Planning a Fabulous Fall Wedding

Planning a Fabulous Fall Wedding

Everyone feels a little bit differently about when is the perfect time of year to get married. However, more and more couples are opting to get married in the fall instead of in the summer because of the wide variety of colour options that are available to them. Fall is an ideal time to get married because the weather is typically cooler and the beautiful colours make for excellent picture opportunities.

Warm Colour Scheme

A bride and groom can also use a warmer colour scheme when they opt to get married in the fall. Instead of bright colours, they can choose to tone it town a little bit and use warmer tones such as a variety of oranges and reds. These colours make for a great combination especially if the couple that is getting married loves the outdoors.

Cooler Temperatures

Fall weddings tend to be beautiful whether they are hosted outdoors or at an indoor Ottawa wedding venue like St. Elias Centre. With cooler temperatures you can ensure that your guests will be comfortable getting to the venue and partying through the night. There is no awkward sweating because of the extreme heat that typically comes with a summer wedding.

Wedding Dress

If the bride was worried about having to wear a sleeveless dress she won’t have to worry anymore if she opts for a fall wedding. In the fall, a dress with sleeves is much more acceptable than it would be in the summer heat. This typically makes the bride more comfortable if she was worried about having to find a dress that wasn’t comfortable for her.

Fall Decorations

The decorations that can be used for a fall wedding come with endless options. From orange to red, deep greens and other fall colours you can make the decorations warm and inviting. The type of flowers that you choose for the wedding scheme can also be fall flowers such as aster and some types of lilies.

There is truly no shortage of ideas for fall weddings. With the leaves changing colours on the trees, the photos that you take will be ones that you never forget. Fall also offers milder weather conditions that can make your big day extremely comfortable for all involved. So if you don’t want to get married in the summer heat, consider a fall wedding that will give you a variety of colour options as well as excellent photo opportunities.

How to Keep Wedding Planning Stress to a Minimum

How to Keep Wedding Planning Stress to a Minimum

The love of your life finally popped the question and now plans for you upcoming wedding are underway. This can be a really stressful time in your life, despite the fact that it is supposed to be one of the most exciting. Keeping wedding planning stress to a minimum is important, especially if you want to look your best on your big day. It isn’t hard to keep stress under wraps, though – that is, if you have a technique.

Create a List

First of all, you have to find out what you are going to need for your wedding. What type of ceremony do you prefer? Do you have any specifics you just can’t live without? Is there anything special you would like to do for your nuptials? These things need to be considered before you start planning or you could end up too stressed out before you take your vows. In addition, creating a list of the important points will give you a good place to start.

Make Short-Term Goals

After you have made your list you may be looking at it like it’s too much work. Well, it will seem that way when you don’t take the time to break it down into digestible chunks. Set short-term goals for yourself and your wedding party, and then use your time wisely to check things off the list as you go. Before you know it, your wedding day will arrive and you will be completely prepared.

Find Trusted Friends to Help

There’s nothing quite like having the help of a good friend, especially when you are planning a wedding. Your best friends should be the first people you call when you need some assistance. Allowing your friends and family to take the reins on a few things isn’t a bad idea, so long as you have briefed them on what you’re wanting.

Keep Things in Perspective

Throughout the entire process of planning your wedding, you might start to become stressed out because you have lost sight of what is important. Although you may want a grand wedding, the point is that you are getting married to the love of your life. In order to keep wedding day stress to a minimum try to remind yourself what all the planning is for and try not to get so upset when small things go awry.


5 Wise Uses of Your Wedding Gift Money

5 Wise Uses of Your Wedding Gift Money

The day has come and gone. After your gorgeous wedding at an Ottawa wedding venue like the St. Elias Centre, you are now married and embarking on a prosperous life with your new partner. Your guests were plentiful and all very generous. You’ve pooled your wedding gifts together and now realize that you’ve received a decent sum of money. You should consider securing your financial future by following one of these wise suggestions:

Down Payment

Has your dream house just hit the market? You can use your wedding money as a down payment and move into the home where you will start your new family. It’s always a good idea to purchase property with a down payment to lower the interest you pay each month. If your down payment is more than 20% of the purchase price, you can avoid having to add to your mortgage with CMHC Mortgage Loan Insurance.

