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  • Writer's picturerachel leintz

engagement shoots in the southwest summer?

Ok, we all know it’s hot enough to cook a pizza in an Arizona car at the moment…literally…I saw that on the news a week ago! I don’t care how “dry” the heat is, 112 degrees is HOT! And did I mention that this is monsoon season? So yeah, Arizona can be brutal this time of year.

But while most brides-to-be are planning their wedding for the winter, fall or spring here in Arizona, there’s another piece to the bridal puzzle that seems to be giving a lot of my future clients some anxiety, so I thought I’d address it in this Wednesday’s blog. Engagement shoots! If you’re planning your wedding for the fall, winter, or even early spring, there’s a chance that you want to get your save the dates out soon. And if you want a gorgeous engagement shoot to showcase on those save-the-date cards, what’s a poor, newly engaged couple to do in the sweltering heat of the summer months here?

The answer: Shoot at a resort!

Most couples love the idea of including nature in their engagement shoot, and most wedding photographers do too! There’s nothing more flattering to the skin than gorgeous, buttery, natural light. Preferably with some open shade. But that’s why shooting your engagement shoot at a resort is the ideal solution to beating the brutal summer heat. How can this be? How can a resort or hotel setting possibly give you the benefits of outdoor lighting while keeping you from melting? Read on : )

Here are the main reasons you should consider shooting at a resort:

· Central Air!

Most of the resorts here in the valley have phenomenal landscaping and they also have the added benefit of a huge, air-conditioned building right next to that gorgeous greenery (or cacti and shrubs if you’re going for a southwest feel). So if you still want to take some outdoor shots, it’s the perfect staging area. Your photographer can scope out the best backdrop for you, while you and your beloved hang in the climate controlled lobby, bar, restaurant, etc. You can then dip outside for a few minutes, grab those perfect shots, and escape back into the A/C before you break a sweat! Well…you might “glisten a bit” but you get the idea : )

· Space!

If you shoot at a resort you have a TON of options for backgrounds. And not just in the landscaping. The Phoenician, for example, has some incredible staircases and an art exhibit that is really dramatic and makes for an amazing spot to showcase a newly engaged couple’s love. And, if you are really sweet and your photographer is “in the know” you might even be able to convince a bell hop to scoot you around in a golf cart!

· Getting the lay of the land

If you end up booking your wedding at the resort where you have your engagement shoot and you have the same photographer for each shoot (why wouldn’t you! Since your photographer should be including this in their wedding package ;) then you have the added benefit of letting your photographer get the lay of the land before the big day. If they haven’t shot at that particular location in the past, this is invaluable time they can use to start brainstorming where they want to take you on the day of the “I Do’s”. And don’t forget, YOU can start thinking about ideas for your photos too! You never know when something you see in one of these modern palaces will strike you as just perfect for you and your hubby-to-be.

So don’t despair, newly engaged couples of Arizona! There are some really gorgeous sites here that you can use to take engagement shots during our insanely hot summer months! Here are just a few that I love and would recommend to anyone looking for romance, drama, and gloriously cool air in their engagement shoot setting:

1. The Phoenician - Scottsdale

2. The Royal Palms - Scottsdale

3. The Scottsdale Resort at McCormick Ranch

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