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The Perfect Checklist for All Your Wedding Planning Needs

Putting your wedding planning schedule together was never easier than with our basic tips for your Big Day!

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Once the bliss of “saying Yes!” settles in, it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty of your recent engagement: planning the wedding! As one of the premier wedding destinations in Central NY, the Marriott Syracuse Downtown has put together a basic wedding planning checklist to keep that blissful feeling going right up until the moment you say “I Do!”

Look at the Big Picture (Just Engaged)

  • Decide, in general, what you both envision for your big day. 
  • Discuss cultural and familial traditions, budget, and of course, the guest list. 

Pick Your Venue (A Year Before…)

  • The top wedding venues can book up months, if not years, in advance.
  • Be sure to do your research. This may include deciding upon a certain time of year that best fits your desired location, or compromise to be able to celebrate your nuptials at your first choice.
  • Make sure to ask every question you have of your prospective venues such as preferred vendors, catering policies, and even if they have a wedding planner on hand (all things that we are happy to provide our brides and grooms-to-be).

Lights, Camera… Action! (10 Months To Go)

  • Now’s the time to sure-up all of the details that go into making your ceremony everything you always dreamed of.
  • Order and send out the invitations.
  • Get working on your vows.
  • Pick your attire and schedule the fittings.
  • Plan the menu for the wedding reception.
  • Some of these may seem early, but these details should be “ironed out” at least three months before the walk down the aisle (and time will start to pass more quickly than you had imagined).

Take Care of Loose Ends (3 More Months!)

  • Have your marriage license?
  • Need lodging arrangements for your guests?
  • How about that honeymoon?
  • Any loose ends that need “tightening” should be done at least a month before your ceremony.  

Enjoy Your Wedding Day!

Have a wonderful time and toast your new marriage (along with all the planning that went into making this day everything that you wanted it to be!).

The 5 Essential Wedding Tips for The Groom Before The Big Day!

Follow our wedding tips for the groom to make the planning of your big day the fairytale your bride always envisioned!

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We’ve all heard it before – “I have been planning this wedding since I was five-years-old!” Yet even if they have everything planned, scrap-booked and under control, every bride really does want some involvement from their husbands-to-be.

Here at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown, we know that it takes many people to plan a wedding, and there are certain responsibilities that are inherent to the role as groom. Follow these 5 pre-wedding tips for the groom to ensure your big day becomes the happily-ever-after that you both are looking forward to.

Choose your groomsmen.
It may be the obvious starting point, but there’s more than just making the final choice. You need to keep track of all of their details as well. Ensure they know the date. Keep a watch on those suit fittings. And make sure if there are any changes, that they are informed.

Help with the guest list.
Don’t leave it up to your bride-to-be to get all of the information (names/addresses) regarding your friends and side of the family. And, once those RSVPs start coming in, assist in making sure that everyone on the list is checked off and all of the missing names are (eventually) accounted for.

Practice or learn to dance.
You don’t need to learn a choreographed dance for the wedding, but get comfortable breaking out your best moves in front of others.

Write your vows.
This tends to be the most important speech of your life. Spend the time and make her feel your love from your heartfelt words. And, even if you plan on using the traditional vows, practice reciting them aloud.

Prepare to say “I Do” by reminding her “I Love You”
Wedding planning is stressful! Those simple three words can mean a great deal to keep her smiling before the walk down the aisle. Remember, for one day, you’re a groom, but for the rest of your lives together you’ll be a husband.

4 Wedding Toast Tips You Need to Know Before the Big Day!

It sounds easy enough, but giving a wedding toast (such as the all-important best man speech) is a task you should be well prepared for…

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He’s your best friend! She’s your twin sister! The words should come easy, right? Not so fast…
Many overlook the various wedding toast opportunities as a time to just say a few words. Yet those few words can end up being one of the most memorable aspects of the wedding reception, for better or worse. Being one of the premier wedding destinations in Central NY, we here at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown have seen it all, from the eloquent tear-inducing showstopper to the sometimes embarrassing and cringe-worthy.
With that in mind, here’s our four wedding toast tips to ensure that your time at the mic leaves the crowd speechless (for all the right reasons).

Be prepared

Nerves get the best of everyone. Be sure to prepare your speech and anticipate the reactions you’ll receive. Will there be laughs? Tears rolling down cheeks? With a plan in place, nothing will faze you from delivering your own version of St. Crispin’s Day Speech.

Keep it simple

Even Shakespeare (see above referenced speech) knew how to get a reaction with a few well-placed words. Tell a nice story about the couple and wish them well. Add a little bit of your own personal flair. Are you the first to speak? Introduce the couple for the first time! The last to go? Remark on the overall reception. Just keep it short but meaningful and it’ll be remembered long after the honeymoon is over.

Be funny and appropriate

A reception is filled with all kinds of friends and family, spanning different generations and cultures. Many of them don’t know each other, and some may not even be that close to the couple, so it’s best to be diplomatic with your jokes and anecdotes. Be funny but consider your audience (and perhaps run your speech by a trusted friend to get their opinion).

Most of all, be sincere and have fun! Remember: your speech is a gift to the happy couple!