Invest for the Future

 Investing for the future of you and your family is always a smart idea. This way it can gain interest and give you an extra source of income. A financial advisor can help you make sure you are putting your money in the right place. You can invest your money in a tax-free savings account, mutual funds, or RRSP, just to name a few. It all depends on where you are in your life and what your future goals are as a married couple.

Emergency Savings

 Nobody likes to think about emergency situations like sudden job loss, disability or home repairs, but these things do come up. In order to be prepared for whatever life has to offer, it’s a good idea to have an emergency bank account with liquid funds that you can access immediately. Just having the fund available to you can make you feel safer knowing there is a cushion if you fall. We recommend opening a savings account that offers immediate access and putting a month’s worth of salary in it.

Pay Down Debt

You’ve just finished with your wedding and you both paid your fair share of it. You may have even used your credit cards or a line of credit in order to pay for everything. If this is the case, it’s a good idea to pay this money back to stop the interest charges. You can get ahead of your bills too, or make a lump sum mortgage payment. You can pay off outstanding student loans or payoff the balance remaining on your car. This will free up extra money which you can then use to save or invest!

Get off on the right foot in your new life together with these money-saving tips.



Wedding Reception Seating Arrangement

Wedding Reception Seating Arrangement

If you are having a wedding reception in a beautiful Ottawa wedding venue like the St. Elias Centre, you can’t forget about making seating arrangements! People like to know where they are sitting and that you took the time to choose who and where they are seated. We’ve outlined a number of useful tips to make your wedding reception go off without a hitch:

The Head Table

First things first: you need to decide what your plan is for the head table. Will it be a long rectangular table facing all the other tables? Will it be a small table for just the newlyweds? The latter is easy to arrange. For a traditional head table, the bride and groom usually sit in the middle with the maid of honour next to the groom and the best man next to the bride. The rest of the wedding party sits boy/girl to fill out the rest of the table.

Your Parents

Depending on your family dynamic at the time of the wedding, the parents of the two newlyweds may no longer be married, and they might even be at odds. You’ll have to take these things into account when seating your parents. You can have the parents from both side along with grandparents and siblings at the same table if that works for everyone. If not, another idea is to have each parent host a table with their close family.

Avoid Tension

There may also be situations in which certain family members or friends just don’t get along. It’s probably best to seat them as far away as possible. They’ll appreciate it. You don’t want tempers to flare during your big day. You would like to hope everyone can keep it civil for the married couple’s sake, but we all know that isn’t always possible.

Play Matchmaker

Reception tables offer a good opportunity to mix and match your friends and family in groups you think will get along well. If you have a number of single friends coming, you can match them at a table with people of the same age group. If you have a few steady couples coming, you can match them up with people of similar interests so they have something in common. You never know who you will see dancing with who late into the night or which people you will see sharing laughs!

With these seating tips, you’ll have the perfect arrangement for your perfect wedding.

6 Tips for a Smash-Hit Corporate Event

Corporate event

Hosting a corporate event is a great way to reward current customers, attract potential client, and build a buzz around your business. There are a lot of moving parts involved in pulling an event together, but the rewards are worth the work. These six tips will help make your corporate event a smash hit:


Get Your Timing Right

Timing is crucial to the success of your event. You need to consider key dates in the community that might compete with yours. Make sure you give your attendees enough time in order to plan and give yourself and your team enough time to prepare.


Define Your Scope

Will you have refreshments, entertainment, workshops, or speakers? Scale the event’s scope to your level of experience. If you’ve never planned an event before, you should try hosting a small one-hour workshop at your office before planning a day-long event. The St. Elias Centre can handle corporate events, large and small.


