Mountain weddings tend to be smaller, and festivities may run throughout the week. // © 2017 Darren Roberts
The bride was wearing a billowing pale-pink Vera Wang dress, and the groom was in a black tuxedo with a gray vest. If it were not for the mittens and the fur-lined winter boots, you could say they were classically attired. The best thing about this couple’s wedding was its spectacular setting amid the snow-covered forests and mountain peaks of the Canadian Rockies (which made wearing mittens worth the trouble).
This particular wedding — which took place at Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise in Banff, Alberta — and others like it are increasingly becoming mainstream in the destination wedding sector.
And, as couples search for unique and inspiring locales, Banff has emerged as one of the top spots for weddings in the Canadian Rockies.
“Summer has always been the peak wedding season in the Rockies, but winter weddings are becoming more popular,” said Kirstie Tweed, a Banff wedding photographer and creator of the Tweed Telegraph website. “Couples who book mountain weddings tend to be more adventurous — especially those who opt for winter weddings.”
A trend in mountain weddings is to plan a “wedding week” instead of a wedding day, Tweed says.
“These weddings tend to be smaller, and the bride and groom plan a week of activities for their immediate family and close friends,” she said. “When people travel to attend a wedding, they want to see the destination.”
In Banff, activities include skiing, skating, curling, ice climbing and dogsledding in winter, and hiking, canoeing, glacier walks, helicopter tours and wildlife watching in summer. Fine dining, spa visits and hot-springs soaks are available year-round.
“The mountains lend themselves to romance,” Tweed said. “Whether a couple chooses to be married on a mountaintop, in a lakeside cabin or at a hotel such as Fairmont Banff Springs, a mountain wedding is always exceptionally romantic.”
Top Spots for Romance in Banff
Whether you’re booking a wedding or a honeymoon trip, there are many options in Banff, Alberta, for clients who want to find romance in the Canadian Rockies.
Fairmont Banff Springs
The “Castle in the Rockies” has developed a reputation for outstanding luxury and service. There’s a spa, a golf course and fine dining restaurants on-site. For a special treat, consider taking high tea or enjoying Sunday brunch.
The Rimrock Resort Hotel
Perched on a hillside near Banff Upper Hot Springs, the property offers amazing views of the Rockies from many rooms. There’s an excellent on-site spa and exceptional restaurants.
Shadow Lake Lodge
You can only reach this rustic backcountry lodge by hiking or cross-country skiing, but it’s worth the effort. A stay includes delicious meals and afternoon tea, but the best part is the incredible views of Shadow Lake and the surrounding mountains. From the lodge you can hike stunning, less-traveled mountain trails.