Whether you’re beach-obsessed, are mad for the great outdoors or fall somewhere in between, celebrating your newlywed status in The Sunshine State makes perfect sense. But with so many magical settings, how will you decide which one is perfect for you?
From dreamy pastoral estates to monastic retreats, we culled 14 of our favorite properties from around the state to give couples—who are just starting off—a starting point.
Photo: Brian C. Idocks Photography
St. Augustine, Florida
Conceived as a destination for peaceful reflection, this 50-foot-high landmark was modeled after a 1,000-year-old castle in Ireland. Ideal for fairy tale weddings, the castle boasts a solid wooden altar, pulpit, choir loft and many intimate offerings.
Trivia: The castle was named after Ottis Sadler, one of the two masons who built the 7 million pound structure, but it’s speculated the three T’s in “Otttis” represent the 3 Crosses of Calvary.
Photo: Lance Oliver Photography
While Goodwood’s beginnings may have started on a sad note—the original owner and his family perished when their steamboat sank—its subsequent proprietors, which included two society mavens, a doctor, a senator and an Army officer, helped to transform the picturesque spot and its grand gardens into one of Tallahassee’s most elegant estates. Goodwood offers customized wedding and reception packages.
Photo: Krista Rizzi via Pinterest
Rosemary Beach, Florida
Nestled along Florida’s Emerald Coast, this intimate 55-room property has become a popular spot for tech-minded marrieds-to-be. The first hotel in the nation to feature in-room Apple TVs, The Pearl equips its guests with application-loaded iPads so they can schedule anything from a romantic couple’s massage to breakfast in bed. Indoor and beach wedding packages are available.
Santa Rosa Beach, Florida
Overlooking the Gulf of Mexico’s pristine shores, this 499-acre, AAA Four-Star rated retreat melds sleepy beach town nostalgia with modern guest experiences, like par-72 championship golf and stand up paddle boarding. The award-winning property is perennially featured on Condé Nast Traveler’s “Gold List” and “Readers Choice” round-ups and was voted one of the “Coolest Outdoor Hotel Showers” by Travel + Leisure. The property features five wedding packages at varying price points.
Photo: Justin Demutiis Photography
Dade City, Florida
Once a popular equestrian ranch, The Lange Farm is now one of the area’s most revered wedding sites. Sitting on 80 acres, the property brims with southern charm and is chock full of ceremonial sites, from the rambling Garden House and Antique Barn to its massive oak trees and old-fashioned gazebos. The farm makes an ideal setting for any rustic, en plein air wedding.
Photo: Blue Lane Studios
Lake Wales, Florida
Renowned as one of the world’s finest carillons, the Singing Tower is also one of our country’s most beloved architectural treasures. Bursting with verdant foliage and colorful flowers—magnolias, azaleas and camellias—the surrounding gardens offer a breathtaking wedding backdrop.
Photo: Confetti Events
Inspired by the elegance of England’s private clubs and libraries, this 24,000-square-foot space teems with historic character and timeless touches, including a coffered arched ceiling, brass railings, marble floors and a retractable glass roof. The property offers numerous venues, including the Commerce Club and Shaw Library, for intimate celebrations.
Photo: Max Wagner
Once home to the Calusa Indians, Useppa is a private, limited-access destination recognized for its Old-Florida elegance and nautical charm. Accessible by boat, this coastal oasis is perfect for privacy-loving couples and specializes in intimate affairs of 80 guests or less.
Photo: Divine Light Photography
Built in 1925 by circus legend, John Ringling, as a loving ode to his esteemed wife, Mable, Ca’ d’Zan was patterned after Venice’s glamorous palazzos. The 36,000-square-foot bayfront property is replete with Gilded Age touches. Perfect for deco-style celebrations, the property offers a collection of vintage-y venues including the Ca’ d’Zan Terrace, the site of countless champagne-drenched parties The Ringling’s were famous for hosting.
Photo: Styled Events + Invitations
Marrying contemporary art with modern architecture, Pérez Art Museum makes a breathtaking, Technicolor backdrop for the married-minded. With its unobstructed views of Biscayne Bay, this sustainable, state-of-the-art building may be best suited for social movers-and-shakers or couples with large, extended families. Why? Booking the museum’s full 200,000-square-foot space is required.
Photo: Clau Photography
North Miami Beach, Florida
Once the Monastery of St. Bernard de Clairvaux in Sacramenia, Spain, the abbey’s outbuildings and Cloisters were dismantled and sold to newspaper publisher, William Randolph Hearst, then shipped to America. Today, the church sits on 20 acres of lush gardens and landscaped grounds. Traditional, non-denominational and civil ceremonies may be performed in any one of the three chapels and its five manicured gardens can accommodate up to 400 guests.
Photo: Jeff Kolodny Photography
Coconut Grove, Florida
Some brides want the storybook wedding. Replicating a romantic courtyard in New Orleans’ French Quarter, The Cruz Building harkens guests back to an earlier, and easier, time. Meticulously designed interiors reveal a fondness for stained glass windows, carved mahogany, crystal chandeliers and spiraling marble staircases. Indoor and outdoor settings are available.
The Florida Keys
Photo: Studio Julie Photography
Since its construction in 1896, The Southernmost House has relished hosting its share of VIP guests, from American presidents and royals to celebrities and Key West fixtures like Tennessee Williams and Ernest Hemingway. Today, guests clamor to this charming Victorian mansion for its relaxed, feet-in-the-sand weddings.
Photo: Noble House Weddings
The legendary Little Palm Island doesn’t hide behind its accolade-riddled exterior: the resort is perfection personified. While celebrities seek its sunny shores for a self-imposed timeout, this luxurious retreat is a wedding planner’s wonderland. Couples can pick from a range of ceremonial options, including the ultra-luxe “Exclusively Yours” package which allows knot tying types and 60 guests ownership of the island.