Crime and Pun-Ishment

Crime and Pun-Ishment


We here at Kiana, along with the help of The Murder Mystery Co, are excited to host a murder mystery show this Halloween! It’s one of the very few times in the year that we open our doors to the public. What could be a more fun and beautiful setting for a Halloween pre-funk on the 30th? To get you in the spirit of the occasion, we’ve chosen a 1920’s event, and we request that you come in your flapper best! Did you know that Kiana dates back to the 1920’s as well? Kind of a neat little coincidence. In addition, Kiana was the setting for one of the most notorious fictional murders of the 1990’s; the death of Laura Palmer in Twin Peaks.  

 As you’re enjoying a huge buffet meal, someone will mysteriously drop dead, and it is up to you to exercise your sleuthing skills to help the detective figure out who is responsible. The Murder Mystery Co, based in Seattle, will be putting on their best to have you fully involved from the very beginning, and it’s up to you to catch the killer (who may or may not be named Bob..). It’s guaranteed to create quite a memorable experience for everyone, so bring your thinking cap and your appetite! Get your tickets HERE today!

Murder Mystery Dinner
Wednesday, October 30, 2019
Join us at rustic Kiana Lodge for Crime & Pun-ishment,a 1920s murder mystery experience, and help the crowd and the detective figure out whodunit?

Price is $45 per person and includes a buffet dinner

Menu Includes:

Rolls and butter
Caesar salad
Baked potatoes
Seasonal vegetables
Breaded tilapia with citrus salsa
Prime rib

Doors open 6:00 PM
Dinner served at 6:30 PM
Cash Bar available

Space is limited, Prepaid Reservations Only

For reservations, please purchase on Brown Paper Tickets or contact us at (866) 738-4307.

There is a $3 processing fee to reserve over the phone

Kiana Lodge Annual Showcase 2019

Kiana Lodge Annual Showcase 2019

My goodness, it’s that time of year already. Seriously, where does the time go? Our favourite day is finally here again! Kiana’s wedding open house is a huge feat every year. We open our doors to wedding couples from near and afar for a day of everything we do best. This one day a year, always the third Saturday in January, is a huge undertaking. Our couples have a chance to sample some of our best dishes, and chat with some of our favourite vendors. From appetizers to florists, there’s so much to experience. We put our best foot forward for our wedding couples to see some design ideas of what they could potentially do for their special day, taste some marvelous food, and experience what the flow of the venue is like when it’s filled with people.

We try our best to leave a lasting impression every time, so naturally this event takes weeks, even months of preparation in advance. Well in advance, the invites and fliers are designed by our sales team and printed by our marketing staff and menus are coordinated so that we can get them mailed out to our interested couples and our most favourite of vendors. Then come the design aspects; how we’d like to see the room laid out, colour schemes, table/chair selections, etc. Some items are rented, and some belong to Kiana. This year we featured a wonderful mixture of our rounds and wooden farm tables from Olympic Farm Style Events. Vineyard chairs were provided by Court Party Rentals. This year’s colour scheme featured “Fig Faille” and “Grey Classic” from BBJ Linen. Both colours, I feel, are just so elegant in our space.

This event is such a great opportunity to sample some of the great work Dave (our fantastic food and beverage manager) and Ceasar (our fabulous chef) create. As they’re always busy in the kitchen, so you get to know them through the great work they do. They were really excited to share some of their best dishes that are new for 2019! From marking steaks to smoking salmon, the cooks are busy all week long preparing for a crazy day filled with food, drink, and many, many questions. I will say there’s not much that rivals Ceasar’s Smoked Salmon Salad. He can certainly turn something quite ordinary into something extraordinary. Plus, his handmade Lumpia is simply to die for!

The staff have been busy preparing for the big day as well. They’ve been working on improvement/beautification projects and training around the clock. From gardening to washing chairs, they truly work hard to keep our beautiful venue in top condition; even in the off season. As we love to make parties great, it’s important to have everything in tip top condition, so every detail counts. The actual setup takes us an average of two days to make sure every detail is as perfect as possible.

I’d like to end off by simply thanking those who made it out over the weekend. We truly appreciate meeting each and every one of you. It gives us the opportunity to catch a glimpse of what is important to you for one of the most important events of your life. As the season moves forward, we will be getting to know you more and more, so we can craft an occasion that your friends and family will enjoy as much as you. Cheers to a great 2019 wedding season!  Here are a few photos from our friends at Pixeldust weddings that we absolutely love!

A Mother’s Day To Remember

A Mother’s Day To Remember

Mother’s day is a day to honor and celebrate the women that have shaped and inspired us throughout the years. They’re strong, strong willed and have made many sacrifices that have shaped us into the adults we are today. Whatever she’s done for you, it’s cause to celebrate her. Whether or not you choose to start the day off early, or sleep in, treat her to brunch at beautiful Kiana.

You can’t go wrong with a setting as gorgeous as this. Did you know, Kiana partners with Kenmore Air to offer a mother’s day to remember? Based on the shores of Lake Union in Seattle, they offer a scenic seaplane ride across the waters Puget Sound. It is certainly a way to make an entrance and make it an adventure to remember. For those who have been here to experience Kiana, you know the walk up from the dock is a magical experience in itself. For those of you who haven’t, it’s almost like a gift for the senses. Not only do you get the sights of the gardens along the waterfront, but you get the aromas of fresh rosemary and lavender among the sea air.  

If mom is not a fan of flying a brunch day at Kiana is simply a beautiful event to experience as well. We have an extensive menu filled with goodies for everyone to enjoy as much as the sights! Relax and enjoy the day in a laid back atmosphere and get your resting brunch faces on!  

