Aspen is a beautiful place to get married. If you are planning an Aspen wedding there are many wonderful venues to choose from and vendors to help you put your dreams into reality. One of these amazing Aspen venues is Gwyn’s High Alpine. While this local restaurant has been known as one of the best on-mountain restaurants for 30+ years, this year is the first they are involved in wedding planning.
Gwyn’s boasts high quality cuisine and stunning mountain views. Located at 10,461 ft. on the mountain in Snowmass, it is an intimate and unique wedding venue in the Roaring Fork Valley. It would truly be a perfect spot for your wedding day! We spoke to Whitney and Gwyn about what makes their venue special.
Q: How long have you been in business?
A: We have been in business for 38 years but have just moved into the summer Wedding and party planning business since our remodel this year.
Q: What makes your venue unique?
A: Our venue is very unique because it is mid-mountain on the ski area in Snowmass and was not accessible for summer events until this last year when the road was improved for remodel construction. We are one of the only family owned on- mountain operations in the Aspen area and the United States. We have a beautiful facility that is completely off the beaten path and yet complete with everything for any wedding or event.
Q: How many people can the venue accommodate?
A:Gwyn’s dining room seats 100 people but our famous Sailplane level will accommodate 150 people which is our max via the Forest Service.
Q: What does it include? (I.e. chairs, tables, linens, etc.)
A:Our venue pricing includes ceremony site fees and Food and Beverage costs. We are happy to accommodate any additional planning to make the event all-inclusive and worry-free for the couple.
Q: How many hours are included in the rental?
A:There are no hourly limits to the wedding venue. Transportation to and from the venue is the only hourly cost that is incurred.
Q: What are catering options?
A:Our executive chef will work with Bride and Groom to provide the ultimate wedding culinary experience.
Q: What is a typical wedding day like?
A:The day for the wedding couple begins with a scenic ride up the ski area with the wedding party. We have multiple levels and areas for the couple and their parties to get prepared for the wedding. Guests will be escorted in Luxury Vans up the mountain and welcomed to our amazing venue at 10,461ft. Post ceremony, overlooking the Cirque, appetizers and cocktails will be served on our spacious upper deck as Wedding party and family take photos over an incredible vista of the Snowmass Valley Below. Dinner will be served in Gwyn’s Dining Room or on our Sail Plane Level. Conclude the reception dinner with a custom cake from one of our classically trained Pastry Chef’s. After toasts, dancing will commence in our grand entry. Gwyn’s is an incredibly unique and private venue with the most beautiful views.
Q: What are special touches you love?
A:We are very proud of our family restaurant and venue and will do everything to make the experience as perfect and personal as possible. We can provide just the venue and the catering or we can organize the entire event with wedding planning included to ensure that your wedding is perfect and stress free. We are known for our world class food and service and will make your wedding the most unique, spectacular and memorable day of your lives.
Thank you so much Whitney and Gwyn for your contribution to this post. Gwyn’s High Alpine is a beautiful venue with many options to personalize and make your wedding special.
If you’re interested in learning more about Gwyn’s High Alpine…
Meet Tara Marolda, a talented Aspen wedding photographer. Her story is inspiring and fascinating. She captures the emotion and personality in each shot, telling a story with her images. We are thrilled to share a little about her. Read on, get to know her and her stunning wedding photographs!
Tell us how you got into wedding photography? How long have you been doing this?
I got into photography working as a camera assistant for my mother (documentary filmmaker) and two of my favorite National Geographic photographers, Angela Fisher and Carol Beckwith in Kenya shooting tribal ceremonies over a decade ago. I picked all of their brains so much and l learned as much as I could about photography on those expeditions. When I moved back to the states in my early 20’s, the most natural thing for me was to pick up the camera and continue shooting portraiture. Eventually I became confident enough to offer photography services for a couple of good friends getting married in Aspen, and from there, word of mouth did the rest of the work for me. I quickly started picking up weddings and enjoyed capturing the most intimate and special day in a couple’s lives.
What type of photos do you like taking best? I love portraiture. Specifically, documentary style, lifestyle photography – capturing real moments, real emotion. You can be 90 or 9 months old – I enjoy it all the same. There is something magical about freezing a moment in time, a real belly laugh or a moment so wrought with emotion there are real tears… that to me, is beautiful and human and I really fight to catch those shots.
What moment during the wedding do you most enjoy photographing?
I think my favorite moment during a wedding is the “getting ready” shots, when the bride is a ball of nerves and excitement is everywhere. I love these moments in black and white. When I capture the mother or father of the bride, looking at their daughter with so much emotion and tears in their eyes, seeing exactly what they are seeing: their baby girl becoming a woman, a gorgeous bride. It’s a beautiful moment.
Where do you find your inspiration?
I love to scour instagram for other fine art photographers and their work. I am constantly searching amazing photographers and feeling jealous and even more inspired by their work. I am always learning, always researching, always practicing the art of photography and becoming a better photographer. I am hungry for it.
Tips for the bride and groom on choosing a photographer?
