Nautical Inspired Downtown Tampa Wedding | Yacht StarShip

Tampa Bay Bridal Show Banner 2021

Amy and Keyan’s intimate downtown Tampa destination wedding featured maritime elements and classic shades of blue and red. The bride and groom incorporated several personal elements, including Keyan’s family burgee (a distinguishing flag used in boating) and key lime pie desserts as a nod to their Key West engagement.

The Port Charlotte couple used to live on a sailboat together so embracing a nautical wedding with details that reflected their love of the water was a natural choice.

“Our theme was very nautical from the Yacht venue itself to the decorations we picked out. We’ve always been a fairly nautical couple, to the point that we even lived onboard a 34′ Hunter Vision sailboat for a year (if you ever do this, make sure you’re ready to REALLY get to know your spouse), and we let that fuel our inspiration,” Amy shared. “Our colors were blue and maroon with accents of silver. We felt that the blue went well with our nautical theme and would be a good attire color for everyone in the wedding party. The maroon came in with the flowers as they went easily together and looked sharp. The silver followed as a lot of nautical decor has more silver than gold.”

While searching for a Tampa Bay wedding venue for their original 120 guests, Amy and Keyan wanted an all-inclusive location that fit their waterfront vision and that would be convenient for traveling. Although they reduced their headcount to 50 guests due to COVID, the pair were thrilled with how the Yacht Starship kept the planning process ‘smooth sailing’ throughout their entire experience, including during last-minute changes.

“After speaking to many venues all over the state, we were amazed at everything Yacht StarShip offered for their very affordable packages. We were thrilled that we could get married on a boat, and the staff impressed us not only on our exploratory visit but also during our complimentary dinner cruise to experience the yacht before booking,” the bride raved. “Everyone we encountered was extremely easy to work with, helpful in every way, and had the best personalities. Chris, our wedding coordinator, walked us through every step and reminded us of everything that we may have forgotten along the way. The entire staff also accommodated our last-minute changes due to guest cancellations, timeline changes, and some last-minute dinner revisions. Overall, their service from start to finish was phenomenal; we couldn’t have asked for better.”

Selecting a venue that reflected the couple’s personalities made their celebration truly memorable.

“What made our wedding unique was truly the venue,” the bride raved. “We are still receiving many compliments on how enjoyable being on the yacht was for everyone.”

Thanks to the Yacht Starship’s rooftop ceremony surrounded by views of the water, Amy attributes her nuptials as her favorite memory of their special day.

“The most memorable moment for us was walking down the aisle after the famous ‘I do.’ Being surrounded by our family and friends, experiencing the salty air and perfect breeze was the best moment of the whole day as it felt like we could take on the world!” the bride reminisced. “It was closely followed by the reception where we had an absolute blast celebrating and dancing with our guests.”

Modern, Nautical Navy and White Wedding Invitation
Strappy Silver Bridal Wedding Shoes with Veil
Lace Sweetheart White Wedding Dress on Hanger
Bride and Bridesmaids Getting Ready Portrait in Silk Floral Robes
Bride and Bridesmaids on Way to Wedding on Jolley Trolley in White Lace Wedding Dress and Red, Navy, Natural Floral Bouquet
Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater
Ceremony on Ship Deck of Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater

What did you look for in a wedding venue?
We looked for a location that was “all-inclusive,” affordable, and that would offer an enjoyable evening for everyone on our guest list. We also looked for a venue that fit our story and our unique personalities.

After speaking to many venues all over the state, we were amazed at everything Yacht StarShip offered for their very affordable packages. We were thrilled that we could get married on a boat, and the staff impressed us not only on our exploratory visit but also during our complimentary dinner cruise to experience the yacht before booking.

Everyone we encountered was extremely easy to work with, helpful in every way, and had the best personalities. Chris, our wedding coordinator, walked us through every step and reminded us of everything that we may have forgotten along the way. The Captain ensured that we stayed in smooth waters and our DJ spent the entire night feeling the crowd out and keeping everyone dancing. The entire staff also accommodated our last-minute changes due to guest cancellations, timeline changes, and some last-minute dinner revisions. Overall, their service from start to finish was phenomenal; we couldn’t have asked for better.

The most memorable moment for us was walking down the aisle after the famous ‘I do.’ Being surrounded by our family and friends, experiencing the salty air and perfect breeze was the best moment of the whole day as it felt like we could take on the world!

