Marco Beach Ocean Resort

Cristina and David began their wedding planning more than a year in advance. I had met with them in May of 2016 and this couple from New Jersey chose the Seaside String Trio to provide the music for their May 2017 destination wedding ceremony and their cocktail reception. It was a pleasure to work with Tonya Malay Photography, Isn’t She Lovely Florals, Dominick of MSE Pro DJ, Will Singleton, Officiant and Galina, coordinator at the Marco Beach Ocean Resort.

The couple chose popular music for their prelude , traditional classical music for the ceremony, and popular music for their cocktail hour. We began prelude music at 6:15 prior to the 6:45 ceremony. It was a lovely evening in Southwest Florida!

Here was our playlist:

PRELUDE:     Hallelujah;The Prayer; Stand by Me, Ben E. King; Somewhere Only We Know, Keane; You Raise Me Up, Josh Groban; Can You Feel the Love Tonight, Elton John; A Thousand Years, Christina Perri; All of Me, John Legend;


Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring, Bach:  Entrance of Officiate; Groom escorts his Mother; Entrance of 5 Groomsmen; 5 Bridesmaids

 Canon in D, Pachelbel: Entrance of the Bride and her Mother

 Wedding March, Mendelssohn: Recessional

 Brandenburg Concerto #3, Bach: Postlude

COCKTAIL HOUR:  All You Need is Love, Beatles; Can’t Help Falling in Love, Elvis; Crazy Love, Van Morrison; Forrest Gump Theme Song; Have I Told You Lately, Van Morrison; How Sweet It Is, James Taylor; Maybe I’m Amazed, Paul McCartney; My Girl, Temptations; Scarborough Fair, Simon & Garfunkel; Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours, Stevie Wonder; Someone Like You, Adele; Sweet Child O’ Mine, Guns N Roses; Wonderful Tonight, Eric Clapton; You Are the Best Thing, Ray LaMontague; Sweetest Thing, U2

We enjoyed performing all the music they chose! Best wishes to the newlyweds! We hope they enjoyed their time in Florida!


Sundial Resort, Sanibel Island

With Hurricane Mathew moving well north, we had beautiful weather on this second Saturday of October for the wedding of Bethany and Phillip. This couple from the Chicago area chose the Sundial Resort on Sanibel Island as their venue and chose the Seaside Strings Trio to perform live music for the wedding ceremony and cocktail hour.  The ceremony began on the beach at 6 pm and was Officiated by the Grandfather of the Bride.

Sundial Resort beach wedding

We played classical favorites for the prelude. During this, the Grandmother and Mothers took their seats and the Officiate, Groom and Groomsmen made their way onto the beach. With a signal from Tiffany, coordinator at the Resort, we began to play Belle Notte as the 4 Bridesmaids made their entrance. Once they were in place, we changed to When You Wish Upon a Star for the entrance of the bride’s two daughters. Bethany chose the Canon in D by Pachelbel as her processional music.  After the newlyweds were presented as husband and wife , we played That’s Amore as they made their exit.

We moved from the Sanibel Beach to Turtle Beach on the resort’s property for the cocktail hour. The couple chose all popular music for the reception. On their playlist was Come Fly With Me, Frank Sinatra; Your Song, Elton John; Here Comes the Sun, Beatles; New York, NY, Frank Sinatra; Fly Me to the Moon, Sinatra; Ain’t That a Kick in the Head, Dean Martin; Annie’s Song, John Denver; Feel Like Making Love, Bad Company; Feels Like Today and Bless the Broken Road by Rascal Flats and Margaritaville by Jimmy Buffet. We still had a couple more to play but the noseums had driven everyone inside!

Naples Beach Hotel, Penthouse Beach

We were thankful to be spared a direct hit by Hurricane Mathew here in Naples, FL but it brought us enough bad weather I was worried Nicole and Jacob were not going to be able to have the beach wedding they had planned. It was raining when I arrived at Penthouse Beach at the Naples Beach Hotel on this first Thursday of October. I was joined by the other members of the Seaside Strings Trio, our ensemble chosen to provide the wedding ceremony and cocktail reception music.

Lindsay, the venue coordinator, said we were still going for Plan A and had set up umbrellas on the beach for us. The ceremony was due to start at 6 and guests were waiting in the main lobby. It was a miracle the weather cleared just before 6 so the guests quickly came to the beach and took their seats. I looked at the sky and it seemed like we were frozen in time. Clouds barely moved and the wind posed no problem. It was meant to be!

Naples Beach Hotel wedding

The Wedding Party walked out to the music , Canon in D by Pachelbel.  Niki made her entrance to the traditional Bridal Chorus. The ceremony was Officiated by the Groom’s Uncle. The couple paid tribute to their parents and we played “Bless the Broken Road ” while roses were given to the mothers. For the sand ceremony, we played “A Thousand Years.” The traditional Wedding March was played for the Recessional.

