Cocktail hour was one of my favorite parts of our wedding day. If you’ve read my previous blog posts about our wedding, you’ll know that we used the time during cocktail hour to socialize with our guests rather than take more photos. I am so glad we made the choice to do so, because we had a blast!
Plus, who wants to miss an opportunity to have appetizers and drinks with friends?
Our cocktail hour immediately followed our ceremony and was only a few yards away. If you’ve been to The Colony, you’re probably familiar with their pool area. We got married in the Hanging Garden – which you hopefully saw in last week’s post – and the cocktail hour was in the lawn area next to the pool. It made for a beautiful backdrop with the pool and pink hotel in the background! I was also very satisfied with the privacy we had; The Colony closed the gate that was nearby so no one could enter the pool area through there during that time and the lawn was roped off for us.
Our DJ had some speakers set up to play some light music in the background. The Colony supplied flexible seating options like high tops with chairs and umbrellas, some standard tables with chairs, and even a couch and cushioned outdoor furniture with a coffee table. We had an open bar set up with a great bartender from The Colony, Michael, and The Colony’s team passed out the hors d’oeuvres we previously chose.
We didn’t do too much decor for the cocktail hour, as I feel like it wasn’t really necessary. But we did have some Amanda Lindroth domed hurricanes on the high top tables with candles lit just to add a little something. We could’ve gotten light florals to place out, but we felt it would have been a waste. One thing we did to add a personalized touch, though, was customized cocktail napkins. We got ours from Etsy for a great price and they were used at the bar, both during cocktail hour and during the reception.
The Colony had a great list of the hand-passed hor d’oeuvres that we were able to choose from while planning our wedding. We were able to choose four different ones – you could add on more if you wanted or get some higher dollar items for an extra charge, but the standard options had a great variety and there wasn’t one appetizer that wasn’t a hit for our group! We chose the shrimp cocktail, a cheese puff, fried chicken bites, and a spring roll (which I’m pretty sure was vegan). Being able to choose four let us have a great variety of items – especially since we had guests that were vegan/vegetarian. My personal favorite was the chicken – I literally dream about that stuff – but the crowd favorite was definitely the shrimp cocktail or the cheese puffs! You honestly can’t go wrong with any food at The Colony – it is all delicious.
As I mentioned in a previous post, we also took the time during our cocktail hour to take pictures with our guests. I think they really appreciated it, and we did too! This gave us a chance to chat one-on-one with each family, take a picture together, etc. We even printed out the pictures to send along with their thank-you note so they’d have a physical copy. Photos only took a few minutes, and we spent the rest of the hour chatting, enjoying the food, and having fun. I know a lot of people stress about being able to take time to spend with each family that comes to their wedding, so attending your cocktail hour may be a way to lift some of that weight! Plus, you want to spend your reception dancing and really spending time with your guests, not just doing your rounds.
I think that is all I have for today’s post! Next time we’ll finally get into the details of the wedding reception – and I can’t wait to share it with y’all. As always, if you have any questions feel free to leave them below or connect with me on Instagram. I’ll be looking forward to your messages!
Such a great idea, I happened to take photos with a few wedding guests during our wedding reception just because the photographer was nearby and I treasure those photos. Great idea to actually take the time to snap a photo with each guest as you visit during the cocktail hour! The food looks SO GOOD!
Thanks for reading, Katie! The food was delicious!