Pride of the Hudson, Monroe
(845) 220-2120; prideofthehudson.com
Photo by Belinda Baker
Guests enjoy the front-row Hudson River view aboard the Pride of the Hudson.
There’s no better view of the Hudson than from on the Hudson itself, which you can get by chartering a cruise for your big day. Billynda Baker co-owns Hudson River Adventures with her mother, Lynne Kirschhoffer, and brother, Kevin Kirschhoffer, a graduate of Kings Point (the United States Merchant Marine Academy). From May to October, guests can enjoy a Champagne greeting as they board Pride of the Hudson, an 88-foot boat that sails through the majestic Hudson Highlands for weddings, rehearsal dinners, and brunches.
In fact, when it came time for Billynda to wed Karl Baker in July 2002, even she couldn’t resist the river’s charm. “Since it was my business, I wasn’t originally going to have my own wedding on the boat. But then my husband told me to do it because it would be amazing—and, as a customer that day, it was truly a dream come true,” she says.
The typical route departs from Newburgh Landing and heads south to the Bear Mountain Bridge. Up to 130 guests can view sites that include the Bannerman Castle, United States Military Academy at West Point, Cold Spring, Constitution Island, and the Bear Mountain Bridge.
Bookings usually are made a year in advance, “though we have had brides and grooms who have contacted us and made wedding arrangements for the current season,” says Baker. “My guests still rave about our wedding day,” she says. “Best of all, it doesn’t break the bank.” Packages start at $75 per person (including food and beverage) for three hours.
Photo by Cherfoto Images
Billynda and Karl Baker at their nautical wedding.
A newlywed herself, Lauren Tumas-Schumacher has spent the last year perusing wedding blogs, attending dress fittings, and scoping out every bridal trend on the market. As an assistant editor at InStyle, she enjoys interviewing celebrities and writing about fashion. As president of The American Society of Magazine Editors junior board (ASME Next), she can be found planning an event or mentoring college students in her spare time. She resides with her husband on Roosevelt Island.