Everyone moved back inside the main lobby for cocktail hour where we played a mix of music. We combined Strauss waltzes along with the couple’s favorite pops songs. These songs included Crazy Love by Van Morrison; Can’t Help Falling in Love by Elvis; How Sweet It Is by James Taylor; It’s Your Love  by Tim McGraw and Faith Hill; Faithfully by Journey, Free by Zac Brown; Love Story by Taylor Swift, Let’s Stay Together by Al Green and Moondance by Van Morrison.

We appreciated the warm response we received , especially from the Groom. He said we helped make the ceremony perfect. It doesn’t get any better than that.

Marco Beach Ocean Resort beach wedding

As I drove to Marco Island on this Sunday afternoon in mid October, it looked like another beautiful day. I did have to drive through some sprinkles but I  anticipated terrific weather for the wedding of Julianne and Phillip at the Marco Beach Ocean Resort. This was a destination wedding for the couple from Massachusetts. When I got to the beach and joined my colleagues, Joan and Julie, who made up the Seaside Strings Trio, we asked  Galina,  the coordinator at the resort,  for an umbrella to provide some shade. As we continued to get ready, dark clouds began to get closer. I went back to the car to grab my umbrella which usually keeps the rain away.  It worked it’s magic again this time!

Marco Beach Ocean Resort wedding

Marco Beach Ocean Resort wedding

The lovely flowers were done by Kevin of Botanicals on the Gulf and he took this picture of us as we were setting up.

Here is a picture of the sky prior to ceremony start. It’s a miracle it all moved northwest of us!

threatening skies on Marco Island

For prelude, we played Can’t Help Falling in Love ( Elvis); Marry Me (Train);and Best Day of My Life ( American Authors) . Since the weather did look threatening, Galina started the wedding party down the boardwalk just a bit early. The Grandmother was seated, Parents of the Groom were seated; Reverend Les Wicker (Officiant) and Phillip, the Groom, entered followed by the Maid of Honor and Flower Girl all to the music Canon in D by Pachelbel.

Julianne processed onto the beach to the traditional Bridal Chorus escorted by both her parents. During the ceremony we played Over the Rainbow ( Israel K version) as the couple performed a sand ceremony. The traditional Wedding March  played as the wedding party exited. The couple came back to greet each row of guests and we played All You Need is Love  followed by Hallelujah (which we did not get to play in the prelude).

Once most of the guests had departed the beach to go to the terrace for the cocktail hour, we quickly packed and joined them. On our playlist for the cocktail reception was All of Me ( John Legend);  Counting Stars (OneRepublic);  God Only Knows (Beach Boys); I’m Yours (Jason Mraz); In My Life (Beatles); Just the Way You Are Amazing (Bruno Mars); Margaritaville (Jimmy Buffet); Marry You ( Bruno Mars); Moondance ( Van Morrison); This Will Be (Natalie Cole); What a Wonderful World ( Louis Armstrong); Come Away With Me ( Norah Jones);  Beyond the Sea ( Bobby Darin);  Kokomo ( Beach Boys);  Sitting on the Dock of the Bay ( Otis Redding) and Stand By Me ( Ben E. King).

I am disappointed I did not get to meet the couple and offer congratulations and best wishes in person. We wish Julianne and Phillip a lifetime of happiness together!

Heritage Bay Golf and Country Club

We got to play at a new venue this Saturday of Easter weekend, Heritage Bay Golf and Country Club located in Naples, FL.  The Seaside Strings Trio provided the wedding ceremony music for Samantha and Justin, a local couple. Samantha was so organized. She had booked us last August and by September she had already sent me her music requests. I had her choose a few more songs just in case and she never had to make any changes.

Heritage Bay GC weddingHeritage Bay GC wedding

We began to play prelude music 15 minutes before the ceremony began. As the guests  came from the clubhouse to the gazebo area, we played Marry You, Marry Me, Can You Feel the Love Tonight and Don’t Stop Beleivin’.  No delays today and Kaitlyn, the venue coordinator,  had everyone lined up ready to go at 5 pm. We began to play Fur Elise by Beethoven for the Seating of the Grandparents and the Mothers. For the Entrance of the Wedding Party, we played Just the Way You Are Amazing. Once the 2 ring bearers had taken their place, we played the Pachelbel Canon in D for the Entrance of the Bride. She made a lovely entrance down the staircase from the clubhouse and was met by her dad at the bottom. The short ceremony was performed ( from memory) by the Bride’s Brother, Stefan.  Samantha and Justin enjoy bicycle riding together and a bicycle built for 2 was decorated in the gazebo. I hope you can see it in the picture.

Loud cheers welcomed the newlyweds and we played the traditional Wedding March for the Recessional. Most people headed inside but a few people stayed outside to mingle and enjoy the weather. Then the wedding party returned for pictures so we entertained them all with I’m Yours, Viva la Vida, I’ll Be, Bubbly, Come Away With Me, and Hey Jude.  To complete the hour, we then added Better Together and Kiss the Girl. We got such a super response from everybody! Many thanks to Samantha and Justin for having us. We wish you all the best!

