Destination I Do - Fall 2015

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HONEYMOON HIDEAWAYS: Argentina to Bali & Beyond


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features DESTINATION i do



AMERICAN COASTAL CLASSICS You really can’t go wrong with any of these quintessentially American, waterfront destinations. Discover our hot picks for Florida (pg. 20), Maui (pg. 22) and Cape Cod (pg. 24).


TEMPTING TRAVELS These alluring destinations will not only have you grabbing your passport, but sending back endless picturesque postcards. Tempt romance in Thailand (pg. 28), go diamond hunting in Belgium (pg. 30) or experience safari sightings in Africa (pg. 32).


MEXICO One of our favorite destinations on earth, Mexico is constantly evolving. Emerging from the wake of a hurricane, this Los Cabos property has stepped into the spotlight (pg. 40) and coming off of a $10 million renovation, this Playa del Carmen resort is pure magic (pg. 41).

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THE HONEYMOONIST – Paris: Now & Forever There’s always something new in the City of Light. Here, The Honeymoonist revisits old favorites and explores what’s new in the way of places to stay, eat and play.


CHARMING TREKS Venturing off the beaten path pays off and that’s the case with Whistler (pg. 54), Tucson (pg. 56) and Aspen (pg. 57).

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Photo courtesy of: Amanda Julca,


HONEYMOON HIDEAWAYS French Polynesia – See breathtaking islands like Moorea, Tahiti and Bora Bora from a whole new angle…aboard a sailing yacht. Rome – This historic hotel atop the Spanish Steps has played host to Hollywood’s elite for five generations. Argentina & Uruguay – Wine enthusiasts will love this mash-up of urban luxury and country comforts. Bali – Escape your everyday troubles and immerse yourself in the enchanted land that is Bali. CARIBBEAN In terms of tropical, Caribbean options, we’ve run the gamut here with features including Antigua (pg. 70), St. Thomas (pg. 72), Curaçao (pg. 73) and Puerto Rico (pg. 74).

Looking for other locations? Check out our website to order past issues featuring: celebrity weddings, romantic castles, Thailand, Australia, Europe, the Hawaiian Islands, the Caribbean, Mexico, countless locations in the U.S., the ultimate honeymoon hideaways and much more.

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WEDDED WISDOM Get the inside scoop and helpful insights on the wedding world.


INSIDER TRAVELING No matter your destination, here are some helpful travel tips & must-know info.


ON THE HORIZON Stay up-to-speed on wedding and travel trends & recent hotel happenings.





ADVENTURES IN ETIQUETTE – Destination Do-Overs Whether you’re renewing your vows or saying “I do” for a second time, destination do-overs come with some unique etiquette questions. THE GUEST BOOK – The Best of Both Worlds This couple didn’t want to leave a single loved one out, so they held both a beautiful destination wedding in Spain and a lovely hometown reception in California.


TO HAVE & TO HOLD – Become a Skincare Sensation Body betterment is a common activity with brides, but don’t forget your skincare regime! If you’re wanting to look your best and brightest come W-Day, these skincare products will surely do the trick.


ASK THE EXPERT – Take Your Jewelry From W-Day to Everyday We’ve partnered with professional stylist Keylee Sanders to bring you wedding-worthy pieces that can easily transition into your life after the aisle.


REAL-LIFE WEDDINGS It’s impossible to control the real wedding submissions that cross our desks at DID, but it always seems to work out that we get the perfect mix of styles and destinations. This issue is no exception with familial sweetness in Scotland, trend-setting details in Thailand, Southwest fiesta flair in Arizona, streamlined chic in Florida, island vibes in Hawaii, floral fantasies in North Carolina and a boho beach celebration in Mexico.

FASHION FORWARD Destination Inspiration: Greece – Known as one of the most iconic romantic destinations in the world, we were inspired by the Grecian light, land and sea for this fabulous photo shoot. Ten Sweet Takes on Cakes – This roundup of gorgeous, delightful cakes will leave your sweet tooth aching.

Visit our blog:, to get frequent updates on products perfect for weddings away, places our traveling editors visit, beauty tips and tricks, gorgeous destination wedding dresses and all things travel, romance or wedding related! Need even more inspiration beyond what graces our gorgeous pages? Visit our oh-so-lovely Pinterest page,

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Photo courtesy of: VUE Photography,



Editor in Chief / Publisher / Owner Owner / CEO Chief Operating Officer Editor Creative Director National Advertising Director Northeast & Caribbean Sales Manager Southeast Advertising Managers Contributing Writers

Production Coordinator Editorial Intern

Jennifer Stein Carolyn Steere Gordon Steere Courtney Cox Gerd Corrigan Mike Walker Glenn Karaban Scott Rickles Dan Tomkiewicz Victoria Abbott Riccardi Kinsley Brown Carly Cylinder Kate Darnell Carolyn Gerin Elaine Hilbelink Adrienne Jordan Shana Kinnerup Stacey Marcus Susan Moynihan Sharon Naylor Sarah McGrain Samantha Payne John Roark Samantha Ross Anthony Stein Kathy Till Taylor Wilson Kristi Blane Natalie Long

SUBSCRIPTIONS Please visit us online at or call our toll-free number to order a one-year subscription – 866-359-9855. Domestic and Canadian rates are $13.90 USD per year and foreign $29.90 USD. Additional shipping rates may apply.

ADVERTISING INQUIRIES Please contact our corporate office at 480-759-9855 or visit us online at

FEATURED LOCATIONS If you would like us to feature your location or wedding, please submit your request via email to or visit

Š 2015/ 2016 DESTINATION MEDIA, LLC All rights reserved. Any reproduction of this periodical, in whole or in part, must be approved and awarded written consent from Destination I Do Magazine. Please note that Destination I Do Magazine provides this information only as a general guide. Opinions expressed by writers do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher. Destination I Do Magazine is published twice annually with a quarterly cover change. If you have purchased the same issue twice, please contact our customer service department at 480-759-9855 and we will either issue you a full refund or send you the next scheduled issue.

Contact Us Phone: 480-759-9855 | Toll Free: 866-359-9855 Web: Blog: Email: Twitter: @DestinationIDo Facebook: Pinterest: Instagram: DestinationIDo

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Editor's LETTER


STICKER SHOCK MISCONCEPTIONS Mention the word “wedding” and it appears that prices skyrocket. Is this just appearance, or fact? Depending on the situation, it could be both. Why do things seem to cost so much when it comes to getting married? I mean, it’s really just a glorified party, right? Well, right and wrong.

Phew, that’s a lot of work! A dear friend and professional wedding photographer, Melissa Jill, estimates she spends at least 40 hours on any given wedding...40 hours, not six or seven. A majority of these are hometown weddings, imagine how much more time would be spent if they were destination weddings.

This example refers to photographers, but keep in mind – stationers, florists, event designers, wedding planners – they ALL spend hours, weeks and even months creating wedding day magic. Magic isn’t free, their time is worth something. Service businesses are hard

When I first got engaged, my jaw dropped when I saw the first quote

to value because what they give you might not be a tangible item

from our stationer, it dropped again when I got the quote from our

the same way food and beverage or a gown is. But, I assure you,

florist. My jaw dropped a lot during our eight-month engagement.

these men and women you hire can spend countless hours on your

We had a budget we wanted to stay within and at the rate we were

event alone.

going, it seemed hard, if not impossible, to meet our goal. Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not suggesting you should splurge In the decade Destination I Do has been in business, I’ve talked to

on every wedding vendor who gives you a quote. There are many

many vendors about their business models and why things cost what

talented people out there who can fit into any budget. Find the right

they do in the wedding industry. Perception is a big part of the issue.

fit for you and your wedding. My intent is to help you understand the behind-the-scenes effort that goes into planning, photographing

Let’s use photographers as an example. There are a lot of

or designing your wedding, which you may or may not be aware of.

misconceptions about what a professional wedding photographer

actually does. Couples think, “They show up at my wedding, are there for six hours and take a few hundred photos which they then upload digitally. How could that possibly cost $X?!”

Perception is a powerful thing. If I knew then what I know now, I don’t think my jaw would have dropped quite as often as I went through the wedding planning process.

What you might not realize is their job doesn’t start or end there. It starts with them getting your business (which costs time and

Here’s to finding the perfect,

money in marketing, PR, web development, branding, social media

hard working vendors to create

outreach, equipment costs, etc.). Once you find your photographer

magic for you come your

through their many efforts, they meet with you to discuss your needs.

wedding day.

More time spent. Next, once you’re on the books, they may spend time taking engagement photos, editing those photos and finally

Yours truly,

sending you the images. Once the wedding day arrives, they’ve got travel time to your destination and time spent at the event (many photographers will shoot anywhere from 12 hours to four days for a destination wedding!). After the event is over, your photographer will edit out all those goofy photos of Aunt Margaret with her eyes closed during the family portrait session, color correct the images, print and develop film (if they aren’t digital), upload the best photos

Follow Us: Twitter: @DestinationIDo

to a site they pay to subscribe to for easy viewing and, finally, create


your wedding album. This doesn’t take into account all the behind-

Instagram: DestinationIDo

the-scenes work necessary to run their business.

Pinterest: Website and Blog: &

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ON THE COVER pg. 58 pg. 34

Throughout this issue

pg. 86 pg. 30

pg. 47

FALL: This real-life wedding couple is the perfect match for their sunny Scotland setting. His traditional Scottish kilt by McCalls Highlandwear and her lovely bouquet by Blue Poppy Florist served as color inspiration for our cover. Her gown is by Mori Lee and the newlyweds' retro getaway car was courtesy of Something Old. See the couple’s full real wedding feature on pg. 86. Photo courtesy of Annamarie Akins Photography.

