room. This room has been specifically designed for more intimate events such as weddings. Later on, you can move to the lounge and enjoy the best assortment of food and beverages the city has to offer.
Grand Victorian B&B
Not very far from the historic French Quarter, there is an amazing best and breakfast hotel in New Orleans known as The Grand Victorian Bed & Breakfast. This facility has been in operation in New Orleans since 1893 when a famous architect in the city Thomas Sully designed and started its construction.
One thing that makes The Grand Victorian B&B one of the ideal places for intimate weddings is the fact that is situated under the shady and colorful St. Charles Avenue oaks. Even before your guests arrive at the Grand Victorian B&B for the wedding, they will be treated to beautiful scenery of the colonial, Greek revival and Victorian style structures along the historic St. Charles Avenue.
Once inside, there are a lot to have the guests entertained as the events of the day roll in. Grand Victorian B&B opened its doors as an official wedding spot in October of 1998, and since then, it has been offering the best services within New Orleans. Looking for one of the best places for eloping in New Orleans? Then look no further; Grand Victorian is the best place to be.
Dauphine Orleans Hotel, New Orleans
Just in the heart of the great New Orleans’ French Quarter lies the Dauphine Orleans Hotel, one of the best places for small weddings in New Orleans. Having been opened in 1969, the building has undergone numerous renovations and restorations to make the best wedding spot it is today. This hotel is open to all couples, from all eras and ages, as long as they want to enjoy a good atmosphere as they make their lifetime commitments.
The Dauphine Hotel is a special wedding destination in New Orleans as it offers the guests with a romantic roll in the hay before they get to see other services provided within the facility. There are two beautiful, private courtyards that are within this facility and are amazingly surrounded by guests rooms, suites as well as townhouse stonewalls. Still looking for the best place for eloping in New Orleans? Try The Dauphine Hotel today.
Hotel Le Marais, New Orleans, Louisiana
This is definitely another perfect location for anyone thinking about having a storybook wedding. The manner in which it has bucked the traditional aesthetic is something that none had ever thought of. Hotel Le Marais is located next to the historic Bourbon Street and this makes it easy to access. With its amazing half-block buffer, all degrees of civility will be maintained here, weather you'd prefer fine dining or just neon cocktails.
In short, Hotel Le Marais is ideally located and this makes it one of the best places for eloping in New Orleans. When it comes to facilities and service, none actually beats this French quarter spot in New Orleans, Louisiana. Whereas it is not the largest hotel in this city, Hotel Le Marais has a total of 66 rooms and all have nice coffee all gratis, Wi-Fi, as well as bottled water. What else do you need for your small wedding in New Orleans? All can be found here.
The other thing that makes Hotel Le Marais convenient is the fact that it has an access for guests with disabilities. The hotel has been designed with a single ADA – Americans with Disabilities Act compliant room. It is complete with grip bars and roll-in showers. This is one of the best spots to have your small lifetime event while in the city of New Orleans for you and your loved ones.
Plan Your Small Wedding in New Orleans Today
These are some of the best places in New Orleans for those who want to have a small wedding; they have some of the best services needed for a small wedding, from assortment of delicacies to recreational facilities and access to shopping and New Orleans nightlife. Don't forget about booking your photography with us, you can reach us HERE! We would be honored to capture your special day.
Unique and Fun Family Friendly Attractions in Louisiana
Louisiana certainly has its fair share of world–renowned attractions. Let's face it; what would family road trips be without them? Here are a few possibilities to consider.
Storyland (New Orleans)
Featuring a fun and kid-friendly collection of fairytale statues, Storyland is a New Orleans attraction suitable for the whole family. It was originally built to mimic a similar attraction in California. However, it has grown to include an assortment of original works.
When your family is done exploring Storyland, head to nearby Carousel Gardens Amusement Park to enjoy a few fun carnival-style rides as well.
Insectarium (New Orleans)
The Insectarium, operated by the non-profit Audubon Nature Institute, consists of larger-than-life (hands-on) displays that keep guests of all ages entertained and educated about bugs... both creepy and cute.
One of the most memorable displays is an over-sized area, which allows your family to experience life on a bug's scale. How cool is that? There's also an area that mimics a Louisiana swamp and an indoor butterfly garden, sure to delight even the youngest members of your group.
Bonnie and Clyde Ambush Museum (Gibsland)
Outlaws Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow unleashed a bloody crime spree in the 1930s, before being gunned down by law enforcement officers hot on their trail. The story has been passed down through the ages and most followers of true crime stories are familiar with the famous pair. The Bonnie and Clyde Ambush Museum is home to tons of interesting information and actual artifacts relating to the case. This includes Bonnie's red hat, Clyde's Remington shotguns and a replica of the car the couple drove on the day of the ambush... numerous bullet holes included! These are just three (of many) Louisiana-based weird roadside attractions just waiting for you to plan a scheduled or impromptu visit. You don't need to spend a fortune at any of these locations and if you're worried about the possibility of crowds, there typically isn't any. What could be better than that?
