Historic City of Bath
Nestled in the historic city of Bath, the Macdonald Bath Spa Hotel provided a sophisticated and romantic backdrop for Kiara and Zak’s spring wedding. This iconic hotel, with its Georgian-style architecture and luxurious spa, was the perfect venue to host their elegant affair.
The Macdonald Bath Spa Hotel is situated in the heart of Bath, just a short walk from the historic Roman Baths. Built-in the 18th century, the hotel encompasses three different buildings – the main house, a townhouse, and a cottage. With its columned portico and stately facade, it retains the grace and grandeur of the Georgian era. Inside, the decor continues the classic style with marble floors, chandeliers, and elegant moldings.
Some key features and amenities of the hotel for weddings include:
- Spacious ballroom – The grand ballroom can accommodate up to 300 guests, with high ceilings and enormous chandeliers, setting a glamorous tone.
- Outdoor garden terrace – The manicured gardens offer a beautiful backdrop for wedding photos or an outdoor cocktail hour.
- Luxury spa – The onsite spa provides massages, facials, and relaxing treatments for wedding parties.
- Elegant accommodations – The hotel has 152 guest rooms and 12 suites, decorated in a traditional style befitting the building’s heritage. Many rooms offer views of the gardens or hills beyond.
- In-house catering – The experienced culinary team can provide bespoke menus and accommodate special dietary needs.
- Central location – Just steps from Bath city center, making it convenient for out-of-town guests.
- Ample parking – The hotel offers valet parking for wedding events.
- Disabled access – The hotel has lifts, ramps, and several accessible rooms.
With its blend of elegance, convenience, and first-class service, it was easy to see why Kiara and Zak chose the Macdonald Bath Spa Hotel for their nuptials.
Flowers and Decor
Kiara wanted an elegant, romantic aesthetic for the wedding flowers and decor. To achieve this look, the floral arrangements featured soft, abundant blooms in blush, ivory, and pale pink.
Some details about the floral decor:
- Centerpieces – Urns overflowing with peonies, roses, and hydrangeas graced the reception tables.
- Ceremony backdrop – The couple said their vows before an arch entwined with roses, lanterns, and flowing greenery.
- Bouquets and boutonnieres – Kiara carried a bouquet of pink peonies, while the bridesmaids carried smaller versions with roses and ranunculus. The groom and groomsmen wore boutonnieres of roses and seeded eucalyptus.
- Aisle decor – The aisle was lined with lanterns holding trailing blooms and satin bows marked each row.
- Reception decor – In addition to the floral centerpieces, the ballroom was decorated with votive candles, silver vases with blooms, and linen napkins in a blush tone.
The abundant florals and mix of pink hues evoked a soft, romantic feeling perfectly suited to the spring celebration.
The Wedding Party
Kiara and Zak had a medium-sized wedding party made up of close friends and siblings:
- Bridesmaids – The bride was accompanied by her two sisters and four close friends. The maids wore flowing blush chiffon gowns and carried smaller versions of Kiara’s bouquet.
- Groomsmen – Standing up with Zak were his two brothers, the bride’s brother, and three longtime friends. The groomsmen wore classic black tuxedos with blush pink ties and rose boutonnieres.
- Flower girl and ring bearer – Kiara’s adorable niece scattered rose petals down the aisle. Zak’s nephew carried a cushion bearing the rings.
- Ushers – Four additional friends helped greet and seat guests.
The wedding party perfectly reflected the couple’s community of loved ones who supported their relationship.
Kiara and Zak opted for a timeline that allowed them to experience the day at a relaxed pace and spend ample time with their guests.
- 10 AM – Bridal party arrived for hair and makeup.
- 12 PM – Guests begin arriving at the church.
- 1 PM – Ceremony begins.
- 2:30 PM – Guests proceed to cocktail hour at the hotel.
- 3:30 PM – Bridal party takes photos around Bath.
- 4 PM – Reception begins with a grand entrance and first dance.
- 5 PM – Dinner service.
- 7 PM – Parent dances and cake cutting.
- 8 PM – Dancing and photo booth open.
- 11 PM – Sparkler farewell sendoff.
