When you get asked to document a beautiful outdoor destination wedding at The Lookout Lodge Wedding in Wanaka New Zealand, you immediately pinch yourself and dance around the room with excitement. We fell in love with New Zealand’s undeniable beauty back in 2016 after travelling around the country in a campervan. Having the opportunity to visit again and photograph a wedding in Wanaka, one of our absolute favourite locations, was nothing short of a dream come true.
We started our day by watching the sun rise over Lake Wanaka with a warm cup of coffee. Feeling refreshed, we headed over to the house that Faye and her family were staying in. The talented Crimson Wedding Flowers delivered the most beautiful bouquets for Faye and her bridesmaids, the white roses were especially gorgeous. Good tunes, a beautiful breakfast spread and the sun shining set the day up nicely for Faye and her bridal team, especially for those that had travelled all the way from the UK to be there.
Nestled between the rolling hills on the outskirts of Wanaka lies the wonderful The Lookout Lodge where Faye and Karl would later tie the knot. We made our way over to the lodge where Karl and his guys were setting up the venue. No picture does this part of the world justice, it’s quite simply mind blowing to see in person. Once dressed in their sharp blue suits and black shades, the boys shared a special glass of whisky together in the courtyard before guests began to arrive.
With her dad by her side, Faye arrived in the coolest classic American car we’ve ever seen. Karl and their guests waited in the garden in anticipation and excitement as the entrance music began to play. The towering mountains and fields stretching as far as the eye could see made the perfect backdrop to declare their vows. Faye & Karl’s entire ceremony was absolutely gorgeous, with special readings from friends and family and tender moments between the couple.
After the ceremony the newlyweds were greeted with congratulatory hugs and kisses a plenty. Unlimited Pimms on a hot summers day – perfect! Guests enjoyed the lawn games whilst others tucked into the beautiful Kiwi feast provided by Karl’s talented Groomsmen and his wife, Smoke’n’Barrel.
We were particularly excited about this outdoor destination wedding in Wanaka because of what came next, a helicopter ride into the mountains for portraits! Chris from Wanaka Helicopters landed his chopper at the heli-pad and greeted us with the biggest smile. The following two hours were absolutely insane and a wedding photographers dream come true. Within seconds we were hundreds of feet in the air, waving to the people below as they turned into the size of ants.
We flew over the mountains towards a glacial lake called Lochnagar that feeds its water into the Shotover river. Chris landed the helicopter along the edge of the shore as the sun glistened brilliantly across the turquoise lake. Over the next 45 minutes we explored the area and enjoyed the ridiculously stunning location.
Next stop was the Summit of Mt Alpha that overlooks Lake Wanaka. Most couples opt for portraits over by its neighbour Mt Roy at Coromandel Peak, so this was especially exciting to get to capture somewhere different. By the time we arrived the sun had began to soften into a warm evening glow. We jumped out and began wandering and exploring with the entire mountain to ourselves. With Wanaka in the background and Lake Hawea in the distance, this too was the perfect setting for outdoor bride and groom portraits.
With happy faces and hearts full of joy we made our way back to The Lookout Lodge. Everybody had gathered outside to greet the newlyweds as they landed safely in time for dinner. It was a beautiful evening of delicious food by the talented Smoke’n’Barrel followed by speeches which were incredibly heartfelt, funny, emotional and inspiring. These are the moments where the love people have for each other really resonates through the room. It’s easily one of our favourite moments of the day to capture.
When the sun began to set we went for a walk through the fields for portraits under the soft pink sky. By the time we headed back to join everyone the talented band Dillastrate were ready to rock & roll and the party immediately got into full swing.
We are incredibly honoured to get to document this beautiful story at The Lookout Lodge Wedding in Wanaka New Zealand. We can’t thank Faye & Karl enough for inviting us over to capture such a special day.