By Mary White
Destination weddings often combine the ceremony with the honeymoon, but they require careful planning. Budget is always a factor in a wedding, especially when you are not getting married in your home town. The convenience of the location for your guests is another consideration. Massachusetts, with its accessible airport, multitude of attractions and natural beauty brings much to the table as a wedding venue. Here are three Massachusetts spots to enjoy the local vibe and say, “I do.”
It’s hard to believe that Brookline runs parallel to Boston. The area is convenient to Logan Airport and all of the Hub’s famous attractions, but its elaborate Victorian mansions and scenic parks transport you back to kinder, gentler days. When you look for the definition of “romantic” in the dictionary, it says Brookline Bed and Breakfast. These privately owned inns can provide the finishing touches to a fantasy wedding.
Before the Ceremony
Arrange for friends and family to get to know each other by planning a group hike around Boston’s famous Freedom Trail, which provides a comprehensive historical tour that conveniently passes some of the best shopping and dining in town. Then, plan a memorable rehearsal dinner at one of the Italian restaurants in the North End, where you’ll feel a romantic combination of Old World and local charm. While you make your final preparations, your guests will enjoy the funky shops and restaurants on Brookline’s Beacon Street and Coolidge Corner. Maybe there’s a wedding gift there that’s waiting to be found!
The South Shore, Cape Cod and the Islands
The fantasy beach wedding becomes a dream-come-true in southern Massachusetts. The area offers wedding venues and lodging options to suit all budgets. Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket, islands that require a transportation connection from the airport, are best for high-end weddings. Since they are less accessible, they are best suited to smaller, more private ceremonies. With their location comes fun and romance: The whole wedding party can enjoy B&B stays on the islands, or find their own spot for a few days in a Vineyard vacation rental.
In contrast to the exclusive and somewhat posh venues on Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket, the towns along the South Shore offer low key and affordable venues and accommodations. Cape Cod bed and breakfast options are extensive, running the full range from economical to high-end lodging options.
Before the Ceremony
Arrange a beach day for your guests who arrive early: hang out on the shore, enjoy a boat ride or a fishing excursion, and gather everyone together for a traditional clam bake. The local seafood restaurants offer the freshest fish and shellfish around and many can accommodate large groups or cater parties. Historically-inclined guests might want to take a trip to Plymouth and explore America’s origins, and those who want to just relax will enjoy strolling through the quaint shops in the various Cape Cod towns.
The mountains are to the Berkshires what the ocean is to the South Shore. This stunning wooded area offers scenic beauty, great inns and vacation homes and, importantly, convenient access from New York City. Like Cape Cod, the Berkshire towns offer lodging options for all budgets. No matter what you choose to spend, the area’s laid back atmosphere will set the scene for a pleasant and memorable wedding
Before the Ceremony
In addition to hiking trails, lakes and rivers, the Berkshires boast an extensive selection of concert venues, shops, spas and restaurants. If you plan your wedding in the summer, then you may be able to enjoy a night of the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s summer residency at Tanglewood. During the day, check out Mass MoCA, a modern art museum in a unique setting. A day of beauty at Canyon Ranch, located in Lenox, is the perfect bridesmaid’s gift!
Make your wedding memorable and marvelous in Massachusetts!
Mary White is the Founder of BnBFinder.com, a leading bed & breakfast listing site and author of Running a Bed & Breakfast For Dummies. Find more bed & breakfast stories at http://www.bnbfinder.com/blog or follow BnBFinder on Twitter @BnBFinder.