Getting Married in Sarasota: A Guide to Planning the Perfect Beach Wedding


Sarasota is a beautiful destination for beach weddings. With its white-sand beaches and tropical climate, this city offers the perfect backdrop for an unforgettable wedding. While there’s nothing quite like getting married at the beach, it does come with some additional challenges that need to be considered.

Budgeting and Costs

A close-up of a couple and their child’s hands holding a pink piggy bank

When planning your special day, it is important to consider budgeting and costs. Although couples have an array of options for wedding venues, decorations, attire, and more, sticking to a budget will make the entire process much less stressful.

Wedding Venue – For couples getting married in Sarasota, there are many beautiful beachfront venues to choose from. Prices vary depending on the size of the venue you are looking for and the type of amenities available at your chosen venue for Weddings in Sarasota FL. In addition to venue rental fees, couples should also keep in mind additional costs such as catering, music, and other services associated with hosting a wedding here.

Decorations – When selecting decorations for the ceremony or reception site, keep in mind that cheaper is not always better. Choosing high-quality decor adds sophistication and style to the event without breaking your budget. If you’re looking to save money on decorations while still having a great event, consider using natural elements such as rentals palm trees/potted plants, or beach shells that can be collected in advance and used as floral décor.

Attire – Beach weddings bring with them a new set of challenges when it comes to attire selection. Couples should opt for lightweight materials that won’t weigh them down on a hot summer day. Natural materials like linen and cotton are ideal fabrics since they breathe more easily than synthetic fabrics such as polyester or rayon. Consider checking local consignment shops or preowned websites for designer gowns at discounted prices or renting dresses from formal wear boutiques instead of buying them new!

Catering and Food


When it comes to catering and food, you’ll have many different options to choose from in Sarasota. The area has a variety of restaurants that offer a diverse range of cuisine, so no matter what type of food you’re looking for or which budget you’re on, you can make your dreams come true.

You can choose from classic barbecue catering, elegant plates with hors d’oeuvres, or buffets with a variety of dishes. These are just some of the specialties that local caterers offer. There are also food trucks and street vendors available – perfect if you want a fun twist on traditional fare.

Floral Arrangements


A beach wedding often differs from a traditional church or reception hall wedding in that it needs to use décor that is more subtle and supportive of its surroundings. Floral arrangements are a key part of this type of aesthetic and selecting the perfect blooms will help to create an atmosphere filled with romance, beauty, and charm.

You should be conscious about the types of flowers you choose for your installation since many popular blooms require cooler temperatures to stay vibrant and fragrant. Some common favorites that are suitable for Florida’s warmer climate include:

  • Peonies
  • Tulips
  • Snapdragons
  • Roses
  • Lilies
  • Sunflowers
  • Hyacinths
  • Gerbera daisies

Photography and Videography


When selecting a professional photographer and/or videographer to document your special day, make sure to inquire about their experience with weddings – including any references they may provide. Ask what packages they offer, what types of equipment they use (for both photography and videos), as well as sample images and videos they have taken in similar settings. Most importantly, be sure to stay within your budget while still undergoing high-quality services!

Additionally, you can also explore crowd-sourced photography options like flash mobs that send photographers out at a certain time during your ceremony to capture different angles of the event. If this appeals to you, be sure to discuss this option with your photographer as well when gathering samples for review – though it’s always wise to select professionals who will be familiar with not only your location but also the lighting conditions at different times throughout the day on that specific beach. With a talented professional behind the lens (or cameras!) documenting every moment from “I do” to “You may now kiss…”, rest assured knowing those memories will last a lifetime.

Music and Entertainment


From hiring a live band, having a DJ play your favorite tunes, or even having a roving acoustic musician who can serenade guests on the beach – what you choose will depend on the aesthetic and vibe you are looking to create. Make sure to inquire with potential performers ahead of time and discuss budgets and expectations in order to find just the right fit for everyone involved.

For entertainment such as games or activities for both children and adults, there are plenty of choices available in Sarasota. Many beach wedding venues offer customized packages that may include an array of fun things to do.

Marriage License Requirements


Before you can get married in Sarasota, there are certain marriage license requirements that must be fulfilled. In Florida, both you and your spouse must appear in person before a Clerk of the Circuit Court to apply for a marriage license. Neither party needs to be a Florida resident.

Your valid photo ID, such as a Driver’s License, is also required for both parties and you will need proof of Social Security numbers. If either of you has been previously married or had civil unions or domestic partnerships, proof of those legal arrangements must be provided as well. The fee for the marriage license is $86 and payment must be made with cash or credit card at the time of application.

Once your application has been submitted and approved, the license can be used immediately but it will expire after 60 days from the date it was issued.


Planning a beach wedding in Sarasota can be an incredibly rewarding experience. From choosing the right venue to making sure your vendors are ready and able to provide high-quality services, you’ll have plenty of important decisions to make. With our advice, though, you can plan an unforgettable beach wedding that captures the beauty and romance of this enchanting city. So, if you’re getting married in Sarasota – or any other coastal destination – take some time to explore all that it has to offer and get creative with how you incorporate its unique features into your special day!