Parking Paving Perfection

Parking Paving Perfection

The big day has finally come. After many years of waiting, listening, budgeting, and hoping for approvals; our parking lots are finally getting some much needed attention. After years of anticipation, Kiana is finally getting paved! Thanks to our friends at PMECC and a small stretch of dry weather (which we know is a rarity in the PNW outside of summertime), we were finally able to get this much needed addition to our beautiful venue accomplished! Gracee, our resident kitty cat, was the unofficial foreman for the project. She was very “hands-on” riding around on the equipment with the guys, and quickly became the most favourite part of their day.

It was a very long two week process too from a venue perspective. We have staff here every day of the week, who had to move their cars around...a lot… We had breakfast and lunch deliveries to make every day, and we were constantly driving around heavy equipment, gravel piles, light poles and other odds and ends. Every day it was a new obstacle course of some sort. The first day of concrete was right in the middle of a snowstorm..even right here on the waterfront. We had events going on during this period, so we had to get creative with wet concrete and getting our guests inside the buildings. Same story with our vendors as well; they had to find new and creative ways to deliver their products to us.

We are so grateful for everyone’s support and patience during this was certainly an adventure. Now that we’re working on the finishing touches, we’re finally starting to get things back to normal around here. With the bulk of the project finished, here’s some photos of the post construction for all you Kiana fans out there:        

Easter Bunny Brunchy 

Easter Bunny Brunchy 



Spring is a time for rebirth and renewal, and we definitely get our fair share of it here at Kiana. The gardeners are busy tending to the endless tulips and daffodils that are spread out all over the property. After a crazy winter of “snowmageddon” in Western Washington it’s certainly good to see something new! The Geese have returned with their new little babies; they’re growing so fast. Despite having our own kitty cat, we have a population explosion of baby bunbuns that are simply adorable as well. We’ve taken a break from our spring auction season to bring you some thoughts on one of our favourite springtime holidays.

Easter Sunday at Kiana is always a brunchy extravaganza. Tickets always sell out super fast, as the kids are always eagerly awaiting a meet and greet with the Easter bunny himself and searching out the delectable candy filled eggs hidden outside. Year after year, we always prepare copious amounts of food to enjoy, and we have many families who have made Kiana their easter tradition. Aside from the traditional ham meal, Kiana carries our own tradition by serving our signature salmon. The one time we tried to go in a different direction and take it off the menu for the holiday, we nearly had a mutiny on our hands!   

Every year it’s so heartwarming to watch the little one’s faces light up when Mr. Easter Bunny makes his entrance, and as they search through their eggs for the magical golden ticket. Being at Kiana for ten years now, my favourite year was one where a little boy with a huge heart gave away his prize to a disabled, wheelchair bound little girl. I don’t think there was a dry eye in the place after that. It’s never a bad day when you get to witness such random acts of kindness. It teaches us all a lesson in humility and being humble. So, if you’re not a new year resolution type of person, maybe this spring we can all focus a little more on these types of lessons and how we can improve our world. Until next time..   

A New Year

Kiana has so much to be thankful for this season. We’ve experienced so many changes in the last year, it’s made our heads spin. From a new food and beverage team, to new management, to a big increase in weddings, we’re so grateful for every last one of these events that have transpired and so much more. With 2018 gone, and a great kickoff to 2019 it’s been a heck of a year already, with so much more to come. Reflecting on the spirit of thanksgiving and the season of gratitude, we thought we’d take a moment to think about the things Kiana is truly thankful for, and looking forward to in a fresh new year..

 As our thanksgiving and holiday season were sell outs and our weddings have wound down, Kiana would like to kickoff the season of gratitude by thanking our staff, both old and new. Our manager, Brittany, came to our team in January 2018. Her invigorating demeanor, her fresh outlook, and her warm smile have made her such a wonderful addition. Our sales team works tirelessly through thick and thin to make our wedding couples dreams come true, and our corporate clients returning for more. Our food and beverage team, led by Dave and Ceasar, are nothing short of marvelous. Their experience and skill have truly embodied what makes Kiana so special. Our garden and maintenance team are simply responsible for the magic of the buildings and the outdoors. Through their work with local nurseries, Kiana comes alive. Lastly, our servers and bartenders are the true backbone. Their friendly service and warm smiles are the icing on the cake. Young and old alike, they’re the best representation of Kiana and its core value of spectacular service.

            Aside from the staff, we’d love to thank our most important members:YOU, from twin peak looky-loos, to our regular corporate clients, to our wonderful wedding couples, you’re the ones who we’re the most thankful for. We’ve enjoyed getting to know each and every one of you. We wouldn’t be in this business without you! We’ve experienced a record breaking year last year, in more areas than one. We’re hoping for an even better year yet to come. So, reflecting on that note, we’d like to raise our hands to you in gratitude, and wish you all the best for the year to come.

Cheers to a great new year!

Kiana's Rising Instagram Star

Kiana's Rising Instagram Star

Everyone meet our mascot, Graycee. This 7-pound bundle of grey adopted us one dark and cold night in December. Hungry and wet, she quickly warmed up and became a part of the Kiana family. While she typically remains scarce for events, you may perhaps catch a glimpse of her making her rounds of the property, or riding around in the golf cart with the gardeners. You may even be lucky enough to be graced by her appearance at your event if she so chooses; as she’s a very choosy girl. She has quickly become an Instagram sensation, and has casually worked her way into more than a few wedding and guest photos as well as those of many of our staff. Her piercing yellow eyes and her petite stature steal the show and your heart. She can suck the stress out of any situation, and turn most people into baby-talking ooher-goohers! She’s marvelous with kids too! If you see her, be sure to say hello!