Your most FAQ about Planning your Wedding with Us

Planning your wedding is easy once you choose the right venue…


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Sometimes, you know exactly where you want your wedding to be, but often it isn’t that simple, and it becomes a matter of visiting quite a few different places, discussing your options, and asking an awful lot of questions. Here at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown, we know that the journey to finding the perfect venue for your wedding can take many paths. Will it be love-at-first-sight, or do you need to get-to-know the place and the team a little better before you can imagine yourself celebrating your special day there.

No matter your path, we love chatting to the couples that walk through our door, and our wedding planners are always happy to answer any questions that they may have about our venue and our wedding packages. This week, we thought we’d share some of our most frequently asked questions …

A: An appointment is required to view the venue. We want you to receive a detailed tour of our hotel and have a Catering Sales Manager present to answer your questions.

A: We have different ceremony spaces within the Hotel. The likelihood, depending on the time of year is that you will have your ceremony in your reception space and we will then escort your Guests to a private cocktail hour area while we transform the room. The Hotel currently has no outdoor ceremony space.

A: The Hotel only offers on-site ceremonies to Bride’s and Groom’s having their Receptions with us.

A: Yes. Your Catering Services Manager is here to assist you with details such as arranging for your tasting, collecting payments, detailing your menu, creating room diagrams, monitoring your room block and creating an event order for the big day. Outside Wedding Planners are always welcome in our beautiful Hotel, as long as they adhere to all the policies and procedures at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown. Our preferred outside planner is Megan with MLH Events. You as the client, may use the planner of your choosing.

A: We offer complimentary menu tastings for up to four guests with all of our wedding packages once a contract has been signed. There will be an additional charge for any guests beyond six. Selections will be provided by your Convention Service Manager and must be confirmed at least two weeks prior to the tasting. Tastings are scheduled based on availability. Tastings are scheduled on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 1:00pm to 3:00pm.

We hope this has helped get you started on your wedding planning journey. If you’d like to read some more of our frequently asked wedding questions, here is the link to our FAQ page, or, if you have a wedding question of your own, our wedding planners are always here and happy to help. Wishing you every happiness as you take the next step!

Fall In Love With a Romantic Getaway in Syracuse

Discover how “together” can be the most beautiful place to be… especially when on a romantic getaway in Syracuse!hands hold romance lvoe shelby-deeter-193590-unsplash

Say “I Love You” with a romantic weekend in Syracuse! Few think of the Salt City as a “destination” for romance, especially in the colder winter months, yet it’s a wonderful place to fall in love all over again with both that special person in your life and the Central NY area.

Skate The Day Away!
The only way this long-standing holiday-time tradition could be made better is as a skate for two! The Clinton Square Ice Rink is one of the city’s most popular destinations during the winter, opening at the end of November and closing in March. Lace up a pair of skates, hit the ice, and heat things up with your better half.

Take a Walk on The Wild Side
Open year-round, The Rosamond Gifford Zoo is the perfect date to bring your childhood back to life. Your “puppy love” can bloom around the animals of the world, with special events like Snow Leopard Days in January/February making this a “purrfect” date out that your heart will never forget.

Book a Romantic Weekend at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown Hotel
Whether planning a romantic getaway in Syracuse built around activities in the area, from skiing to sleigh rides, or just wishing for a romantic weekend staycation, enjoy a night or two with us at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown. Known as one of the most luxurious and iconic places in the Central NY area for love, our “Romance Package” was made to be the ideal “Do Not Disturb” getaway!

This special package includes:

  • The classic romantic pair of champagne and chocolate-covered strawberries delivered upon arrival.
  • Breakfast for two, buffet-style, at Eleven Waters.
  • Complimentary late check-out, so that “Do Not Disturb” sign can hang on the door handle a little longer!

Make memories that will last a lifetime and book a romantic stay with us today.

Four Tips to Plan a Winter Wedding as Sweet as a Candy Cane!

The Certified Wedding Specialists at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown have four sure-fire tips to make your frozen fairy-tale come true!


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Plan Ahead
It may not be “on season” in terms of nuptials, but this time of year is full of festivities that you should be mindful of when planning your winter wedding. Pre-formal invitation “Save the Date” cards are advised to ensure that everyone on your list has ample time to make arrangements to attend. Also, remember that it gets darker earlier which affects many details from travel schedules to photography lighting.

Baby, It’s Cold Outside!
No matter if you have an outdoor or indoor ceremony, the crisp weather needs to be considered when choosing attire. Winter weather accessories, from faux-fur wraps to velvet blazers, will keep your entire party cozy, comfortable, and chic! Also, don’t forget simple beauty prep from moisturizers to chapstick.

Be Creative
Many brides decide to “keep it simple” and opt for traditional holiday themes. Just because you want a ceremony as “sweet as a candy cane” doesn’t mean it has to look like one! Pick a winter palette that fits your personal style, from shimmering metallics to bold jewel tones! This also applies to your floral décor and menu choices. Warm beverages are a welcoming sight for attendees, as well as festive, heartier fare full of winter favorites. Who wouldn’t want a gingerbread cookie place setting?

Choose the Perfect Venue
The perfect venue is crucial when planning your big day during winter, as inclement weather is a normal occurrence. This can mean extra travel time between venues, which can be alleviated by having both your ceremony and reception at one venue! And if that venue happens to be a historic hotel (and one of the top wedding venues in Central NY), travel woes will be minimal with room blocks available for all guests!

Start planning your winter wedding today with the Marriott Syracuse Downtown!