Define Roles

Who will be in charge of the event? You need one person to take ownership and manage all the details, then others to help with the rest of the moving parts. Make responsibilities clear-cut so you don’t end up without chairs at your conference or no speaker in the second hour. Consider how much manpower you’ll need at the event itself, what could possibly go wrong, and what you’ll need to have on-hand to handle issues that arise.


Get the Word Out Digitally

Use social media to get your target audience excited about the event. You can tease the event well in advance, post pictures of your preparations, and invite customers to the event through social sites. Keep the social media energy high during the event by having an employee live tweet and post pictures and video from the event as it’s going on.


Develop Promotions

Market yourself or your business to potential clients when they’re at your event. You can use business cards, brochures, discount coupons, gift cards, or even product giveaways and contests. Be sure to capture attendees’ contact information by having them put their business cards in a fishbowl for a prize drawing. The St. Elias Centre can help you with your promotional needs at your corporate events.


Stay Positive

On the day of the event, be ready to accept that you probably haven’t planned for every possibility. If you stay positive, keep your sense of humour and make your customers feel welcome and happy they came, it won’t matter so much that something went wrong.

Follow these tips, and your corporate event is sure to be a success.

The 5 Hottest Summer Wedding Trends of 2015

Summer wedding

Summer is the most popular time for weddings, so why not embrace the warmth and fun of the season to make it one people will remember forever? Here are five fun new ideas for your summer celebration:


Create Natural Centerpieces

Making natural centerpieces consisting of fruit is a fun fresh summer idea that will turn heads. Have your florist use hollowed-out watermelons as a centerpiece container for a casual look that’s fun and seasonal. Another way to incorporate natural elements in your centerpieces is to go green with your containers. Use wooden vases or pedestals with grass or moss to give centerpieces a natural feel.


Get Creative with Desserts

Get inspired by the summer pastimes and flavours you loved as a kid. For a nostalgic snack, hire an ice cream truck to arrive out front of your venue and serve some childhood favourites. If you are dead-set on having a cake, how about getting one that is infused with summertime fruit flavours like lemon, key lime, or orange vanilla? You could use a strawberry shortcake-style wedding cake topped with whipped cream and fresh strawberries.


Incorporate Summertime Music

To really embrace the summer season, think about alternative music styles. Create a laid-back vibe during your cocktail hour and dinner with a singer accompanied with a ukulele. For the reception, heat up the evening with the sultry sounds of a classic swing band. The St. Elias Centre is capable of hosting any kind of musical request for your cocktail hour, reception, or ceremony.


Send Unexpected Invitations

Break free from the normal, boring invite by getting them fabric-printed, along with your programs and escort cards. This would create a laid-back feel perfect for the summertime. You could also try reversing the usual invitation colour scheme. Think of a great background and print colour combination, like fuchsia and cream, and switch them around. This is a great way to grab your guests’ attention while they open their invitation.


Serve Wine Smoothies

A wine smoothie consists of a fruity wine, like rosé, blended with ice and fruits of your choice. They are garnished with a couple of berries or fruit slices. They are cold, frosty and pack less of an alcoholic punch than margaritas. Wine smoothies are perfect for your cocktail hour and as a signature drink for the evening. They make for a refreshing and unexpected signature sip.

Stay ahead of the curve with these amazing summer wedding trends of 2015.

5 Elements of a Flawless Summer Wedding


Summer lovin’ is in the air and wedding season has arrived! The summer is a lovely time for a wedding. There are many elements that can help you orchestrate your flawless day, but we have narrowed it down to five key elements.


