Royal wedding to be shown live on cruise ships

Touted as a “front-row seat” to the royal wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton, cruise lines are jumping on board a growing world-wide obsession with the event.

To be shown live fleet-wide on Royal Caribbean, Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Cruises, other lines will show the event on select ships.

P&O Cruises’ managing director Carol Marlow said: “As Britain’s favourite cruise line it is only fitting that our passengers should have a front row seat from unique locations around the globe. It will certainly be a grand celebration with almost 14,000 passengers sailing with us at this time.”

Cunard Line’s will show the entire event from start to finish the ships main showroom on their three ships. Says Cunard president Peter Shanks: “If demand for seats exceeds supply we are able to use our Planetarium and lecture room, Illuminations, which seats a further 450 passengers.”

Cruise lines have been in the wedding business for quite some time, with most devoting considerable resources to on-board wedding ceremonies. The all-inclusive nature of a cruise vacation makes weddings at sea a viable alternate choice and cruise line involvement with the royal wedding a natural fit.

Indian hotel managers face jail time for Katy Perry noise pollution

Indian officials are investigating complaints of noise pollution from the Aman-i-Khas hotel where Russel Brand and Katie Perry recently tied the knot. During their wedding reception, party noise exceeded the 45 decibel limit, and that means someone is in trouble.

An official for the Sawaimadhopur district already said that the newly weds will not be charged, but that hotel management is not going to get off that easy.

To clarify, Wikipedia lists 45 decibels around the noise level of a conversation when two people are about 1 meter apart. The punishment for “talking softly” could mean several days in jail for the hotel managers who were on duty.

After the Indian wedding and reception, the couple flew to the Maldives – I just hope they have someone to help translate whatever the locals tell them.

[Photo credit:]

Couple to wed at Halloween Horror Nights

April Richardson and Adam Cohen (that’s the blood-drenched, happy couple in the picture at right) are the winners of a wedding package at Halloween Horror Nights.

The Vermont couple, who describe themselves as “lifelong fans of Halloween,” will wed on the steps of a haunted house at Universal Orlando on Oct. 15.

April, a graphic designer, and Adam, a pharmacist, met six years ago and got engaged this May.

“Getting married at Halloween Horror Nights would join our two loves in the best possible way,” April says.

If you entered and didn’t win, you can still get a horror-filled wedding. Universal is offering wedding packages with a chainsaw drill team, 10 “scareactors” as wedding guests, transportation in a hearse, and Halloween-themed menus.

For more information on the wedding packages, check out Universal’s wedding Web site.

Halloween Horror Nights is in its 20th year. The event runs on select nights through Oct. 31, with eight haunted houses, six scarezones and two live shows. More information on ticketing and travel packages is available at Universal’s Web site.


Universal Orlando offering new wedding packages during Halloween Horror Nights

If your idea of the perfect wedding involves his and hers coffins, chainsaws and a ride in a hearse, then you’re in luck, because Universal Orlando is now offering wedding packages during Halloween Horror Nights.

The new horror-filled wedding packages include options such as having a “chainsaw drill team” at your nuptials, and taking a post-ceremony hearse ride through the fog-filled streets of the event.

As for the food at your romantic evening, you can serve your guests “Deadly Romance” spring rolls, “Bride of Frankenstein Lady Fingers” stuffed jalapeno peppers, and “Creepy Wellingtons.”

Halloween Horror Nights runs on select nights Sept. 24 through Oct. 31 at Universal Orlando.

To celebrate this new way to tie the knot, Universal Orlando is offering one lucky couple a free Halloween Horror Nights wedding.

To enter, send a Halloween-themed picture of you and your eternal beloved to All entries are due by noon Eastern on Monday, Sept. 20. Check with Universal for a complete list of contest rules.

Ten reasons to have your wedding reception at a hotel

I’m getting married this fall, and I chose to have my wedding reception at a hotel. This is not because I’m a travel writer (and they have no idea that’s what I do; I’m not getting any special treatment). The reason was actually that I’m getting married in my hometown of Minneapolis, but I live in New York and my fiance is from Cleveland, so between us, we have a lot of out-of-town guests coming. A hotel reception seemed like a good way to simplify everyone’s travel situation.

My decision to host the reception at a hotel has proven more and more helpful as time has gone on. Here are just ten of the reasons having a hotel reception turned out to be the best idea ever:

1. They want you there.

Hotels earn a lot of their revenue from events like weddings. Not only does having your reception in a hotel bring them cash from the room rental, but they also know that even your local friends will want to crash there afterward, meaning they’ll have more rooms occupied. In my research with other possible venues, at times I felt like they weren’t really that into hosting what will surely be the greatest wedding of all time — and does any bride want to deal with feeling like an inconvenience? No.

2. They know what they’re doing.

Because weddings are so lucrative, hotels host a lot of them. Cathy Smith from The Knot informed me that about one out of five wedding receptions take place at a hotel/resort, “the second most popular venue type behind banquet halls.” Hotels know what they’re doing. Even if you have big ideas and crazy requests, they’ve probably heard worse.

3. They’ll sort out the dinner details.

While hiring a specific caterer may be hugely important to some brides, for me, I just want things to be easy. Most hotels will require you to use their caterer (though usually not for the cake), so I chose a hotel I know has terrific food. They’re providing the staff, the tables, the plates, the linens, the bar … a million details were instantly eliminated from my to-do list when I decide on using a hotel. All I had to do was taste the food and tell them how much of it I wanted.4. It’s convenient for out-of-towners.

As I mentioned, this was my original reason for choosing a hotel. Thanks to public transportation and the close proximity of the church, my out-of-towners don’t actually even have to rent cars. Any way I can help them save a buck is worth it to me.

5. You’ll worry less about people getting home okay.

Drunk driving is always a worry with events like weddings, as is getting home when you’ve been dancing for hours and you’re just plain tired. Even my local guests, when they heard the wedding was at a hotel, inquired about the …

6. Group rate.

Because a whole bunch of my friends and family want hotel rooms, they’re getting them for less. Awesome.

7. Parking.

In the case of a downtown wedding, which mine is, parking can be a nightmare. Fortunately, the hotel has ample parking and has agreed to provide it for free.

8. Recommended vendors.

Hotels have worked with just about everyone in town, from florists to photographers. They may even have ideas you hadn’t thought of, like a photo booth or building a stage for your band. Working with vendors who’ve already done hundreds of weddings at your venue makes everything a lot easier. Ask your hotel who they recommend.

9. Free perks.

Hotels want weddings, and you may be able to get some amazing perks like a free room for gifts, a free honeymoon suite for the night, a complimentary champagne toast, an hour of open bar … these are all things hotels will use to entice you to go with their hotel. If they don’t offer them, ask for them.

10. Ceremony included.

My wedding is not a destination wedding, and I’m not having my ceremony at the hotel, but in the case of destination weddings, many will do your ceremony, complete with flowers, an officiant and all the setup, for free.

[Photo credit: Annie Scott]