Marco Beach Ocean Resort

Amy and Sammy from Michigan chose the Marco Beach Ocean Resort as the venue for their May wedding. But, instead of choosing the beach , they chose to have their destination wedding ceremony in the valet courtyard. It turned out to be so lovely. Corrin and her staff transformed the area into an elegant romantic setting.  It was a beautiful evening.

Marco Beach Ocean Resort 002

I took a peak inside the restaurant too and the flowers and drapery continued up the banister  to the ballroom. Arrangements of roses were everywhere on the tables. It was amazing! I found out later the flowers were done by a florist in the Chicago area, Bellaserio Florist and were chosen because they had done the flowers for the weddings of Amy’s sisters.

Amy and Sammy chose the string trio to provide their ceremony music and spent a lot of time researching music, sending me links to YouTube videos. I was able to accommodate most of their requests and they were extremely understanding about the songs we could not do. I try to explain to my clients that I must have the sheet music in order to arrange it for our groups. I usually also tell them that it will sound different from what they hear on those videos.  They helped us add some great new songs to our repertoire list!

They chose all pops songs. For the prelude, their choices were Paradise,  How Sweet It Is, Secrets, Viva la Vida,  If I Ain’t Got You,  Summer Wind,  Stand By Me,  The Way You Look Tonight and Into the Mystic. The songs that we did not play due to the timing, we did play afterwards while pictures were being taken. Everyone was so quiet as they were being seated and waiting for the ceremony to begin. It was like playing a concert!

The music for the Ceremony was Can’t Help Falling in Love for the Seating of the Mothers, Marry You for the Entrance of the Wedding Party, Marry Me for the Entrance of the Bride, Just the Way You Are Amazing for the Recessional and Make You Feel My Love as the postlude. Reverend Thomas McCulley of New Life Community Church Officiated.

We really enjoyed performing the music they chose and it was a pleasure to meet them!  We hope everyone enjoyed their time here in Florida! All the very best to Amy and Sammy!

La Playa Gulf Lawn

We are very fortunate to be named a Preferred Vendor at the La Playa Resort. So when I was contacted by Michelle and Joseph about Seaside Strings providing music for their wedding and I was unavailable but my other colleagues were available, they put their trust in me to handle all the details even though I would not be one of the performers.  They were such a joy to work with! Living in California , this was a destination wedding for them so we had many phone conversations.  My colleagues , Joan Stewart and Susan Sikuta on violin and Julie Cornwall on cello, formed the Seaside Strings Trio and provided the wedding ceremony and cocktail reception music. Joan served as the leader for the day and with a fact sheet in their music books and the music all in order, I knew all would go smoothly.

Julie took these photos for me. Jenny and Sarah of Lyfe of the Party did a beautiful job on the ceremony site. The La Playa Resort is such a lovely venue!

La Playa wedding

wedding flowers

Michelle and Joseph chose so many wonderful people to help make this day special. Kathie Resop of Side by Side Destination Wedding Services, AnnMarie and Steven of iheARt films, Karl and Nanette from Luminaire Foto and Father Charles Obie, the Officiant. We always enjoy seeing them!

As I spoke with the couple,  I knew that they realized how the live music would enhance their event and they took great care in making their selections. The prelude included many lively pieces as they wished to have a celebratory feel.  The selections  they chose were the Mouret Rondeau, Delibes Flower Duet, Handel Allegro, Telemann Sonata, Handel Le Rejouissance and Vivaldi Spring. The Groom’s parents informally walked into this piece which was a special favorite of theirs.

The Pachelbel Canon in D was chosen for the Entrance of the Wedding Party. This included Father Obie, Joseph, the Best Man, Flower Girl with a Bible, Ring Bearer, a Flower Girl with the rose petals and Matron of Honor.  The Wagner Bridal Chorus with its fanfare announced the Entrance of the Bride.

After the readings and the homily by Father Obie, the couple chose an excerpt from The Prayer as a musical interlude.  After the Sand Ceremony was completed, they chose the Bach Air as background music for their prayer time. The ceremony concluded with Mendelssohn’s Wedding March. Beethoven’s Ode to Joy and Bach’s Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring were played as their guests transitioned to the cocktail reception.

It was all popular songs for the reception. On the playlist was Tonight, As Time Goes By, It’s a Beautiful Day, How Sweet It Is, New York, NY, Unforgettable, I’ve Got You Under My Skin, That’s Amore, Unchained Melody, What a Wonderful World, Wonderful Tonight, You Are the Sunshine of My Life, Penny Lane, From this Moment On, All You Need is Love, Viva la Vida and Wouldn’t It Be Nice.

I heard from Kathie: ” I have never seen a couple so in love on their wedding day!”

We are so happy for them and wish them all the best!

Here is a picture of the trio. Many thanks to Karl and Nanette of Luminaire Foto !Luminaire Foto