A summertime wedding gives you the opportunity to use colours that are much bolder and brighter than you would use in a fall or winter wedding. It is a time to experiment with different colour schemes. Depending on how bold you want to be, consider some of the following pairings for wedding ideas:

Adding bright bursts to a mix of the colours that Mother Nature has to offer is a great way to take advantage of the season’s lush hues. Think different shades of green and pink for a natural, romantic look. Blood orange, sea blues, and yellows combine all of the hues of a sunset on the beach, and will give your wedding venue a nautical look. Silver, cream, and pinks are a perfect look if you’re looking for something more classic. Add pinkish tones (think peach and blush) as an accent to your neutral colours. Combine several different pastel colours (yes, more than one!) to add a whimsical element to your wedding.

Embrace the Outdoors

Lush trees and grass and late sunsets provide the perfect scenery for your wedding photos. Choose a wedding venue that is near natural settings for your photos. The St. Elias Centre is conveniently located near ideal outdoor locations such as Hog’s Back Park, the Rideau River, and Mooney’s Bay.


When the humidity picks up, it can be hard to keep a centrepiece looking fresh throughout the entire day. Terrarium centrepieces are a great way to prevent your centrepieces from looking sad and wilted in the summer heat.


Keep the beverages light and seasonal. Refreshing cocktail drinks with mint, lime, and frozen fruit are bound to impress your guests. Think mojitos, margaritas, lemonade mixes, and punch. Any of these cocktails can be made as virgin drinks if you’re looking to save money on the alcohol. If you’re looking for something within a budget, consider offering wine and beer instead. Sangria with fruit slices and frozen berries also makes for a great fruity alternative.


Be creative with your food options. After a night of dancing, your guests will appreciate a summer themed snack: ice cream, gelato, and frozen yogurt are all great options that everyone will love. The St. Elias Centre also has incredible food, and is prepared to assist with the catering of your wedding.

Play close attention to these key elements, and you can have a flawless and unforgettable summer wedding.

How to Keep a Team-Building Event on Track

Team building

If you’re planning a corporate event such as a team building retreat, there are many things to think about to ensure that your event is successful and appreciated by all attendees. Make sure to keep the following things in mind when planning your event:

Manage Expectations

Before getting to the actual event, make sure that you consider what each employee would like to achieve through the exercises of the day. Discuss the goals of the event, and find out what everyone would like to see as part of the corporate event. Managing these expectations is an important part of team building success.

Schedule a Convenient Time

Participants will be more receptive to team building exercises if they do not interfere too much with their regular routines and schedules. If you can, schedule the activity during the workday.

Go Offsite

Getting out of your usual office setting will promote more collaboration between employees. The St. Elias Centre is the perfect location for your corporate event. The Centre hosts many corporate events/functions, providing ample conference and meeting space for conference events of all sizes.

Create an Agenda

Distribute an agenda to attendees beforehand. This will give the participants a sense of purpose and they will be able to know what to expect.

Set Group Norms

Making sure that everyone gets a chance to speak their mind can be hard when there are so many different types of personalities in a work group. By setting guidelines as to when people are allowed to speak, you will be able to manage the group discussions with ease.

Everyone Leads

Select a leader for smaller group sessions, and allow each participant to take a turn leading a session.

Collaboration > Competition

Games and activities can be a fun way to foster team building at your corporate event. If not managed properly, they can adversely lead to negative competition. Make sure that the games you choose encourage collaboration between employees, rather than each person competing against each other.

Consult a professional

Consider hiring a guest speaker or a training company. Choosing a good leader can really change the dynamic and excite colleagues into participating.

Feed Everyone

Provide a snack or a lunch for employees halfway through the training session. It may seem simple, but people can be motivated to have better ideas on a full stomach.

Get Feedback

The only way to find out if everyone enjoyed the event that you planned is to ask the people who attended! Use this feedback constructively to help you plan your next corporate event.

Remember – teamwork makes the dream work!

Planning an Elegant Wedding Reception

Wedding reception

An elegant Ottawa wedding reception is perfect for any season. Touches of white lace and white lights, along with timeless décor can make your guests feel as though they spent their evening dancing on a cloud. Planning a wedding reception can seem like a lot of work, but the St. Elias Centre is here to help you tackle the task and make your day as enchanting as possible. There are many important things to consider when planning an elegant wedding reception.