Throughout this issue pg. 80 pg. 58 pg. 86

pg. 47 WINTER: This real-life bride is basking in the soft light of Sayulita, Mexico. Her gorgeous L’ezu Couture Bridal gown and BHLDN jeweled hairpiece make her a true vision to behold. Her romantic bouquet is by Francisco Salazar of Detalle de Lujo. See the full real wedding feature on pg. 103. Photo courtesy of This Modern Romance.

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WISDOM shopping for the



wedding party


Seasoned stationers Wedding Paper Divas recently shared a survey that polled 1,000 bridesmaids and groomsmen who participated in at least one wedding party in 2014. These wedding warriors’ experiences were overwhelmingly positive

Words by: Dan Decker, Customer Care Manager for Robbins Brothers, The Engagement Ring Store

and below are some interesting stats with advice from Wedding Paper Divas’ style and trend expert, Amber Harrison.

ALL-IN-ONE BRIDAL MAKEUP KIT This Bridal Kit by glō minerals has everything you and your bridesmaids need to look camera ready come W-Day – all in a chic makeup bag. The kit includes a travel-friendly retractable brush, perfecting powder, shimmer duo, gloss, lipstick and blotting papers. $55,

just for the


“Two months salary or is it three?" Overspending is not required. It’s hard not to stress about how much you are “supposed” to spend. Here is where you need to take a deep breath and tell yourself that there is no rule. You decide how much to spend.


surprised" by the invitation to join a wedding party. ADVICE: “Celebrate each member

of the wedding party individually when you pop the question or invite everyone

“She knows what she wants and gave me four choices! What am I going to do?” Always go for #1. It’s her first choice for a reason, so relax and don’t over complicate it. “My girlfriend doesn’t even know I am ring shopping and has given me nothing to go on.” She will love it. The thing to remember here is, she is going to love whatever you select. To be honest, it’s not 100% true, but I would say at least 95% true and that’s not too bad.

FACT: 71 percent of bridesmaids/

groomsmen were at least "somewhat

to a special brunch where they receive the invitation together.” FACT: 54 percent of groomsmen preferred

phone conversations to text or email. ADVICE: “Regardless of the method, clear,

concise communication is key. Be direct and clearly outline what you need and when you need it.” FACT: 71 percent of female wedding party

members got to provide input on attire. ADVICE: "Try a classic and versatile piece

that can be styled differently for a totally “STUFF EVERY GROOM SHOULD KNOW”

fresh, post-wedding look. If it is obvious this

Wedded wisdom doesn’t just extend to

is a one-time wear, be mindful of the price.”

the bride…grooms need help too. This

FACT: 30 percent of groomsmen did not

pocket-sized guide covers everything from

receive a thank you gift – despite spending

planning the honeymoon to writing a great

an average of 40 hours helping or advising

toast – all in a funny, guy-friendly tone.

the groom.

Written by Eric San Juan, published by

ADVICE: “Don’t forget to recognize your

Quirk Books, $9.95

pals with a personal gift or heartfelt thank you note. Cufflinks or ties for them to wear on the wedding day don’t count.” | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Courtney Cox, glō professionals, Dennis Kwan Photography and Quirk Books

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“I have found ‘the one’ but how am I ever going to find ‘the ring’?” The key is taking the things you love the most about her and translating that into a style. Start by describing her. If she is an old soul who appreciates the details, start looking at vintage rings. Bold and unique? Start with modern rings.

wise bride TIPS

“There is only one time in your entire life that all the people you love will be in the same place with you at once – your wedding. So, soak it up and remember to stop and just be thankful it’s happening!”

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom): Yellow Feather Photography, Mitch+Denice Wedding Photographers and Dmitri and Sandra Photography

— Hilary, Santa Fe destination wedding bride

“There are always going to be people who feel a bit uncomfortable with travel, especially to a remote location, but we found that the more details and information we provided, the less everyone worried.” — Danielle, Nicaragua destination wedding bride

“It’s important to be as hospitable as possible. [Your guests] traveled far for your wedding and, while the wedding is about you and your spouse, it’s an experience for them as well.” — Karen, Peru destination wedding bride

We’ll help you customize every detail of your day, your way. 1.888.476.0518



Stylish sunnie-producers Etnia Barcelona have partnered with famous photographer Steve McCurry to launch the “Wild Love in Africa Collection” – inspired by the African Savanna’s textures and wildlife. As a bonus, look chic for a cause since a percentage of the collection’s sales will benefit the Ngo Africa Rising Foundation. $192-$225,

luggage-free TRAVEL





Keep your prized possessions sparkling clean throughout your globetrotting adventures. Well-Kept Cleansing Towelettes come in cute and convenient packages and are ideal for cleaning your sunglasses, phone, laptop and camera lenses. $5.99 each or $32.94 for a 6-pack,

Even the most experienced traveler would be hard-pressed to limit their destination wedding or honeymoon luggage to a carryon. In fact, you’re likely to have several large bags filled with everything from DIY details to full-sized beauty products. Checking luggage can be a nuisance, not to mention expensive, so thankfully there are companies like Luggage Forward. The service picks up your luggage from your home, ships it ahead to your final destination and even completes all necessary customs forms for you (they deliver to 200+ countries). Pricing varies depending on bag size (not weight), the number of bags, how far it’s going and how fast you want it delivered. | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Looking to skip the expensive limo service come W-Day, but don’t want to bank on cabs or a spur-of-the-moment ride-sharing service? Thankfully, there’s a middle ground. Opoli is a new car service which is perfect for wedding parties and features luxury “black cars” like BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Tesla. Access Opoli via your phone or computer and make your reservation in advance. Name your price, choose your car and pick your driver – all the details are settled ahead of time and you don’t have to worry about surge pricing or peak times like with similar ride-share apps. The service is currently available in Southern California and will be expanding soon.

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Etnia Barcelona, Well-Kept, Opoli Technologies and Luggage Forward

destination inspired

luxe transport

Want more?

AT HOME OR ON THE GO YOU CAN ALSO FOLLOW US ON: Twitter: @DestinationIDo Facebook: Instagram: DestinationIDo Pinterest: Website and Blog: and


Our expert team of wedding planners will be with you, every step of the way. 1.888.476.0518

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YOUR BEACHES ® HONEYMOON INCLUDES* : A BUBBLY WELCOME A bottle of chilled sparkling wine elegantly arranged in your room to toast your future. A ROMANTIC GESTURE A special turndown service that includes flower petals on your bed on an evening of your honeymoon. WAKE UP TO WEDDED BLISS Delight in a delivery of fresh flowers and a decadent breakfast in bed one morning of your choice.

Celebrate the most special time of your life with the people who mean the most to you. And while you enjoy the honeymoon of a lifetime, your guests can enjoy the vacation of a lifetime. Because at Beaches Resorts, the best of everything is included—every land and water sport imaginable, exhilarating waterparks and activities for kids of all ages, Gourmet Discovery Dining at up to 21 restaurants per resort, luxurious family-friendly suites for them and romantic Love Nest Dream Suites for you. So while your loved ones may have come to celebrate your love, they will enjoy their own unforgettable celebration, too!



1-877-BEACHES • • or call your Travel Agent ENTER FOR A CHANCE TO WIN * A BEACHES HONEYMOON at FAL L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5 |

Important — visit or call 1-877-BEACHES for Terms and Conditions.




warm weather



Known for the customized experience of an atelier salon and its old-world craftsmanship, DEE HUTTON recently launched itself into the world of bridal. The 2015 Bridal Collection is made-toorder, allowing brides to choose color, fabric and fit variations. Brides can also collaborate directly with the designer in her NYC showroom to create their own, one-of-a-kind couture gown.

The iconic shapewear brand SPANX recently introduced its Power Series collection of shaping solutions which include five new lightweight, seamless silhouettes. They are ideal for warm weather destinations and some shades remain invisible under the sheerest of white wedding gowns.

Recent Hotel Renos & OPENINGS Villa Florence San Francisco

The Embassy Row Hotel Washington D.C.

This Italian-inspired boutique hotel is set in the bustling Union Square scene and recently completed a $15-million renovation. The overhaul includes a transformation of the hotel’s 182 guest rooms and the addition of seven entirely new rooms.

Inspired by the city’s 20th century private clubs, this new hotel is located in the iconic clock tower facing Madison Square Park and features 273 residential-like rooms with 360-degree views of NYC.

We love a property which pays homage to its surroundings and the Embassy Row does just that after a $15-million renovation which includes local designers, a sociallyfocused lobby and the only rooftop bar in Dupont Circle.


