On the outskirts of Paris, France sits a place with manicured gardens, an incredible painting collection, and timeless details: Chateau de Chantilly.
It’s the perfect French chateau wedding venue for someone who wants a true Parisian-inspired, romantic wedding.
That’s exactly what this particular bride and groom, who we first met at the exclusive Villa Gastel wedding, created.
Keep reading to see how I photographed their Paris destination wedding at Chateau de Chantilly; one full of elegant details, incredible bridal fashion, and Parisian romance.
One of my favorite (newer) traditions is to host a welcome party the day before the wedding. This gives you a chance to greet all of your guests before the celebration and excitement of the wedding day begins.
This couple did it perfectly for their France destination wedding. And with such an exquisite French chateau wedding venue, the couple did their wedding welcome party right.
At this welcome party, they worked to cover all five senses to create the most immersive experience for all of their guests – something I always love to see from my couples!
After all, since your guests are traveling far and wide, you want to make sure that they have a trip of a lifetime!
For taste, the couple chose an open bar, including signature cocktails. Along with that, for sound, they opted for a string trio to set the tone of the welcome party with gorgeous, classical music.
To cover the sense of smell, they opted for the gorgeous party to be outdoors in the summer evening sun. Between the gardens at Hotel Mont Royal Chantilly, the sliced citrus fruits they had for unique decor, and the candles, the aroma in the air was filled with a bright freshness.
Along with that, they thought of everyone’s sense of touch in small elements that made a large impact such as the floral displays. Those vibrant colors were so hard to resist touching! Water features also gave certain tiny guests a source of entertainment.
The sights were, of course, covered considering they were enjoying their time with guests outside of the gorgeous French chateau. Plus, they chose to invest in a caricaturist to provide custom drawings for their guests – an exciting and unique wedding favor!
When you think of a France destination wedding, or even more specifically, a Paris destination wedding, you may have a certain image that comes to mind.
Maybe it’s the 19th-century Parisian architecture, complete with the beautiful moldings, elongated windows, and romantic turrets built into the walls.
Or maybe it’s something about the manicured gardens, lightly-colored pea gravel crunching under your feet as you step through them.
Maybe it’s just the idea of Paris or France itself. Whatever the case may be, a France destination wedding conjures an image of pure romance. And that’s exactly what this couple created for their French chateau wedding at Chateau de Chantilly.
The bride chose to get ready at the nearby Hotel Mont Royal Chantilly, which I was thrilled about. It meant we got to use the incredible space as the backdrop for her getting-ready photos.
Between her gown, her hair and makeup, and her subtle details, she looked as though she belonged inside the gorgeous French building!
Fashion continues to be one of my absolute favorite parts of my Lilly Red couples. The brides and grooms that I am so lucky to photograph always have impeccable taste and style!
And this bride was no different.
She understood the need to choose a wedding dress designer that complimented the French chateau venue. And to do that, she went with a romantic Monique Lhuillier ball gown.
With a dramatic, yet somehow subtle, full train and a sweetheart neckline, the wedding dress looked as though the designer was inspired by Chateau de Chantilly itself!
Because the bridal gown was such a statement on its own (in the most classic, elegant way, might I add!), the bride made the perfect choice by selecting delicate, subtle details to go along with it. From her cream-colored Valentino heels to her small, pearl-cluster earrings, she let her dress take up the spotlight while her details accented it.
I really could not get enough of the romantic French chateau aesthetic for this wedding! The bride and groom worked with their planner to make sure everything was cohesive and created the mood they were looking for – that romantic, ethereal, elegant look that was sure to look “in style” for decades to come. Even the hotel where they got ready and where we captured their first look fit the style they wanted.
So when they were both ready, I scouted the perfect location for their first look right in the foyer! The winding staircase with the iron handrail, the grand piano, the ornate paintings that adorned the walls – everything inside the hotel added to the wedding day aesthetic they wanted.
Because they chose to add a first look to their wedding day timeline, we had extra time for their first wedding portrait session!
This was a private session focused on just the two of them. And I love when we can add these to a wedding day because it’s a chance for me to capture that first “just married” or “soon-to-be married” feeling.
Those emotions are written all over their faces, and I’m able to capture it all in the photographs.
And considering Valentino had just held their fashion show at Chateau de Chantilly in the exact same location? Their portrait session truly did feel as though they were stepping out of the glossy pages of French Vogue!
In Lake Como, we have the classic Riva boats that are the quintessential, Italian way to arrive in style.
But for a Paris destination wedding at a chateau venue? A vintage Rolls Royce is the way to arrive in style!
Of course, no detail was left out, so the car matched the bride and groom’s wedding day style. And the cohesion between the two created photography gold!
With enough time before the wedding ceremony, I guided the pair around the venue grounds so we could capture works of art that would instantly transport them back to this day.
After seeing the welcome party come together and the details of the bride and groom getting ready, their first look, and their first portrait session together, I knew their ceremony would be exceptional.
And they did not disappoint!
Staged on a staircase outside of Chateau de Chantilly, their ceremony was the definition of French romance.
Between the lush florals that lined both the aisle and the staircase to their altar, the manicured gardens they walked through, and the flowers that were perfectly placed in the fountains, their French chateau wedding ceremony looked as though we had stepped inside a Claude Monet painting.
The inspiration drawn directly from the location was every wedding planner and wedding photographer’s dream for a spectacular ceremony!
After the outdoor wedding ceremony and cocktail hour, everyone made their way inside Chateau de Chantilly’s museum, Musée Condé, for the reception.
At long banquet tables, everyone gathered around to eat and celebrate under the museum’s renowned collections of paintings.
And afterward, everyone spent the rest of the evening partying, celebrating, and dancing the night away with the newly married couple!
The couple made sure to create an unforgettable experience for all of their guests. From bright pink lights and a DJ that always kept everyone on the dance floor, to a Dom Perignon champagne tower, it was a night to remember for everyone!
As a fashion photographer turned destination wedding photographer, celebrations like this Chateau de Chantilly wedding are what I live for!
Every last detail was thought of and planned for. The mood and the aesthetic were cohesive and inspired throughout the day. The fashion of the bride and groom was impeccable. And their love for one another shone in all of their photos, which created such a stunning gallery for the two of them to pour over for years to come!
Photography: Lilly Red
Wedding Planning: Katerina Meyvial
Wedding Venue: Chateau de Chantilly
Floral Design: Floraison Floral Design
Videography: Defrance Productions
Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier
Makeup Artist: Reina Kim
Hair Stylist: Lena, New Hair Salon NYC