Friday, June 24, 2011

The Back-Up Plan

photo courtesy Meg Perotti

Anyone remember the televised Bachelor wedding a couple of years ago when Jason married Molly at a stunning outdoor location overlooking the California coast? Anyone remember the torrential downpour that soaked both them and all of their guests? While the couple appeared to laugh it off, I’m not sure their guests were thinking the same thing as they had to sit at the reception in soaking wet clothes and chilled to the bone. There is also only so much the photographer can do to touch up the photos when everyone looks like a drowned rat.

Trusting Mother Nature to smile upon you on your wedding day is a pretty big risk. It’s great when it all comes together, but has the arrival for disaster if nasty weather rolls in. As a wedding planner, I always make sure there is a Plan B. In fact, I’m adamant that there has to be a back-up plan. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be doing my job. Bad weather can spoil a wedding day faster than anything else!

Here are some simple ideas that can help make your wedding day run a little smoother if rain or snow try to threaten your day:
  • Have an e-mail distribution list and/or phone fan-out planned and ready to use if necessary so you can let guests know quickly about possible changes to your wedding day plans. This isn’t that hard to do when in today’s world of technology, but it does mean you have to think ahead a bit, like making sure you know where out-of-town guests will be staying and making sure you have both e-mail addresses and cell phone numbers.
  • If you have an outdoor ceremony planned, make sure you have another option available to you. This could be as simple as having to rearrange your reception venue a bit and post someone at the ceremony site to redirect traffic if necessary.
  • Buy a couple of cool umbrellas and a funky pair of rubber boots. They can be fun and fantastic photo props AND, better yet, they will keep you dry!
  • Make sure you talk with your photographer and plan an alternate INDOOR location for your photos.
A little pre-planning will make a world of difference in the actual outcome of your wedding day!


Cathy MacRae is a certified wedding and event planner, and owner of Creative Weddings and Occasions and Del Sol Destination Weddings. Located in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, she plans wedding for couples in and around the Calgary and Banff area, who want a wedding that is a unique and personal reflection of them. She is also a destination wedding specialist, working with couples who desire to wed in various picturesque dream locations throughout the world. For more information about planning your own wedding or for advice from Cathy, please contact her at

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Conrad Maldives: Reshaping the Concept of Luxury

30 Water Villas Will Undergo a Complete Transformation in 2011
Setting the standard for luxury travel in the Maldives for over 15 years, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island raises the bar once again with the complete renovation of 28 Water Villas and two Premier Water Villas starting May 15. Expected to last for six months, the renovation work will transform the villas into ultra-luxurious contemporary over-water retreats with additional decking, private pools, entirely new furniture and sublime bathrooms with picture windows overlooking the ocean.
“Rangali Island is the smaller of the resort’s two islands,” says Regional General Manager Carsten Schieck, “and it offers the natural setting for the pure beauty and luxury that guests expect to find in the Maldives. The complete renovation of our Water Villas will ensure that these rooms retain their position as some of the most outstanding villas in the country.”
During the renovation, 28 Water Villas will be taken apart and completely renovated from the inside out, while two Premier Water Villas will see subtle updates on the interior. The layout of the Water Villas will become an open plan, giving a sense of space. The highlight of the architecture is the desk which is set over glass panels, giving the impression that it is floating over the water below.
The d├ęcor of the new Water Villas features elegant natural tones of wood and soft whites with gentle shades of lavender and green. Understated, recessed lighting adds to the contemporary feel.
As part of the renovation, half of Rangali Island; one restaurant, Vilu; and one of the resort’s two spas will be closed. The rest of the resort will continue to operate as usual with guests having the option of dining at eight restaurants and bars. The Spa Retreat on the main island will offer the full treatment list from the Over-Water Spa during its six-month closure.
Rangali Restaurant and Bar
In all Water Villas, guests will enjoy the latest in modern amenities including flat screen satellite TVs, CD stereos with iPod connectors, DVD players, “Nespresso” tea/coffee machines, mini bars and International Direct Dialing (IDD) telephones. The renovated villas are expected to open on November 1, 2011 with room rates starting from $1,000 per night for two.
With the Spa Retreat and Beach Villas on Rangalifinolhu Island and Water Villas on Rangali Island, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island offers the widest choice of accommodation in the Maldives, allowing guests to enjoy a variety of different experiences without ever leaving the resort.
Can you imagine sleeping in this room surrounded by the sea? This is definitely a dream come true experience!
A special thank you to Conrad Maldives for giving us information about the renovations to their beautiful resort and allowing us to use their photos.
Muriel MacRae plans exciting getaways and customized vacations  for honeymooners and families. As the owner of  Del Sol Travel, she offers romantic vacations with personalized service and unique itineraries. Getting to know and understand her clients is critical in helping turn their ideas and vision into a unique and memorable masterpiece when creating their customized vacation. Located in Calgary, Alberta, she plans weddings, destination weddings, and honeymoons for couples in and around the Calgary and Banff area and throughout North America. For more information about planning your wedding, honeymoon, or romantic getaway, please contact her at   or phone 403-477-0643