1. The price is right Wedding venues quickly become booked solid through summer months, which means your dream venue may be unavailable for a year or more. By planning a winter wedding, you’re far more likely to secure the venue you want, when you want, without peak season prices.
2. Colour comes to life Winter’s bare boughs and frosty carpets provide an ideal canvas for splashes of colour. Bold accent hues pop while soft pastels such as aquamarine look ethereal when juxtaposed against a snowy landscape. Incorporate nature’s best in your theme. Consider a chocolate brown pinecone motif, or weave winter wonderland symbolism throughout the event.
3. Embrace layers of love Gorgeous fabrics deemed too weighty for summer – such as sophisticated silk satins and heavy lace – become luxurious possibilities in winter. Look beautiful, but stay warm by wearing a dress with sleeves, or a donning a decorative coat or jacket. ‘A winter wedding is a fabulous opportunity to not only wear a stunning dress but to consider layering,’ says designer Anna Schimmel. ‘Adding a bridal jacket to your ensemble essentially gives you two looks [wear your jacket outdoors and remove it for your reception]. I also advise winter brides to have fun with a cover-up. They can pair a simple gown with a shrug embellished with ruffles or strong detailing.’
4. Picture this The New Zealand winter sets the stage for stunning wedding photos. From Mount Ruapheu to Mount Cook many of our mountain ranges are snow-covered, and the South Island’s magnificent glaciers also make particularly breathtaking backdrops. Winter’s overcast weather creates flattering, ambient lighting. Plus, you don’t have to worry about squinting into the sun during the portrait session. The North Island experiences more rainfall in winter than any other season so if you’re planning outdoor photos, have an indoor back-up plan.
5. They're all yours There are fewer public holidays during the cold months – which is ideal if you’re planning a multi-day event, as your guests’ accommodation options are likely to be plentiful and more budget-friendly. Furthermore, your wedding is unlikely to clash with your guests’ own holiday-weekend plans. Even boutique luxury accommodation, such as Auckland’s Mollies and the South Island’s Blanket Bay have reduced room rates, so you can get luxe for less. However, if you’re planning a ski resort destination wedding, you'll be competing for space with thousands of snow-goers, so you'll need to book accommodation well in advance.
6. Pamper party If hitting the bars in town seems a little ‘been there, done that’ for your hen party, suggest to your bridesmaids that they make the most of winter by embracing the season. Why not pack up and head off to the mountains for a ski/snowboard weekend? By organising a group lesson for newbies even the most timid snow bunnies can enjoy hitting the slopes. If pampering is more your thing, what better place to kick back in winter than the hot pools? Rotorua's Polynesian Spa has been voted one of the top 10 day spa resorts in the world. In addition to featuring a variety of massage therapies on the menu, it offers private thermal pools, perfect for a girls’ gathering. On the shores of the South Island’s Lake Tekapo, Alpine Springs Spa & Winter Park is all about celebrating the winter season. As well as hot pools and a spa, they have an ice hockey rink and state-of-the-art snow slope, dedicated entirely to snow tubing.