Gracie 1.png
Gracie 1.png.jpg

Kiana Lodge Twin Peaks Paint & Sip


Kiana Lodge Twin Peaks Paint & Sip


September 19th, 2018 | 6:00pm - 9:00pm


Kiana Lodge “Twin Peaks” Paint & Sip

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Join us for an evening of cherry pie and coffee featuring a special painting of Laura’s Log from TV’s cult classic “Twin Peaks!”

$45 per person + tax which includes the cost of instruction, painting supplies, 1 drink ticket good for a beer, house wine, or non-alcoholic drink, & light appetizers

Doors open at 6:00pm and the painting will begin at 6:30pm

Full no-host bar ∙ Cash and Credit Accepted

Canvas size is 11 x 14

Seating is limited. Purchase your tickets HERE!

Twin Peaks.jpg


A moment in time, a moment for years to come

A moment in time, a moment for years to come

A moment in time, a moment for years to come

Kiana had the pleasure of working with H2R for an updated photoshoot of our grounds and food, sans wedding. So much has changed over the years, as it has been a few since our last, so it was a very much-needed update for us to share with our clients. A venue photoshoot sounds like such a simple concept: hire a photographer and let them go to town, but it there is so much more that goes on behind the scenes. It took weeks of preparation actually, nearly a month of behind the scenes work. From deep cleans, to fresh stains, our staff worked around the clock and events too. Floors were waxed and buffed, cobwebs constantly being swept away, lights of all different shapes and sizes constantly being moved and replaced to find the perfect wattage…you name it, and it was done. The week before and the day of, tides had to be watched around the clock to get the perfect beach shots. We did not want the tides to be too high, or we would not be able to fully see the infamous “Laura’s Log”, but we did not want them to be too low either. The grounds crew constantly had to keep the flowers deadheaded, the lawn watered and mowed, bricks washed and moss free. We do a lot of this work in our general upkeep anyway, but extra hours were worked to ensure no detail was overlooked.

When the day finally came, we had the perfect Seattle weather; overcast and 70. We had a full kitchen, and a full menu of our bestselling dishes. We had staff there to set the rooms in a variety of different styles. We shot rooms/buildings for wedding and corporate setups in a variety of styles. Tables and buffets were set with food, beverages were poured, appetizers were tabled and passed. Overall, it was a full workday for everyone that was involved. Shots took hours to complete, tables and food were moved around all day long. Chairs were set, torn down, and moved, both indoors and out. The setups took nearly as much time as the photos did. With two buildings and the outdoors, it was a huge undertaking, but it was very successful. We’ve gained some really great photographs for use in menu making, marketing, and to provide our future and present clients with a fresh new perspective on this beautiful space we call Kiana.

Just a few of our favorites

Just a few of our favorites

A few of our staff here briefly recounts a few of their favorite wedding stories

Working in the wedding industry, you see a ton of weddings. Each and every one is different in it’s own way. Even if you have the exact same setup and decorations; no two are alike. Industry professionals who have done hundreds, if not thousands of weddings, will remember something from each one, whether it be a person, a colour, or some sort of minute detail. The memories come flooding back with the particular link that binds them together, and there are just some that will stick with you forever. Here are a few of our favorite wedding memories that will stick with us here at Kiana:  

My most favorite wedding memory comes from quite a few years ago. I was bar-tending a wedding for an older couple from the LGBTQ community. It was a relaxed morning crowd of about 60 people who had come out to celebrate their commitment to each other (prior to the legalization of gay marriage). It had just been a quiet and relaxed day. They went through their first dance as a couple and at the end, they took off their tuxedo jackets to reveal matching flame shirts, and suddenly broke into a group flash mob dance to the YMCA. I was almost in tears because it was so adorable, fun, and exciting for their guests. Everyone absolutely loved the element of surprise. It was as exciting and fun for the staff to watch as it was for everyone else. -Lynnette, Banquet Captain

My favorite themed wedding memory is one that I will never forget. The bride and groom were very big Twin Peaks fans and decided to recreate a scene from the premier episode of Twin Peaks TV show. The bride wrapped herself in plastic head to toe with her beautiful white wedding dress on and laid next to “Laura’s Log” on the beach of Kiana. They also had cherry pie, donuts for desserts and little touches of Twin Peaks throughout the décor. It is always fun to experience weddings that are non- traditional. -Sonya, Office Manager (previous Event Manager)

A simple ordinary looking wooden box arrives with the groom’s frail and elderly grandmother a little before the ceremony is to begin.  The groom extends a truly warm greeting to his grandmother, very excited she is able to be with him on his wedding day. She gently opens the box, inside lays a beautifully dried and preserved single white rose boutonniere. This boutonniere was the groom’s grandfathers that he wore on his wedding day some 50 years ago while marrying the love of his life.  The boutonniere was carefully pinned to the groom with a lot of emotions as you can probably imagine. The groom was very close to his grandparents and had lost his grandfather a few years earlier. The grandfather was most certainly present and part of the groom’s special day. -Pamela, Event Manager

Sometimes, even the smallest details make the biggest impact. What will be yours?

April Showers bring on the Wine Florals


The upcoming wine tasting dinner event for this month is going to feature wines from the Foxy Roxy Winery. Not knowing anything from this winery in particular, or more than just the basics of wine, I decided to do a little investigation into the name, the wines, and what makes the wine from this Columbia Valley winery so unique.

