May 10, 2023
By Kim Campbell

We're right at the beginning of peak wedding season, so get ready! Trends significantly impact what couples want from a wedding venue from year to year. Setup and design trends shift, influencing the size and style of wedding events engaged couples want to host. While straightforward and traditional designs may be stylish one year, glamor and luxury could be more fashionable the next. If you’re wondering which 2023 wedding trends could affect hotels, you’ve come to the right place.

In this post, we’re digging into the fashions, styles, and designs dominating this wedding season. You’ll uncover which 2023 wedding trends could affect the hospitality industry and how your hotel could benefit from shifting preferences. Discover what’s in style, what couples want from a wedding venue, and how changing trends could affect your property.

How top 2023 wedding trends could impact your hotel

In 2022, the wedding industry exploded. After years of pandemic-related postponements and cancellations, engaged couples were thrilled to finally tie the knot, which increased demand for wedding venues and vendors. Although wedding-related business is expected to decrease slightly in 2023, the 2022 wedding boom continues, providing hotels with continuing opportunities to take advantage of increases in business.

Why should hotels book weddings?

Weddings are valuable pieces of business for hotels and other event venues. Even if you don’t consider your property a “wedding venue” per se, targeting wedding planners and engaged couples is a powerful way to attract low-risk, high-rate group blocks.

Before diving into the trends shaping the 2023 wedding season, let’s explore the many ways wedding business can positively impact hotels. Whether large or small, full-service or focused-service, booking wedding blocks could help your hotel.

Fill in need dates. Booking wedding blocks can help hotels fill need dates, shoulder dates, and off-season weekends. Are you struggling to raise occupancy levels on particular weekends? Are you consistently falling below the competition on Sunday nights? Targeting wedding blocks can help hotels attract much-needed business over need dates and slower demand seasons.

Attract larger room blocks. The size of wedding room blocks varies from wedding to wedding and hotel to hotel, with most consisting of 10 to 30 guestrooms. Multiple hotel blocks may be required to accommodate a single wedding, as most properties cap the number of discounted group rooms they are willing to offer on any given date.

Increase group length of stay patterns. Most weddings take place over the weekend, often requiring out-of-town guests to book accommodations for multiple nights. In addition, the couple, members of the wedding party, or honored guests may arrive days before the ceremony to attend the rehearsal dinner and other pre-wedding events.

Secure higher group rates. Wedding blocks typically agree to significantly higher group rates than other groups like youth sports teams or corporate travelers. Although wedding blocks still receive a discount (e.g., % off the best available rate), their budget requirements tend to be less strict. Booking wedding blocks months in advance can help hotels increase their booking pace and occupancy without sacrificing hotel ADR or significantly affecting bottom-line revenue.

In addition to driving occupancy and helping hotels secure higher group rates, booking wedding businesses can help properties drive additional revenue from other areas of the property. For example, hotels that can accommodate a wedding and its guests benefit from increased revenue in many areas, including event room rental, staffing, dining, and other specialty services.

how to start an event venue CTA

Which 2023 wedding trends should hotels pay attention to?

Below, we’ve listed 10 of the most popular 2023 wedding trends dominating the industry and where the wedding industry is headed as a whole. Examine this season’s hottest fashions to discover how wedding trends could impact your market, consumer habits, guest preferences, and more.

1. Maximalism on the rise

“Less is more” is not on anyone’s lips in 2023. This season, more is more as the maximalist wedding trends we saw in 2022 continue to dominate the industry. Maximalism embraces luxury, color, boldness, and glamor. From vibrant prints and bold patterns to lush floral arrangements and showstopping attire, this year will be full of over-the-top nuptial displays.

In the now mostly post-pandemic world, engaged couples want to show off, let loose, and share over-the-top wedding moments with their friends and family. Industry experts agree: the 2023 wedding season will embrace excess.

2. Custom dance floors

The 2022 wedding season featured some incredibly unique and creative custom dance floors, like a floral-filled dance floor and a pastel-colored checkerboard dance floor. The trend continues into 2023, with couples seeking creative and expressive out-of-the-box wedding design ideas.

Prepare for inquiring couples who may ask about your ability to accommodate their custom dance floor design. Look for vendors in your area that offer custom flooring services so that you can be prepared with recommendations or referrals. Meet with their sales team and see if you can develop a mutually beneficial partnership for the season. For example, flooring vendors may be willing to offer a referral discount on wedding business they receive from your hotel.

3. Statement wedding aisles

Say goodbye to the classic white or plain aisle; 2023 is all about making a statement. In addition to custom dance floors, statement ceremony aisles will be big this wedding season. This maximalist wedding trend allows couples to get creative and personalize their ceremony in a fresh, new way. Whether decorating the aisle to resemble a high-fashion runway, the wedding’s theme, or another design concept, look for opportunities to help engaged couples make the event their own.

4. Epic after-parties

Another trend indicative of the “more is more” theme dominating 2023 weddings, couples are seeking to keep the party going late into the night. More couples are replacing the traditional wedding send-off moment with an epic after-party transition event. Instead of leaving their guests behind at the end of the ceremony and riding off into the sunset, couples want to extend their celebration with family and friends.

