Hotel Del Coronado History

Ah…the Hotel Del Coronado’s History… Did I captivate your interest yesterday?  Are you waiting with baited breath to read about the ghost that supposedly haunts the Hotel Del?

Well, here you go…according to the Hotel’s own “Press Room” on it’s web page,

Kate Morgan, age 24, arrived on Thanksgiving Day, alone and unhappy. According to hotel employees, she said she was waiting for a gentleman to join her. After five lonely days, Kate took her own life.

At the time of her death, police could find nothing to positively identify her, so a description of Kate was telegraphed to police agencies around the country. As a result, newspapers began to refer to Kate as the “beautiful stranger.” After Kate Morgan’s identity was confirmed – she was married but estranged from her husband – it was surmised that she had arrived at The Del hoping to rendezvous with a lover.

Kate had been employed as a domestic in a wealthy Los Angeles household. From there, she traveled by train to the hotel, where fellow passengers reported that a woman matching Kate’s description had argued with a male companion, who then deserted her en route. During her stay, Kate was described as sickly and sorrowful, venturing into San Diego to buy a handgun, and the San Diego coroner later confirmed that Kate had died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

The Ghost of Kate Morgan

According to the hotel’s book, Beautiful Stranger: The Ghost of Kate Morgan and the Hotel del Coronado, since that time, guests and employees have attested to ghostly goings-on. Most have to do with Kate’s original third-floor guestroom, where visitors have experienced flickering lights, a television that turns itself on and off, breezes coming from nowhere, inexplicable scents and sounds, items moving of their own accord, doors that randomly open and close, abrupt changes in room temperature, and unexplained footsteps and voices. The story of Kate Morgan continues to intrigue hotel visitors, and the room in which she stayed is the most requested guestroom at the hotel.”

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hoteldel.com A photo from the hotel’s early days.

And that’s not all…In it’s long history, the Hotel Del has played host to many a celebrity.

The list is extensive: Bette Davis, Gary Cooper, Kirk Douglas, Judy Garland, Maureen O’Hara, Mickey Rooney, Lana Turner, Rudy Vallee, Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, Doris Day, Joan Crawford, Walt Disney, Groucho and Harpo Marx, Donna Reed, Dinah Shore, Loretta Young , Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, Liberace, Ronald Reagan, Cary Grant, Katherine Hepburn, Burt Lancaster, as well as Goldie Hawn, Sylvester Stallone, and Renee Russo.  Whew!

More current celebs don’t wish to be left out.  They include: Brad Pitt, Kevin Bacon, Seth Rogen, Robert Downey Jr., Eva Mendes, Will Farrell, Shakira, Al Pacino, Jennifer Garner, Kevin Costner, Jack Nicholson, Oprah Winfrey, Julia-Louis-Dreyfus, Whoopie Goldberg, and Steven Spielberg.  (Press Room, Hoteldel.com)

Several movies were made at the Hotel Del, one of the most iconic?  “Some Like it Hot” with Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis, and Jack Lemmon.  HotelDel733

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And really…who WOULDN’T want to visit this gorgeousness?  Tomorrow…let’s talk weddings, and why this might be the perfect place to say, “I do”!   (PS – notice the blue bridge in the background of the above photo.  That’s how one travels by car to reach the “island”)

 

Keep Your Wedding Budget in Check

Can you keep your wedding budget in check? Well, it all depends how much research you do in advance.  You may THINK you’ve thought of everything, but there many little things you might not have planned for.   This can add up.  I read an article from the huffpost.com recently.  They had some good points to consider…all items that I encountered with my own daughters.

POSTAGE

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Postage is a not an insignificant charge; especially as your invitations may require more than one stamp. When my girls were planning their weddings, I’d buy a page of wedding stamps every couple of weeks.  I purchased extra, so they also had stamps for their thank you notes.  One of the girls’ future mother-in-laws would also surprise her with a book of wedding stamps every now and then as well.  It really helped.

VENDOR MEALS

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Vendor meals were not something I thought about until I was placing my final order for my first daughter’s meal count.  All of a sudden I was hit with the cost of 8 additional meals. At $ 100.00 a head, not an insignificant cost.  Many caterers have “vendor meal pricing”, however, which can be as much as 50 % off the price of guest meals.

LIGHTING

I signed daughter # 2’s venue contract and thought I was done.  But no…there were extras to consider…do we want lights, extra decorations, etc., etc.  I wasn’t going to go with the light package, but I sure liked it.  (Photo below – of my best friend, and her handsome son, (MY son-in- law!), at the venue WITH the light package).