Located on the Royal Slope near Othello, Foxy Roxy sources their grapes from the popular StoneRidge Vineyards located in the Columbia Valley between Royal City and Othello. Columbia Valley is quickly becoming the second largest wine producing region in the United States, with its rich soils and dry sunny weather.

Dave, our Food and Beverage manager has teamed up with Frank from the Masi to bring a wine dinner that’s surely to get the wines from Foxy Roxy noticed! For more information, or to purchase tickets, be sure to visit the Current Happenings section on our website

 Viognier, made from a vine that was nearly extinct at one point, boasts notes of honey, stone fruits, and minerals. The finicky grapes have made a huge comeback since the 1980’s in North America, requiring precision wine making, and a desire to be consumed young. This wine is designed to be paired with sweet, spicy foods like Dave’s peppery arugula salad and apricot dressing. 

Roxy’s Rosé of Syrah: Produced using a different method than the average Rosé typically results in a much darker colour than the traditional “Pink”. This wine supports a flavour that is most definitely more savory than sweet. Pairing well with peppery meals, this one is going to be paired with grilled lamb chops- yum!

Foxy Roxy’s award winning flagship wine, Vixen Red features a blend of Merlot, Petit Verdot, Malbec and Carménère- a wine that was not recognized until 1998.  A Bordeaux wine with a “malevolent side”, this one produces a long lasting finish with it’s smooth, full bodied and balanced flavour. This one has won the label awards within the valley’s wine scene. Pair this one with a Prosciutto wrapped Chicken breast, and it’s sure to knock your socks off!

Port Style Cab Franc- Breaking all the old school winemaking rules by adding brandy, this kind of wine certainly gives credit to it’s original grape but with a whole new spin. Due to its rising popularity in the PNW, the Cab Franc grape is great for blending, adding a spiciness while smoothing out the traditional tannins that a red grape brings. Dave has a Strawberry-Rhubarb tart recipe that is to die for!


For more information on Foxy Roxy Wines visit their website:

Early Spring Snow at Kiana Lodge

Early Spring Snow at Kiana Lodge

            The last few days have brought us something that is usually pretty scarce in Western Washington: Snow. That dreaded “s-word” that native Seattleites come to dread has come in to greet us in style. We’ve enjoyed a rather nice, warm winter the past few months, so naturally, mother nature has decided to shake things up a little and give the daffodils a coating of the white stuff. As we know, snow is somewhat of a rare occurrence around here, and it’s even more rare to see it here on the waterfront at Kiana. For those as excited to see it as I am, here are some photos we’ve managed to snap of the event. Enjoy!  



Winter Wedding Colours

Winter Wedding Colours

So you’ve decided to go against the norms and have yourself a wintertime wedding! The season is filled with gatherings, celebrations, and traditions; so why not throw a wedding into the mix of it all? 


Need help on colour solutions? Everyone associates winter with red and green. However, there’s so much more in the colour palette you can play with to make your wedding not feel like one of the countless holiday parties that fill the season.


Go Bold

Winter is a time that’s often associated with darkness. Deep shades are still the perfect complement to the season. Bold has been on the rise in the last few years in general. Deep shades of burgundy, navy blue, and even purple are a great compliment to a dark winter’s night. When the landscape is lacking, use colour to fill it up. It will help you stand apart from the crowd. If you feel like a bold coloured tablecloth is too much for the space, try neutralizing it with a soft ivory or white and save the boldness for the napkins or accent pieces such as flower vases, coloured votives, or even boldly coloured vintage water goblets if that’s your thing. It will go a long way, trust me. 


Metallic accents

Wintertime spaces are naturally cozied up with lots of candlelight. Why not highlight that candlelight with metallic accents? Silver and gold are always a classic, elegant touch to weddings any time of the year; but have you thought about bronze, copper, or champagne? Go with frosted for a more wintery touch by adding sheer metallic fabrics as an overlay or a runner over your tablecloth.  


And if you want to go classic..

Dove grey or silver with garlands of green and white and gold accent pieces make for the perfect wintery “naked” look on a white table cloth. It doesn’t scream holiday party in the slightest, and is sure to add elegance to any room.    

White rose and poppy bouquets with frosty eucalyptus and pale pink accents are a good way to supplement big, bold holiday-ish colours such as red, teal or navy. 

Engagement Season

Engagement Season

The winter months are a season for family, gratitude, and also a season engagements. Seriously, the statistics are staggering… estimates state that six out of every ten couples become engaged between Thanksgiving and Valentine's Day. There are so many directions newly engaged couples find themselves pulled in after the proposal, it can feel overwhelming. Everyone will be wanting to know the details for your wedding right away, so, after the yes, what are the initial steps do you take next?


Set a timeline

The average engagement period for couples is approximately 15 months. Set an approximate month or date that matches your preferred time of year. Remember, this is not set in stone. You need time to celebrate and enjoy your engagement, locate and book a venue, work around any major holidays or any major friend/family gatherings. Your important guests will appreciate the information early on, and start making mental accommodations.


Set a budget and Open a Wedding Account

Start saving as soon as you can. Even the smallest wedding can cost a lot more than you think. If you have the option of opening a savings account for your wedding cash, do it. It will come in handy, plus it’ll be fun to watch your hard earned bucks go into buying everything for your special day. Depositing a set amount from each paycheck and using an online wedding budget tool will help you get on your way to your dream wedding. However uncomfortable the conversation may be, you also need to figure out what each of your families are contributing. As soon as that is out of the way, you will know exactly how much you will need to save on your own.


