Las Vegas is known to many as the Wedding Capital of the World. So it will come as no surprise then that Vegas was one of the first to celebrate and cheer on LGBT couples when the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned Nevada’s ban on same-sex marriage. While Las Vegas has always been welcoming, it’s now more open than ever: not only can you celebrate, relax and indulge in style, you can tie the knot and walk down the aisle with pride alongside the one you love.
Check out our tips on how to get the most out of Vegas for all your wedding-related festivities, be it your bachelor(ette) party, your wedding or your honeymoon, below:
Bachelors and Bachelorettes At Play
Heading to Vegas for bachelor and bachelorette parties is a famous tradition that now more than ever has plenty to entertain LGBT brides and grooms to be. Those looking to go out on the town will want to check out SHARE Nightclub. Known for its go-gos, unique dance floor and VIP rooms and cabanas, this two floor ultra lounge is one of the most popular in Vegas. Other nightlife highlights include Piranha Nightclub and 8 1/2 Ultra Lounge, FreeZone, Charlie’s and Snick’s. For shows, see Jersey Boys at the Paris Las Vegas or Frank Marino as comic icon Joan Rivers at The LINQ. Should you be looking for male revues, take in favorites like Chippendales, Thunder From Down Under and Men of Sapphire. The Strip’s many summer pool parties also provide playful daytime activities perfect for bachelor and bachelorette getaways.
Where To Get Hitched
Perhaps one of the best things about getting married in Vegas is the variety of ways you can say ‘I do.’ Whether you’re eloping or planning a large celebration for all your family and friends, there’s a venue just right for you.
Almost every major hotel and resort in Vegas has a chapel on its premises, each with its own flair. The exotic Island Chapel at the Tropicana and the spectacular Eiffel Tower Observation Deck at the Paris are just two of the romantic options that the city’s landmark hotels offer.
Las Vegas is also home to dozens of stand-alone chapels, many of which you might recognize from famous weddings over the years. Can’t wait to get hitched? Get a drive thru quickie wedding presided over by Elvis at the Special Memory Wedding Chapel. Or visit the home of the Elvis wedding ceremony, Graceland Chapel. Graceland has celebrated many celebrity nuptials, as has The Little Church of the West. Old Hollywood icons like Betty Grable, Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney were wed at this chapel which is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. Other chapels have seen their fair share of celebrity “I do”s too, including the Little White Wedding Chapel. It was here that Frank Sinatra wed Mia Farrow and Bruce Willis married Demi Moore. If you’re looking for something a little more fantastical, however, you’ll want to tie the knot at Viva Las Vegas Weddings. They offer fantasy weddings with themes ranging from gothic to Egyptian to beach party. Art and music lovers will enjoy the art deco resplendence of The Smith Center for the Performing Arts whereas those looking for a more traditional ceremony or to renew their vows will enjoy the quaint elegance of the Chapel of the Flowers.
As for the technicalities, marriage licenses are available every day until midnight, and no blood test or state residency is required. There’s also no waiting period. All you need is proof of age (driver’s license, passport or birth certificate will do) and a social security number. International visitors may require special documentation.
Honeymoon And Stay
In addition to being the Wedding Capital of the World, Las Vegas is also one of the world’s top honeymoon destinations. Take your love on a gondola ride at The Venetian, pose for pictures at the Fountains of Bellagio or enjoy your first meal as a married couple courtesy of Wolfgang Puck. With a host of resorts and hotels, you have plenty of options for where to stay. Paris Las Vegas was one of the city’s first hotels to cater to its LGBT clientele. Meanwhile Wynn and Encore have a special Pride concierge, dedicated to helping LGBT guests make the most out of their stay in Vegas. The city is also constantly refreshing its roster of hot hotels. Check out our guide to the latest in Las Vegas accommodations HERE. And with the city’s Pride festivities coming up along with a long list of unforgettable experiences you’ll have more than enough to keep you busy on your honeymoon this summer, with concerts like Mariah Carey at The Colosseum at Caesar’s Palace, pool parties all over the Strip and comic fun courtesy of Kathy Griffin and Eddie Izzard.
For more information on the intersection of all things ‘wedding’ and ‘Las Vegas’ be sure to check out the city’s guide to nuptials HERE.