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TENTS

Inclement weather…What if it rains?  Well…it did at daughter Maggie’s wedding.  We decided to book a tent 4 days out when the weather looked inclement.  It was a good call.  And at only $1,000, a lifesaver…but wait, add a delivery charge, light package, set up package, etc., etc. and it was almost $ 2,000.  This was NOT budgeted in…But in the grand scheme of things, there was no other option.  Below is daughter Maggie dancing with her Dad.– in the tent  🙂

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GRATUITIES…don’t forget to plan for this. It’s a big expense, and one you don’t want to scramble to round up the week of the wedding.  Below is a great guideline.

 

 

Decide How Much to Tip

For specific suggestions, see this “Tipper’s Table,” excerpted from event planner Mindy Weiss’s The Wedding Book($23, amazon.com):
Bartenders: 10 percent of the total liquor bill (to be split among them)
Bathroom attendants: $1 to $2 per guest
Catering manager: $200+ or a personal gift
Chef: $100+
Coat check attendants: $1 to $2 per guest
Hairstylist: 15 to 20 percent
Hotel chambermaids: $2 to $5 per room; $10 to $15 if you used a suite as your dressing room
Limo or bus drivers: 15 percent
Maitre d’hotel or headwaiter: 1 to 3 percent of food and beverage fees
Makeup artist: 15 to 20 percent
Musicians: 15 percent of fee for ceremony musicians; $25 to $50 per musician for reception
Photographer/videographer: If you’re paying a flat fee with no overtime, $100
Valet or parking attendants: $1 to $2 per car; 15 percent for valet parking
Waiters: $20 and up each (distributed by the catering manager or maitre d’)
Wedding planner: 15 percent of fee

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Groom’s Emergency Kit

Ah…the Groom’s Emergency Kit …  Do you have one?  I must admit…I had THE BEST BRIDAL EMERGENCY KIT for my two daughters when they married…but I didn’t think of my soon to be sons-in-law!  I now carry a groom’s kit in my role of wedding planner.  When my next two daughters marry, no one will have a better emergency kit for the groom than I!

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When one stops to thing about it, your groom probably needs an emergency kit more than you, the bride, does!  You will be surrounded by women.  Someone always has an advil, a tampon, (hope he doesn’t need THOSE) 😳 , a bandaid.  But do men carry those items?  NO.  But they may need one.

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Above is a nice list.  I have to admit…I am a little shocked to see that every single “Groom’s Emergency Kit” that I come across has some sort of alcohol included.  Really?  Do our men need to be sedated in order to marry us?  Really?!?

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Get creative.  Anyone can find a list on pinterest and follow it.  It takes real love and a creative spirt to design something like the tie above.  If that’s not a care package/emergency kit, I don’t know what is!  Much better at calming shaky nerves, or warming cold feet, than any alcoholic beverage.

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No need to get everything on a pinterest list.  But some must haves are: mints, pain reliever, bandaid, mini sewing kit, safety pin, snack, bottle of water, deodorant and ‘tide to go’ stick. Everything else is just fluff.

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The above shoe shine kit is adorable.  It has some great amenities I didn’t list on my minimalist package: shoe horn, nail clippers, collar stays, shoe shine kit.  And the nice thing about this is…it can be reused for years to come.

Your Wedding Dress Neckline

Your bridal gown. So much to think about — not the least of which is your wedding dress neckline.  Think it really doesn’t matter?  Think again… It matters…a lot.

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When choosing your dress, AND your neckline, the number one thing to consider is your figure.  Your wedding day is not the time to experiment.  Pick the style that most flatters you.  I think the gown below is exquisite.  The bride has a great combination of a sweetheart and scoop style.  She is slightly daring with the cut, but still presents a modest sillouette.  That’s the second point to consider.  A bride, in MHO, should not present a daring style, at least at the ceremony.

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The bride below chose a combo style as well – a sweetheart neckline with sheer gauze to her collar bone.  Quite the ingenue – which is what a bride should strive for.

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The dress below — could this dress be more beautiful? I don’t think so.  But is it appropriate, especially for a church wedding?  No.  Would it make just the perfect “Reception Dress”?  Yes.  it does have a place at a wedding.  But remember, this is just my opinion. That’s the thing about weddings.  There really is no right or wrong, just what you like, or don’t.

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Wedding Inspirasi

I think of all the dresses on this post, the one below is my favorite.  The illusion neckline is perfection.  The tiny rhinestones on the bodice give just the right amount of coverage so the dress achieves a little more decorum.

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The final thing to consider when choosing your wedding dress AND it’s neckline, is how your guests will respond.  You really shouldn’t have to, but your do. The last thing you want to do is offend your grandmother, or your groom’s…