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Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Dee Hutton, SPANX, Jeff Zaruba, The Embassy Row Hotel and Nikolas Koenig


Words by Shana Kinnerup


South Seas Island Resort is an expansive property that offers activities and accommodations for both couples and large families alike. Formerly part of the largest key lime estate in Florida, it is so massive that most guests find themselves renting golf carts to traverse back and forth. The resort offers a full menu in terms of guest accommodations, ceremony and reception venues and activities for guests of all ages – making this property a top choice for U.S. destinations. The resort offers traditional hotel rooms, condominium options and even beachfront house rentals for larger parties. Multiple lodging options makes planning for a destination couple a breeze. It also allows guests to choose which price point best meets their budget. For your VIP guests, the resort also offers yacht and boat harbor privileges with full hook ups and short stays for those that prefer to dock-in for your event. If the season is right, many manatee find safe harbor at the resort and sightings are plentiful. Many of the historical buildings from the days as a key lime estate remain on the property, providing a setting that is classic and idyllic. A reception could be hosted just off the lawn in a


true plantation-style building with indoor, patio or rooftop space. An oceanfront cabana boasts the feel of a beach luau, ideal for rehearsal dinners or more casual nuptials. Sunset ceremonies on either of the two golf courses at the resort provide a rich backdrop. The true value in hosting your destination wedding at South Seas Island Resort are the endless activities on property to help keep everyone busy for their entire stay. The short list includes 2 1/2 miles of white sand beach (which affords some incredible shelling opportunities), Skully’s (where the little ones can be left to partake in scheduled activities), Sanibel Sea School (which provides a platform for learning and hands-on experience with the ocean), painting and photography classes, and full spa offerings at Kay Casperson Lifestyle Spa. I found myself driving from end-to-end of the property on my own golf cart during my stay. I stopped to take in the ocean, slowly admiring the beauty of the property and just indulging in the sun and warm breeze. I even caught myself with a casual smile on my face that I found hard to get rid of. It was true beauty and relaxation, all wound-up in this single destination. | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photos courtesy of: South Seas Island Resort


A 90-minute drive from Fort Myers, through the city, over the bridge, across two small islands and at the furthest point of Captiva Island, you will discover South Seas Island Resort. Situated at the tip of the island, this resort boasts both bay views and oceanfront amenities on the Gulf of Mexico.

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WOWIE MAUI: Hip + Haute Hawaii Words by Carolyn Gerin


Hotel Wailea


“Aloha!” – says Maui, with its dramatic purple-orange skies, tropical breezes, secluded beaches, lush terrain and chill, island vibe. Maui has soul: it’s hip and haute, sans hassle. "Holoholo" is Hawaiian for “fun adventure.” Escape the crowds at the Paia Inn. One part hippy and one part hipster, it hits all the right notes: a huge veranda with daybeds for a noontime nap overlooking lazy palm trees, vibrant tropical flowers and best of all: a private access beach. With ten comfortable rooms, you’re assured a peaceful existence in a fun-meets-functional boutique, away from the maddening crowds. If you want to feel like a local, Paia Inn’s the place for you: it’s lo-fi but luxe with friendly, | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photo courtesy of: Hotel Wailea

We travel writers are spoiled: our assignments take us to the ends of the earth to cover majestic vistas, epic cuisine and luxe venues. That being said, sometimes we forget that paradise – aka Hawaii – is in our own backyard (with a far easier commute).

Hotel Wailea

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom): Hotel Wailea and Travis Rowan with Living Maui Media (2nd & 3rd)

Paia Inn

Paia is a groovy little town on Maui’s North Shore with its fair share of tie-dyed denizens, yoga aficionados and spiritual healers. The Inn overlooks a small-town street dotted with casual dining cafés, beer halls with live music, health food stores and boutiques. If you’re looking for cabanas, fancy cocktails and a bevy of fawning attendants, you’ll need to move on. Paia is perfect for fashionable, fuss-free travelers. Dine at Mama’s Fish House – their fishermen bring the ocean’s bounty direct to the kitchen. Enjoy a handcrafted Mai Tai and catch-of-the-day teamed with wild boar overlooking a stunning sunset beach and attentive wait staff in gorgeous, traditional Hawaiian couture. Passport to paradise is here: Hotel Wailea – located 300feet above sea level and spanning 15-acres – this “romantic sanctuary” is a stunner. A study in relaxed luxury, its got all of the amenities of a classic 5-star with none of the pretentiousness – with “beach house design” one-bedroom suites, views of three islands, tropical greenery, cascading waterfalls, and all infused with a modern, clean and Zen sensibility. Your wedding and honeymoon can happen right here, with an on-staff event planner and world-class chefs. Enjoy an “orchard-to-glass” apothecary cocktail from former raw food chef, now “mixmistress” Kerry Mekeel, in a poolside cabana and watch a fire pit-lit sunset. Saunter over to an oasis of Maui-grown gastronomy at the Mediterranean-inspired Capische? run by CIA grads Chef


attentive staff who make you feel at home and anticipate every need without hovering. There’s no shortage of gorgeous beaches in Maui, but why leave your own private paradise? Sit back in your deck chair with a compelling novel and a cold beer and spy on a surfer’s sunset session. After a sun-soaked day, recline on your spacious, fluffy bed under a lazy ceiling fan, watch the palm fronds bend in the breeze and dream about what’s for dinner.

Paia Inn

Brian Etheredge and his Chef de Cuisine, Christopher Kulis. Handcrafted island specialties are “grown here, not flown here” from their Wailea Organics on-property farm. Start with the Kona Maine Lobster Salad and move on to the catch-of-the-day or the Braised Lamb Shank. End the day with your feet in the hot tub and a nightcap under the stars. Daybreak canoeing with Hawaiian Outrigger Experience is epic: dolphins, sea turtles and ancient Hawaiian storytelling compels you to paddle hard. Enjoy a day at the private beach club or canoodling under the cabana. Need more adrenaline? Take kiteboarding lessons (or grab a surfboard) and head to the North Shore. The verdict: paradise and proximity – together at last. Easy for you or your guests to get to and much to love when you land – Maui is magic. A hui hou kākou – until we meet again.

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America’s Coastal Frontier Words by Courtney Cox

Stay: The family-owned Ocean Edge Resort & Golf Club is difficult to miss with its convenient location right off historic Route 6A and


impressive mansion which dates back to 1912. Almost equally as important is the expansive Mansion Front Lawn that features a croquet course and is an ideal place for a scenic destination wedding ceremony beneath the 150 year-old linden tree. When it comes to accommodating wedding guests, there are three options varying in price, but not in perks. While the façades of Ocean Edge’s guest wings and Presidential Bay Collection Villas aren’t as overtly impressive as the mansion’s, their interiors don’t disappoint. Both the guest wing rooms and villas were recently renovated and feature textured wallpapers, luxurious linens, plantation shutters and charming details like bathrooms with hexagonal-tile floors. For groups, the two-to-three bedroom villas are a steal even during high season (Memorial Day through Labor Day) and come with complimentary concierge service and a fully-stocked kitchen. | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photos courtesy of: Courtney Cox

When it comes to America’s seashore, the briny, maritime history of Cape Cod dates back to when the Pilgrims first stepped ashore in 1620. While historic charm is as impossible to avoid here as the saintly-looking seagulls and vintage, shingled cottages, there’s one resort that embraces its celebrated surroundings like none other.


Across the street from the mansion you’ll find the Villages, comprised of one-to-three bedroom villas. Villages' guests don’t have access to the resort’s private Bay Pines Beach, but daily shuttles to nearby Crosby Landing Beach are a strong alternative. Villages’ guests are also closer to the resort’s Jack Nicklaus-designed golf course, expansive Member Sports Club and the scenic Cape Cod Bike and Rail Trail.

Play: Treasure Hunting – Spend an afternoon navigating the picturesque homes converted into antique shops before swinging by the Brewster Scoop for a frozen treat. Brewster Herring Run – Every May next to Stony Brook Grist Mill, thousands of herring make their way upstream to spawn. The little fish leaping will make you rethink your daily struggles. Nautical Happenings – Explore Blueberry Pond via one of Ocean Edge’s kayaks or stand-up paddleboards, or get up early to experience the famous Brewster Flats. At low tide, the Cape Cod Bay recedes up to a mile, allowing an up-close encounter with the ocean floor. The Beach Walk and Brewster Oyster Farm Experience is an interesting inside-look at the area’s iconic oyster farming tradition.

Eat: Ocean Terrace – Situated at the heart of Ocean Edge Resort, this is a popular spot for sunset dinners overlooking Cape Cod Bay. Be sure to order a Bayzo’s Brew, named after the resort’s basement bar and produced by local micro-brew experts, Cape Cod Beer.

Photos courtesy of: Ocean Edge Resort & Golf Club

Bramble Inn & Restaurant – Located within a white-faced farmhouse built in 1861, this eatery is bursting at the seams with charm. The restaurant features daily dessert specials and has special touches like different vintage china in each room. The perfect spot for a romantic night out for two. Chillingsworth – What appears on the outside to be a quaint cottage is actually one of the Cape’s most iconic restaurants. Once a favorite of icon Julia Child, chef-owner Nitzi Rabin has been cooking up French-inspired cuisine here for over three decades. Treat your guests to an intimate rehearsal dinner they won’t soon forget. After visiting Cape Cod, you and your destination wedding guests will quickly understand why this place made our cut as an American Coastal Classic. Thankfully, this historic destination strives to uphold its past as much as it promotes its surely-bright future.