With a substantial cocktail hour and nearly three hours for the reception, the schedule allowed the bride, groom, and guests time to mingle, relax, and savor the celebration.
The Guest List
Kiara and Zak struck the perfect balance for their guest list, inviting close family, long-time friends, and recent acquaintances.
- Family – Including parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces & nephews, both their immediate families comprised about 75 guests.
- Close friends – The couple had about 50 dear friends they’ve known for 10+ years to attend.
- Work colleagues – They invited around 20 coworkers from their respective jobs.
- Newer friends – Capping the list were 25 friends made in the last few years through their hobbies or community.
With around 170 invited, their wedding was an intimate affair while still large enough to feel like a true celebration with those closest to them.
Entertainment and Music
Kiara and Zak infused the wedding with music that held special meaning and kept guests entertained all evening.
- Ceremony music – A string quartet played pop songs and classical arrangements.
- Cocktail hour – A jazz trio welcomed guests with upbeat tunes.
- Reception entrance – The couple entered the ballroom to Kiara’s favorite Elton John song, “Your Song.”
- First dance – They shared a romantic first dance to “At Last” by Etta James.
- Parent dances – Kiara danced with her father to “My Girl” by the Temptations. Zak danced with his mom to “Simple Man” by Lynyrd Skynyrd.
- Open dancing – A live band played current hits and classics to keep the dance floor packed all night.
- Photobooth – Complete with props and digital sharing, it provided entertainment between dances.
The mix of live music, energetic songs, and personal touches made it a fun and memorable reception.
Working with the Macdonald’s onsite catering team, Kiara and Zak chose a menu reflecting their favorite foods and the spring season.
For the reception dinner, guests enjoyed:
- First course – Fresh asparagus spears wrapped with prosciutto.
- Salad course – Mixed greens with goat cheese, strawberries, and champagne vinaigrette.
- Main course – Guests could choose between seared salmon with dill butter or sliced beef tenderloin with mushroom Madeira sauce.
- Sides – The entrees were served with roasted new potatoes and grilled spring vegetables.
- Dessert – An elegant vanilla cake with fresh flowers and fruit compote.
The meal incorporated fresh, seasonal flavors that suited the spring celebration. The venture catered to Kiara’s request for organic, locally-sourced ingredients. With delicious cuisine and top-notch service, the dinner was a highlight of the day.
In addition to the beautiful florals and music, several special details made Kiara and Zak’s wedding unique.
- Photo guestbook – Guests took Polaroid photos and left messages in a scrapbook for the couple to keep.
- Glow sticks – The dance floor came alive when the couple passed out glow sticks during an upbeat party song.
- Dessert bar – Along with cake, they served an assortment of petite desserts, including macarons, tarts, and truffles.
- Sparkler exit – As they departed, guests lined up with sparklers, lighting up the night to bid Kiara and Zak farewell.
- Donations – In lieu of favors, they made a donation to a local animal shelter they volunteer with.
These personal touches made the wedding distinctly Kiara and Zak’s while allowing their guests to share in the joy.
To capture all the special moments and details, Kiara and Zak hired wedding photographer Michael Gane of The FX Works. Michael’s documentary, natural photography style would enable him to fade into the background and capture authentic moments.
They appreciated that Michael:
- Has over 10 years of experience photographing weddings.
- Won awards for his wedding photography.
- Spent time getting to know them and understanding their wedding day vision.
- Focuses on unobtrusive, natural photography that tells the real story.
- Is familiar with venues in the area.
- Reviewed the day’s timeline and coordinated key photos.
- Brings backup equipment and an assistant photographer.
Kiara and Zak felt confident entrusting Michael to capture lasting memories of their special day.
Kiara and Zak’s elegant spring affair perfectly encapsulated their romantic vision. Marrying at the historic Macdonald Bath Spa allowed them to celebrate in sophisticated style amongst dear family and friends. Each detail, from the blush floral designs to the live musical accompaniment, was thoughtfully chosen to create a beautiful, joyful celebration. The beaming smiles in their wedding photos are a testament to the happiness they felt on their special day. Their wedding sets the stage for a lifetime of love and partnership.