As a wedding venue in Alexandria VA, you can imagine how many wedding celebrations we’ve been a part of.  A big part of those weddings are the vows. These are important simply because they lay the groundwork for a future life together. If they are done right, they are the most powerful part of the whole day.

Ninas Dandy

If you are considering creating your own wedding vows, then it makes perfect sense to plan out the meaning of the vows, and to think carefully about the message you are trying to convey to your future partner. It isn’t always easy to get this right, and in this post we will look at how you can create wedding vows that are actually meaningful.

Try and get a lose draft arranged around three weeks before the wedding date. This gives you an opportunity to check the vows with other people that mean a lot to you and can be good judges of the quality of the work you have created. Preparation is obviously vital for this kind of writing.

Think about the feelings you had the first time you met your future partner. What did you feel and how intense were those feelings? If you are able to gather together your thoughts in this way, you will be able to create a mood in your vows that is both meaningful to both of you and incredibly romantic.

One caveat involves the personal nature of vows. It is your responsibility to ensure that your vows are not too personal and cryptic, so much so that your audience really cannot understand what you are talking about. This is a common failing of many self-written vows. So make them meaningful by looking at your own feelings, but don’t make them too obscure.

Although we’re a wedding venue, we work with several excellent wedding professionals that can help you plan out your wedding vows.  So give us a call if you want need any references…and of course, come check out what we can offer in regards your wedding venue.

Ideas for the Perfect Summer Cocktails


When it comes to drinks at a wedding, there is always room for improvement. There will be a lot of people attending the bar or the drinks section throughout the wedding, and even more during the summers. However, if your drinks fail to keep your guests hydrated and in the right mood, then you are not doing a very good job. Summer cocktails have to be chilled, refreshing, and tasty to make sure they get the thumps up that you so dearly want. If you are considering your choices for drinks at the wedding, we have some amazing ideas just for you!

Mocha Martini

The Mocha Martini is your solution cocktail from all the staying up late and waking up early dilemmas that are reminiscent to wedding. It’s a fairly simple drink to make but it’s one that will keep your guests wide awake and ready to have some fun. Mix coffee vodka with mocha and some vanilla cream and you have the perfect summer martini!

Rosé Crush

Our personal favorite, the Rosé Crush is one cocktail that you must have for a summer wedding. Put some crushed ice in a martini glass and pour around 2 to 3 r rosé wine shots with 1 shot of cranberry, raspberry, and orange juice. Mix them all together and garnish with a sprig of mint to have a refreshing and light summer cocktail!

Death By Vodka

Death By Vodka is a powerful cocktail that you would definitely want to have before hitting the dance floor. Pour 3 shots of absolute vodka with one shot of apple gin and sour mix. Garnish it up with a slice of orange and you have a cocktail that has fun written all over it.

Like our suggestions? Watch this space because there’s a lot more to come!


Tips for Keeping a Mini-Crisis at Bay

Tips for Keeping a Mini-Crisis at Bay

Bride gets help getting ready

Every bride wants her special day to got smoothly. However, it is a fact of life that we cannot be guarantee everything will go according to plan. So, it is best to have a few tricks up our sleeves to help deal with anything that arises.

Little Irritations
It is common that a bride discovers after wearing her gown for an hour or more that seams, beads, and fabrics may start to irritate her skin. Anti-chafing cream is one solution, another solution many brides find useful is water –based silicon products, such as those used to tame fly away hair.

Beat the Bloat
There are many reasons why you may wake up feeling a bit bloated. Nerves can even play a part in this. Avoid coffee if you are feeling at all bloated, as this will add to the problem. Non-carbinated drinks, and tea can keep you hydrated without adding to the discomfort. Mint tea can help calm your nerves as well.

Whether you are doing your own hair or having it professionally styled for the big day, wash it the day before your wedding, not the on the day. Your natural hair oils will work to your advantage, and help keep the style in place during the styling process and beyond.

