Category Archives: Wedding Stories

Viva Las Vegas Weddings Staff Spotlight: Ask Alondra!

Vegas Wedding Planner
Alondra mans the front desk to check in brides and grooms and to soothe their wedding jitters on arrival!

One of the first faces to greet you when you arrive at Viva Las Vegas Weddings on your wedding day may be Alondra, one of our most cheerful staffers. Her winning smile and confident guidance will put you at ease right away, if you’re feeling those wedding day butterflies. (You may have even chatted with Alondra on our website at or spoken to her on the phone when you booked your wedding with us.) This week, we’re putting Alondra in our Staff Spotlight!

We put a few questions to Alondra, so you can get to know her better before arriving at our chapel:

1. How long have you lived in Las Vegas, and where are you from? I’ve lived in Las Vegas for 13 years. My family has Mexican roots, and we moved from Chicago, where I was born, when I was seven years old. So I mostly grew up right here in Vegas.

2. Where did you go to school and what other interesting things have you done before joining the Viva Las Vegas staff? I attended high school at Southeast Career Technical Academy where I also got my cosmetology license to do hair. After I graduated from high school, though, I joined the Army, and I’m now in the Army Nevada National Guard. I’d like to mention, for all the veterans who may be coming to Las Vegas to be married, be sure to ask for your military discount at Viva Las Vegas Weddings! It’s a small gesture of gratitude that we make here. We’ve even had our fair share of beautiful weddings in uniform at our chapel!

3. What other things do you like to do for fun in Las Vegas? I enjoy reading, working out, and going to eat at different restaurants. I enjoy going to church and the Galleria Mall. (Need a great recommendation for restaurants during your honeymoon stay in Las Vegas? Alondra and her Viva colleagues can help steer you in the right direction, since the city has become a veritable mecca for gourmet and unique casual dining! Plus, they know all the BEST shopping spots!)

Elvis Wedding Memorabilia
Under Alondra’s front desk counter, and throughout our lobby, Elvis memorabilia, fabulous wedding bling, and fun Viva Las Vegas wedding souvenirs bring smiles to you and your guests and calm those wedding day nerves!

4. What is your favorite part of your job at Viva? What is the hardest part of your job? My favorite part of my job is seeing how happy the couples look, and sharing that happy moment with them. The hardest part of my job is knowing I can’t mess up at all because it’s a really special moment for the couple. So there can be a lot of pressure.

5. What is the funniest, sweetest, or best thing you’ve seen happen at a wedding–something that you’ll always remember. I will always remember a bride that started to cry because she couldn’t believe this day was actually happening. She was so excited to be married to the love of her life. I imagined myself in her place and got almost as emotional as she was!

6. What is the worst or most embarrassing thing that you’ve seen happen at the chapel…or the funniest thing? I am one of the newest wedding planners here, and I’ve heard a LOT of incredible stories from my co-workers. But the one I witnessed in person was the time a beautiful bride almost fainted because everything was too much for her. She was THAT nervous! (It should be noted that the atmosphere at Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel is usually very relaxed and calming, and we all do our best to keep the tone soothing for those brides and grooms who may be a bit on edge. We definitely aim to make this the happiest memory of your lives!)

7. Do you have any good advice for couples when planning their wedding? My advice is to definitely take time when planning your wedding. Read the informational packet we send you when you’ve booked your wedding with us, and feel free to call us or chat with us online with as many questions as you have. That way, you’ll know exactly what to expect on your wedding day, and you’ve got a much better chance of just relaxing and enjoying every minute of your Viva Las Vegas wedding! Call me or my fellow Viva wedding staffers anytime at 702-384-0771. We’ll help arrange the Las Vegas wedding or wedding vow renewal of your dreams!

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Your Personal Las Vegas Wedding Website

Carmen and Les recently renewed wedding vows at Viva Las Vegas after 25 years together!
Carmen and Les renew wedding vows at Viva Las Vegas after 25 years of happiness!

Did you know that your Viva Las Vegas Wedding includes a free wedding website that doubles as an invitation? It’s your very own page where you can post photos and write a brief blog about how you met. Couples tell how they got engaged, and often include whatever sweet and romantic tidbits they want to share with family and friends. Your personal wedding web page is also the site where your wedding can be viewed live and streaming via the Internet, should you wish. You can even choose to archive the video. That way, it can be watched by anyone, weeks after the fact. Carmen and Les, above, wow-ed us with website photos before their recent silver anniversary renewal of vows in Las Vegas. ‘Still looking amazing, you two!

