The charming Bay View Inn and Perry Hotel in Petoskey were the perfect settings for the elegant and fun Stafford’s Northern Michigan wedding that Mary Kate and Adam had pictured. From the backdrop of Little Traverse Bay to the cocktail menu’s Northern Michigan twist, this destination wedding reflected the couple’s Up North spirit.

This article was originally published in the 2016 issue of MyNorth Wedding.

All photography: Heather Cisler Photography

Ever since she was a little girl, Mary Kate knew she wanted to get married in Northern Michigan by the water, and last summer her dream became real at Stafford’s in Petoskey. “I remember looking at the property in January, and we were standing in a three-foot snow bank,” Mary Kate says. “I was thinking, ‘You can’t beat this view now, I can’t imagine what it will be like in July.’”

Mary Kate’s ceremony was held at the charming Bay View Inn. Set in Petoskey’s historic district, the inn offers a serene and romantic setting. Built in 1886, the elegant Victorian country inn is an enchanting escape to a bygone era. Mary Kate and Adam were married outside in the blooming gardens overlooking a stunning view of Little Traverse Bay and Harbor Springs, where the bride spent many childhood summers.

Following the ceremony, guests enjoyed cocktails spun with a Northern Michigan theme. The menu featured drinks named after iconic Up North events and attractions, such as Harbor Springs’ annual Ugotta Regatta and the M119 Tunnel of Trees.

Staffords Wedding

Click here to view Mary Kate and Adam’s Stafford’s wedding in the 2016 MyNorth Wedding issue.

After the cocktail hour, Mary Kate and Adam switched gears and venues, taking their reception to Stafford’s Perry Hotel in bustling downtown Petoskey. “I really wanted to do a nautical theme—J.Crew meets Kate Spade meets Lilly Pulitzer, but also with a little bit of a hipster vibe. I didn’t want it to be entirely formal; we wanted it to be elegant, but fun with a little bit of a Northern Michigan twist,” says Mary Kate.

Guests enjoyed the warm summer air and a magnificent view of Little Traverse Bay from the hotel’s Rose Garden Veranda. The tented terrace at the upscale hotel created a sophisticated but casual atmosphere for the evening. For dinner, Stafford’s worked with the couple to incorporate local ingredients into the menu including Northern Michigan cherries for the salad, a whitefish entrée and cider from Tandem Ciders in Suttons Bay.

Mary Kate grew up dining at another Stafford’s restaurant, the Pier in Harbor Springs. Her family celebrated her 13th birthday and rang in the 2000 New Year there. “It was always a site for big events for me,” Mary Kate says. It was only fitting for Stafford’s to be hosting this big day too.

After dinner, guests kicked off their heels and enjoyed the weekend getaway. The buzz of the city was perfect for a fun evening filled with dancing, and a trolley was available to take the wedding party between the Bay View Inn and Perry Hotel. The convenient onsite lodging made Stafford’s perfect for Mary Kate and Adam’s destination wedding.

Find more inspiration in the MyNorth wedding directory.

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Photo(s) by Heather Cisler Photography