Draft a Guest List

Draft your guest list early on in your planning process, and ask your families to do the same. Prioritizing your lists and breaking them down into categories early on will help you in many ways. It will help you in choosing a venue, it will help you stay within your budget, and it will even influence the time you spend with them on your day of. So, be wise, and work on it early. Keep in mind this is just an estimated number, it’s not set in stone. You can always add or drop later on when you've made some more decisions on what your vision is, and where you are choosing to say I do.


Don't forget to daydream… a lot!

Dream up your special day. Figure out your style, how you want your wedding to look. Where is your dream location? Rustic or Elegant? Intimate or a party of the decade? Daydreaming is certainly allowed and encouraged! It can be an important tool to help you formulate some important decisions later on like finding a venue or that perfect dress. You don’t have to go it alone, ask your fiance or even some of your most important friends for their input as well. Once the important elements are figured out, you’re well on your way to dress and venue shopping. We once had a wedding that had all vintage china, that the couple enjoyed shopping around at flea markets for.


Pick Your Venue

As popular venues book up a year or two in advance, you’ll want to hit this hard once you’ve figured out what your vision is. You will likely be asked your estimated guest count, and a desired timeframe/date for your wedding. Come prepared to ask and be asked loads of questions. You will need to find out what decorating restrictions are, what the venue can provide for you (in house catering, tables, chairs, china, etc), nearby accommodations (if not onsite, you will need to hop on this early in the game too); the more armed with questions you come, the better of an idea you’ll have of how it’ll fit into your budget. Once a deposit is paid, the date and the venue are yours!

If your accommodations are not onsite, I cannot stress enough that you will need to check availability at these places and place holds as soon as you book the venue. They are equally important!! Especially if you have a large amount of out-of-towners. If you sit on this one, someone will beat you to it. Guaranteed. We’ve had people find themselves in this predicament and it can be very frustrating for all around.


Decide if a Wedding Planner or an on-site coordinator is right for you

If you choose to have a wedding planner, you will need to decide this pretty early on in the game. Wedding planners and On-site coordinators are very closely related and do a lot of the same things but be sure to know the difference depending on the venue you select. Our on-site coordinators will be there for you throughout the entire planning process, and can help you achieve your specific design. They know their venue best, and what does/doesn’t work.   They will point you in the direction of vendors if you need it, and they will be your contact on your big day. They will also act as the liaison between you and your vendors, and will help you achieve your vision day of, making sure you stick to your timeline.

A wedding planner will help you with all of this too of course, They can also help you design and draft your wedding, and assist with many other personal needs such as hair and makeup, down to china and floral design. They will be there to help you plan everything from your engagement party to your honeymoon. They’re the ones available for the crisis at 3am or 36 hours before, and they’re a little more hands on.    


Book your Priority Vendors

Most vendors book out a year in advance, so make sure you get in with your most preferred ones as soon as you can. If you need assistance in finding vendors, your venue will likely have at least a recommendation list for you to choose from, or even provide some themselves.


Party and Enjoy Each Other

Remember to relax and enjoy your engagement  Have some time to yourselves and give your family and friends some time to enjoy you!

Why Team Building is important, and why it should be your number one investment

Why Team Building is important, and why it should be your number one investment

            Despite it’s reputation for being something that is.. Well.. bothersome, team building is actually of significant importance to your company. After spending the last several months studying effective human relations in the workplace, I have come to find team building to be a very real and very important factor in the workplace. The topic has also become very important to me, because, in the past,  I have personally witnessed the devastating effects a dysfunctional team can have on the workplace. Allow me to be clear here, I am not an expert on the subject, nor will I pretend to be. What I can offer you is a small fraction of all the information I have compiled over the last several months, and the perfect location for your team to meet at. Now down to the nitty gritty, or the interconnected views that I find very relevant to the subject.


●       Trust is the number one foundation for true, effective teamwork. People waste so much time and energy creating false harmonies in the workplace, it’s time we ditch the facade and engage with some truth and self awareness.. even our vulnerabilities


●       Conflict is healthy!  Without it, we couldn’t get anywhere without open debate and people expressing their opinions. Those who need to assert their strong opinions are allowed to do so, and they provide the detailed information to back their statements up.


●       True Commitment begins with joint transparency. Those who come together to formulate decisions, do so as a team, and with transparency. This is not about consensus, or people agreeing for the sake of agreeing. It is about bringing forth the data to support the cause and ensuring each teammate is able to weigh in on the subject.


●       The success of a team is being clear on its standards. It is up to the leader to set the tone, or the standard for the group. However, it’s up to the group to hold one another accountable, and accept it when they are held accountable individually. The team will likely respond by pushing themselves harder and challenge themselves.


●       Learn to look at your goals like a sports game. Remember each member plays a role in contributing to the win or loss. Through good communication, concise goals, and a little trust, the team will be rewarded for their efforts. If they are a true team, they will be able to express their vulnerability and accept the loss and learn from the experience. 


It’s not the size of the company that keeps it competitive, it’s how well your team functions that really drive the success of your organization. This is something that requires consistent effort, as it is always a delicate balance of egos and recognition for some, but the end result is nothing short of amazing.

Now for the sales aspect.. We can provide an amazing, private space for your team building meeting. There’s honestly not a more beautiful space I can think of that offers the privacy we do. There’s all sorts of different ways you can customize your team building offsite. If I got into that, this blog would be way too long! Seriously.. I can write for days about ways to use Kiana. However, I can honestly tell you that you will find it hard to leave once you've arrived! So please, stop on by, we’d love to work with you!