In an interview with Martha Stewart magazine, Jove Meyer, a renowned event planner, discussed wedding trends and changes in the industry. Musing on the trend, Meyer explained, "The after-party used to be optional, but now more and more couples are planning to keep their party going longer. With great music and fun snacks, guests can keep celebrating until the early morning hours. Couples don't want to stop!"

Consider creating a wedding promotion that includes an after-party package. Determine whether your hotel can accommodate a wedding after-party in an area that won’t be intrusive or disruptive to other guests, like a rooftop bar or event space far away from guestrooms. If you cannot host after-parties at your location due to space or noise restrictions, offer a late-night shuttle service that will take wedding goers to their after-party destination.

5. Personalized wedding experiences

Couples are not looking for the traditional wedding experience of their parents and grandparents; they’re planning personalized celebrations revolving around their one-of-a-kind love story. According to wedding planner Chanda Daniels, couples want to “tell their unique love story, and it comes through the entire weekend experience.” Personalized weekend wedding packages could help your hotel capture more wedding business in 2023.

6. Pre-ceremony “warm welcome” events

Instead of a short pre-ceremony event that includes a small glass of champagne or a trip to the lemonade stand, more and more couples are hosting a pre-ceremony "warm welcome.” Similar to cocktail hour, warm welcome events give wedding guests a chance to mingle and catch up, but it takes place before the ceremony instead of after.

Hotels with multiple banquet spaces or meeting rooms can take advantage of this trend, offering a separate area for guests to gather before the main event. Set up a gift card table in your warm welcome space, allowing guests to set down their offerings and free up their hands for the fun to come. Serve signature wedding cocktails at the warm welcome, setting the tone for your event.

7. Blur-motion photography

We can thank social media giants like TikTok for the “drunk in love” photo trend, which uses blur-motion and direct flash photography to create an interesting and artistic photo perspective. As the name suggests, this photography style is often applied to photographs of couples in romantic situations, such as on a date or at their wedding, to capture the intoxicating power of love. Featuring pictures of the same style in your marketing materials can help make your wedding venue stand out to trend-watching planners and engaged couples.

8. Terracotta tones

The deep orange-red-brown blend of terracotta is shaping up to be a staple of the 2023 wedding season. In addition to earthy terracotta tones, copper and burnt sienna are trending. Interest in a “burnt orange wedding theme” has risen 695% on Pinterest. Think of color schemes suited for the southwest, and you can picture where the industry is headed.

Capitalize on the colorful by stocking up on warm, welcoming burnt orange linens and investing in terracotta accent pieces or centerpieces. If your hotel doesn’t provide linens or decor for weddings, placing trendy accent pieces around the event space can help capture the attention of planners and engaged couples who visit your hotel for a site tour.

9. Destination weddings

As travel conditions continue improving in a mostly post-pandemic landscape, many couples have found the idea of a destination wedding more alluring. Industry experts received a surge of inquiries for multi-day destination weddings scheduled in 2023. Planners are seeing couples place more emphasis on activities and outings than traditional wedding events (e.g., ceremony and reception). In addition, destination guest lists are trending on the smaller side, as couples emphasize having an incredible, memorable experience—even with fewer friends.

10. Sustainable wedding services

Although it may seem contradictory to the maximalism trend dominating the wedding industry in 2023, sustainability is more important than ever—to couples, planners, venues, and vendors. Couples are repurposing and reusing wedding decor, wearing pre-worn gowns and suits, and seeking vendor services who do the same. In addition to the wedding industry, hotels are in the midst of an eco-friendly revolution, so it’s the perfect time to pair the two sides of the business together, driving sustainability on two fronts.

Learn more of our top 2023 wedding venue tips

2023 wedding trend hotel preparation tips

Discover trend-focused hotel marketing strategies and actionable tips you can use to attract and win more wedding business.

1. Spruce up hotel event space

Whether your hotel boasts multiple banquet rooms or minimal meeting space, keeping hotel facilities in tip-top shape is critical to capturing wedding business. Attract meticulous event organizers and enthusiastic engaged couples by showing them that your staff cares for the hotel and the guest experience.

Hotels that can’t afford complete renovations can still revitalize event areas through soft renovations, such as replacing furniture, fixing minor repairs, or adding a new coat of paint. Schedule a photoshoot to capture high-quality photos of spruced-up event spaces. Refresh the hotel’s social media pages and venue listings to display current offerings.

Trendy tip: Figure out which areas of the hotel (both indoor and outdoor) are best for wedding photos, and maintain those spaces to ensure they’re in picture-perfect condition when the big day comes.

2. Promote sustainable wedding services

An increased desire for green weddings doesn’t mean you must use paper straws or biodegradable dinnerware, as hotels can make their wedding services more sustainable in many ways. Focus on making every stage of an event’s life cycle more sustainable—before, during, and after the wedding. Using online event registration tools, group travel services, and food waste reduction programs can help reduce the footprint of hotel events.