No one wants to see the bride slip on the dancefloor! You will need to break in new shoes anyway, so go for a walk to break them in and scuff the soles so they will not be slippery.

Last Minute Panic Prevention
Put anything you will need to take with you in a bag next to the door. Remember to include any paper work you will need.

Contact us today to ask about our Washington DC wedding venues!

Jessica Simpson Is Married!

Singer and fashionista Jessica Simpson said I do to Eric Johnson in a fabulous California ceremony. The pair chose to enter the ceremony together, getting plenty of cheers from their guests.


Jessica’s father served as officiant, and the couple’s two children were also involved. Their son was the ring bearer and their daugther served as the flower girl.

While official photos haven’t been released, it has gotten out that Jessica wore a dress by Carolina Herrera. The champagne and gold gown was a custom design made just for the bride.

The overall tone of the wedding was very family oriented, but certaony not short on glamor. Guests were given lavish bags of wedding favors as they left, which for many guests was after 5 am the next morning!

Jessica and Eric seem to have had a wedding that was truly special and we wish them our congratulations! If you’re planning your wedding and are looking for a Washington DC wedding venue that is something as special as your day should be, give us a call!


Photo: Instagram/Jessica Simpson

Great Champagne Alternatives for Your Wedding

Champagne is a traditional part of many weddings. It’s used for welcome drinks, toasts, and is often sipped throughout the night. It is a luxury beverage, giving everyone a sense of just how special a day your wedding is. However, it’s not everyone’s taste and it can also be a big budget buster. If you’re looking for alternatives to champagne for your wedding, here are some great ideas.


If you like the taste, but not the cost… Look at other sparkling wines. Prosecco and cava are frequently used instead of champagne and offer a more budget-friendly sparkling wine.

If you prefer a sweeter wine… Consider a lambrusco or moscato wine. These will give your guests a different flavor with just the right amount of fizz for the occasion.

If you don’t want anything wine-based… A small-batch craft beer can be a great substitution. A fruit beer can offer a sweet flavor while a darker beer can give a rich, savory edge.

If you want something alcohol free… Have your bartender create a sparkling fruit punch for the big day. Sparkling water can be added to a combination of juices and syrups for a truly customized flavor.

Whatever you offer your guests, you’ll want to do it in a fabulous venue. To find out more about using Dandy Restaurant Cruises for your Washington DC wedding, give us a call today!


Photo: Flickr/Jan Smith

Keep Cool with a Wedding on the Water

It’s officially summer, and that means it’s time for summer weddings. Here in Washington DC, summer can get very hot, and your guests might not be prepared for the humidity. If you’re planning a summer wedding, you’ll want to offer ways for them to beat the heat.

One great way is to choose a Washington DC wedding venue that is great in the warm weather. Our boats offer the comfort of an indoor venue, but also allow guests the fun of being outdoors and on the water. Our outer deck gives guests the chance to feel the warm summer breeze while seeing the nation’s best monuments.


You should also give your guests lots of refreshments. Water is a must, and can be presented in a variety of ways. You can offer personalized bottles of water, which your guests can also take with them as an extra favor. Beautiful drinks dispensers are another way to offer drinks, and are perfect for infused water that looks and tastes gorgeous.

If you’re planning a summer wedding, check out what we offer on board our restaurant cruises. To find out more, give us a call today!


Photo: Flickr/justgrimes

Looking for a Fabulous Fourth? Come On Board!

Here in the nation’s capital, Independence Day is a fantastic celebration. If you’re looking for an even better way to celebrate, though, consider taking our Fourth of July dinner cruise.


This candlelight dinner cruise offers you a five-course meal, dancing, champagne, and a view of the fireworks unlike any other. As you cruise around Washington, you’ll get to see all of the city’s most famous monuments. The evening culminates in the fantastic fireworks show that fills the skies over the National Mall and Capitol building.

It’s the perfect way to avoid the crowds and enjoy the day in elegant surroundings. Semi-formal attire is suggested for this event, which will also allow you to enjoy the use of the huge upper outer deck for the perfect view of the fireworks.