Certainly, the décor plays a significant role in adding the right amount of charm to your reception, but booking the venue is the first big task to check off your list of things to do. If you’re looking to book an Ottawa wedding reception, the St. Elias Centre will simply captivate your guests with our high ceilings, large shimmering chandeliers, and great open space.


White lights or candles are a picture-perfect touch for your reception. You can use strings of lights on tables, hang curtain string lights to add a romantic feel, or even place lights inside of vases as table centrepieces. There is nothing more elegant and romantic than a dimly lit room.


Have fun with flowers and think outside of the box. Tall centrepieces are the perfect touch in a high ceiling room. Make sure that your centrepieces are tall enough that they don’t block your guests from being able to see each other across the table. When selecting your flowers, embrace simplicity. Think: the calla lily, the oriental lily, and carnations. If you’re on a budget, consider flowers that are in season in your region.


Silk ribbon is an easy way to add a delicate touch to any room. Tie bows on the backs of chairs or on flower vases. If you appreciate a more antique look, consider using lace on your tables.


Guests will always remember how excellent the food and drinks were for your reception. Start off the night with crudités and fine cheese displays. This is a simple way of keeping your guests content before the main course, while also using your food displays as a décor opportunity. The St. Elias Centre would be pleased to offer our catering services. Our centre boasts its very own executive chef and staff, who serve high quality meals and snacks to your guests throughout the evening.


Before dancing the night away to wedding reception classics, consider hiring a live band to play more classical and contemporary music while your guests arrive and eat their main courses.

Enjoy your elegant Ottawa wedding with all of the charming touches! It will be a magical night to remember.

Why You Should Choose St. Elias Centre for Your Trade Show

Choosing St. Elias for your next trade show

Trade shows are a great way for different companies to showcase their accomplishments, interact with prospective clients, and create brand awareness. Not only are trade shows an opportunity for companies to demonstrate new products and services to customers, but they are also a great way to network with other businesses in the industry. Meeting face-to-face with existing and potential clients, customers, and business contacts is the best way to establish meaningful relationships. If you are looking to plan an Ottawa trade show, the St. Elias Centre is the perfect location!

No matter the size of your event, the St. Elias Centre will be able to help you prepare and host a trade show that will be rewarding both for you and all of the exhibitors. Our first-class newly renovated facility is guaranteed to impress your guests. Here are some reasons why the St. Elias Centre is perfect for your upcoming trade show:


The St. Elias Centre is easy to get to, as it is centrally located just off Riverside Drive across from Mooney’s Bay. Exhibitors and guests from out of town will have no trouble navigating their way to our facility. The convenient location also makes it perfect for people living in the area to attend an Ottawa trade show for a morning or an afternoon.


The centre boasts an elegant hall with over 11,500 square-feet that can be partitioned into smaller rooms at your request. This amount of square footage provides plenty of space for you and other exciting exhibitors to promote your business activities.


An important component of your trade show checklist is ensuring that you have the equipment that you need for a successful event. You can choose to provide your own computers, projectors, screens and other equipment, or you can request the St. Elias Centre to alleviate some of the trade show stress and rent the equipment on your behalf. The St. Elias Centre also provides high-speed Internet access with wireless access if required. Our professional services are here to assist you in making your trade show run smoothly!


Hosting an Ottawa trade show can require attendees to visit from out of town. The St. Elias Centre provides 400 onsite free parking spots for attendees, saving you the hassle of booking parking spaces for your visitors.

Food & Beverage

Who can resist delicious food and cocktails? Feed exhibitors’ appetites by adding catering to your event. The St. Elias Centre offers in-house catering with our own executive chef, facilities, and customer service, all delivered on time and on budget.

When you consider location, size, equipment, amenities, and catering, it is clear that the St. Elias Centre is the perfect venue for Ottawa trade shows.


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