Lora and Mike’s Hilton El Conquistador wedding was full of energy. They drew inspiration from their mutual loves of country music and the charm of the Southwest. The Hilton Conquistador resort and its reception space at the Last Territory certainly delivered on the western vibe they were after.
Mike and his groomsmen got ready in one of the casitas at the hotel. Lora, however, chose to get ready at her childhood home only minutes away from the venue. Their wedding colors of copper (a nod to Arizona’s history) and bright navy were beautifully featured throughout their personal details.
To get those nervous butterflies out of the way as early as possible, Mike and Lora chose to share a First Look together. They were both so excited to see each other that they walked up to each other before myself and the videographer were even ready! Not everything goes according to plan on your wedding day though. And genuine excitement is a pretty sweet excuse, right?
Going along with their western theme, both Lora and Mike wore cowboy boots! Lora proudly told me that she’s the one who converted Mike into a boot-wearing man. Before the wedding party arrived, I took some of my favorites portraits from the whole day of these two. I just loved the way the light was pouring in through the mesquite trees!
To commemorate his older brother that passed away far too soon in life, Mike wore two boutonnieres on his jacket: one for himself and one for his brother. His watch was a wedding present from Lora.
The delicate diamond bracelet that Lora had on was her mother’s. Lora said that she admired the bracelet ever since she was little and that her mom surprised her with it for her wedding day.
Shortly after their portraits, Mike and Lora’s energetic wedding party arrived on the scene. They looked so stylish. I adored the velvet bridesmaid dresses. They looked so chic and classy!
Guests began to arrive and gather on the lawn at Sunset Point. The ceremony, officiated by a family member, included sweet personal vows with humorous jokes referencing Mike and Lora’s competitive love of golf sprinkled in.
These two also began the tradition of the wine box during their ceremony. The box contained a wine that they brought home from their recent trip to Bordeaux, France along with letters written to each other. On their first anniversary, they’ll share the wine and read the letters to each other. Then, on each anniversary, they’ll continue to add letters to the box to read the following year and replenish the wine.
The Hilton El Conquistador’s “Old West” themed town featuring a quirky jailhouse and cozy firepits was the perfect backdrop for their reception.
After saying hello to the resident beer burro, Phoenix, we snuck away to Hole 9 on the golf course for a few quick sunset portraits. As they mentioned in their vows, Mike and Lora are both avid golfers, so the location was (again) spot on!
To really kick off the reception, Mike got to ring the little town’s dinner bell. How fun!
The rest of the night was packed with slow dances with each other and their parents as well as fast-paced line dancing from many of their friends and family.
To end the night, Lora and Mike made a special request for a portrait of them with the moon in the distance. They actually chose their wedding date specifically because it fell on the night of a full moon!
For their honeymoon, these adventurous world travelers will be visiting Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Maybe they’ll bring back a bottle of wine from this trip too to have on standby for next year’s wine box opening!
Ceremony | Sunset Point at Hilton El Conquistador
Reception | The Last Territory also at El Conquistador Tucson
Planner | Hustle and Bustle Events, Tiffany Perathaner
Photographer | Christy Hunter Photography
Florist | Celebrations by Silvia, Silvia Diaz
Hair | Lewis + Ivey Salon, Taylor Lewis
Makeup Artist | Xoxo Jackie Beauty, Jackie Mendoza
Videographer | Cameron Robbins Photography
DJ | Hans Hutchison
Dessert | Frost Gelato
Beer Burros | Dinky Donkey Adventures, Maxine Hayden
Christy Hunter is a wedding and portrait photographer based in Seattle, Washington.
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