What is the best destination wedding location?
My specialty is to help you find the ideal destination wedding location for your ah-mazing wedding! Not so long ago I was that bride. Today, as I think about my own wedding planning, I laugh…heartily! I was stressed and almost out of my mind with worry! So many details…so many uncertainties.
To reduce the stress and expenses associated with choosing a wedding dress, I borrowed my sister-in-law’s dress (she got married in May and my wedding was in September). To cut expenses, my friend and I made my wedding cake as well as some of the food preparation the day before. Two of my friends did the photography and my uncle assumed the duties of a limo driver lol!
The day of the wedding, I drove from the hair salon to my maid of honor’s house where the entire bridal party got dressed. Then we drove to the church…by which time my hair started to fall and get damp (it was Jamaica and hot).
After the ceremony which was about 30 minutes, we found places for pictures and then drove to the reception location…more hot temps. From the reception we drove to the hotel for the night before we drove again to our honeymoon. I was exhausted. I cannot recall what the food tasted like or even what my cake tasted like. I needed at least a day to unwind before I could even enjoy the start of my honeymoon.
That was years ago, and my tastes and knowledge have changed. If I was planning my wedding today, it would be a destination wedding on the beach of either Mexico or the Caribbean.
I had the pleasure of designing a destination wedding for my family friends Tamara and Jerald. I also attended the wedding as a guest. It was amazing! It was easy! It was stress-free and most of all, ALL the guests had fun – they had a fantastic vacation!
Why are destination weddings so easy and so fun? Take Tamara and Jerald’s experience as an example:
- For Tamara and Jerald, their wedding was simple and easy. After months of us interacting and working with the details of the wedding with the onsite wedding coordinator, they showed up in Jamaica and met with Keisha, their onsite wedding coordinator.
- Keisha has insider knowledge as to what will work best such as location set-up, backup plans, seating arrangements etc. She was able to take care of and arrange meetings with the photographer, baker, florist, minister etc.
- Tamara and Jerald arrived at the resort and after a few short meetings, they are able to sign the papers and begin to enjoy the time on the resort until the day of the wedding. They chartered a boat and went to Margarita Ville where they had a blast with some of the other wedding guests.
In addition to being simple, there was no family drama. Everyone who came to the wedding, invested time and money and were the most intimate with the couple. Fifty people carry much less drama than 250 family members and friends who may have their own feelings towards the wedding and the couple.
- The entire time we were at the resort, guests continued to communicate about how gorgeous the resort was and the wonderful time they were having. Everyone had their own agenda of fun and ventured off to the beach, the pool, the bar etc. with one goal in mind: have fun
- What was even more noticeable, no one was reaching into their pockets to pay for food and drinks. The general feeling was that they were there for a vacation…an all-inclusive vacation. The most anyone did in terms of spending was put a few dollars on the table for tip for good service and they were happy to do that
- Tamara and Jerald got upgraded to an amazing honeymoon suite and enjoyed all sorts of amenities without the extra cost of a honeymoon in another destination. That was a benefit that they didn’t see coming…the best part, it was a complimentary upgrade
- For the couple, the cost of the wedding in Jamaica was a fraction of the cost if they got married in Atlanta. They tipped well (at their discretion) because everything was well worth it …it was simple, it was easy…it was stress-free
On the day of the wedding, the bridal party gathered in one location. They bonded together doing hair and makeup without the stress of driving from one location to the other. As the guests gathered on the beach, the wedding location could not have been more spectacular. The backdrop of the ocean, the powdery sand beneath our feet was nothing short of dreamy. Some guests choose to wear sandals, flip flops or some were clad in just their bare feet. We mostly wore casual attire which made for a relaxed feel. Compare that with gowns, high heels, suits and ties and the ambiance had a sort of casual and sexy feel that made the guests want to take a splash in the ocean instead of getting into a car to find the reception venue.
Our evening ended with a private reception. There was no one sitting for long…everyone was up and dancing including the wait staff who were invited to participate in the festivities. I have not seen a wedding more fun.
Where would I get married if I had to do it again? Without a doubt…on the island of Jamaica or in Mexico.
Contact us today at 770.469.7370 to start planning your fairy-tale wedding!