Sunday, June 29, 2008

Weddings in Paris

We spent our second anniversary in Paris (See The Anniversary Trip). It gave us an opportunity to scope out weddings in Paris.

We couldn’t imagine going to Europe and getting married in a stodgy old church (although there are tons of cool churches in Paris). What Paris has to offer is some of the most romantic spots in the whole world.

If you consider a destination wedding in Paris, you might think about a wedding cruise on the Seine. We don’t know if you could do the actual wedding on the boat (although we bet it is possible; more on that below), but you can certainly do a nice reception. You and a handful of guests can take a Seine river cruise and, after you exchange your vows, party the night away. There are several cruise vendors, so check into them carefully. You want to find a small boat that you can rent out (so its private). Check with Bateaux-Mouches or the nice company that operates from the Pont Neuf bridge. There also seem to be several other luxury providers that you might want to check into. A local wedding coordinator may prove valuable, unless you speak French.

As part of your romantic Paris wedding, you might want to take your own wedding photographer with you. Paris offers stunning vistas and charming little lanes to take photos. We thought the Eiffel Tower, Sacre Coeur, The Trocadero and The Louvre would all make nice backdrops. After a day of photos, you could have your rehearsal dinner at a restaurant in Le Marais.
Not to be a total downer, there is a residency requirement for getting married in France. It's either 40 or 60 days (there is conflicting information on the internet). means you need to be in country for a while. This may or may not be a problem for you. If it is a problem, consider getting legally married in the U.S. (rather easy to do) and then do your ceremony abroad for you and your family. We think this kind of defeats the purpose of a destination wedding, but know other couples who do it to get around ridiculous regulations in countries like France or Mexico. While this takes the romance out of Paris and France as a destination wedding location, depending on your personal tastes, it may still work for you.

Paris could be a wonderfully romantic wedding destination to begin your new life together. And since you are already in Europe, you might consider honeymooning there as well.

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