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Toast Events Wedding at Le Belvedere Ottawa Elise Schmitz with Bride

When you walk onsite it's like a wave of calm slowly sinks in, and this planner is legit relaxed. The view is something I can't really describe. Le Belvedere is like a secluded Muskoka resort, better yet- something you'de see on the cover of a B.C tourism magazine. But I'm not there for the ambiance. I'm there for the exclusivity, five star service, world class cuisine, on-pointe amenities, guest accommodations and well, truth be told, Jessica. That's right, Jessica. The powerhouse  that has made Le Belvedere what it is today. Working in tandem with her is an absolute pleasure. She is one of a few I consider to be a top notch professional.

This past long weekend I had the pleasure of coordinating 2 weddings, one oh which was Sarah & Andrew's wedding at Le Belvedere. This couple melts my heart right down to the core- and for 24hrs I felt like family. 

Now I can't take ANY credit for styling Sarah's wedding, although I wish I could ;) This was all the amazing work of Rebel Petal. If you followed us on Snap Chat (eliseschmitz) last Saturday, you would have been privy to a video walk-through of the space decked out. We also posted pictures in stages to showcase the thought behind this gorgeous design. 

So let me break it down for you. Sarah had no idea what to expect. She provided Michelle & Gary aka "mastermind-florists-taking-over-the world" with her vision, color palette, budget and told Michelle to surprise her. 

Michelle got to work a dreamed up a three stage design concept. She highlighted each estate table with three completely different centerpieces as seen bellow.  

ESTATE TABLE ONE: Long garlands of Sallal and Eucalyptus leaves adorned with mercury vases w/  posy of creamed spray roses

ESTATE TABLE TWO:  Tall Hydrangea centerpieces with cascading Ivy 

ESTATE TABLE THREE: Low pedestal arrangements with Hydrangea, cascading ivy with peach and ivory roses.  


Toast Events Wedding at Le Belvedere Ottawa
Toast Events Wedding at Le Belvedere Ottawa Rebel Petal
Toast Events Wedding at Le Belvedere Ottawa flowers floral design centrepieces

This cake is so dreamy. With Tulips in July and the sweet sent of strung Jasmine, I was LITERALLY in heaven people. FYI Jasmine in the floral world is RARE like a blue moon. First time I've ever had real Jasmine on this scale in over 500 weddings.

Now drift your eyes to the right-hand side of the page. The horseshoe...... I just died. The special attention Sarah's sister and Maid of Honor Jessica took in painting these in the "right" tone of gold......I stole one. I full on popped one in my purse and I'm hanging it on top of my front door. (for the record, there was one at my place-setting... I'm so not a shady wedding planner)

Toast Events Wedding at Le Belvedere Ottawa wedding cake
Toast Events Wedding at Le Belvedere Ottawa Horseshoe Floral Design
Toast Events Wedding at Le Belvedere Ottawa
Toast Events Wedding at Le Belvedere Ottawa floral centrepieces
Toast Events Wedding at Le Belvedere Ottawa

Cascading Ivy and Jasmine in this 10ft tall entrance piece. I love first impressions, especially when this is what you see when you first walk in the reception. 

Toast Events Wedding at Le Belvedere Ottawa

And last but not least a video of our beloved couple on their wedding day by Up North Wedding Films. 


Planning & Coordination: Elise Schmitz, Madison Kelly & Intern Allie Darwin
Venue: Le Belvedere
Floral Design: Rebel Petal
Cake: Take Another Bite
Hair Stylists: Salon Silk
Makeup Artist: Sarah Clayton
Wedding Video: Up North Wedding Films
DJ: Chris Lunardi
Solo Singer: Ryan Tansley
Officiant: Dr Alan Viau
Photography: Union 11, Derrek
Transportation: East Coast Limousines
Stationary: Ink Blossom






Before I delve into the details, YES there is a difference! 

A little bit of history on my part. When I graduated from the Event Management program at Algonquin College, my first job was a Event Coordinator for a local venue, and believe me when I say "I can work a food and beverage budget like nobody's business!".  I also know all the back-end tricks venues use to make money as well as the true cost of the food your paying for before inflation. Don't ask me, you don't want to know! 

So naturally when I hear brides-to-be saying "Oh I don't need a planner the venue provides one." I tend to shudder. Because if you think a "venue coordinator" is a planner then you'll be quite upset with the lack of help on your wedding day. 

Here is the reality. Venue coordinators are responsible for any and all information which relates to directly doing their job and their job only. This means that they will do you floor plans, food & beverage orders and sometimes include very basic timing details. That's it. Anti climatic isn't it! On the Saturday of your wedding, the Coordinator will be on hand but will also be taking meeting with prospective clients while giving them tours of the venue before your guests begin arriving. So really, their not available to your beck and call. Let me break it down for you.


Provide you with advice on planning your wedding or negotiate with vendors on your behalf

Attend key vendor appointments or style weddings

Create your wedding day itinerary 

Follow up with all your vendors to make sure they know when to arrive and where to set-up

 Keep you on time throughout the day

Wont have a bridal emergency kit on hand to re-sew your broken bustle or provide your bridal party with advil, fresh pairs of stockings, granola bars, tide sticks and bandaids because the heels you bought for the wedding must have been purchased one size too small ;)

Will not receive vendors as they arrive onsite ensuring quality control nor cross reference rentals to make sure all contractual agreements have been fulfilled

Will not trouble shoot or resolve problems which are not related to the venue. So if your napkins come in the wrong color and your rented chivary chairs are falling apart...too bad!

They do not normally set out any decor on behalf of clients (favors, placecards, seating charts, signing table items etc)

Oh and they leave at 5pm before your event starts.... 

Do not cue speeches or attend to you guests needs. Nor will they get Uncle Sam a rum & coke even though the bar is closed during dinner or check and make sure the father of the bride's steak is served well done.

They also most certainly do not pack everything into your vehicles at the end of the night! 

Now with this being said, there are some venues that have amazing coordinators that will go above and beyond the call of duty. And these coordinators will tell you that even though they may do more then the average,  hiring a Wedding Planner will be the best money you will even spend.

Truth be told, we don't want you to be one of those brides that say "I wish we had a planner". And we all know one of those girls! 

xoxo Elise  

Photo Credit: Andrew Geddes of Union 11