A bride in a white dress holding a bouquet of white flowers.

Lorryn Smit

July 6, 2023

Welcome, lovebirds! Planning your dream Korean wedding is such an exciting adventure, but we know it can be a bit challenging when you’re doing it from afar. Don’t worry, though! We have the perfect solution for you. South Korea, with its vibrant culture and breathtaking scenery, is the ultimate destination for couples who want to blend Western and Korean wedding traditions while capturing genuine emotions in their wedding photos. As a wedding photographer based in South Korea, specializing in multicultural weddings for the past 7 years, I’m here to guide you. I’ve teamed up with Sarah, a bilingual wedding planner in South Korea, to provide you with everything you need!

A man is holding a woman's hand in front of a table in south korea

In this three-part series, we will guide you through the process of planning a dreamy wedding in South Korea. 

First, let’s meet Sarah and discover her vital role in planning Korean weddings. With five years of experience as a dedicated wedding planner, she’s a pro at creating unforgettable weddings in Korea. Planning a wedding in Korea can be quite different (and sometimes frustrating) from how things are done abroad, so Sarah’s first priority is to help couples understand these differences. From finding the perfect venue to coordinating with vendors like dress shops, makeup artists, and photographers, Sarah is the go-to person for couples seeking a seamless and extraordinary experience. She ensures everything flows smoothly, from meetings about decorations and flowers to managing timelines and communication with all involved parties. On the big day, Sarah steps up as the wedding coordinator, making sure every detail falls into place and leaving the couple with cherished memories of their special day in Korea. With Sarah’s expertise and passion, couples can relax and enjoy a truly magical celebration of love.

In this first part of the wedding guide, we’ll explore Korean wedding culture, how to find the perfect wedding venue in Korea, and adding your personal touch to your Korean Wedding.

Planning a Korean Wedding: Cultural Aspects

Korean weddings are legendary for their grandeur and deep-rooted traditions. So, let’s acquaint ourselves with the customs that will add an authentic touch to your celebration. From the paebaek ceremony, where you honor your parents, to the beautiful hanbok attire, these elements will infuse your wedding with cultural richness. Plus, they make for a wonderful cultural experience for overseas guests, so be sure to include them to entertain your loved ones.

Wedding Venues in Korea

When it comes to choosing the perfect venue for your wedding, the options are truly endless and each holds its own unique charm. From lavish hotels and grand convention halls to intimate indoor ‘house’ venues, enchanting outdoor spaces, and traditional hanok venues, there is something for every couple’s taste. However, beyond the type and style of the venue, there are several crucial factors to consider. 

Firstly, think about whether you want to embrace a Korean cultural experience or opt for a more international ambiance. Next, consider the duration of the wedding and whether you envision having a reception or dance party. Food options should also be taken into account, ensuring that they align with your preferences and dietary requirements. Additionally, consider the geographic location of the venue and the breathtaking views it offers, as well as the cost implications. 

Keep in mind that not every Korean wedding venue can fulfill all these criteria, so it’s essential to prioritize your wishlist and approach the selection process with an open and flexible mindset. By carefully considering these aspects, you’ll be able to find the venue that perfectly encapsulates your vision, creating unforgettable memories on your special day.

How to Personalise Your Korean Wedding

To make your wedding truly unique, consider adding your own personal touch to the venue decor. While some venues offer all-inclusive packages, it’s still possible to infuse your style and create a wedding that reflects your personality.

1. Choose a theme and color scheme: Select a theme that resonates with you and choose unique flower colors and decorations that align with your vision.

2, Welcome sign/board: Create your own welcome sign or board to give your guests a warm and personalized greeting as they enter the venue.

3, Guest books: Opt for a guest book that reflects your personality and style. It could be a custom-made book, a creative alternative like a fingerprint tree, or even a digital guestbook.

4. Gift table and decorations: Personalize your gift table with special decorations, such as photos or sentimental items that represent your journey as a couple.

5. Wedding program displays and menu: Design your own wedding programs and menu cards, incorporating unique fonts, graphics, or illustrations that reflect your wedding theme.

6. Cake: Instead of the standard cake provided by the venue, bring your own custom-designed cake that showcases your tastes and preferences.

7. Photo booth: Set up a photo booth area with fun props and backdrops that showcase your personalities and create memorable photo opportunities for your guests.

8. Vow books: Create personalized vow books that you can use during the ceremony, adding an intimate and sentimental touch to your wedding.

9. Games items: Incorporate interactive elements like games or activities that entertain your guests and add a playful twist to the celebration.

10. Table numbers and decorations: Instead of using the venue’s standard table numbers, bring your own unique table number displays that complement your overall theme. Additionally, consider adding special table decorations like personalized centerpieces or unique table runners.

Remember, even small details can make a big difference. For example, Sarah had a couple who brought their own vases for the dinner tables, their own custom-designed cake, and even a beautiful floral backdrop they created themselves, which made the bride’s room extra special.

By incorporating these personalized elements, you can infuse your own style, create a unique atmosphere, and make your wedding an unforgettable experience for both you and your guests.

Flexible Wedding Venues in Seoul

When it comes to vendors being flexible enough to bring couples’ unique visions to life, I must admit that, in general, it can be a bit challenging. However, there are certain venues that have shown more openness and willingness to accommodate couples’ specific needs and desires while planning their Korean Wedding. From my experience, the following venues have been particularly accommodating:

1. Rakkojae

2. Handus

3. The Ailey House

4. Sunwoongak

5. The Floating Island

6. The Cheongdam the Dome

7. Mary’s April

These venues have demonstrated a greater level of flexibility and understanding, going the extra mile to help couples realize their unique vision for their wedding day. While it’s important to communicate your specific needs and preferences with any vendor you choose, these venues have shown a track record of being receptive to couples’ requests.

In this first part of our wedding guide series, we’ve explored the fascinating world of Korean wedding culture, discovered the perfect wedding venues in South Korea, and learned how to add a personal touch to wedding decor. By embracing the rich traditions, finding the venue that speaks to your heart, and infusing your own style into the decor, you’re well on your way to planning a dreamy Korean wedding.

Stay tuned for the next wedding guide, where we’ll delve into enlisting your own wedding vendors, Sarah’s favorite wedding venues in Seoul, and tips for choosing the perfect dress and hair and makeup styles. Happy planning!

Find Sarah here: on Instagram, Kakaotalk: sarah38, or e-mail: sarahshin38@gmail.com 

Your Ultimate Guide to Planning a Dreamy Wedding in South Korea: Part One

 Yours will be finessed to celebrate your love, your destiny.

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