Top 10 Wedding Tips

From the Experts:

Top 10 Wedding Planning Tips


The Knot has named Grand Traverse Resort and Spa a “Best of Weddings” Hall of Fame venue thanks to its diverse accommodations, first-class catering, and excellent event design. But the true heart and soul of the Resort’s wedding success is the wedding planning staff—Liz Kondik and Jenelle Whipple. They’re here to share their top wedding planning tips to help your big day go off without a hitch.

Meet Liz, Special Events ManagerLiz Kondik

Liz has over 300 weddings under her belt and has been in the wedding and event planning business for 10 years, 5 of which have been at Grand Traverse Resort and Spa. In 2017, she even had her own dream wedding here, so she knows the Resort experience firsthand!

Liz’s Top 5 Wedding Tips

1. Think about the big picture. If some part of your ceremony or reception is too time consuming or will cause you too much stress, don’t bother with it. Everyone will be coming to the wedding to celebrate your love—they won’t sweat the small stuff, and neither should you!

2. Make sure to take at least 5–10 minutes alone as a couple during the reception. Take in the evening together and think about all the wonderful parts of your day. Get a mental snapshot of the room and the moment!

3. Get a good night’s sleep before your wedding. You’ll be busy from the moment you get up to the moment you go to sleep again, so you’ll want extra energy for the long day.

4. Cherish time with family and your friends before, during, and after your wedding. Make sure you thank them for making the trip and investing their time to your special day.

5. ENJOY yourself! Even in the midst of planning, don’t forget to have fun and embrace the day/week/weekend. Trust me—the time goes by fast! Let yourself live in each moment.


Meet Jenelle, Event Design ManagerJenelle Whipple

With a graphic design background and a love for the outdoors, Jenelle makes every event memorable. She’s a Traverse City native and has been in the event business for 12 years. She prides herself on creating great relationships with guests and vendors.

Jenelle’s Top 5 Wedding Tips

1. Theme your wedding day. You don’t have to go crazy (unless you want to!), but giving the day a theme makes the experience even more fun for you and your guests. Your theme could be as simple as “vintage wedding” or as complex as “royal wedding”—complete with an invite to Princess Kate.

2. Put together your team and divide out tasks—lighten your list! This is key for the day of your wedding, but also important in the planning stages. You don’t have to do everything!

3. Don’t be afraid to ask for advice. Whether you need a girlfriend to help you pick out centerpieces or someone who’s done this wedding thing before to give you pros and cons…ask. Wedding planning isn’t a solo venture for the bride or for the couple.

4. Make a Plan B and maybe even a Plan C. The truth is, no wedding goes absolutely according to plan. If you have contingencies in place, you’ll be ready to weather any storm, from missing flowers to late guests to a literal thunderstorm!

5. Take it one step at a time! Whether or not you’re the scheduling type, work with a wedding planner or download an online guide to planning your day. Crossing off big and small details is rewarding, and having a schedule can help you from feeling rushed or overwhelmed.

Planning a wedding? Liz and Jenelle would love to help! With an on-site spa, hundreds of guest rooms, and multiple ceremony and reception venue options, Grand Traverse Resort and Spa is Northern Michigan’s premiere wedding destination. Learn more about our wedding services.


Upcoming Events

October 5
Big Hole Golf Tournament

October 21
Tuff Enuff Golf Tournament

Slingshot and Summer Fun Rentals

Fall Spa Deals

June 26 Through September 26
Dave Pelz Golf School

December 31
New Year's Eve

NovaLash September Special

Locals Appreciation Month

September 27-29, 2019
SOLD OUT - Bowers Harbor VIP Wine and Spa Weekend

Wednesdays 4:00-6:00pm
Happy Hour at Spa Grand Traverse

November 9
The Great Beerd Run

Souvenir Shopping Tips


Barefoot Magazine

  • Destination Relaxation

    For five years, Spa Grand Traverse Director Dawn Olsen thought about the changes she wanted to make to the resort’s 7,000-square-foot spa and salon.

  • New Look for Iconic Governors' Hall

    Premier gathering space undergoes $1.5 million renovation

  • Reuniting at the Resort

    “It’s a beautiful place to reconnect and build close ties to those we love in one of the most spectacular places in Michigan.”
    —Lori, Leaver family reunion

The Clubhouse
Stay up-to-date on all the happenings at Grand Traverse Resort and Spa. Be the first to know about events, news and special offers!
* required field

By registering you are agreeing to Grand Traverse Resort and Spa privacy policy.

Grand Traverse Resort and Spa

Have a group or promo code? Click Here
**A one-night nonrefundable deposit will be required and processed within 48 hours of making this reservation
  • 2-Night Carefree Getaway - Midweek
    2-Night Carefree Getaway - Midweek

    2-Night Carefree Getaway

    A romantic getaway that includes a 2-night stay, romantic dinner at Aerie Restaurant, and great Spa Grand Traverse savings.

    BOOK NOW Learn More

  • New Year's Eve: Take the elevator home!
    New Year's Eve: Take the elevator home!

    Ring in New Year’s Eve at Grand Traverse Resort and Spa! Our Midnight in the Mitten celebration honors decades of Michigan agriculture with an 8-course strolling dinner and Michigan beverage pairing stations. Music from the Blue Water Kings will help you dance the night away as we lead up to the champagne toast at midnight. Party favors and a cash bar will also be available. The party is open to guests and the public, and takes place in the all-new Governors’ Hall, which will feature classic silver and black décor to kick off 2020 in style.

    Doors open at 7:30 pm
    Strolling Dinner from 8:00-10:00 pm
    Champagne Toast at Midnight
    Live Music from 8:00 pm - 1:00 am

    Book a New Year's Eve Package with us  that includes a room stay and entrance to our New Year's Eve Party.

    Book Now Learn More

Special Offer Sign-up

By registering you are agreeing to the Grand Traverse Resort and Spa privacy policy.