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Words by Victoria Abbott Riccardi


“Welcome to Phulay Bay,” said General Manager Carlos Tarrero. “I know you’ve traveled far, but we’re glad you’re here.” Indeed, getting to this mountainous region of lush jungles and limestone karsts overlooking the azure Andaman Sea takes time. But, whether you’re visiting to get married or bliss-out on your honeymoon, the journey is worth it. My flight from Boston to Bangkok took 20 hours; flights from the West Coast take 13. Since flying to Krabi from Bangkok takes only 1 1/2 hours,


consider breaking up your travels with a few nights in Bangkok. The city has a vibrant art scene, along with great restaurants, bars, shopping and luxury hotels. After landing at Krabi Airport, the resort will whisk you away to Phulay Bay, nestled on 50 acres of landscaped gardens at the edge of the Andaman Sea. The 54 spacious, temple-like villas have cream terrazzo tile and polished teak interiors. Oversized beds, soaking tubs and expansive patio lounge beds exude luxury and comfort. Ocean views, private pools and hidden outdoor showers connect guests with nature, but in a highly private way. To meet all your needs during your stay, each guest is assigned a personal butler. Mine helped arrange several off-premise excursions, including a boat trip to several of the area’s islands to stroll along the sugar-white beaches before savoring a gourmet Thai picnic. You can take guided jungle hikes, snorkel around the limestone karsts and kayak through mangroves under the curious eyes of small, honey-brown monkeys. Or, simply relax at the resort snuggling in private cabanas overlooking the infinity pool, take sunset yoga, Thai cooking classes or luxuriate at the spa. Featuring saunas, steam baths and 11 treatment rooms, | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photo courtesy of: Christopher Cypert

Guided by the glow of 2,000 candles, I crossed the reflecting pool on a path of stepping-stones to the temple pavilion, where my hosts at Phulay Bay, a RitzCarlton Reserve in the southern province of Krabi, Thailand waited to greet me. The chirp of crickets filled the night air, along with the sweet scent of frangipani.

Tempting TRAVELS Photos courtesy of: Christopher Cypert

including a couple’s suite overlooking a plant-filled lagoon, the spa offers a myriad of Thai treatments featuring botanicals from the resort’s organic garden. For engaged couples, the resort’s wedding planner will handle all the details, even arranging for unique Thai traditions, such as a fire dance show and marital blessing from local monks. As for the ceremony, “We have some special options,” says General Manager, Tarrero. “One is the underwater ceremony where guests say their vows underwater.” Another option is to get married in the dramatic welcome pavilion.

In terms of cuisine, Phulay Bay offers delectable Asian and Western fare. Chomtawan – Sunset Lounge is a must for predinner drinks and Sri Trang restaurant serves spicy Thai curries and seafood dishes. Lae Lay offers elegant French food and Jampoon features Mediterranean and Western fare, as well as a bountiful breakfast buffet each morning. Romantic options include dining in your villa or at a table-for-two on the beach. Thailand has earned the nickname, “The Land of Smiles,” and for good reason. No matter where you go the locals are exceedingly friendly, kind and generous in spirit. The smiles are contagious... it’s impossible to feel anything but happy.

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Tempting TRAVELS


ROCK CITY While some people’s dream known forhoneymoon its chocolate, waffles, frites and beer. Luckily, charming While some individual’s dream Antwerp is pedestrian-friendly and you can stroll from one side a sandy honeymoon involves ainvolves sandy beach andbeach and frozen of the city to the other in roughly 30 minutes – allowing you to beverage (umbrella included), I rather frozen beverage (umbrella included), walk off all those recently consumed calories. seeexploring romancea as exploring a historic I rather see romance as At one point in of history, Antwerp was the second largest city city with an umbrella historic European cityEuropean with an umbrella in Europe – surpassed only by Paris. The comparisons don’t the rainy variety. traveled of the rainy variety. I recently traveled toI recently end there with charming cafés like Del Ray Chocolates and Antwerp, Belgium on a mission to like the Antwerpen-Centraal, deemed mesmerizing architecture Antwerp, Belgium on to a mission to discover one of the finest train discover diamonds…lots and lots of stations in the world. For a convenient diamonds…lots and lots of diamonds. place to rest your head, the Hilton Antwerp Old Town is located as While this classified asdiamonds. a researchWhile trip forthis classified in a gorgeous former grand bazar right in the middle of the city. a research work (lucky me), I fell in love with trip morefor work – lucky me – explore more of Belgium, day trips to nearby Ghent or Bruges I fell incommodities love with more To than the than the sparkling priceless are wonderful options. Ghent offers a rare look inside Medieval the the city is known for. sparkling priceless commodities Europe with its historic architecture and meandering canals. The city is known for. Saint Bavo Cathedral is the centerpiece of the city and home to Located an hour’s drive outside of Belgium’s capital city of Brussels, Antwerp has all the makings of a romantic fantasy: historic European charm, world-class shopping and mouthwatering cuisine. Frankly, you can’t go wrong with a destination


the infamous Ghent Altarpiece. If you’re looking for a romantic honeymoon destination outside of the norm, Antwerp’s cobblestoned streets and spiraling architecture will quickly capture your imagination. | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photo courtesy of: Courtney Cox

Cathedral of Our Lady, Antwerp

Words by Courtney Cox

Tempting TRAVELS Ghent

Saint Bavo Cathedral, Ghent

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Courtney Cox (1st, 2nd & 4th) and


After a recent, all-access look inside Antwerp’s diamond industry, we came away informed, inspired and itching to shop. Diamonds inspire love and symbolize commitment and, after learning about what it takes to get these precious stones from the recesses of the earth and on to your ring finger, it’s easy to see why. Our generous hosts, Tolkowsky and Kay Jewelers, taught us five lesser-known facts about the iconic diamond. 1. According to HRD Antwerp, a professional diamond certification company, the amount of pressure necessary to create a diamond is equivalent to resting the Eiffel Tower on your fingertip. 2. Antwerp's Tolkowsky family has been in the diamond industry for seven generations, but it was Marcel Tolkowsky who revolutionized the industry. He established the precise proportions needed to maximize a diamond’s brilliance and dispersion of light. Thus, the Ideal Cut was born. 3. The U.S. is the #1 consuming market of diamonds – making up roughly 40%. In terms of what’s popular, the round brilliant is first, princess cut second and cushion cut third.

4. Of the 4Cs of diamonds (cut, clarity, carat and color), it’s the cut that is the most important according to Master Diamond Cutter Jean Paul Tolkowsky. This is the only aspect which is determined by craftsmanship and for which the high quality can be seen clearly with the naked eye. 5. The world’s largest, D flawless diamond is the Centenary Diamond polished by Gabi Tolkowsky and coming in at 273.85 carats. Known as the leading Master Diamond Cutter in the world, Gabi also created the Golden Jubilee, the largest facetted diamond in the world at 545.67 carats.

Both round Ideal Cut and princess Ideal Cut Tolkowsky diamonds are sold exclusively with Kay Jewelers in the U.S.. For five more fun facts about diamonds and the Tolkowsky brand, visit

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UNDER THE AFRICAN SKY Words by Adrienne Jordan

From spotting lions and leopards on a game drive in South Africa, to watching the sun rise over Rwanda’s dramatic volcano landscape, newlyweds can experience an unforgettable honeymoon in Africa. A destination wedding is also possible with careful planning and choosing the right setting, whether it be overlooking animals in the distance or in the midst of Victoria Falls. 32

Volcanoes Safaris is a luxury safari company operating in the East African countries of Rwanda and Uganda and have honeymoon-style suites at their Virunga and Mount Gahinga lodges. Honeymooners have life-changing encounters with the endangered silverback gorillas, where couples hike with a guide to spend an hour in the majestic primates’ presence. A third of Africa’s bird species reside in Rwanda and Volcanoes Safaris organizes birdwatching in the lush Volcanoes National Park. Hiking through varying habitats, from bamboo and Hagenia to open areas, will yield endemic species like colorful olive woodpeckers and swift African dusky flycatchers. In Uganda, newlyweds can experience cultural dance performances by the Batwa pygmies, nomadic hunter-gatherers who have lived in the forests for thousands of years. | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photo courtesy of: Volcanoes Safaris

Mount Gahinga Lodge

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Kwandwe Game Reserve, Sun International, Volcanoes Safaris ( 3rd & 5th) and South African Tourism

Tempting TRAVELS

Kwandwe Game Reserve

Virunga Lodge

Royal Livingstone Hotel

Quiver Tree Forest

Mount Gahinga Lodge

Most people know South Africa to be popular for its game drive offerings as a chance to spot Africa’s “Big Five” (lion, rhino, leopard, elephant and buffalo). After spending a few days at the upscale Kwandwe Private Game Reserve in Eastern Cape, couples should take a quick flight to Northern Cape for a tour of the country’s desert wildflowers along the Namaqualand Route. Every year in August and September, 4,000 species of flowers bloom with vibrancy in the wildlife reserves of Northern Cape. The 780km route offers a romantic drive with stops in the wildflower parks, 4x4 expeditions, biking, trips to stunning waterfalls and photo-ops inside the alien-like Quiver Tree Forest. At the 5-star Royal Livingstone Hotel in Zambia (a 40-minute flight from Cape Town), weddings take place on a gazebo with zebras in the background and Victoria Falls as a backdrop.

Wedding party guests can participate in a helicopter ride over Victoria Falls or a massage overlooking the Zambezi River. Africa offers beautiful landscapes for a destination wedding. “I would recommend that any wedding couple plan a 10-14 day trip minimum,” says Kim Gorres, President of Travel Leaders in New Richmond, Wisconsin. “There is so much to see and do and such a wide variety of options. Rates would vary from $4,000 to $11,000 per person.” Depending on departure city, flight times can range from eight to 16 hours. For example, a flight to Johannesburg, South Africa from New York takes 16 hours. Whether you plan to visit for your honeymoon or destination wedding, Africa is sure to create long-lasting memories for you and your guests.

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destination do-overs:


of Second Weddings

Words by Elaine Hilbelink

Planning a second marriage can present a unique array of etiquette issues. A destination wedding can be the perfect option for couples planning a second wedding or choosing to renew their vows. Here, we cover the basics to get you re-married with ease.