Wedding Ceremonies

Wedding Ceremonies

Debating the “who” of your wedding ceremony


Time and culture are fluid.. Nothing ever stays the same. As time passes, cultural values change. As culture shifts, so do the defining values. As defining values change, so do traditions associated with them. As the internet has evolved, culture has changed alongside with it. It has opened up a vast new world of ideas and has had a profound effect on western culture and some of its associated values. As the “culture” of the wedding ceremony changes, couples are faced with changing values and traditions that surround it, and deciding which ones are the most important to them.

            Now back to that internet changing the world thing as I mentioned before in that dry, highly-philosophical paragraph before. The internet has become an integral part of wedding culture. It has become an important tool for resources, and has greatly facilitated many of the processes involved in planning your ceremony. In recent years, Washington State, as well as many others, have opened up the option for anyone to get ordained online and therefore, legally marry couples. With the help of Kiana’s favourite wedding officiant, Annemarie Juhlian, we’ve decided to outline the key differences for all the couples out there who are debating the “who” of their wedding ceremony. Annemarie is a seriously awesome lady --and the winner of multiple awards by many top wedding magazines might I add-- We’ve had the pleasure of working with her many times over the years, and she wouldn’t be on our preferred vendor list if we didn’t find her work to be professional yet, warm, sincere and genuine. In her own words, she writes to everyone faced with the “who” debate:


Professional vs. Amateur.  A wedding ceremony is a ‘one time major life event.’  Some couples feel comfortable entrusting the ceremony text, delivery and overall ‘feel’ to someone who has no or limited experience with officiating a ceremony.  Others want someone who has mastered the art of ceremony and who can bring perspective, calm/peace, problem-solving skills and a sense of ‘order’ to a wedding ceremony and day.


Well Written & Conversational Delivery:  Writing and crafting a heartfelt and personalized ceremony is an emotional event.  For me, it’s important that the text and delivery be conversational, easy, fun-loving, reverent and heartfelt.  Someone who has serious wedding ceremony experience can weave together words and rituals that appropriately celebrate a couple.  If someone doesn’t have this understanding and knowing, especially in front of a group, overall presentation may be lacking.


Leading a Wedding Rehearsal:  Leading a wedding rehearsal is an art.  An experienced Officiant has led many rehearsals and can bring fun and order (and calm) to a rehearsal experience. In addition, this is a serious opportunity for an Officiant to connect,  on a personal level, with family and friends so that everyone is at ease on the wedding day.


“The Hour Before” – The hour before a wedding ceremony is serious ‘go time.’  This means, in this work that I do, I become a couple’s Air Traffic Controller, taking care of all pre-ceremony details, just like a wedding planner would.  For someone who doesn’t have this ‘wedding day of’ experience, it can’t be taught – it has to come from being a part of many wedding days.


Well, there you have it. You can still choose Uncle Dan to officiate your wedding ceremony, we’re not saying you can’t.. But will the experience and the sincere, honest message of your overall journey and commitment to one another be the same?


Until next time..

Pursuing Trivial Traditions (Part two)

Last time we bought to you a few of the best wedding traditions and the meanings behind them. As I find this a very interesting subject, I’ve decided to include a few more traditions for you all to enjoy.  

Just me and a few best peeps

During the wedding ceremony, the bride, traditionally, is always on the groom’s left side, as he needed his sword hand to fend off other potential suitors or other objectors. Stemming from the days of lore, when marriage was by capture, the bride’s family other suitors would kidnap the bride and whisk her off for revenge, even at the very last minute. Nowadays, this decision is right down to personal preference. Unless, of course, you’re expecting a sword fight.. Kiana has yet to see one of those! The role of the groomsmen started during the old kidnapping days as well. They would assist the groom in the capture of his bride and protect her until the moment she was wed, and the marriage was consummated. The role of bridesmaids have nearly always been present in various roles. What gave rise to the role of the wedding party popularity, is due mostly to the requirement of ten witnesses for a wedding during the roman empire. The wedding party would dress like the bride and groom to confuse kidnappers and those who wished to do the couple harm. 

If you like it, put a ring on it

Wedding rings were invented by the Egyptians who exchanged rings made of reeds or papyrus. The circle symbolized eternity and therefore, the couples never ending love for one another. The ring was placed on the fourth finger of the left hand because they believed that it held a vein that led directly to the heart, later being named the vein of love by the Romans. The first rings of metal were made by the Romans and were given as a part of the bride’s dowry as a symbol of betrothal. Rings that included jewel settings were a part of Venetian betrothal culture in the 15th century. Traditionally, only the bride wore a wedding ring. Men wearing wedding rings did not become popular until the 1950’s in America.

Let them eat cake  

Originally considered a luxury item, the tradition of the wedding cake actually started in Roman times as a loaf of bread that was broken over the bride’s head to symbolize the end of her virginity and to wish her fortune and fertility. The attending guests would then grab a piece, as it was to bring them luck as well. What eventually developed into the tiered wedding cake started as a game where the couple would have to kiss over the top of a pile of sweet rolls, without knocking them over. This type of cake, called Croquembouche, became widely popular in France in Medieval times, and still continues today. White-tiered fruitcakes developed during Victorian times, when white became a symbol of wealth and prosperity. The more tiers you had, the wealthier you were considered to be. It was the bride’s responsibility to cut and pass the cake originally, but as the cakes grew in size and shape, the groom became the assistant to the bride. They would cut the cake and serve it to their guests together.     