In addition to being a fantastic way to celebrate our nation’s birthday, it’s also a great way to see what we offer here onboard our diner cruises. If you’re looking for a venue for your wedding or event, coming to the Fourth of July dinner cruise will also give you a great taster for how great your own event could be! To find out more or book your place for Independence Day, give us a call today!


Photo: Flickr/dpbirds

How to Say ‘No Kids’ in Your Wedding Invitation

Some couples love the idea of having kids at their wedding, but many couldn’t think of anything worse. Whether you want to have a more formal wedding or simply want your guests to feel able to relax without having to worry about what their children are getting up to, it’s perfectly acceptable to have a no kids policy for your wedding.


In general, guests should assume that their kids are not invited unless you address the invitations to “and family” or “and children.” Just as your guests should assume that they are not to bring a guest unless you have specifically stated “and guest,” parents should know to leave their kids at home. If they aren’t sure, they should feel comfortable asking you whether or not kids are included in the invitation.

However, you may still find that some guests make the wrong assumption. If you have your own kids, they might figure that kids will automatically be at your wedding, which might not be the case. Because of this, it can be helpful to state your wishes more explicitly in your invitation. This can be included along with any other additional information you are providing. Be sure to be clear but polite in this.

When you make a no kids policy for your wedding, it is something that your guests will respect. If this means that some of your guests are unable to attend, though, think about ways you can celebrate with them after your big day.

If you’re looking for an excellent venue for your Washington DC wedding, check out what we have to offer. Get in touch today to find out more!

Photo: Flickr/Darin Moran

Should the Groom Help Plan the Wedding?

It used to be the standard practice that a bride’s family would pay for the wedding. This, combined with many brides’ pre-planning of their dream wedding, meant that the groom was often left out of any wedding planning. However, with many couples now paying for their own wedding, is it right that the bride does all the planning?


Most grooms do want to be involved, at least in part, in the wedding planning. They know that this is an important day in their lives and want it to be everything they dream of. Whether this is making sure that there’s great music, choosing the menu, or finding a fantastic Washington DC wedding venue, they want to have some input on how the day will go.

Of course, there are some grooms who don’t have much interest in the planning. This can be for any number of reasons, and brides shouldn’t feel discouraged if their fiance doesn’t really seem to care whether there are roses or hydrangeas in the centerpieces. Encourage the groom to be involved, and make sure he knows what decisions you’re making, but don’t pressure him into weighing in on every element.

Oftentimes, the best way to plan a great wedding is to have some give and take between the two of you. One thing that you can both get involved in is finding an excellent venue. To find out how to have your wedding here onboard one of our boats, give us a call today!


Photo: Flickr/Nastya Birdy

Kimye Say I Do!

The biggest wedding of the year, and one we’ve been waiting to see, was this weekend! Kanye West and Kim Kardashian exchanged vows in a spectacular two-day wedding event.

The couple started their festivities in France, with a luncheon hosted by Valentino. The fashion icon’s lunch was followed by an even more extravagant dinner at the Palace of Versailles. This party included a performance by singer Lana del Rey.


The couple and their guests headed to Florence the next day for the big event. Their wedding was held at the 16th century Forte di Belvedere. The outdoor ceremony took place in front of a 20-foot wall of white roses and peonies. The bride wore a custom Givenchy gown and the couple’s daughter is reported to have worn a matching dress. The ceremony included a serenade by tenor Andrea Bocelli.

Of course, the ceremony was followed by an equally lavish reception that included performances by the groom and John Legend. The couple and their guests danced through the night and had fun with a black and white photo booth.

While many of the details aren’t likely to be made public immediately, we expect that this will be a trend-setting wedding. It’s also very possible that we’ll all get to see the highlights of the wedding on Kim’s reality show.

In any case, we wish the new Mr. and Mrs. West all the best! If you’re inspired by Kim and Kanye’s big day and want to start planning a fantastic Washington DC wedding, give us a call today!

Photo: Instagram/kanyewest79