Q: My fiancé and I are both celebrating our second weddings. What is the proper number of guests to invite? Is it okay to include in-laws from our previous marriages?

A: The size of your wedding is totally up to you and your fiancé.

It can be small and intimate, as many destination weddings are, or you may opt for a larger, more traditional wedding. It can be appropriate to invite in-laws and close family members from your previous marriage – depending upon your relationship with them. If you are widowed, it is likely you are still in close contact with the family of your previous spouse. Inviting a previous spouse would probably present a more awkward situation and should be avoided. However, every situation is different. If all parties involved feel it would be fine, then it most likely would be.

Q: I would like to include my children in my second wedding. They are teenagers, so what is the best role for them to play?


A: Involving all of the children/grandchildren on both sides from your previous marriages is a wonderful way to include them in the start of your new life together as a family. Possible roles family members might play can include junior attendants or ushers, flower girls or ring-bearers, walking you down the aisle, readers or greeters. Giving children choices in what role they would feel comfortable in is important…especially for teens!

Q: Is it appropriate to have a bridal shower for a second wedding? We both have established homes and are doing a destination wedding. Should we accept gifts or other parties outside of the main event? A: It is perfectly acceptable to have a shower or bridal get-

together for your second marriage with your close friends and family. If you both have established homes, themed parties are a nice option. Cooking, gardening and travel are just a few of the themes to consider for a party. You may choose to register for | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5


& gifts, but it is not necessary. A rule of thumb for gifts and parties might be to not expect, but to accept graciously what is offered.

weddings if you choose, but omitting what does not suit your style or destination venue is appropriate.

Q: Is it appropriate to wear a big white gown for a second

Q: My fiancĂŠ and I are both widowed, from different countries and planning our wedding. Due to family work, school and sports schedules, it is not feasible to get all of our children together for our ceremony. Any suggestions?

wedding? If not, what should I wear?

A: What you choose to wear for your second wedding is

dependent upon your age, style and the venue. Veils and trains are not necessarily appropriate for second wedding ceremonies, but your dress may reflect your personal comfort level and preference. You may opt for sophisticated and chic; long or short; or white, pastel or shimmery. The options are endless.

Q: When having a second wedding, can we still do all of the traditions you would include at a first wedding?

A: You might consider planning a small ceremony with one side

and doing a blessing, open house or reception with friends and family on the other side. Make sure both sides know they are welcome to participate in any of the events if their circumstances permit them to travel. Making both sides of the family feel included is important, and depending upon your venue, live video streaming might be an option.

A: You may include customs and traditions typical of first

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Best Both Worlds: of

Guest BOOK

A DESTINATION WEDDING & HOMETOWN RECEPTION Words by Courtney Cox Images courtesy of Mike Larson Photography,

Opting for a destination wedding comes with glorious strings attached – a smaller guest list, a few logistical challenges and an adventure to remember. However, there’s always some level of compromise for a destination wedding couple. Well, almost always. For Amanda and Kris, they saw their reduced destination wedding guest list as an excuse to throw not one, but two marvelous parties. Some couples may think hosting both a destination wedding and a hometown reception sounds like more work than it’s worth, but these two lovebirds couldn’t disagree more. In hosting a colorful wedding in Spain and a hometown fiesta in California – this couple had their cake and ate it too.

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Guest BOOK

Destination Wedding

DID: How

did you decide on a destination wedding in Spain?

BRIDE: Kris was very familiar with the area because, as a child, he and his family would spend weekends in Spain. Kris was born in Canada and raised in England, so we knew a destination wedding would make it easier for both our [families] to be able to attend. Our friends and family were ecstatic. We started Googling private villas and Al Miral de la Font captured our attention.

DID: How

was the process of planning a destination wedding?

BRIDE: I wouldn’t say planning any wedding is easy. We were lucky because six months prior to our wedding we were visiting Italy and made a side trip to our destination. We were able to meet with our wedding planner, caterer and check out the villa. Planning the wedding was so much fun!

Hometown Reception

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DID: Describe

your favorite moments from the wedding day.

Guest BOOK

BRIDE: When I was all ready to go, I looked out to where Kris and I were going to have our first look. It was this amazing Romeo and Juliet balcony – Kris was standing there waiting for me and the excitement hit me. As I walked into the ceremony, I lost my breath. The flower petals, the lighting, the atmosphere…it was the most gorgeous room I have ever seen.

DID: What

was your thought process in planning both the destination and hometown events?

BRIDE: I knew I wanted both the wedding and [hometown] reception to be tied together. The wedding was in such a beautiful, Spanish location and the beauty of the villa and surrounding area inspired us. From there, I figured, let’s keep the Spanish theme rolling in our Malibu reception. We had our amazing wedding planners at LB Event Planning create a fiesta. The lights in the trees, the cocktails, the décor, the taco truck – it was just easy-going fun.

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DID: Planning

two amazing wedding events must have been a real challenge. Looking back, would you have done anything differently?

Guest BOOK

BRIDE: I don’t have one regret. By hosting a destination wedding, we were able to have Kris’ friends and family join my closest friends and family for our special day. The Malibu reception was another blessing in itself [because we were able to have] the rest of our friends who couldn’t make it to Spain help us celebrate being husband and wife. We wanted everyone to feel like they were a part of our big day and to help us celebrate. Spain Destination Wedding Vendors: Photographer: Mike Larson Photography,, Destination: Stiges, Spain, Venue: Al Miral de la Font,, Flowers, Table Scaping, Cocktail Bar and Cake: Philippa Events,, Stationery: Prim and Pixie, primandpixie. com, Catering: GAU,, Hair & Makeup: Michael Mawson,, DJ: Jon Wedge, Flamenco Guitarist: Paul Bousander, Gown Designer: Watters,, Groom’s Clothing Designer: Marks & Spencer,, Bridesmaids/Groomsmens’ Clothing Designer: Badgley Mischka/Mark & Spencer, & Malibu Hometown Reception Vendors: Photographer: Mike Larson Photography,, Destination: Malibu, California, Venue: Malibu Market and Design,, Planning & Design: LB Event Planning,, Florist: Stella Bloom Designs,, Stationery: Prim & Pixie:, Rentals: A Rental Connection,, Catering: Merlin’s Kitchen,, Taco Truck: El Tapatio, Bar Catering: Pharmacie,, DJ: Dart Djs,, Bakery: Enjoy Cupcakes,, Linens: La Tavola Linens,

Hometown Reception

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Los Cabos has long been a favorite location for destination weddings and honeymoons with its rugged coastline, great resorts and convenience to the U.S.. Mexico

In September 2014, the seaside town had another visitor – Hurricane Odile. The damage was evident along the hotel corridor, where many big-name resorts were delaying their re-openings and taking the opportunity to renovate. Which was great news for smaller, lesser-known hotels currently welcoming new visitors.

Words by Susan Moynihan


Los Cabos

For example, take Hacienda Encantada Resort & Spa. Situated in the Hotel Zone just outside of Cabo San Lucas, the familyowned property lives up to its name with 150 luxurious suite-style accommodations ranging in size from one-bedroom suites to three-bedroom villas. The Residences, set back from the resort, up the ante with a two-level design plan and fenced backyards with a pool and grill, ideal for families and small groups. Bonus: the resort is set on a hill, so there's no such thing as a bad view. The resort caters to families and couples, making it ideal for wedding groups and honeymooners alike. It's especially nice in the winter months, when you can see migrating humpbacks.

Hacienda Encantada has a sister property, Marina Fiesta Resort & Spa, located in downtown Los Cabos. Guests of one hotel can relax at either – and the all-inclusive plan applies to both. The dining plan extends to five marina-front restaurants in the heart of the pedestrian Golden Zone, which means you can take a shuttle into town and dine on seafood at Baja Lobster Co. or steaks at pirate-themed Jack's Bar & Grill. It's a great option for wedding couples who want to throw a party off-site, or honeymooners who want to take in Cabo's famous nightlife without breaking the bank. Los Cabos isn't just about hotels and nightlife. Get out and explore with Cabo Adventures. Sightings during whale-watching season (December through April) are basically guaranteed or take a camel on safari through the cactus-strewn landscape. The company’s goal is to show off the Baja Peninsula's natural beauty, which prevails despite development, tourism and yes, even hurricanes.


Photos courtesy of: Hacienda Encantada Resort & Spa

For dining, enjoy five different restaurants, available à la carte or under all-inclusive pricing. "It's the most popular option for our guests, by far," says Gabriel Ibarra, the resort's marketing director. Enjoy tacos, salads and even sushi poolside, or settle into romantic Los Riscos for an elegant take on Mexican cuisine; set on a terraced bluff overlooking the crashing ocean – it’s also ideal for receptions.


For destination weddings, Playa del Carmen has it all: white sand beaches, sparkling Caribbean waters, adventure and nightlife. Not to mention, the unique spirit you will only find in Mexico. One magical resort stands out among many. Playa del Carmen is Mexico’s laid-back alternative to the crowds of nearby Cancún. Playa mingles plush Yucatán Peninsula jungle with the glittering beauty of the Caribbean Sea. An iconic oasis in an iconic destination, Mahekal Beach Resort takes its name from the Mayan word for “magical.” And it is. Following a $10-million re-imagination completed in 2014, Mahekal is the only thatched-roof bungalow resort in Playa. Ranked the “No. 1 Destination in Mexico” by TripAdvisor, this affable haven welcomes you with considerable charms. Choose from a myriad of accommodations – each guaranteed to destress even the weariest traveler with decadently perfumed Caribbean breezes and a vibrant palette as colorful as the spirit of Playa.