Friends don’t let friends drink bad wine

What began as an assurance that people weren’t drinking poisoned wine in Greek and Roman culture, friends would wish one another health as they clinked together their filled wine glasses. The wine would spill over into each others glasses, and they would drink to show that it was untainted. The Romans later developed this idea by adding a piece of stale bread, or toast, to their wine. The bread would not only taste better, but it would reduce the acidity of the wine. The person being wished health would eat the saturated piece of bread. At wedding celebrations, the father was the first to drink from the communal wine pitcher in order to ensure that it wasn’t poisoned. He would, in turn, wish the couple health and to the health of their future children. Thus, the wedding “toast” was born! Don’t worry, we won’t be putting bread in your champagne flute anytime soon.

            Wedding traditions are, to say the least, interesting. Though every wedding is different, they are largely the same in the grand scheme of things. Transitioning from past to present, most wedding traditions were born out of superstitions or a grand display of wealth. They have become such an integral part of weddings today -we just can’t imagine a wedding without. 

Pursuing Trivial Traditions (Part one)

Pursuing Trivial Traditions (Part one)

Ever wonder why western wedding traditions are what they are? From the dress details down to the ring, everything has a reason for being included in the big day. In a two part series, I will share with you some fun wedding facts and trivia that you can use for a night at the pub or to wow your wedding crowd with.    

A Knot to remember

The phrase “tying the knot” refers to a tradition of the bride and groom having their hands or wrists tied with twine or wrapped together with linen to symbolize their commitment to each other. The earliest reference to this tradition dates back to the 13th century.

Party on

Stag parties, more commonly known as bachelor parties, started in Fifth-century Sparta. When a man was to marry, his friends would put together a raunchy party to say goodbye to his bachelor days. In contrast, the bachelorette party did not really become a tradition until 19th century America. Ladies would gather for a luncheon and an afternoon of gossip. 19th century America also gave rise to the bridal shower, as a bride no longer required a dowry in order to marry. Small gifts were wrapped up and hidden inside an umbrella or a parasol, which would “shower” the bride when she opened it up.

A Summertime Wedding

The month of June is the most popular month to get married in America. This stemmed from the Roman goddess, Juno, who is the goddess of marriage and childbearing. There’s an old folk rhyme that also dictated which days were the best to marry: “Marry on Monday for health, Tuesday for wealth, Wednesday the best day of all, Thursday for crosses, Friday for losses, and Saturday for no luck at all.” ( This tradition has changed in the modern age however. Saturday has become the most coveted day for weddings: our Saturdays book out a year or two in advance.. We nearly never see a Wednesday wedding here at Kiana; but hey, if you’d like a wednesday night wedding, we can certainly arrange that. Our location here in Western Washington, makes August our most popular month for weddings as well because of the typical cool northwest rainy weather.

What’s a girl to wear?

In traditional western culture, wedding dresses were actually just a girls best church dress. The rich would be dressed in rare color, jewels, and beautiful furs. Queen Victoria went white for her big day, starting a new tradition in 1840. The white dress became a symbol for wealth and purity. Bleaching techniques were not very effective at the time, making white a very hard color to both achieve and maintain, naturally making the linen more costly. Traditionally, the style of the dress was just made to the style of the current period. It wasn’t until the 1960’s that the floor-length hoop-style skirt became your a-typical fashion. Dresses now come in all shapes and colors; the most popular color is still white after all.

Beware of the Evil Spirits

Veils were worn by ancient Greek and Roman brides to protect them from evil spirits. The tradition of the groom carrying the bride over the threshold of their home stemmed from the same reasoning as well. If a bride or a bridesmaid were to stumble on her way to the altar, it was believed that she would never marry. They also carried bundles of fragrant herbs with them up the aisle, to cleanse the air from the spirits. It was also much welcome in the days where hygiene standards were quite different than they are today. Carriage rides to and from the wedding were quite an event as well. Firecrackers, bells, or other loud noise-makers were used to spook the spirits, and bring luck to the wedding party. Something old, new, borrowed, and blue originated in superstition as well, and symbolized the transition from single to married life. 

Wedding traditions is a vast and fascinating subject. There’s a lot more to the basics than meets the eye. From tying the knot, to something borrowed and something blue, there’s a reason why things are as they are. There’s a lot more to come so stay tuned!

Part two, to be continued... 

A Damn Fine Cup of Coffee

Way back when in 1989, a great tv show was born right here in Western Washington. The
who-dunnit murder mystery that is Twin Peaks has developed quite a following among the
30-somethings over the years. 28 years later, we here at Kiana, still meet people from all
over the world who come to tour our beautiful venue. A mix of the supernatural and the
traditional, the show explores the dark side of small town secrets. This younger generation may not know about Laura Palmer yet, but thanks to Showtime, they will soon get the chance to get to know the characters in the seemingly picture perfect town of Twin Peaks and Special Agent Dale Cooper. Brought back to life by Mark Frost and David Lynch, and many of the original cast members, they will learn about what makes the show so great. She’s dead..wrapped in plastic… Many scenes from the original show were filmed right here at Kiana; which will be featured in the new series as well. People from all over the world stop by to catch the behind the scenes glimpses of what makes the show so iconic. Our rustic Main lodge serves as much of the backdrop for the Great Northern Hotel and the Blue Pine Lodge (aka Josie, Pete, and Catherine’s house). Of course one cannot forget the famous log on the beach where the body of the town’s homecoming queen, Laura Palmer, washed ashore wrapped in plastic. 