Ceremony on Ship Deck of Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater
Grooms Reaction Photo to Bride Walking Down the Aisle Wedding Portrait
Wedding Ceremony on Ship Deck of Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater | Wedding Guests with Cell Phones
Bride and Groom Kiss Down the Aisle Portrait | Tampa Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater
Wedding Party Portrait | Tampa Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater
Bride and Groom Intimate Wedding Portrait | Tampa Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater
Bride and Groom Intimate Wedding Portrait | Tampa Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater

The Proposal:
We met in the airline where Keyan was a Captain, and I was a flight attendant. We moved onto a sailboat and then Keyan changed companies, and I changed careers in aviation. On our third dating anniversary, Keyan surprised me with a trip to Key West, FL. We rented a Cessna 172 and made our way south for a weekend on the island on our first ever trip in a general aviation aircraft together.

On the first night, we were there, Keyan convinced me to get dressed up for dinner (come to find out he didn’t even make reservations anywhere!) in Mallory Square. After sunset, we walked the boardwalks where he gave a short but sweet speech and then promptly got down on one knee. The best part of the proposal was when he struggled to get the ring box out of his pocket, causing a brief but funny pause. After the proposal (and I stopped crying), we found the closest place with Key Lime Pie and shared a slice.

Bride and Groom Intimate Wedding Portrait | Tampa Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater
Bride and Groom Sunset Wedding Portrait | Tampa Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater
Bride and Groom First Dance Wedding Portrait | Tampa Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater

Where did you spend your honeymoon?
Due to overseas locations being closed or requiring us to take too much time off work due to COVID, we did a mini-vacation to Durango, Colorado. We used to fly into Durango together when we were flight crew, and we fell in love with the city quickly. We ended up going back to ride their steam train through the mountains, visit hot springs, and drive the million-dollar highway while disconnecting from reality for the week and reconnecting with ourselves and nature. We rented a house in the mountains and allowed ourselves to experience a mental reset while bonding together as a newly married couple. 

Nautical Inspired Wedding Reception Portrait | Tampa Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater
Nautical Inspired Wedding Reception Sweetheart Table | Tampa Florida Nautical Wedding Venue | Yacht StarShip Clearwater

How would you describe your theme/wedding design inspiration?
Our theme was very nautical from the Yacht venue itself to the decorations we picked out. We’ve always been a fairly nautical couple, to the point that we even lived onboard a 34′ Hunter Vision sailboat for a year (if you ever do this, make sure you’re ready to REALLY get to know your spouse), and we decided to let that fuel our inspiration.

What were your colors?
Blue and maroon with accents of silver. We felt that the blue went well with our nautical theme and would be a good attire color for everyone in the wedding party. The maroon came in with the flowers as they went easily together and looked sharp. The silver followed as a lot of nautical decor has more silver than gold.

Nautical Inspired Wedding Reception Decor with Wooden Boat Centerpieces
Nautical Inspired Wedding Reception Decor with Wooden Boat Centerpieces
Reception Wedding Dessert Table with Two Tiered White Round Wedding Cake
Bride and Groom Farewell Reception Portrait with Bubble Exit

What advice would you give to other Tampa Bay couples?
Make sure that you’re getting what you want and not what others want because it’s your big day, not theirs. However, most of all, and commonly said, don’t stress the little things! It’s bound for plans to be derailed with so many in motion; just flow with the motion of the ocean, and it’ll all be okay!

Venue, Caterer, DJ & Officiant: Yacht StarShip *Preferred Marry Me Tampa Bay Wedding Venue
Photographer: Chris and Micaela 
Florist: MyDinosaurDreams (Etsy
Cake: A Piece of Cake 
Invitations: Truly Engaging by MagnetStreet
Transportation: Clearwater Jolley Trolley
Dress Shop and Designer: The Wedding Gallery 
Tux Shop: Men’s Wearhouse 
Bridesmaid Dress Shop: Azazie 
Makeup & Bridal Hair: Visionary Glam 
Wedding Party Hair: Creative Styles by Janet Barber: Rayz Fadez 
Ship Decor: Hand Crafted Nautical Decor 
Rings: Kay Jewelers

Quotes have been lightly edited for clarity and brevity.

*Preferred Marry Me Tampa Bay Wedding Pros are highly respected by our local wedding community and have been personally vetted by our editor.

MEET THE EDITOR

Marry Me Tampa Bay editor, Anna Coats, created Marry Me Tampa Bay in 2012 to showcase the area's best local weddings and vendors. She has been featured as a wedding expert on the national talkshow Daytime, Fox13, ABC Action News, Great Day Tampa Bay, and Bay News 9 (now Spectrum).

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