Splurge and save. I got married in Aspen in 2010, and I wish I had the knowledge I do now of getting married in this beautiful mountain town.
Find what is most important to you, and spend the money on it. For example, don’t try and find a cheap photographer – that is the one and only way you are going to remember your wedding… spend the money on the best photographer you can afford. It will make ALL the difference. Make sure you hire a qualified photographer/s… grill that photographer on whether they give print release rights, and how high the resolution of the digitals are. You don’t want to pay someone an arm and a leg, only to find out that you don’t even have the rights to your own images. This is something that is changing in modern times… more and more photographers understand how important it is to give the digitals as part of their package and it only behooves them in the long run. Brides posting their wedding photos on social media? That’s advertisement and its a win-win for both sides.
Anything else to share?
When looking for a photographer, go with someone who has a similar sense in style. If you like pictures where everyone is posed perfectly and smiling at the camera, choose a photographer who obviously has this style. If you want some thing a little more natural, a little more candid and not so conventional, find a photographer who has that eye (and that style in their portfolio).
Thank you to Tara Marolda for sharing with us! Check out Tara Marola and other Aspen wedding photographers here.
A wedding in Aspen is one of the most breathtaking and picturesque places to tie the knot. It’s no wonder that we work with an array of talented, hardworking vendors that help transform wedding visions into reality.
To kick off the 2017 wedding season in the beautiful state of Colorado, we decided to get to know our vendors on a more personal level. Our first vendor spotlight highlights the work of Premier Party Rental. We spent some time talking with them to get an inside scoop on what it takes to be a successful vendor.
A: We have been in business for 7 years and were established in 2010.
Q: What’s your favorite thing about working in the wedding industry?
A: We love meeting with all the different brides and grooms that come to the valley and helping contribute to making their dream wedding come together!
Q: Do you have any favorite venues? What makes them unique?
A: Anywhere in the Roaring Fork Valley is our favorite! We get to work in one of the most beautiful locations in the country, so wherever you choose to have your event, you’ll surely have the best views!
Q: How far in advance do people need to be planning and securing their rentals?
A: We recommend starting the process a minimum of 6 months prior to your event, not only does this help guarantee that your items will be reserved but ensure you have time to find the best style that fits your event!
Q: What’s your number one tip when it comes to wedding rentals?
A: Plan early and estimate costs a little on the high side to be sure you’ll have enough of the items you want.
Q: What’s your preferred wedding trend: rustic or modern? Why?
A: The rustic is definitely the most popular trend we see here in the mountains and works great with our Rustic Farm Style tables and chairs, but we never shy away from a beautiful modern look or even a nice mix of the two!
Q: What’s the hottest wedding-rental splurge people will be going for this summer?
A: Farm tables! We have them in two styles: both banquet and round. They are definitely a big hit for the summer!
Q: Fill in the blank: “One thing most people don’t know about wedding rentals is ____.”
A: They often times get forgotten or put off until last minute, but please don’t wait. It is very important to get rentals secured early on and ensure you have the items you desire for your event!
Whether you’re working with Premier Party Rental yourself or attending an event adorned by them, you can’t ignore their quality and passion for creating a one-of-a-kind experience accompanied by memories that will last a lifetime.
If you’re interested in using Premier Party Rental for your wedding…
When planning a wedding, you want to put all of the different pieces together for one cohesive design. Choosing vendors that fit in to your vision and work well together is an important part of this. GATHER is a unique service with many quality vendors that came out of this idea, where vendors work together creatively and collaboratively.
We spoke to Tara Abbaticchio, owner of Modern West Floral Co., and Katie Baum, owner of EAT catering, about what makes Gather such a unique and special Aspen wedding service.
Aspen Wedding Guide (AWG): What is Gather?
Gather (G): Gather was a vision born out of the desire to work creatively with the people we love the most. We (EAT, Harvest Tables, Modern West Floral Co., and West Side Lighting) all have niche businesses that happen to fall within the event/wedding umbrella, but we wanted to create a “parent” company that allows us to work together on creative events that really fit our style.
We specialize in intimate gatherings with a purpose – be that learning, wedding celebrations, engaging with family and friends or celebrating life milestones. We work with clients beginning with their initial vision, and help to curate the most special and meaningful gathering based on the client’s style, meaning and purpose. We try not to do anything ‘just because we’re supposed to’ and love the creativity that comes along with each unique client and their reason for celebration!
Photo: Harvest Table Co.
AWG: What are good resources for inspiration, where do you find inspiration for design?
G: As a whole, Gather Collective has many years of experience in the event curation and production business. Each one of us seeks inspiration in different ways, but with a common core – community, love, and perfect simplicity.
EAT is inspired by local farms and foods takes great pride in the presentation and taste of each meal we create, while at the same time striving to inspire healthful and sustainable eating practices. We believe every element of your event, including the food, should be at the same time simple, joyful, creative, beautiful and delicious.
Modern West Floral Co. seeks to highlight the beauty of the native landscape around us here in the mountain west. Our floral palette is Colorado grown as much as possible, with an emphasis on the form and architecture of the plant rather than jumbles of tropical flowers you might find in the standard floral industry.