The owls are not what they seem… Throughout the years, the Main Lodge here at Kiana has been remodeled a bit, but much the original character and scenic background still remains. The series opens up with a scene shot in the kitchen: Pete Martell looks out the window to discover Laura Palmer’s body. The giant butcher block is the most recognizable thing left from that scene. The dining room where the Norwegians met Audry has undergone a major transformation as well. The large fireplace, in fact, all of the fireplaces used are still here, as well as a lot of the background decor. It's just all arranged differently for the most part. The large Native Coastal Art wall murals painted by local artist Duane Pasco are perhaps the most easily recognizable background scenery aside from the waterfront and the log. They're something that provide such a unique backdrop to both Kiana and the lobby of the Great Northern. Pasco is also responsible for the totems that reside here, as well as one at Pioneer Square in Downtown Seattle.

One day, my log will have something to say about this… Please remember that we are a
private facility. We welcome and encourage anyone to stop by for a visit, however, we ask
that you give our paying clients their privacy and plan to visit when there are no events going on. We’d love for you to call ahead to check our schedule (360) 598-4311. The show is scheduled to premiere May 21st, 2017, so you still have some time to perfect that cup of brew and have a slice of cherry pie!

Here are a few excerpts from our guestbook for a little fun reading:
“This small present (referring to a book he wrote and donated to us) is not much compared
to the fond and lasting memories we have of your strange and wonderful place and the
pictures you gave me” -Stephan (France)

“Amazing place! Thank you Jay! Honored to be showed around. Keeping our fingers crossed
for the new series.” -Michael and Ann (Poland)

“Thanks for the great stories and generosity!” -Åge (Norway)

“I want to live here.” -Travis (USA)

“This has been the highlight of our trip. What a gorgeous place!” -Bradley and Jessica

Hot Wedding Trends for 2017

     We're gearing up for wedding season here at Kiana. Soon, the room will be filled with candlelight, the fresh scent of floral bouquets lining the tables, and the sound of light-hearted conversation from guests as they dine. Every year there are trends that we try to look for to help our wedding couples plan their special day. You've already narrowed down your venue, but you still need some help with the finer details such as what color scheme to go with or what your floral arrangements are going to look like. Here’s some of the hot new trends that we’re already seeing for 2017, so you can get a sense of how to customize your day to wow your crowd.

     If I may, I’d like to add a few pointers to help you along on your planning journey. First, Pinterest is not exactly your best friend. It’s a nice resource to use to get ideas, however, proceed with caution. Haven't you ever tried to recreate something and it turned out to not be even close to what the photo? Some work is best left to the professionals; don't stress yourself out more than you already are. Next, I’d use only what works in your space... You wouldn’t design your wedding like you wouldn't design a house. Sticking with neutral table cloth colors will go a long way in making your centerpieces and tableware pop. Saving the color for the tabletops will go much further, and won't run the risk of being too much in the space, or too washed out. Third, less is more. Sure, you have all these amazing ideas floating around of how you want your wedding space to look, but remember folks, simple can be elegant too. It will help tremendously with time and budget. The better organized you are, the happier those who are there to help with your decor will be, and the less time you'll spend stressing over the look of your tables. Now here's a look at what to expect for 2017 decor.

     First, the outdoors and nature inspired decor has worked its way into the scene. Couples are tending to choose venues that are full of natural light and elements like wood and stone. We're seeing more of the outdoors coming in through tons of greenery and hanging florals. Arbors made up of or incorporating natural elements such as birch or driftwood and flowers surrounded by heavy greenery have made their way onto the scene as well. Even if you don't use them at your ceremony site, they make a beautiful addition to the backdrop of a sweetheart table.

     From shiny copper Mercury candle votives down to silver threads and beading in your dress, Metallics are huge this year. They're full of versatility, and add a sense of wow to any setting. Dressed up or down, they add the right amount of flare without being too bold. Just make sure not to use too much... Remember, everything in moderation.

     Soft is a texture that represents love. Soft petals from flowers like hydrangeas, peonies or roses, paired with the soft color of eucalyptus or ferns allow you to add even more bold color to your table, as they soften the harshness. They can allow you to add a few whimsical elements such as colored stemware or vases, a colored bread plate, or a boldly colored napkin. Smoky or slate blue hues are becoming more and more popular recently.

     Another thing we're seeing less and less of in recent years is the disappearance of a wedding cake. More and more couples are ditching the traditional three-tiered colored fondant and going bare... Yes, nearly naked cakes are on the rise, as well as dessert buffets. Many are sticking with the traditional cake cutting ceremony by having a small ceremonial cake, or even a large doughnut to cut. We've seen everything from doughnuts to mini custard tarts with fresh berries. Couples have really made it their own recently. It helps tremendously with cost also, as you don't have to have a large quantity of one thing. You can go with a wide variety of dessert options. Add some fresh fruit and berries or some chocolate milk, and it's guaranteed to be talked about!

     Late-nite snacks are on the rise too. After all that dancing and fun, your guests are guaranteed to work up another appetite. Who could resist mini tacos or even some mini hotdogs? They're the perfect addition to the late night party, and will keep the energy up and lasting till the very end. Mini Seattle dogs are, in my mind, the best thing since sliced bread, and perfect for a late night party. Ask any Seattle resident, and they'll agree with me on this!

     Finally, after all the fun is wrapped up and you've eaten your fill at brunch, what better way to send off your most important friends/family than going on a local nature hike or day-after photo shoot. We've been asked by so many of our couples about local trails or natural wonders in the area, that I've comprised a list of everything within a two-hour radius of Kiana (because there are just some places I just can't leave off of it). From the not-so-outdoorsy to the avid hikers, there's something on the list for everyone's age and ability. We live in such a beautiful and scenic area, it's hard to leave. From beaches to mountains, Kiana is centered in the heart of it all.