Hope you enjoy a few if not all of these attractions. For more information on New Orleans, feel free to visit us HERE. Article compliments of Ibay Photography.
By: Matthew Lovett, Crimson Sigil Media
You’ve decided to forgo all the stress of wedding planning and run off just the two of you to say I Do. But just because this plan is much easier to pull off, that doesn’t mean you don’t have to put in some effort. Check out these five things you might forget to do before eloping.
1. Don't Forget To Take Care of Your Legal Work. Nothing gets in the way of a romantic destination elopement more than forgetting to get all of the legalities out of the way. You might think it’s okay if you just wing this part because you’re not planning a huge wedding, but it’s just as important. You don’t want to have to be thinking about this side of things while you’re supposed to be enjoying time with your significant other.
Make sure all of your paperwork is ready, completed, and out of the way. That way, your getaway will be headache free and your union will be official.
2. Don't Forget To Invest in a Planning Service. Local wedding planners are essential and do more than just cater to huge traditional weddings. If you want your perfect day to go off without a hitch, you’re going to want someone managing everything in the background for you.
An elopement should be stress free and full of romantic events planned out – treating it otherwise will only give you headaches. Why would you want to risk not having a reservation at the restaurant you had your heart set on, or not being able to find a certain venue because you don’t know the area that well yet? Elopement and wedding planning services take all the hassle away, save you time, money, and best of all, they are experts at maximizing your enjoyment.
3. Don't Forget To Create a Theme. What direction do you want your elopement to go? Are you looking for an earthy feel, a tropical getaway, something fancy, or super casual? In order to have the best possible experience, plan ahead of time what theme your elopement will have. This will make planning for everything else that much easier.
One of the easiest ways to get tangled in your own wedding plans is to dive in without an idea of what you really want to do. Once you decide on a theme, that will set the pace for everything else, including catering, flowers, decorations, cake, dresses, and more. You might even want to base your elopement destination on what your theme is.
4. Don't Forget To Hire Professional Photography Services. You’re going to want great photos of all your special moments. Often, a good wedding or elopement planning service can help you out in this regard, and others provide in house photography services (like us), but either way, you don’t want to skip over this point.
You might have a few amateur photographers in your family or friend circle, and that’s all well and good, but to truly capture the highlights and special little moments, you need a professional service with all the right tools and experience with special events like weddings. There’s simply no substitute!
5. Don't Forget To Setup Your Transportation. A surefire recipe for unwanted headaches is having to rely on the randomness of taxi or limo services to ferry you on the fly from one place to another. And the last thing you want to be doing on your special day is driving yourself around. That’s a huge no. So the best course of action here is to have your transportation plans laid out before you say “I do.” Make sure you know how you’re getting from point A to point B, and beyond. Make sure all of your guests know how to get to all the important venues as well, and make sure any flights involved are booked well ahead of time. This goes for hotel stays too! If you have a wedding planning service on your side, they usually help immensely in this department, so don’t forget to use their expertise.
6. Don’t Forget To Plan For The Days After Your Elopement! Since you will likely be staying at your destination location for a couple of days, map out what to do in the city as a newly married couple the days after your wedding day. I recommend not coming to a city like New Orleans to marry and then not have a plan for what you will do the rest of the days you are here. I’m all for winging it, enjoying each others company and letting your nose lead you to amazing restaurants but a little bit of planning will ensure you see some very iconic sites in your chosen destination. Even just reaching out to others on social media (or simply asking for recommendations from your planner/photographer who likely live in the area) for advice and tips of what locals do in your destination. What you find on a google search will most likely be very touristy and non-unique.
Your elopement should be stress free, fun, and memorable, so make sure you take care of what you need to beforehand. Don’t forget to let your friends and family know If your plan is to have an intimate destination elopement with only a few friends and family, or perhaps only you and your significant other, be prepared for at least a little backlash.
Most people agree that it’s best to let the cat out of the bag sooner rather than later. Don’t wait to announce that you tied the knot in some exotic locale on Facebook before telling close relatives or long-time friends. That’s just setting yourself up for a world of headaches.
One of the most important aspects of planning an elopement is deciding early on how big of an event are you planning and who’s invited. The sooner you hash those details out the better, that way you can get the word out to the right people when it’s time.
Knowing what NOT to do on your elopement is just as important as knowing what TO do. With these tips, you'll be better prepared and you will be less likely to make any mistakes along the way. For more information on eloping and best locations, visit our partner site HERE!