Lord Howe Island Wedding


Samantha-Ohlsen -Photography-

Lord Howe Island Wedding - Paradise Destination Wedding

Lord Howe Island is a destination wedding paradise, and a place where walking and cycling are the major modes of transportation. Whilst cars are available for hire, the island pace lends itself to a more gentle and relaxed method of exploring the island.

Lord Howe Island

Beautiful wedding with rainforest and beaches on the World Heritage listed Lord Howe Island.

A World Heritage listed location, Lord Howe Island consists of turquoise waters and sub tropical landscape, and it feels as if you have stepped into a postcard. The landscape is truly breathtaking and until you visit you cannot truly understand the extraordinary beauty of this location. So when Damien was ready to propose to Kristen, there was no better place than Lord Howe Island.

Where to have the wedding? Whilst both Damien and Kristen explored the more traditional options of a wedding in Sydney, their hearts told them that Lord Howe Island would really be their dream location.

A destination wedding is not without its organisational challenges, and Lord Howe Island would prove to be no different despite being part of New South Wales. Strict baggage allowances, and sometimes unpredictable weather made this a challenging wedding to put together. Kristen and Damien flew a few months prior to the wedding to make arrangements. Through the help of Kathy and her team at Earl’s Anchorage Restaurant, their dream wedding was to become a reality.

Samantha-Ohlsen -Photography-

This beautiful sign was made by the bride’s father and had to be shipped to Lord Howe Island.

Kristen’s father hand carved this beautiful sign for their wedding. It however was a significant challenge and cost to have shipped to the island.

The rings that Damien and Kristen and chosen served as both wedding and engagement rings. The design was so unique, I understand why no wedding ring could possible match Kristen’s engagement ring.

Damien chose to get ready with his best man Adam at the Pinetrees Lodge. This also was a perfect location for most of the wedding guests to stay. Nestled amongst the pinetrees with Lagoon beach just a stones throw away, it made for a relaxed place for the boys to get ready. After a few formal photos in the gardens at Pinetrees, the boys went looking for some relaxation time at the Pool table and a quick stiff drink just to calm the nerves.

Before leaving the groom’s getting ready location the bride’s father approached me with a special gift for the couple. It was a bolt with their names, wedding location and date inscribed. It contained a single washer that had ‘Day 1? inscribed on it. During their wedding reception Kristen’s father presented it and asked the couple to add an inscribed washer each year of marriage. What a unique and special gift.

Kristen, her Mum and her Maid of Honour chose Earl’s Anchorage Lodge to get ready. The hair and beauty salon was literally only 100m up the road. The girls were exposed to ‘island time’ when they were running 45minutes late from the hairdresser. That was not going to be a problem as we had factored this into the couples wedding timeline. Just for good measure the girls decided to lighten the mood with a nice bottle of sparkling wine prior to Kristen being whisked away in preparation for seeing Damien at their First Look.

Lord Howe Island also is the perfect location to experience a more relaxed and unique wedding. This was evident when they chose to have their ‘first look’ in a secluded cemetery. A ‘first look’ is when the groom sees his bride on their wedding day for the first time. Whilst this would usually occur at the wedding ceremony, more and more couples are choosing this to occur in a private location just prior to the ceremony. The ‘first look’ is very common in the USA and Canada but up until a few years ago it was unheard of in Australia. The ‘first look’ is usually organised by the wedding photographer to document this special moment. It often results in a very emotional response and allows the couple time to reconnect prior to the wedding ceremony.

Samantha-Ohlsen -Photography-

First Look before the wedding in secluded cemetary on Lord Howe Island

Damien and Kristen’s ‘First Look’ didn’t disappoint. The location allowed for Damien and Kristen to reconnect prior to the ceremony and soak up the quiet surroundings before a few pictures and then they were ready to depart for the ceremony.

To see a more setailed account of Kristen and Damien’s First Look and their first hand experience of what they felt during the moment check out: The First Look In Detail Q&A

If a ‘First Look’ in a cemetery is unique, then the bride was not going to disappoint with her grand entrance with her Maid of Honour, both on wicker chairs lashed to the back of a ute.

The view from Lovers Lookout, with Mount Gower towering in the background was the perfect location for the ceremony.

Kristen’s parents proudly walked Kristen down the aisle. The wedding was conducted by a member of the Lord Howe Board and Damien and Kristen said ‘I Do’ in front of 33 of their closest friends and family.

Then there was some spare time for the bridal party to have some fun with their wedding photos, hanging out on the 8th Hole of the Lord Howe Island Golf Club.

With white sandy beaches and crystal clear water, Damien and Kristen made sure that they made time to visit Lagoon Beach before heading to the reception.

The reception was hosted at Earl’s Anchorage, a local restaurant serving the island’s best food utilising the freshest of local produce, in particular their amazing seafood.

There was even time for the bride and groom and their guests to leave the reception for 10mins and walk down to the beach to watch the sun set.

Then it was back to finish the party. Lord Howe Island has a 10pm noise curfew so everybody made for some quality time on the dancefloor.

For those of you that don’t believe in fairytale endings, Damien and Kristen’s wedding at Lord Howe Island proved that love worth waiting for, and fairytales, do come true if you marry your best friend on one the world’s most beautiful islands.

On a personal note: I have never attended a destination wedding so special as Damien and Kristen’s. Lord Howe Island is truly one of the most beautiful places on earth. One of the reasons I enjoy destination weddings so much is the opportunity to see the bride and groom spend quality time with their closest family and friends.

I was lucky enough to spend this time getting to know Kristen and Damien’s family and thought I might share a few pictures that were not from the wedding day, but what I believe illustrate both the beauty of this island the benefits of a destination wedding.

Samantha-Ohlsen -Photography-

The amazing views and stunning clouds and skies.

Great times with family relaxing before and after the big day.

A complete natural children’s playground.

Great opportunity to be with all your family and have group and family photo’s, often a rare occurrence that everyone is together at once.

As published in:

  • Beauty & Lifestyle Bride … (Mar 27, 2015)
  • The Luxe Pearl (Mar 30, 2015)
  • TheVeil.Co (Feb 16, 2015)
  • Wedding Essentials Blog (Apr 10, 2015)
  • Wedding Favors Unlimited … (Mar 18, 2015)
  • A Golden Locket (Wedding… (Jan 16, 2015)
  • Brideside Real Weddings (Dec 26, 2014)

Nominated for Wedding of the Year – Easy Weddings 2015