Words By John Roark


Playa del Carmen

The new Aventura section gives wedding guests proximity in penthouse buildings with generous ocean-view balconies. The dedicated honeymoon suite includes a two-room master suite separated by a personal plunge pool. For a true Playa experience, have your rehearsal dinner or reception barefoot on the beach beneath a canopy of colorful lanterns. For added privacy, your guests can also stay at Mahekal’s enchanting adjacent sister property, Hotel Las Palapas. For a truly magical getaway, look no further than Mahekal.


Photos courtesy of: Mahekal Beach Resort

Cenacolo Playa: Handmade pasta becomes art and brick-oven pizza is a revelation at Cenacolo, winner of the Ospitalità Italiana Seal by the Italian Chamber of Commerce, certifying exceptional food and service quality. La Cueva del Chango: Playa’s most distinctive restaurant/ bar, featuring authentic not-to-be-missed Mexican cuisine. We recommend breakfast – the chilaquiles top our list.

PLAY: Xcaret Eco-Archaeological Theme Park: This combines fun for all ages with history and traditions about the Mayan culture and more than 40 exciting attractions. Tulum: Step back in time exploring the ruins of one of the last cities inhabited by the ancient Mayan people. Guided tours include hiking, jungle zipline, snorkeling and cliff rappelling.




Shangri-La Hotel

The City of Light is a honeymoon classic. Lately, the city is reinventing itself in a way that honors its timeless passion for art, food and love. Here are The Honeymoonist's picks for an au courant honeymoon that celebrates old and new. STAY

Hôtel Plaza Athénée A landmark on Avenue Montaigne, this 101-year-old grande dame reopened in August 2014, after a multi-million dollar facelift. Redone interiors by Patrick Jouin and Marie-José Pommereau add light and whimsy while keeping the sumptuous French frills intact. Restaurant Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée is a showstopper of mirrors and crystals, and creative cocktails by Thierry Hernandez are on tap at buzzy Le Bar du Plaza Athénée. In-room perks include couture-quality fabrics, interactive iPads and shoe-polishing services from John Lobb.

The perfect Paris hotel is beautifully designed, conveniently located and offers stellar service. These three hit the mark.

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Shangri-La Hotel, Paris, Oetker Collections Le Bristol Paris (2nd, 3rd & 6th), Pierre Monetta, Jacques Pépion & Eric Laignel

Words by Susan Moynihan

Photo courtesy of (pages 42 & 43, top to bottom, left to right):



Le Bristol Paris

Hôtel Plaza Athénée

Le Bristol Paris

Hôtel Plaza Athénée


Le Bristol Paris

Hôtel Plaza Athénée

Le Bristol Paris

Shangri-La Hotel, Paris

This storied 8th Arrondissement hotel turns 90 in 2015, entering its next chapter fresh off a six-year redo that touched everything from the marble lobby to the sumptuous guestrooms. (The Panoramic Suite was featured in Woody Allen's "Midnight in Paris.") On-site attractions include three-Michelin-star Epicure, a lovely La Prairie spa, and a balconied indoor pool designed to resemble a yacht in the Côte d'Azur, albeit with views of the Eiffel Tower and Sacré-Coeur. Guest rooms are each uniquely designed using gorgeous toile or floral fabrics.

When you see a glossy fashion spread with a backdrop of the Eiffel Tower, chances are it was taken at this hotel; opened in 2010, it's the closest luxury hotel to the Eiffel Tower, which means it has ah-mazing views, especially at night. Request a room with a view or, better yet, one with a private balcony, ideal for a room service night in. On-site perks include two Michelinstar restaurants (French-style L’Abeille and Chinese-style Shang Palace), a CARITA spa and an expansive fitness area with a stunning pool. Bonus: You're within easy walking distance of shopping on Avenues Montaigne and George V.

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The HONEYMOONIST Shangri-La Hotel

Yachts de Paris

PLAY Paris is one of the world's foremost capitals of art, architecture and design. Here are three different ways to experience them.

Fondation Louis Vuitton The Louvre is still the spot for Old World masterpieces, but Contemporary Art mavens are flocking to the Frank Gehrydesigned Fondation, opened to much fanfare in 2014. The museum showcases pieces owned by LVMH CEO Bernard Arnault (among others), with works by modern masters from Jean-Michel Basquiat to Jeff Koons, along with site-specific installations. There are also rotating exhibits from the top names in Contemporary Art and a full slate of performances; Kanye West's three-night engagement coincided with Fashion Week in spring 2015.


Merci Printemps and Le Bon Marché are the city's shopping go-to’s, but we love this three-story shop located in Haut-Marais. Yes, there's fashion; chic wardrobe staples from their in-house brand. You'll also find housewares and design items from famous names and upstart designers. It's a great place to find one-of-a-kinds for your new home or gifts for people who went above and beyond for your wedding. When you're done browsing, grab a pair of café au laits in the cozy Used Book Café. | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photos courtesy of: Shangri-La Hotel, Paris

Shangri-La Hotel

Strolling along the Seine is utterly romantic, but the view is even better from the water. There are multiple cruising options, but we like the intimacy of Yachts de Paris’ Don Juan II, which only holds up to 52 guests. You'll sail for three hours as you enjoy a fourcourse dinner, sailing past a stunning collection of architectural wonders that date as far back as the 17th century. Yes, it's pricey, but it's your honeymoon and it's Paris. Some things are worth splurging for.

The HONEYMOONIST Restaurant Allard

EAT French cuisine is an art form unto itself, celebrating fresh ingredients and layers of flavors created with techniques honed over centuries. These three restaurants showcase the range of French cuisine today.

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom): Pierre Monetta (1st & 2nd) and Carla Ten Eyck Photography

Au Passage Opened in 2012, this casual restaurant is a-buzz with diners excited to taste the creative small plates by English chef Edward Delling-Williams. The chalkboard-written menu changes daily based on what's fresh: could be grilled octopus, shaved beets or creamy burrata…who knows. Things sell out as the night goes on, so if you want it, order it ASAP. Equally inspiring is the wine list, featuring cult wines from French vintners.

Restaurant Allard This atmospheric bistro in Saint-Germain-de-Prés has been serving classic French cuisine since 1932. It was passed-on to fine-dining maestro Alain Ducasse in 2013, but the vibe has remained unchanged, from the glass light fixtures and diamondtile floor to the menu of classic dishes like perfectly roasted chicken or the house specialty, canard aux olives (roast duck with olives).

Restaurant Allard



Yes, it's a challenge to get a table at this hot restaurant in the 11th Arrondissement. Chef Bertrand Grébaut showcases the modern side of French cuisine with a seasonal "neo-bistro" menu that changes without notice, depending on what ingredients are at their absolute peak. If you thought farm-to-table meant simple and rustic, this beautifully presented, creative take will teach you otherwise.


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Photography & Concept: Amanda Julca,, Planning & Event Design: Kasey Conyers of Bliss Wedding & Event Design,, Photo Shoot Location: Amorgos, Greece, Floral Design: Heather Thomas of HeatherLily Inc.,, Hair Stylist: Vera Joyce, Make-Up Artist: Anthie with Aegialis Hotel & Spa,, Bridal Gowns: Jenny Packham/Judd Waddell/Ulla-Maija Couture/Kirribilla/Lazaro each courtesy of La Jeune Mariee Collection via Big Rock Bridal Atelier, &, Bridesmaids Dresses: Amsale/Kirribilla/Alfred Sung Dupioni each courtesy of La Jeune Mariee Maids,, Jewelry: Haute Bride/Toni Federici/PARIS Inc./Sara Gabriel each courtesy of La Jeune Mariee Collection,, Men’s Accessories: Beau Ties Ltd.,, Paper Items/Stationery: Momental Designs & Coral Pheasant, &, Favors: Local Amorgos Olive Oil Bottles, Linens: La Tavola,, Charger Plates: All Occasions,, China Plates: Private Collection of Aegialis Hotel & Spa Owner, Food/Catering & Hotel Accommodations: Aegialis Hotel & Spa,, Videography: William Scott and Steve & Kyle Muza of Little Tree Studios,, Local Transportation: Blue Star Ferries Lines and the Aegialis Hotel & Spa, &, Models (Locals to Amorgos, Greece): Kaliovi – bride, Kalia – bridesmaid & Stavros - groom



There are certain places in this world that have a special magic – an essence which can be captured in a single image. Greece is one of those destinations. Captivated by the light, land and sea of this iconic romantic setting, this talented team translated these elements into destination wedding inspiration.


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Inspired by the warm light of the Mediterranean, Greece casts a magical glow over this sun-inspired décor. “As we reached our destination of Amorgos, the magic of the island came to life and really began telling the story,” says photographer Amanda Julca. Dramatic sunflower centerpieces by HeatherLily Inc. add contrast to the dreamy setting and enhance the destination’s natural luminosity. Traditional, formal linens by La Tavola are the perfect background for an organic mix of china patterns. The torn-edged stationery by Momental Designs is the perfect balance of rustic and refined. Guests can also take home a taste of Greece with these local olive oil bottles as favors. Our bride, Kaliovi, is the picture of Grecian perfection in a dramaticbacked Jenny Packham gown, sparkling "Abby" earrings by Sara Gabriel and the olive-inspired crown "Rue Plumet" hairpiece by PARIS Inc. - all courtesy of La Jeune Mariee.

