By: Patricia Guarch-Wise
Coral Gables is brimming with the romance of life in love. Giant tree branches reach from the sidewalks to hold hand in canopies over the streets, the sidewalk cafes are perfect for whispering sweet nothings while sharing a bottle of vino and, perhaps most importantly, it's a wedding shopper's paradise.
You'll find everything for the wedding of your dreams behind the chic storefronts of Coral Gables, a world-renowned pre-wedding destination. From the bride's dress to the tiny adorable poufy flower girl dress, the invitations printed on heavy luxurious cardstock in fancy calligraphy, and the scrumptious high-tiered cake, you'll find a fit for everyone from the traditional bride-to-be to a more contemporary or casual future Mrs.
More than three dozen shops specializing in wedding goods of all kinds are located on a few blocks in beautiful Downtown Coral Gables. Miracle Mile, a palm-lined boulevard with cafes, salons, boutiques and bookstores, is the center of the Downtown area. A stroll down Miracle Mile is the best way to start your exploration of the many offerings of Coral Gables. While there's a selection aplenty of stores, boutiques and shops, you're not likely to feel overwhelmed. Your day in Coral Gables, or "Our City Beautiful" as it's also called, will be peaceful and quiet; it's more residential, removed from the hustle and bustle of some of Miami's more touristy neighborhoods.
Whether you're planning Miami as the host of your destination wedding or stopping by to do some shopping, you'll have to hit the "Bridal Row" of Miracle Mile- it's truly the wedding shopping spot. If you're looking for a fine jeweler, a photographer or the perfect stylist to do your do on the big day then you're in the right place. Many of Miami's most talented events professionals have made the Miracle Mile area their home base for its proximity to the boutiques ready to provide you with the rest. Consider this a one-stop-shopping area for favors and gifts, shoes, tuxes and men's attire, wedding cakes, flowers, beauty and hair and, who could forget, the dress.
On an average day in Downtown Coral Gables, you're likely to walk past many mother-daughter duos or young brides-to-be with their entourage of friends eager to give their opinion on the dress that will be forever memorialized in photos proudly hung in hallways and bound in a fancy photo album for generations to come to flip through.
There are bridal fashion boutiques from name brands you might recognize to local family-owned shops, modern gowns with simple lines and traditional lace princess-style gowns, all with unparalleled service and uncompromising patience to help you find the dress. You'll feel comfortable and in good, capable hands, when you leave your dress for alterations or customize any changes to make it uniquely-you.
Of course, the bride isn't the only one needing a dress. Don't worry, grooms, mothers of the bride, bridesmaids, flower girls and ring bearers are covered too.
It's the details of a wedding that really personalize the event and let it tell the story of the happy couple. You'll find a variety of stores filled with tiny treasures to add to the wedding's ambiance and fill in the details that make it feel true to you and your story and taste as a couple. Whether those tastes are for handcrafted chocolate, a particular fragrance or a set of antique porcelain teacups there's a store with a nook and cranny somewhere in this magical area that will surprise and delight you.
When you're starting to run out of fuel or need to hold a meeting to recap and make some decisions you'll never be more than a few steps away from a place to duck into for a bite and a brainstorm. If you've really exhausted yourself, and let's face it, shopping can be hard work, consider taking some time to unwind at a local spa with a massage and a manicure.
If you were planning a day in Coral Gables for shopping and wedding prep, you might want to make it a weekend. It's a capital of elegance and romance that will keep you entertained and checking important items off your list- the only problem will be how to get it all home.
For more information on all things bridal, including attire, accessories and event professionals, visit http://www.shopcoralgables.com/bridal and http://weddings.com/coral-gables.