Trendy tip: Develop green wedding practices and offerings, like plant-based and/or locally sourced menus or eco-friendly decor. Collaborate with wedding planners and vendors who are passionate about sustainable event services. Invest in solar panels, water conservation systems, or other eco-conscious infrastructure, and highlight your venue’s sustainability efforts in marketing materials.

3. Target trends in your marketing materials

Incorporate 2023 wedding trends into your venue marketing ideas. Stage event spaces with colorful centerpieces, trendy linens, and floral arrangements that match popular palettes to attract the attention of trend-setting couples during site tours. Display various setup options, detail event service styles, and highlight glowing reviews from satisfied event planners in your marketing materials.

Trendy tip: Keep up with social media trends and post relevant content to show your audience members that the hotel is in the loop.

4. Advertise your hotel as a premier wedding venue

Update the hotel’s main website, brand.com pages, and other venue listings to highlight your wedding capabilities. Modernize hotel details to include current event spaces, services, packages, minimum booking requirements, and other important wedding information. Include updated facility photos, group booking requirements, and a direct link that makes it easy for interested parties to submit an inquiry.

Trendy tip: Showcase your property in venue-only directories, like Cvent Wedding Spot, to market your hotel to planners and engaged couples actively sourcing a wedding venue. Hotels can comfortably invest in venue-only directory marketing, confident in knowing that site visitors are actually shopping for a wedding venue.

5. Build a robust and reliable network of wedding professionals

The types of weddings a hotel can accommodate will vary from property to property based on numerous factors, including its size, service level (i.e., full-service vs. focused-service), and the hotel facilities available for use. Surround yourself with a broad network of trusted wedding professionals you can rely on to offer the services your hotel isn’t able to. Fill in any gaps that inquiring couples may have with high-quality recommendations for local planners, vendors, designers, and other nearby industry pros.   

Trendy tip: If you’re new to the wedding game, host a wedding expo to promote your event services and build relationships with established professionals in the community. Invite local caterers, bakeries, designers, florists, and entertainers to attend. Promote the event on local media, social media, email, and participating vendor sites.

Regardless of what’s in style from year to year, the best way to attract new customers to your hotel is to identify what you do best, celebrate it, and use it to make your property stand out. Research the services, packages, and special services offered by other hotels, special event locations, and wedding venues in your area. Look for what’s missing in the market, and find opportunities to set your hotel apart.

Still have questions about 2023 wedding trends?

If you’re new to the wild and wonderful world of weddings or have additional questions about preparing your hotel for 2023 wedding trends, keep reading for more insight.

1. When is “wedding season?”

Although we’re free to get married any time of year, most weddings occur from late spring to early fall, when the weather and temperature are most pleasant. The season lasts from late April or early May through late October in many places, with demand typically peaking from June to September.

2. How can hotels capture more wedding business in 2023?

In addition to creating trend-based campaigns and marketing materials, consider promoting a virtual tour of your property. Highlight event spaces, advertise amenities, and feature a former wedding setup to display your hosting skills. Invite interested couples, wedding planners, and other guests to take a virtual tour of your hotel. Encourage them to explore the lobby, move through the event space, and check out guest rooms, all from the comfort of their homes.

3. What other wedding colors are trending in 2023?

In 2022, emerald green was the color for fashionable décor. Alongside terracotta, the glamorous green shade remains popular amongst couples tying the knot in 2023. Vibrant, luxurious emerald tones pair well with neutral, complementary colors. Emerald palettes may include blush pink, dusty rose, earthy, or silver hues, which will also top the trending 2023 wedding colors list. Couples looking to add pops of color to their design are turning to brighter shades of yellow, whereas darker yellow tones are perfect primary colors for wedding palettes.

Now you know how 2023 wedding trends could affect your hotel

After reviewing the wedding trends most likely to impact hotels this year, determine which trends and tips could impact your business the most. Factor wedding business into the hotel’s revenue and sales strategies, and identify opportunities for your hotel to capture more.

Next, we explore other event trends hotels need to know about in 2023. We’ll review the current state of virtual and in-person events, how hotels are working to save on costs, and so much more. Discover which event programs, digital tools, and event data strategies could boost business at your property.

Headshot of Cvent writer Kimberly Campbell

Kim Campbell

Kim is a full-time copy and content writer with many years of experience in the hospitality industry. She entered the hotel world in 2013 as a housekeeping team member and worked her way through various departments before being appointed to Director of Sales. Kim has championed numerous successful sales efforts, revenue strategies, and marketing campaigns — all of which landed her a spot on Hotel Management Magazine’s “Thirty Under 30” list.

Don’t be fooled though; she’s not all business! An avid forest forager, post-apocalyptic fiction fan, and free-sample-fiend, Kim prides herself on being well-rounded.

5 Tips to Stay Ahead in Meetings and Events in 2024 correct image
5 Tips to Stay Ahead in 2024
Capture more group business in 2024 with our ultimate checklist

Subscribe to our newsletter