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Greece’s soft light is complemented and elevated by the natural flora of the surrounding hills. Heather Thomas of HeatherLily Inc. took inspiration from the land in her floral designs. “Greece’s landscape provides a rich and diverse backdrop…many species of trees, bushes, flowers and herbs grow all over the country, making it an interesting place for a designer who loves foraging the country’s natural landscape.” This vibrant table setting takes its cues from the fuchsia bougainvillea found throughout Amorgos and the green hills of this cliffside town. The centerpieces and floral runner by HeatherLily Inc. pack a punch against the neutral linen by La Tavola. Gilded chargers, courtesy of All Occasions, put a Renaissance twist on this vivid set-up, and handpainted paper menus by Momental Designs add a customized and cultured element. Our bride is classically elegant in a light-as-air, tiered gown and jeweled sash by Judd Waddell with the "Abby" earrings by Sara Gabriel and a lacetrimmed veil by Toni Federici – all courtesy of La Jeune Mariee. Stavros, our groom, dresses up a suit of his own collection with a pink patterned tie and pocket square from Beau Ties Ltd.

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Sea 52 | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Fashion FORWARD The soft color palette and whitewashed buildings of Amorgos are emphasized by the azure Aegean Sea. Shades of blue and turquoise weave their way into this décor concept in the form of florals by HeatherLily Inc. and marble-like stationery by Coral Pheasant. Our couple was captured in various locations around Amorgos and the Aegialis Hotel & Spa. “We tried to match each of the individual bride and groom’s looks with the type of wedding someone would host in those locations,” explains Event Designer Kasey Conyers. “From the church procession with the formal Ulla-Maija Couture lace gown with matching orchid bouquet and Haute Bride earrings, to the little town square with the fun and flirty short Kirribilla dress with a succulent bouquet and PARIS Inc. earrings – there is a style for everyone here.” The bride’s three different dresses and all her jewelry pieces are courtesy of La Jeune Mariee and the groom’s tie and pocket square are courtesy of Beau Ties Ltd. The beautifully-backed dress, upper right, is by Lazaro and her Sara Gabriel hairpiece is the "Josephine Hair Wrap." The rustic, countryside-inspired cake is by Aegialis Hotel & Spa.



Nita Lake Lodge

Charming TREKS Nita Lake Lodge




Words by Samantha Payne | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photo courtesy of: Nita Lake Lodge


The Fairmont Chateau Whistler

The Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Although primarily known as one of the top ski resorts in the world, Whistler is gaining recognition for its summer allure. Whistler Village sits at the base of the Blackcomb and Whistler Mountains, allowing for romantic, breathtaking views from just about anywhere. An alpine village with chic-modern charm, it is lined with shopping, boutiques, galleries, bars and exquisite culinary experiences.

Photos courtesy of (left to right): Mike Crane and The Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Charming TREKS

For the adventurous newlyweds who crave natural surroundings for their honeymoon, or the adventure-seeking destination wedding couple, consider the ruggedly elegant Whistler, Canada. A three-hour flight from Los Angeles will get you to Vancouver. From there, gaze out the windows of your shuttle for the two-hour ride along the “Sea to Sky” highway. You’ll be in awe of the raw majesty British Columbia has to offer with ocean vistas, glacier views, deep forests, mountains and waterfalls cascading down cliffs.

The Bearfoot Bistro is a couple’s fine-dining dream. While your inventive, decadent meal is being prepared, head to the underground wine cellar boasting over 20,000 bottles. Learn to saber your own bottle of Champagne, a tradition made popular by Napoleon’s soldiers. If vodka is more your style, you’re in luck as this unique restaurant also holds the coldest vodka tasting room in the world for subzero tastings in the Ketel One Ice Room. After a full night’s entertainment, relaxing luxury is a short walk away at The Fairmont Chateau Whistler. Centrally located and looking like a castle from a Disney fantasy, it’s no wonder the Fairmont is so popular. There is even a rooftop terrace for couples interested in marrying on-site. The Fairmont is known to accommodate and personalize events ranging from parties to ceremonies, taking into account guests’ personal desires. With all the expected luxuries and red carpet treatment known of the Fairmont name, the Chateau Whistler rises to its reputation. For lovers craving cozy elegance in a more remote setting after saying their “I do’s,” the Nita Lake Lodge offers serene and intimate surroundings. Also priding itself on personalizing weddings, parties and celebrations, the award-winning service from the staff will make all events memorable. There is on-site

yoga, a full spa, an art gallery and a restaurant boasting farm-totable ingredients from their own rooftop garden. Surrounded by deep temperate rainforest and situated on the edge of the lake, every room is a suite in this luxury boutique lodge. No want will be left unfulfilled as you relax with tranquil views and unrivaled service. On the mountains, winter sports such as skiing, snowboarding, bobsledding, snowmobiling, ice climbing and snowshoeing are famous for being world-class. The mountain activities abound in the summer as well with epic hiking, mountain biking, canoeing, kayaking, golfing, horseback riding and whitewater rafting. “It’s no wonder Whistler is becoming nearly as popular for its summertime activities as those in the winter,” explains Mary Zinck of Tourism Whistler. “We also have many festivals that cater to music, the arts, health and wellness, wine, film and more – Whistler really is a year-round destination.” Companies like The Adventure Group can help you arrange many adrenaline-filled and scenic excursions, like Superfly Zipline tours. What a thrill for honeymooners to hold hands sideby-side while zipping through the air 600 feet above the ground at 65 mph! Or, spoil yourself with unique Finnish spa treatments and Scandinavian baths at Scandinave Spa Whistler to feel ultimately refreshed. For romance and elegance, heart pounding activities and pampering relaxation, large group celebrations or intimate getaways for two – whatever your destination wedding desires may be, Whistler, Canada will create unforgettable memories.

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Charming TREKS


Words by Samantha Ross

Traditions continue to present day, with a few more modern amenities, while paying homage to the spirit and settlers of this desert retreat. Once you’ve seen a sunset at Tanque Verde Ranch, there won’t be any objections. This is the ultimate destination for the bride who plans to wear boots under her wedding gown. From intimate family weddings to barn busters of 200 guests, Tanque Verde boasts handfuls of event spaces, both indoor and out. With the Saguaro National Park as your backdrop and surrounded by aged mesquite trees under sparkling white lights, Cactus View is a popular space for couples to say, “I do.” Retreat to Rincon Terrace for your reception, toast with prickly pear margaritas (a Tanque Verde specialty) and leave your guests with stars in their eyes – literally. Stargazing on the Rincon Terrace is beyond compare, especially when aided by local astronomers from Arizona Star Tours. Armed with a giant telescope and extensive knowledge of the night sky, Arizona Star Tours will “wow” your guests at any reception. What better wedding favor than giving each of your guests a once-in-a-lifetime experience as you celebrate your once-in-a-lifetime union?


If you imagine a wedding where guests feast at an outdoor Southwestern barbeque buffet and line-dance into the wee morning hours, Cottonwood Grove is the venue for you. The natural beauty of Tanque Verde lends itself to so many picturesque places, it can be overwhelming to choose, but with the ranch’s wedding planners, you’re certain to find the ideal spot. Leave all the details to the ranch with the Tanque Verde Wedding Package, which includes everything from décor to the dancefloor. Even details such as a wedding day breakfast and lunch for the busy bride and groom, setup and breakdown and even cake cutting are included. For busier weddings guests, a bed and breakfast package includes a comfortable room and breakfast every morning, with all activities offered, à la carte. Tanque Verde is a treasure trove of activities and your guests will want to spend the days before and after the wedding experiencing all the ranch has to offer. Horseback riding, hiking, swimming, fishing, tennis and daily Jeep adventures, just to name a few. After a long day, retreat to one of several of Tanque Verde’s accommodations. Haciendas, salas and casitas range in size, but each offers a private porch to retire to and enjoy the vibrant desert nights. Breathtaking scenery, unmatched Southwestern style, adventure, tradition and starlit spaces – Tanque Verde Ranch has it all. From the first step down the aisle, to the last boot on the dancefloor, your wedding at Tanque Verde Ranch will stand apart in every way. | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photos courtesy of: Tanque Verde Ranch

Spread across the base of the Rincon Mountains in Tucson, Arizona, Tanque Verde Ranch can trace its ranching history back to the 1860s.

Charming TREKS

St. Regis Aspen Resort Sundeck at Aspen Mountain



Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Daniel Bayer, Barnhart Carlson and St. Regis Aspen Resort

Words by Shana Kinnerup

There is an air of luxury that fills this small Rocky Mountain town and you can almost see it from street corner to mountaintop. For a destination bride, you will likely not find another locale which embodies beauty, elegance and luxury in the same way as Aspen. A romantically small community with surprisingly large opportunities, your list will be short to find another destination that is as used to entertaining the rich and famous as Aspen. With snow well into April, miles of Aspen groves for hiking, water for rafting or fishing and endless mountains for climbing, consider Aspen your bridal playground with countless options and non-stop luxury to build your own experience.

Theater Aspen – In the heart of Rio Grand Park and located right in town, this venue is surrounded by trickling streams, blooming gardens and endless Aspen trees. UNFORGETTABLE RECEPTION IDEAS

Caribou Club – An exclusive members-only eatery and bar that allows private functions such as welcome, rehearsal or reception dinners. St. Regis Aspen Resort – Providing the single largest event space in all of downtown Aspen and home to Chefs Club by FOOD & WINE, your palate will more than agree. Pine Creek Cookhouse – There are no roads in, so a horsedrawn wagon is an exciting experience for all of your guests. The food is gourmet and less “cookhouse,” but entirely delicious. The Aspen Historical Society – Offering three unique properties; Wheeler/Stallard Museum is a Victorian-Era residential-style property, Holden Barn located outside of town and the 1880s rumored ghost town of Ashcroft.