Christa and Michael married at Viva Las Vegas this October
Christa and Michael married at Viva Las Vegas in October

Cindy and Robbie, pictured below, got engaged on December 20, 2013, and thought to include a photo of the occasion on their personal wedding website. Lots of folks post close-up shots of the engagement ring, or of the actual proposal. We love that stuff! Feel free to get creative with your pics and stories. Friends and family will enjoy sharing all the events and stories that led up to your fun and romantic Las Vegas wedding day!

Cindy and Robbie, engaged on December 20, 2013, then married recently at Viva Las Vegas Weddings
Cindy and Robbie, engaged on December 20, 2013, then married at Viva in October!

Nia and Brian, pictured below, chose a Gothic-style ceremony for their vows, with Grim Reaper as minister. We laughed when they blogged about why they chose a Viva Las Vegas wedding:”Long story short. The Grim Reaper doesn’t live in Ohio.” Viva Las Vegas is just the place for brides and grooms who don’t necessarily want the typical, traditional wedding. But we do those kind, too. (Want more info on our many varied wedding packages? Our staff is always available to answer questions and help you decide….702-384-0771.)

Nia and Brian chose a Gothic October Wedding
Nia and Brian chose a Gothic October Wedding

Best wishes to these and all of our happily married couples who have honored us with pics and touching tales of their love. Keep ’em coming!

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Famous Couples Married in Las Vegas Part 2

Celebrity weddings in Las Vegas
We’ve had a few “celebrity weddings” at Viva Las Vegas, including one to a cardboard groom—Edward!

These days, not only movie stars, but rock and sports stars, too, make Las Vegas their celebrity wedding destination. Here’s the gossip on a few more celebrity weddings in Las Vegas:

In 1987, Bruce Willis married Demi Moore in a private suite at the Golden Nugget, one of downtown’s glitziest hotels. Thirteen years and three daughters later, they called it quits. Moore remarried (Ashton Kutcher) in 2005 (not in Las Vegas)–and we all know how that turned out… And, BTW, Ashton Kutcher visited Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel with the late Brittany Murphy in 2003 to promote their movie, Just Married.

Mega rock star Jon Bon Jovi married Dorothea Hurley, his high school sweetheart, in 1989 at the Graceland Wedding Chapel. They both wore jeans and leather jackets and had their cab driver as the only witness. The couple now has four children. Thank goodness some famous folks who marry in Vegas manage to make love last!

Basketball giants Michael Jordan and Dennis Rodman were both married in Vegas, Jordan at the Little White Wedding Chapel, and Rodman at The Little Chapel of the Flowers, both right down the street from Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel. Rodman’s marriage to Baywatch actress Carmen Electra in 1998 didn’t last more than a year. Sadly, Jordan didn’t fare much better with his vows.


The unusual pairing of Angelina Jolie and Billy Bob Thornton took place at the Little Church of the West on May 5, 2000. Since the split, just three years later, Jolie has had her “Billy Bob” tattoo on her arm (mostly) removed. Those two also wore jeans to their wedding, and wore vials of each other’s blood to boot. Turns out, that kind of commitment wasn’t the ticket. We are happy Jolie has found happiness today with Brad Pitt. (Jolie has also visited Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel, as a guest. Her gorgeous photo graces our lobby!)

And who can forget the 55 hours that Britney Spears was married to childhood friend, Jason Alexander? They did the crazy-Vegas-movie thing, overdoing New Year’s in 2004 and getting hitched at A Little White Wedding Chapel. They filed for annulment the very next day. Like you do.

What’s the moral of all this Las Vegas wedding chaos? Your odds of a happy marriage, as a “regular” person in love, are likely WAY better than most celebrity couples. If you’re serious about marriage, but want to have a fun, unique and still romantic ceremony in Las Vegas, visit us at Viva Las Vegas Weddings. It’s where couples return again and again. to renew vows with the SAME person! 🙂

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How to Find Your Perfect Husband!

Mandee and Tom's Vegas Wedding
The story of how Mandee met hubby-to-be Tom will knock your socks off!

Just when we think we’ve heard it all at Viva Las Vegas Weddings, a love story appears on one of our Viva Las Vegas wedding websites that gives us goosebumps. A bit of background: Mandee and Tom were married in our Main Chapel this past weekend in a romantic traditional ceremony presided over by our own Reverend Robb. It was a rare rainy afternoon in Las Vegas, in keeping with the uniqueness of this special pair.

At the request of the couple, Elvis put in an appearance to serenade them in his dashing gold lamé jacket. Besides being a strikingly attractive bride and groom, Mandee and Tom also shared a love story we hadn’t quite heard before…

According to the bride, Mandee, “This real-life story is a fairy tale come true…(the kind that)… I had only watched on television or in movies.” How they met is not quite as special as who gets the credit for the two meeting. We have a feeling that Mandee will be forever grateful to her very insightful sister, Dana.

