Girls Just Want to Have Fun
Photo: Steve Lee Weddings
The bachelorette party is no longer that last night of freedom, but a celebration with a more mature vision. Bachelorette parties have now evolved with creative twists that include exotic destinations and at-home spa luxuries - and with it, memories that last a lifetime!
Michele Vaccarello, a maid-of-honor who recently planned a party in Cincinnati, Ohio, says this was the main goal for her friend and bride-to-be. “We wanted to give her one last weekend with her best friends before we called her ‘Mrs.’ Here, she could be the center of attention and remember those college days when everyone was single, and dancing with their hands flailing over their head was the sexiest thing around.” The festivities, which included a retro prom night-themed cocktail party, beach volleyball competition, self-designed handbag party, and dinner at a dueling piano bar, was a way for the bride to bond with her wedding party and reconnect with old friends that had scattered across the country after college.
Susan Southerland, president of Just Marry!, a wedding coordinating company, says the trend of elaborate and destination bachelorette parties has emerged with the latest generation of brides who are walking down the aisle. “Their friends are actually more influential than their families because they’ve spent so much time with them,” she explains. “This trend is an extension of that—the fact that the bride wants to go away, enjoy the company of her wedding party and friends and be able to have a good, relaxing time.”
According to Martina Rodriguez, a bridesmaid who returned from a party in Dallas, Texas, a group of 10 friends reunited during a weekend of power shopping, dinner, drinks and a night of dancing. “Two of the other girls were also getting married, so we combined the celebrations, relaxed and just had fun!”
Getting Personal. The stereotypical bachelorette party is becoming passé as brides opt for more personalized celebrations.
Classic spa days where you can sip champagne while being pampered with facials, pedicures and manicures, such as at The Houstonian Hotel, Club and Spa, or a wine-tasting and overnight stay near local Texas wineries are great ways to unwind as a group.
For daredevil and outdoorsy brides, consider a day of Go-Karts, white-water rafting, sport fishing, or rock climbing. For pre-wedding celebrations with a bang, bachelorettes and bridesmaids can check out Athena Gun Club for a little target practice with certified range instructors.
Jet-Setting. Has the thought of planning a wedding made you want to get on a plane and chill for a long weekend with your gal pals? Sounds impossible? Not today.
Besides themed options, brides are using their bachelorette party as a choice getaway to relax. Liz Dawson, a bride-to-be, planned a trip to Acapulco for her group of friends. “I used the opportunity to spend time with my girls and have a little fun before the stress of wedding planning takes over.”
One bride booked a trip for 10 to Amsterdam for a finale to single life. It was a combination of culture, food, wine and non-stop fun. When planning a trip of this magnitude, however, it’s important to make sure everybody is comfortable with the destination and with each other.
Hawaii is another popular destination for girl-getaways. Aqua Hotels & Resorts offers “Divine Diva” packages that include three-and-a-half hours of total pampering at the spa each day, daily breakfast, and special gifts for all the gals.
Then, there’s Las Vegas, with plenty of entertainment options for everyone. With fine restaurants, top-rated shows, gaming, and sightseeing tours, it's a great place for all-around fun.
Whether it’s a themed party at home or a celebration away, remember this is a celebration of friends and family… who needs more reason than that?