A bride and groom are photographed amid wine barrels in Napa.

Tips for the Napa Wedding of Your Dreams

July 3, 2019
Style & Decor

With its rolling hills, vast vineyards, Mediterranean-inspired buildings, and charming towns, it’s no surprise that Napa Valley is as romantic as it is gorgeous. Add to that the area’s casual sophistication and laidback lifestyle and Napa is the perfect mix of relaxed and refined, rustic and romantic—an ideal place to celebrate your love and say, “I do.”

We love hosting weddings and special events aboard the Napa Valley Wine Train, but we know that pulling off the wedding of your dreams can come with its share of challenges. To help, we’ve put together some of our top tips for planning the perfect wedding in Napa Valley.

Consider Planning an Off-Season Affair

One of the reasons Napa Valley’s terroir produces such excellent wines is that our climate is temperate all year round. This means that your winter, spring, or late fall wedding will be just as stunning as if you celebrate in the peak summer and early fall months, but more cost-effective.

Help Your Guests Get to Where They Need to Go

The two airports closest to the Napa Valley are Oakland International Airport and San Francisco International airport. Each is about 70 miles away. So make sure that your invitation contains clear instructions on how to get from the airport to your venue and accommodation options, or consider working with a local shuttle service to get your guests to and fro.

Keep Your Guests Comfortable

That California sunshine and warm, wonderful weather are fantastic for a wedding but can be tiring for your guests if they are out in the sun all day long. Work with your venue to provide shaded areas where guests can take a break from the hot sun, or if your wedding is during the months of the year when the evenings are cool, use blankets, fire pits, or heat lamps to keep your guests comfortable well into the night. Of course, if your reception is aboard the Napa Valley Wine Train, your guests will be seated in the comfortable luxury of a vintage railcar, where they’re protected from the elements but still able to take in Napa Valley’s extraordinary views.

Make the Most of It

Napa Valley is home to award-winning vineyards, PGA golf courses, Michelin-starred restaurants, and world-class spas. Whether you board the Wine Train for your rehearsal dinner, treat your bridesmaids to a round of golf, go wine tasting with your groomsmen, or get a couples massage the day after you say, “I do”, there is a myriad of ways to soak up all that Napa Valley has to offer.

Know What’s Included

Even if you’re not a wine-lover, there’s no denying that the romantic setting of a Napa vineyard is a beautiful place for a wedding. Take note while planning, however, of what you are and are not allowed in your venue. For example, some wineries are licensed for wine and beer only and will not allow alcohol or cocktails to be served. It’s also worth asking about noise regulations, as many places in Napa Valley require music to be turned down or stopped at 10 p.m.

Go With What’s In Season

The farm-to-table culinary movement all but began in Napa. The culinary team at the Napa Valley Wine Train and chefs throughout the region are constantly tweaking and changing their menus to take advantage of local products at the height of their freshness. Adopt this style of thinking when planning your wedding menu and your decor as well—vases filled with blooms at their peak will only serve to enhance the fresh food on your plates.

The beautiful resorts, rolling hills, and outstanding landscapes of Napa Valley can transport you to a different place, making your Napa nuptials feel like a destination wedding without ever leaving the country. Our hospitality and laidback lifestyle make for a carefree wedding location filled with superb food, memorable experiences, and breathtaking natural backdrops that will have your wedding feeling as special and incredible as the love you share.

For more information on weddings in Napa Valley, or to arrange a one-of-a-kind tour, contact our event specialists at 707-251-5210 or visit www.winetrain.com/plan-your-trip/weddings-groups/.

A bride and groom on the caboose care of the Napa Valley Wine Train