Featured Venue Fridays: China Pavilion

This week’s Featured Venue post was written by Disneymooner Carrie.  To read more about her wedding please join our private forums.

A Bride in the China (shop) 

To be honest, we wanted the American Adventure Rotunda.  We got engaged back by the waterfalls at the Canada pavilion and in the time it took to walk over to America, we had decided.  No ifs, ands, or buts.  Jacob’s degree is in history and he has always loved that pavilion.  I loved the wide open space, the columns, the marble floors.  We were set.  And then fate stepped in to see us through…

Turns out, the American Adventure Rotunda was booked for our date, so we had some choices to make.  We had no idea China was even an option, so when we found out, we were definitely intrigued.  The China pavilion has always been impressive.  The space is elaborately themed and it just has a great awe factor.  We talked it over and decided it would be perfect.

Since the space is so colorful on its own, we were able to save a significant amount on our floral budget.  We decided to forego elaborate floral centerpieces in favor of more subdued, low , wide vases with river rocks and a single flower in each.  We went with standard white tablecloths and added black napkins (our colors were black and white with the occasional pop of red).

Our cocktail hour was in the “temple” part of the pavilion – the big domed rotunda.  The ceiling in there is incredible; I could stand there all day gazing up at it.  Two bars were set up in that space for the cocktail hour and once the reception started, one was moved into the main “ballroom.”  The cocktail hour and reception spaces were separated by a line of trees.  Our reception was held in the pre-show part of the pavilion.  The benches were moved to line the walls, which gave our guests a place to rest in between songs.  The dj was set up on the stage where there is normally a musician entertaining guests before the movie.  The dance floor area was set up right in front of the dj and the tables were set up like a regular ballroom.

We had a wonderful plated dinner but I know you can also have buffet dinners in China.  I believe the space will hold 120 people; we had 92 guests.  They can do amazing things with gongs and smoke and gobos, but that just wasn’t in our budget.  Honestly, I can’t say enough good things about China.  We loved it.  It was different, it was breathtaking, it was (and still is) a conversation starter.  It gave us such great opportunities for theming.  We had little chinese take out boxes filled with M&Ms as our favors.  Our cake had the Chinese symbol for happiness.  Our thank you notes had little fortune cookies with “thank you” fortunes.  It was such a fun theme to work with.  If I had it to do over again, we’d absolutely choose China without hesitation.  Basically, I would recommend China to anyone.

Please join us on our forums for more venues reviews and recaps.


Featured Venue Fridays: Wedding Gazebo at Yacht Club

This week’s Featured Venue post is written by Disneymooner Geneva. Images are from Egomedia Photography. To read her wedding recaps and find out more exciting details please visit our private forums.
My husband and I both enjoy being outdoors, so an outside ceremony made perfect sense. There were several options available which could easily accommodate our guest count and uminimalist theming. Disney’s Yacht Club, however, spoke to us in a way no other venue could.  There were several nearby reception & dessert party options. There was very little need, if any, for additional decoration.  The resort theme tied in our mutual love of the water and worked extremely well with our colors (navy blue, sage green, and stark white).  There were many photo-friendly locations as well.
One of the fabulous aspects of this venue is that you can dress it up or down according to your taste.  The gazebo looks amazing either way.  I’ve seen flower balls on Shepard’s hooks adorning the aisle.  You could put a swag of flowers across the entry.  You can dress up an altar table.  Use as much or as little floral as you want which can translate into big spending or savings as the case may be.  One item of note: we didn’t have a sand or candle ceremony component to our wedding, but it seems that you might want to do this on the lawn to the left or right of the gazebo or possibly use a slightly higher table or your guests might not be able to see what you’re doing.
You can have music, live on the lawn or using a CD player as we did.  Be sure to verify your disc(s) performance prior to the ceremony!  Be prepared to have strangers watch you as you marry your prince or princess, but don’t expect to notice until you watch your video.  🙂
Here’s what other Disneymooners are saying about the Yacht Club Gazebo on our forums. Be sure to join in the planning fun!
 “Disney’s Yacht Club, however, spoke to us in a way no other venue could.”
– Geneva
Image above from Disneymooner  and Owner Sam’s Yacht Club Gazebo Wedding.

Featured Venue Fridays: Sea Breeze Point

Sea Breeze Point is an open-air pavilion, that sits on the shores of Crescent Lake, and gives stunning views of Disney’s Boardwalk, Yacht Club and Beach Club Resorts.