We find inspiration in nature and in the landscape and flora silhouettes that surround us in this beautiful place. With Harvest Tables’ beautifully handcrafted in Lyons, Colorado from reclaimed wood from Colorado barns. Gather also has supply of additional rental items – stemless wine glasses, vintage dinnerware, & silver plated silverware.
To lighten up your space indoor and out, West Side Lighting is able to make your event space beautiful and unique. Gather has the ability and passion to work together to combine all of these elements into one beautiful package personalized to each client. It is important to us that we build relationships with our clients and our vendors so that each event is executed with passion.
Photo: Our Love is Loud
Photo: Our Love is Loud
AWG: What are some of your favorite ways to personalize the wedding day?
G: We are a true farm-to-table company that believes in sustainable practices when curating an event – we “shake the hand” of our farmers, we are friends with our purveyors and vendors, we connect with people, which makes our events extra special. We learn about our clients and their guests – we take time to hear their vision and implement it.
Some of our favorites:
Incorporate family heirlooms into the decor.
Fabric napkins to suit your style (that you get to keep!)
Wedding menus personalized around palate and favorite foods.
Using seasonal and locally grown and sourced foods, flowers, and decor.
Intimate gatherings for the bride or groom and their loved ones into the event schedule around creative crafts or classes that allow guests to connect in other ways than around the bar.
Photo: Our Love is Loud
Booking the experienced professional wedding vendors of Gather for you wedding day will truly make your wedding one-of-a-kind. They work with you to create a special and meaningful event based on your own unique style and needs.
The food is one of the most important pieces of a wedding day for many couples. ASC Catering, is the premier catering service for Aspen Snowmass. ASC Catering offers many options for catering from formal to informal, intimate to large galas.
ASC Catering offers six different on-mountain venues all with spectacular views. Whether you want an intimate event or a larger gala, their venues can accommodate 60-300+ people. The rental is for five hours and includes chairs, tables, china, glass, silverware and more. From a fancy meal to casual BBQ, their topnotch chefs will provide a spectacular culinary experience to achieve your vision. Your wedding guests will rave over the food and service.
We spoke to Eva Pekkala, Director of Catering, at ASC Catering to learn what makes this catering service unique.
Majestic Mountain Setting
All of the venues that ASC Catering works at has stunning views. Cliffhouse looks down at the valley with clear views of Pyramid Peak. Elk Camp is a beautiful modern spot in a forest overlooking the hills of the valley. And for those getting married at Aspen Highlands can enjoy the very unique experience of riding a snowcat to Cloud Nine.
Eva says, “Being located on-mountain, the natural beauty of our venues lends itself to a serene and relaxing environment, allowing our guests to genuinely enjoy themselves.”
Unique, Custom Culinary Options
You likely have an idea of what you want to serve on your wedding day. ASC Catering can accommodate specific requests and offer you a menu that will amaze your guests. The options are endless!
“We are a full-service catering company with cuisines and styles of dinner that are completely customizable to all tastes. We lead the charge on sourcing sustainable, local, organic produce. We welcome customizing menus from all different cuisines from Farm to Table, Indian, Argentinean Asada-style feasts to St. Bart’s Nikki Beach themes. We can do sit-down dinners, stations, buffets, small plates reception. We also have the unique offering of the Sled, a customizable on-mountain food truck experience that can feature late night snacks like sliders, house-made ice cream, chicken & waffles – anything you can dream up!” shares Eva.
Having experienced and knowledgeable caterers is an invaluable resource to utilize on your wedding day. Your caterer will handle all of the details regarding planning, cooking, presenting, and serving your food. Your caterer can take your requests (in term of budget, taste, creativity) and come up with a menu perfect for your event. Additionally, having a professional staff on hand during your reception will ensure that everyone will be served at a reasonable time and everything runs smoothly. Your Aspen wedding caterers will ensure things run smoothly and you and your guests are well fed and happy.
The Wow Factor
The typical wedding held at the Aspen Snowmass wedding venues will be a late afternoon wedding ceremony with a dinner at sunset and dancing under the starry mountain skies. Wow your guests with delicious wedding cuisine and the gorgeous mountain views found at the six different venues. With many options to choose from, you will be able to find the perfect Aspen wedding venue for your special day. Everything will tie together to create a cohesive design and a “wow” worthy event.
“I love it when clients accentuate the natural beauty of our mountain landscapes with thoughtful rustic décor like burlap linen, birch accents (candle holders, etc), wild flowers, customized blankets by the fire, customized sunglasses at the outdoor ceremony. We also offer beautiful modern architecture at several of our locations like Elk Camp and Merry-Go-Round that can be accentuated with more modern décor touches.” Eva adds.
Booking ASC Catering and the beautiful venue options at Aspen Snowmass for your special day will truly make your wedding one-of-a-kind. They offer unmatched culinary expertise, stunning views, and many options for beautiful wedding reception and ceremony spaces.