For years, Los Angelian Jenna Benjamin dreamed of traveling to Charleston. Two years into dating Matt Cook, she got her wish and then some when Matt proposed at Magnolia Plantation & Gardens. When choosing a Big Day venue, the indoor-outdoor possibilities at the posh Belmond Charleston Place stole Jenna’s heart. Jessica Cruz of Cruz Coordination helped the couple pull off an intimate destination wedding there with a ceremony in front of the hotel’s Market Street Circle fountain, a cocktail hour in its hidden courtyard, and an elegant dinner in The Palmetto Café. The night flowed seamlessly from space to space, including one surprise: mid-reception, Matt asked Jenna to walk with him across King Street, where she found their names emblazoned on the marquee of the Charleston Place’s 1939 Riviera theater. Talk about a cinematic touch to one heck of a romance!
• Keep it in-house. Having all the festivities an elevator-ride away from their hotel rooms made the weekend more relaxing for both the couple and their guests.
• Know that bigger isn’t always better. Thanks to the couple’s modest guest count (77), the banquet chefs who cater events at The Palmetto Café could make everyone’s dinner to order.
• Take advantage of a one-stop shop. Belmond Charleston Place supplied the day’s florals, linens, cake, catering, and bar, and Rick Burton—the hotel’s chief concierge—officiated
• Minimize decisions. Since the couple was planning from afar, a venue that would be visually impressive without elaborate added décor was a major plus.
• Stick to a theme. From the cake design to the bride and bridesmaids’ bouquets, if it wasn’t dripping with orchids, it didn’t make the cut.
We asked the Lowcountry’s top hair and makeup professionals what products they carry in their bag of tricks that can withstand the heat and humidity. For a gorgeous glow and polished locks, check out their top picks. Bonus? The majority of the products are Charleston brands with enthusiastic national followings. Stock up with these tried-and-true besties and you've got your own glam squad