It is the only outdoor location that is completely covered and gives your guests excellent views of your wedding ceremony from all angles.  The venue can hold up to 80 guests which makes it an excellent choice for both Escape or Wishes Weddings.

The EPCOT resort area recaptures the 1940’s Boardwalk charm and is perfect for those couples who want to incorporate a beach or vintage theme into their wedding.

Imagine walking down a beautiful, breezy, wooden boardwalk instead of a traditional aisle on your wedding day. Perhaps you want to make a grand entrance in a horse- drawn carriage or a vintage car.

Many Brides choose Sea Breeze Point for its great location to many wonderful reception venues such as Atlantic Dance Hall, and the stunning Ballrooms at the Boardwalk Resort.

Here’s what Disneymooners are saying about Sea Breeze Point on our forums:

Along with the romantic vintage style of Sea Breeze Point, we loved how intimate the space feels.  All of our guests, who are most important people in our lives, will be seated in the gazebo during our ceremony and that will be very special.

– Kadie (planning bride 2013)

During our ceremony, a boat passing by beeped the horn, which you can hear in our video. Some couples might have an issue with that kind of thing. But I thought it was so cool!

– Meredith

When we got to Sea Breeze Point, my heart skipped a beat. It was beautiful. I think what really drew me in was the view from there. It was on the water and you saw the lighthouse and Atlantic Dance Hall in the background. Since we were having our reception at Atlantic Dance Hall, I loved the idea of our guests being able to see where we’d be celebrating later on.

– Marilyn

Featured Venue Fridays: The Living Seas Salon

Imagine transporting your guests under the sea and hosting an enchanted wedding reception in one of Disney’s theme parks.  The Living Seas Salon is a private area found in EPCOT’s The Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion and showcases a wall of glass windows overlooking a 5.7 million gallon aquarium. Your guests will be amazed at their incredible view of a wide array of sea life, as they dance and eat dinner.

This venue can be used for weddings of 20-104 guests and has pre-existing tables of six. The Living Seas Salon already has pre-existing vibrant blue and green table linens.  However, brides who want to accent their own wedding colors can change these linens for an additional charge. Since the Living Seas Salon is a private venue, it gives brides and grooms the ability to have an in park reception during park hours.  The venue can be used for lunch and dinner receptions and is spacious enough to have a multi-level seating area.  Your cocktail hour can be hosted in a connecting room, giving the venue an intimate feel.

The biggest highlight of this location is the stunning view and its the only venue were couples can add Scuba Mickey to surprise their lucky guests. The Living Seas Salon other big selling point for Brides and Grooms is the pre-existing décor.  Many brides feel that the location needs very little in terms of additional decorations.

If you are considering the Living Seas Salon or have had your wedding at this venue, one thing is certain: This venue is one that your guests will soon not forget.

Here’s what Disneymooners on our forums are saying about the Living Seas:

“The Living Seas is a location that has that extra Disney magic. Even though all the reception locations we looked at during our site visit were beautiful, the thing I liked best about the Living Seas was that it provided my guests free entertainment! The view into the tanks gave them something to do besides the music and food that was already planned for the reception. I was able to have the extra Disney magic of the aquatic life without the costs that are required for things like characters. ” – Vanessa 

“I loved the fact that it was in park. This has a real excitement factor for guests and Bride and Groom alike. Also when you tell people you had your reception in EPCOT they are a little blown away and I like that…I loved every single part of the day and the Living Seas was a huge part of it.” – Gemma

“During our wedding reception scuba divers were inside the Living Seas aquarium. Our guests had a lot of fun dancing with the scuba divers through the glass.”  – Sarah 


For more information on the Living Seas Salon, including pricing minimums, site specific restrictions and wedding recaps please visit the Disneymooner Forums.

A Fairy Tale Focus: Tara & Chris

Disneymooner, Tara and her fiance Chris, will be having a Wishes wedding at Disney’s Wedding Pavilion at the Grand Floridian on September 1st 2012. They will be holding their reception at the American Adventure Rotunda at Epcot.

Disneymooners: Can you tell our new members a little about the both of you?

Tara: Chris and I not your average couple and things have not always been so great. I currently work for Limited Brands and Chris is a sergeant for a local police department. I met Chris while working at Kohl’s and he was doing special duty there. He always talked to me and said hi while at work, but I never thought anything of because so did all the other police officers. One day I had mentioned that I was finally moving out on my own, which was close to where he lived, he gave me his number incase I needed anything and things just blossomed from there. Chris is a huge Steelers fan so I go along with him since I didn’t really watch NFL before I met him. We are both huge Disney fans and hope to move to Florida in the next couple of years.

