THE STANLEY HOTEL
Although Leighton & Edward celebrated with a small wedding in Florida during the pandemic, they still planned to carry out a bigger bash at for their fall Estes Park wedding at The Stanley Hotel. Like many couples, Leighton and Edward’s original wedding plans were impacted by the challenges of the pandemic. We joined them for a pre-wedding get-together at the O’Connor Pavilion alongside Fall River beforehand to capture some evening entertainment with their closest friends and family enjoying dinner, drinks, yard games and fireside fun.
We were very excited to shoot at The Stanley Hotel, which is an iconic and historic hotel that has captivated visitors for over a century. The hotel, which was built in 1909, is famous for inspiring Stephen King’s novel “The Shining” and has become a popular destination for fans of the horror genre. However, the hotel’s charm extends far beyond its spooky reputation.
The architecture and interior design reflect the elegance of the early 20th century, with period furnishings and decor creating a sense of grandeur. The hotel also boasts stunning views of the Rocky Mountains and offers guests a wide range of activities, from hiking and fine dining. The hotel is a true gem of Estes Park, and a must-visit for anyone looking to experience the history, beauty, and mystique of this iconic destination.
On their wedding day we met up with Leighton at the Glow Salon and Spa where she and her bridesmaids were pampered while Edward and his groomsmen soaked up a laid back morning at The Residences. After hair and make-up were completed, the ladies made their way back to The Pavilion for lunch and enjoyed some champagne against the backdrop of Longs Peak before Leighton changed into her gown.
The newlyweds shared a sweet moment during their first look at Knoll-Willows Open Space before their dogs joined in for some portraits. We explored the path for a bit, soaking up views of Lumpy Ridge and Rocky Mountain National Park, which made for some gorgeous backdrops.
Knoll Willows Open Space in Estes Park is a breathtakingly beautiful natural area that is especially enchanting in the fall. During this time of year, the landscape is ablaze with vibrant hues of gold. The hiking trails that wind through the open space are well-maintained and offer stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.
Back at the hotel, Longs Peak Lawn was undergoing a transformation for their ceremony that was about to take place. Guests gathered for a welcome cocktail hour in the shade as musicians performed nearby. The lawn is spacious enough to accommodate a large number of guests, yet still retains an intimate and personalized feel. Their ceremony went off without a hitch – it was short, sweet and sentimental to the two of them. Leighton and Edward had been through this before, but even though this was their second ceremony, the gravity of the moment still brought Leighton to tears.
We grabbed the newlyweds for a few blue hour portraits after dinner, and then reconvened back inside the ballroom for first dances and speeches by their fathers. After toasts, the dance floor was on fire! Leighton and Edward said that one of the things they were most excited about was the live band, and the musicians did not disappoint. Playing hit after hit, the crowd was on their feet nearly all night long, jamming away with inflatable saxophones and rocking their Santa hats. At one point, Leighton and Edward joined the band and sang alongside the performers into their own inflatable mics. It was surely a night to remember!
Congrats you two!