Getting Married in Vegas


It is possible to have a beautiful, memorable, maybe even elegant wedding in Sin City.

When you think about getting married in Las Vegas, you probably have images of sad little wedding chapels, ceremonies officiated by Elvis impersonators and a bride and groom who may have been enjoying the nightlife of Vegas…and not be entirely aware of what they are doing. It is possible to have a beautiful, memorable, maybe even elegant wedding in Sin City, though? Like any wedding, it requires some advance planning and attention to details, but the result will be a ceremony and celebration that’s less tacky and gaudy and more about romance and pledging your love to each other.


Choose a Location

Las Vegas has more wedding chapels than any other city, ranging from the historic Little Church of the West to the themed Tuscany Wedding Chapel at the Tuscany Hotel and Casino. While spontaneous weddings are common, the wedding chapels also work with couples to plan ceremonies, ahead of time. Keep in mind that you get what you pay for and you don’t always have a lot of selection when dealing with one of the wedding chapels. For more elegance and refinement, consider holding your ceremony at one of Vegas’ myriad of over-the-top hotels. All of the major hotels and resorts, such as the Bellagio, MGM Grand, Bally’s, the Venetian, Luxor and Wynn Las Vegas, have wedding chapels. Each hotel offers its own package options for weddings, ranging from extravagant affairs that include accommodations for the happy couple, photography, flowers and an officiant, to more subtle affairs that include use of the chapel or a location at the casino and someone to conduct the ceremony. Most hotel wedding coordinators will work with you to plan the wedding you wish to have, but you’ll most likely be required to work with the hotel’s vendors and choose from pre-determined options.


Plan Your Ceremony

While hotels and chapels in Vegas host hundreds, if not thousands, of weddings each year, they generally know what they are doing and can help you plan the wedding you want. However, in some cases, this might take away some of the personalization of your special day. Talk to the wedding coordinator at least a few weeks before your wedding date to determine how much personalization you can add to your package. You can probably write your own vows, for example, or request particular flowers that you prefer. Don’t be afraid to ask, because it is your wedding, after all. Also, ask about any licenses or other documents you need to bring. Contrary to popular perception, you still need to visit Las Vegas City Hall for a marriage license before getting hitched, so allow time for that trip before your wedding. Unless your wedding truly is spur-of-the-moment, chances are you’ll have time to find the right clothing to wear. While you’ll probably bring your dress from home (although you can probably find something amazing to wear in one of Vegas’ many shops) the groom should be able to rent a tux once you arrive. If he is hard to fit size, consider renting one at home and having it tailored, to avoid disappointment. Make appointments for hair and makeup at one of the elegant hotel salons and spas – and perhaps add in a couple’s massage and/or treatment, to add to the romance of the day?


After the Wedding

Just because you’re having a destination wedding doesn’t mean that you can’t celebrate afterward. In most cases, hotel wedding packages only include a champagne toast, so you may be on your own to plan the post-ceremony festivities. If it’s just the two of you, consider splurging for an once-in-a-lifetime meal at one of Vegas’ many five-star restaurants. Make a reservation well in advance and be sure to mention that you’re celebrating your wedding. If you have guests – consider inviting friends and family for a few fun-filled days in Vegas – make a reservation at a nice restaurant, or consider reserving a private room to celebrate together. Most hotels and restaurants have function coordinators that will work with you to plan an amazing party that your guests won’t soon forget. A Las Vegas wedding doesn’t have to be a tacky affair complete with Elvis, fake flowers and a recorded wedding march. Do some research, plan in advance and you can have an elegant wedding that gets your marriage off to a romantic and even sophisticated start.  


This article was written by Erica Gustafson who is a freelance media consultant for the Shoal Bay Resort. Erica was born in the United States but currently lives in South Australia.  She enjoys traveling the world and writing about her experiences.