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Kandi & Jack knew they wanted their elopement to be wild an adventurous, with stunning mountain scenery and an alpine lake. For the overall feel of the day, they didn’t want it to feel rushed or frantic. They wanted to explore together and both envisioned the landscape with an alpine lake with mountains sprawling in the background.

When I shared with them one of my location suggestions, Achensee, the largest lake in the Tirol region of the Austrian Alps, they fell in love with it, and we planned their whole elopement around that area.

Kandi & Jack’s Austrian Elopement Story

How did you get engaged?

After dating for a little over two years, Jack asked Kandi if she wanted to get out of the house for a hike. Kandi had been under a tight writing deadline, so she responded with a loud and energetic, “YES, PLEASE!”

The next morning, they piled into the car along with their six month old puppy, Button, and went to Hillsborough River State Park — where it all began. Early on in the hike, Jack led Kandi to a large tree that stretches across the river. It was the place where — after their first hike — they sat and talked for quite a while, not ready for the date to be over.

As they stood there, Jack took Kandi down memory lane, reflecting on all they’d been through together in the past two years. Kandi thought they were just reminiscing, and was enjoying being away from her desk on a weekday. When Jack shrugged his backpack off, Kandi assumed he was getting his camera out — after all, that was a big part of their hiking adventures, him taking photographs. So, she turned around to tend to a very impatient Button, who was not happy the walk had stopped. She was petting her and playing with her for a bit before she turned back around…

To find Jack down on one knee.

While they both say the details are a little fuzzy from there, the only thing that matters is that he asked, and she said yes.

Why did you decide to elope?

When we were visiting venues and looking at the cost to host a wedding with all the people we would want to invite, we were overwhelmed by how much it would cost and how involved the whole process would be for one day. Having gone to quite a few weddings together, we saw how the couple often has a hard time enjoying their wedding day because they are rushing around and being pulled in a million different directions.

Jack was the first to joke about eloping, but a joke quickly turned into something we were excited about. We shifted gears and began thinking about how we could use the same amount of money or less to have our dream vacation and to have a more intimate ceremony where we could spend the day together celebrating our love as opposed to trying to make everyone else happy.

Any funny stories leading up to your wedding day?

Right before we left the country for our elopement, it seemed every little thing wanted to test us! From an airbnb cancelling our reservation that we made more than a year before to the venue we booked for our returning home celebration regretfully informing us that they had double booked our date. But through it all, we just laughed and rolled with the punches and figured it out together. That was the beauty of the elopement — nothing was stressful. It was just a wild ride!

How did you decide on your location?

We really trusted YOU to guide us! When we told you what we were looking for, you delivered that and more. We loved that we had the mountains, the lake, AND the quiet. ❤️


What were the biggest challenges you faced in planning your elopement?

Choosing where to go! We had so many places we wanted to explore in Austria, Switzerland, and Italy. We had to really narrow it down to make a feasible 3 week trip.

What is your favourite moment or memory from the day?

Kandi: it really was the most magical day all around, but my favorite moment was saying our vows. It was the most perfect weather and setting, the cow bells in the distance, the sun soft and glowy. I just remember us both tearing up and making each other laugh and cry and just the LOVE I felt in that moment was overwhelming. Everything else melted away.

Is there anything you are really glad you did? Or didn’t do?

We are both really happy that we were flexible and open to going with the flow of the day. It was pouring rain early that morning, so we pushed everything back a little, but it ended up being GORGEOUS. And then, with the time push, we decided to cut out a bit of what we had originally planned. But by doing that, we had more time to just hike and relax and be together, and it was such a CHILL day which we both loved!

We’re also really glad we didn’t invite anyone to come with us, because we didn’t have to worry about pleasing anyone else on our special day.

What advice would you give to other couples planning their wedding?

Our advice would be to set date nights each week for planning. Taking it all on at one time can be so overwhelming, but breaking it up bit by bit and working on it each week while also spending time together and making a date of it is so fun and something to look forward to. Also, be open and flexible to things changing — because they absolutely will!

What was your favourite thing about working with Cat?

Is everything an option? LOL. We loved that Cat took the time to get to know us as individuals and as a couple, and she really heard us when we told her what we were looking for. She didn’t try to push anything on us, just let us discover the day. We loved that she was so prepared, too. She had umbrellas in case it rained, food to keep us from getting hangry, and resources upon resources for hiking, location scouting, and more. Working with her was the best decision we made!

Now for their photos…

The Elopement Day

Post-Wedding Day Hike

We’d planned an epic hike the day after the elopement, but due to heavy storms that day, we were forced to change plans.

I suggested an alternative location, closer to their next accommodation in Innsbruck for the day after. Unfortunately Jack was a little under the weather, but despite the showers on the forecast (which turned to snow), Kandi & I hit the trails.

Vendor Credits:

Hotel: Gramai Alm
Hair & Makeup: Viki Aichner
Dress: La Perle Stevie Dress
Suit: Balani Custom Clothiers
Videographer: Aneta Lehotska
Flowers: Blumen Fuchsberger

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