It’s the bridal extravaganza that inspires nearly as much excitement as the actual big day. A one-stop spot for hundreds of brides and grooms, the Bahamas Bridal Show, presented by Buttons Formal Wear, brings bliss to the betrothed on March 27.
The combination trade and fashion show takes place at the Wyndham Nassau Resort ballroom at noon. Host Nicole Henderson Smith invites brides and grooms to come and see what this year will bring.
“This year we’re going to offer tons of surprises and prizes, up to about$30,000 in prizes,”said Smith of the show’s annual highlights.
“We always get wonderful prizes, like engagement rings from Forbes Pro-Goldsmith.”We also get wonderful discounts from the different retailers.”
Buttons Formal Wear is also raising the giveaway stakes this year with its own covetable prize. One lucky bride will win items and services for a complete wedding.
In its 21st year, the 2011 Bridal Show includes the staples that have drawn wedding hopefuls to its doors for more than two decades. There will be the usual variety of vendors offering catering, limousine, honeymoon, décor, photography stationary, bridal selection, and even insurance services.
Amid the thrill of planning a wedding, services that assist in life after the wedding are equally as important, Smith pointed out.
“A lot of people don’t realize that the younger you are the better your chances are of getting insurance,”she said.”You can literally get your wedding booked and do everything here,”she added.”A lot of vendors have their own raffles and giveaways so I encourage you to visit each stall because you never know what you could walk away with.”
After the business is done, the Bridal Show offers prospective brides and grooms a glimpse of how good they can look on their special day with its fashion show.
“We will give you everything in terms of what you would need for your bridal attire for your bridesmaids, your petal droppers, your groomsmen,”said Smith.”We will also tantalize you and tease you with the lingerie segment of it, and there’s also a casual wear segment, so those are for things that you need for the honeymoon.”
Choreographed by Button’s Makeva Wallace, the fashion show is typically a hit among show-goers.
“She blows me away,”said Smith of Wallace’s work.”It gets better and better.”
Vendors have noticed an increase in the number of brides and grooms who make bookings for their weddings at the show. Victorine Bannister, general manager of Bahama Fantasies, has seen growth over the past six years of her company’s participation.
“We do get a lot of people interested,”said Bannister of the company, which offers start-to-finish wedding services.”The reason we’re doing it again is because we have gotten business from it. I feel now it’s attracting more people that are truly interested.”
Tonya Rolle, catering and event coordinator at Burns House, called the Bridal Show a good event for those with looming wedding dates. The show helps couples with aspects of planning that they may have no idea about until they arrive.
“It’s important because a lot of people know they want to get married but in terms of planning, they have no idea,”said Rolle. The Bridal Show can be particularly helpful in providing detailed information on services like Burns House’s liquor catering.
“A lot of times the bar side of it is the last thing, and normally what people do is they try to scrap and fit this and fit that in. We take away all of that headache,”she said.
Smith, the host, encourages couples to come and experience the magic of the show. Involved in the event for 16 years, first as a model and later as host, she has seen the relief it has brought to more than a few overwhelmed brides.
“For me it’s been wonderful to see how much we help brides,”she said.”When you see that they’re genuinely appreciative of what you give them, it really makes me happy.”
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