Disneymooners: When did you first decide you wanted to have a Disney Fairy Tale Wedding and why?

Tara: I had been to Disney World many times as a child, but had not gone as an adult until I met Chris. I fell in love with Disney World even if it was during July 4th! I had always joked about wanting a Disney Fairy Tale Wedding after we went, but did not think it was going to happen. I looked at their website and told Chris that I really think we could make it work with their minimums. We looked at some places locally and I felt the prices were going to be comparable. After doing some research, we decided it was going to be a Disney Fairy Tale Wedding.

Disneymooners: Did you have any concerns about having a destination wedding? If so, what were they and how did you work them out?

Tara: Our main concern with a destination wedding is having to planning a wedding so far away. However, we have met with DFTW 3 times in the past year and will meet with our planner again in a couple weeks so it makes things a lot easier. I really do not know what we would have done if we didn’t have some many opportunities to go to Florida and meet face to face.

Disneymooners: How has the reaction of your guests been to a Disney wedding?

Tara: Most people seem to react with a little shock and most of them make the comment that it must be expensive since it is Disney, but we set them straight. Some are excited though because they have never been.

Disneymooners: Any special reason why you chose these locations?

Tara: We were limited to our locations based on our estimate of 100 people, we changed venues a couple times, but glad we settled with this

Disneymooners: Many brides pick a Top 3. These are components that are a non-negotiable. Chiavari chairs, lots of floral, lobster, etc. Tell us about your Top 3!


1. Illuminations
2. Chair covers
3. Quick ceremony (hopefully this holds true)

Disneymooners: Do you have any extra magical touches planned? Such as a dessert party or characters?

Tara: Our cocktail hour is going to be at Italy Isola during Illuminations and we are definitely having Mickey and Minnie there.

Disneymooners: How has your planning experience with Disney Fairy Tale Weddings been thus far?

Tara: My planning experience has had its ups and downs so far. I have had a couple planners so far which can sometimes be frustrating when getting shifted around. Also, MK bridal portraits aren’t available anytime around our wedding so it is also frustrating in that aspect when things do not go as plan… However, my current planner is doing a great job and making things go a lot smoother.

Disneymooners: What would you say has been your biggest challenge?

Tara: Our biggest challenge has been making decisions. Chris and I are both easy going, laid back people so trying to make decisions isn’t always the easiest. Decisions are also a challenge because we are just estimating our 100 head count even though we are inviting over 300 guests. Granted I would love for everyone to come, but it will also send our budget sky high.

Disneymooners: Budgets are very important to all of us. Do you have a favorite budget tip that you’ve used and can you tell how it’s helped you?

Tara: Shop around and be patient. We can’t really cut much through DFTW so we had to look at the other things we having. For example, I waited about 5 months from buying my gown and returned to the bridal salon to look for a rehearsal dinner dress and ended up finding the dress I fell in love with 5 months prior on the discontinued rack and it saved us big bucks.

Disneymooners: Have you found it to be easy to plan a Disney Fairy Tale Wedding on your planned budget?

Tara: Yes and no. Honestly I didn’t really come in with a budget, I knew what my parents would pay and anything else Chris and I had to pay for. Chris and I have kept it to the minimum and do not have very many extras so we are comfortable with what we are spending. I also had the passporter’s book which helped give me an idea of what things were going to cost before Disney sent out the BEO.

Disneymooners: Do you have any fun splurges planned for you trip that you’re excited about?

Tara: We are staying in the concierge rooms for 4 our of the 8 days we will be there. Not only that, my bridesmaids will be staying with me in the concierge room for one night and I think it will have them spoiled.

Disneymooners: You have a Planning Journal in progress here, have you found that to be helpful in your journey?

Tara: I love having a planning journal, not only does it allow me to share my ideas and experiences, but it also gives me a place to vent (only sometimes) when DFTW causes stress knowing my fellow disneymooners are there to listen. I also enjoy having a planning journal because I tend to look at the other planning journals and it gives me ideas.

Disneymooners: What are you most looking forward to on the big day?

Tara: I am looking forward to seeing everything put together and the reaction on our guests’ faces.

Disneymooners: Do you have anything else you’d like to share with our new members?

Tara: These boards are full of a lot of information so take your time and look through everything. Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions on here or to your planner.

Tara, the Disneymooners would like to thank you for sharing your experience with us. We are so happy to have you as a part of our community! We look forward to sending you off on your big day. And we can’t wait to hear all about it when you return! All the best~ the Disneymooners