Mandee continues, “Dana is the sole reason I have met the love of my life. My sister’s an avid bowler. On a particular Sunday, Dana went to a local pub with a friend of hers after bowling. Tom was sitting there alone, so Dana went up to him and said, ‘I think you would be perfect for my sister!’ Ironically, I was at Dana’s house waiting on her to come back from bowling when I got a text and picture of her with Tom— a stranger to me at this point.”

What is most incredible is what Dana texted to Mandee: “I just met your new husband!”

Dana put Tom on the phone to speak to Mandee, which really put both of them on the spot. They spoke only briefly. (Awkward!) Nevertheless, they did text each other frequently over the next several days.

Mandee added, “We met that next Wednesday night. From the very first time our eyes met, sparks flew. We were inseparable from that second on.”

Vegas Wedding with Elvis
Tom and his new bride Mandee

Why a Las Vegas Wedding? Mandee’s mother Sylvia has always loved Elvis. Besides, after Mandee made her first trip to Vegas just before meeting Tom, she knew she wanted to share the Las Vegas experience with him. So, what better place to wed than Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel? Sylvia and other family members back home were able to watch live on our chapel webcam. Perfect!

The bride wore a shimmery lavender floor-length gown== and she definitely stole the show from Elvis. We love it when that happens! Otherwise, the ceremony was sweet and intimate and the very essence of a romantic Las Vegas wedding.

Hey, Mandee and Tom, you look great on that bike! See you in five or ten years for your Harley Themed wedding vow renewal! (Just a thought…) Best wishes to this very happy, and very memorable, couple!

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Five Ways to Make Your Las Vegas Wedding a Real Tear-Jerker

Wedding music in Las Vegas
Your Forevermore Wedding Package includes a live singer, pianist or organist!

Sometimes tears are a good thing, like happy tears at weddings. That’s why at Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel we’ve got kleenex hidden in the flowers and plants. Weepy brides and grooms, we’ve got you covered! While most of our Elvis and themed ceremonies are likely to bring laughter instead, there are sometimes tears during the “serious part”— even at Elvis weddings.

It’s the traditional ceremonies, though, that tend to be emotional throughout. That’s where we go through the most tissue, anyway. Because of our many years of experience in planning and arranging weddings, we have a pretty good idea about when we’re going to need to re-stock our kleenex stash. Here are the cues we go by:

1. When the bride and groom bring us a CD with their own special song for the bride’s entrance. (We can’t even say how much music affects the entire feeling of your ceremony. It may be the single most important choice you can make for your wedding day. By the way, tell us ahead of time that you’ll be bringing your own music.)

2. When there’s a live singer involved. Our Forevermore Wedding Package includes a professional singer, with the couple’s choice of song. If it’s “Ave Maria” or “Unchained Melody” as the bride and groom light of the unity candle, there’s usually not a dry eye in the chapel. There are many other really stirring song choices, and, given two or more weeks’ advance booking, we can perform your song.

Wedding music for your Las Vegas Wedding
Don’t overlook the music, the one detail that makes your wedding unique to you.

3. When the bride and groom have written brief vows to say to each other during the ceremony. These are often so heartfelt that staff members start to tear up, and we don’t even know the couple very well!

4. When the couple includes family in a part of the ceremony. These are usually special requests that surprise even us. For example, at Forevermore weddings, brides sometimes order single roses to pass out to family members during the song and unity candle lighting. It’s a really stirring and unforgettable moment.

5. When the couple adds a “First Dance” to their wedding ceremony package. Again, there is something about “your song” and the meaning it has for you. Sharing an intimate dance mid-ceremony to a special piece of music usually gets everyone else choked up, too. We say, do it!

For details on our Forevermore Wedding, please visit:

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Guys, Please Don’t Propose Like This!

Engagement ring
Okay, the rock helps
Image courtesy of Graeme Weatherston
Even though most women will love and cherish their marriage proposals, no matter how simple or elaborate, this one, in the news recently, had a bit of a twist. It’s likely the bride felt a rush of relief even before she had the chance to be overwhelmed with happiness. Originality should win this future groom a lot of points, though. Here’s how he did it:

At Viva Las Vegas Weddings, we are lucky enough to chat with couples who share their proposal stories, and sometimes the way they have chosen and/or designed their special wedding ceremony with us. If you have a unique story to tell others on our blog, leave us a comment or give us a call. We’d love to put your story and photo in cyber-print.

And remember, Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel offers you your own wedding website, where you can share your photos and “your story” with wedding guests and friends and family. It’s one of the little touches that makes your wedding package with us more personal and complete. Wishing you all a perfect proposal and a fairy tale wedding.

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