St. Regis Aspen Resort – At the base of Aspen’s signature slopes, you won’t get a better mountainside location, right in the middle of town. Pine Creek Cookhouse – Overlooking some of the most breathtaking and untouched landscape in the surrounding mountains of Aspen. Sundeck at Aspen Mountain – Located, by gondola ride, at the top of Aspen Mountain, only the bride will measure up to this view.


- Ski any of the four world-class mountains. - Watersports such as kayak, rafting and fishing. - Miles of trailhead for hiking and biking. - Picturesque views with a breathless gondola ride to the top of Aspen Mountain. - Host an old fashioned cookout, complete with chuck wagon, firepit and s’mores by the creek at T Lazy 7 Ranch.

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Dreams Set Sail in Words by Courtney Cox

FRENCH As most travel lovers know, there are some places forever stuck in our minds and cemented in our psyches. After a visit in 2011, French Polynesia became one such spot for me. When I was given the opportunity to go back, I was excited to experience the destination in a different capacity – by sea via Windstar Cruises.


If you have cruised on a larger cruise line in the past, Windstar Cruises and the 148-guest, 440-foot sailing yacht, Wind Spirit, will most likely surpass your previous experience and perhaps give you a new definition of “cruising” altogether. For starters, cruising on a smaller vessel with sails could not be more different than larger cruise ships. You’re going to feel the swaying of the boat and splashing of the ocean, so come prepared if you’re prone to seasickness. The Wind Spirit sets sail out of Papeete, Tahiti. After an eighthour Air Tahiti Nui flight from L.A. on one of the airline’s recently upgraded planes (think more legroom and your own in-flight entertainment system), it was time to say “bon voyage.” | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photo courtesy of: Courtney Cox





Photos courtesy of (left to right): Courtney Cox and Windstar Cruises


Windstar quickly sets itself apart. The food is excellent and every member of the crew will call you by name and prophetically memorize your preferences. Every Windstar cruise is adults-only and you’re encouraged to mingle with the captain and crew.

The “Magical Island” is only a stone’s throw away from Tahiti, but is a can’t-miss opportunity to venture off-ship. The Wind Spirit drops anchor in picturesque Cook’s Bay and a guided hike of the Three Coconut Trail offers sweeping views of the ship surrounded by velvety-green valleys. The hike is strenuous, but well worth it. After you’ve surmounted the final stretch, you will be awestruck by the cloud-crested beauty of Mount Moua Roa (otherwise known as “Bali Hai” from the film "South Pacific"). While you might be tired from the day’s adventures, the sunset sail leaving Moorea is truly breathtaking. TAHA’A

There are a variety of optional excursions on each island, but for the “Vanilla Island,” Windstar has you covered. Get up early and hop aboard a charter to your own private motu (a tiny islet within the lagoon). You can snorkel right off the powder-sand beach and the boat’s crew has anything you might need on-island. Sip rum cocktails out of coconuts and enjoy the bliss only these

crystalline waters can offer. I was so hesitant to leave this small piece of paradise, I ended up on the very last charter of the day. RAIATEA

At your next pit stop in paradise, look into taking advantage of Raiatea’s amazing drift snorkeling. After you’ve removed your flippers, take a walk into town to visit the island’s “le marché” where you will find gorgeous handmade crafts. As you sail on to Bora Bora, enjoy a deck BBQ in lieu of dinner in the dining room. The massive spread includes local salads, lobster tails, lamb chops, steaks and anything else your decadent heart desires. BORA BORA

Get the most out of your time on this infamous island and book the “Bora Bora Lagoon and Cultural Tour” for unforgettable adventures. The first stop was a sapphire-tinted spot just outside the rim of the lagoon. I, and the other brave souls, hopped in the warm water to discover dozens of tropical fish. Little did we know we had a few surprises swimming just 30-feet below. Beyond the sunny, crystal clear surface were three 10-foot lemon sharks. These docile, albeit intimidating, creatures were a wonder to behold. While swimming with sharks wasn’t on the top of my to-do list, I was captivated and mystified. With our

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Honeymoon HIDEAWAYS On the final night in Bora Bora, Windstar will host an epic, sunset “Celebration Festival.” Get whisked away once again to a small, private island where the entire ship is treated to a traditional Polynesian meal, hula dancers and flame-wielding acrobats. These complimentary celebrations are a Windstar speciality and are unique to your chosen destination.

In a way, Windstar is the antithesis of larger cruises: intimate excursions, romantic dining under the stars and remarkable service – all the makings of a perfect honeymoon experience. If French Polynesia isn’t your dream, Windstar also sets sail to 50 nations and 150 ports, including the Mediterranean and Asia. In the days of social media and photo filters, a visit to French Polynesia is like falling through the looking glass into a land where time stands still and colors seem to shift seamlessly with the sun. For honeymooners, it’s hard to imagine a more magical place to start your life together. These islands offer a rare opportunity to see pure wonder in the eyes of your other half.


There are a few shops on the small island of Huahine, but this day will provide the perfect opportunity to stay on-ship and enjoy the watersports platform. The Windstar yachts are unique in that you can kayak, paddle board, swim and snorkel right off the back of the ship. As you set sail for Papeete, you will feel your journey coming to an end. Enjoy one last “magical moment” as the dramatic theme song from “1492: Conquest of Paradise” plays and the sails are raised to greet the evening wind.


The city of Papeete is the heart of French Polynesia’s commercial life and for overnight accommodations at the beginning and end of your journey, Windstar has partnered with Le Méridien Tahiti to offer its guests discounted rates.

Photos courtesy of: Windstar Cruises

adrenaline pumping, we were off again with our sarong-clad guide for a delicious, traditional Polynesian lunch on a motu, swimming with stingrays and exploring the area’s vibrant coral reefs.


Words by Susan Moynihan

Italy has long been a favorite for honeymooners, and now more than ever thanks to George Clooney’s wedding. But long before George met Amal, there was Grace Kelly, the ultimate Hollywood icon, who became royalty when she married the Prince of Monaco in 1956. On their Mediterranean honeymoon, they checked into Rome's Hotel Hassler and celebs continue to do so to this day (think Gwyneth, the Beckhams, Paul McCartney and more).

Photos courtesy of: Hotel Hassler Roma


with a View

Owned by the same family for five generations, Hotel Hassler wins for location. Set at the top of the Spanish Steps (made famous by Audrey Hepburn in "Roman Holiday"), it has the best views in the city, from Villa Borghese next door all the way to St. Peter's in Vatican City and beyond. Vendors gather on the small plaza outside, selling paintings and flowers. Walk down the steps past Romans sitting and enjoying the sunshine and you're in the historic Tridente neighborhood. Stroll the high-end shops along Via Condotti, wander to the Trevi Fountain, meander all the way down to the Colosseum and pop into cafés for wine and tasty bites; when you get tired, take a taxi back up the hill.

But this is your honeymoon, so you may not leave the hotel at all. And, frankly, there's no need. The 96 rooms are thoroughly plush, each unique in décor with silk fabrics, antique furnishings, fresh flowers and marble bathrooms. Even better are the suites, which range in size and have separate living areas and private balconies. City views are most prized, of course, but even the non-city views have great vistas overlooking the Villa Borghese gardens. Dining is a feast for the palate and the eyes at Imágo. This Michelin-star restaurant boasts Chef Francesco Apreda, who puts his own spin on Italian-Asian cuisine. It's a unique break from the pastas and pizzas you'll be eating as you explore the city. Settle into the red leather banquette for pomegranate bellinis at the Art Deco Hassler Bar, or head outside to the Palm Court in warmer months. Love what you're drinking? Ask about classes at the International Wine Academy of Roma next door, owned by the same family as the hotel. They offer programs in the spring and fall, ranging from vertical tastings to wine dinners featuring the chef of Imágo. Rome is Italy's largest city and its central location makes it an ideal jumping-off point for honeymoons north to Tuscany and Cinque Terre, or south towards Naples and the Amalfi Coast.

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Algodon Mansion


Algodon Mansion

Algodon Mansion

Algodon Wine Estates


AHoneymoon Duet Calling all foodies, oenophiles, beach lovers and pleasure seekers looking for an eclectic honeymoon escape. We have the perfect itinerary to satisfy your senses. Think Napa Valley, Paris and the Hamptons with a South American twist.

Flying to South America is easy. “LAN Airlines is known for award-winning service and an in-flight experience that brings the best of South America to the world from the minute they step on board,” says Pablo Chiozza, Senior Vice President, LATAM Airlines Group, USA, Canada and the Caribbean. “Flying to South


Words by by Stacey Marcus

America from the U.S. is easy as passengers are able to travel from our gateway cities including New York, Orlando, Miami and Los Angeles. Argentina is a great honeymoon choice with Buenos Aires often called the 'Paris of South America' with great Argentinian wines, ‘parrilla’ (Argentina’s unique grilled cuisine) and wide boulevards with charming cafés.” The journey begins on a breathtaking vineyard in San Rafael, Mendoza where newlyweds can unwind amid endless acres of olive groves and fruit orchards while indulging in scrumptiously fresh cuisine and delicious wines. The vibe is relaxed and über friendly. “Located in the heart of Argentina’s wine country, boasting picturesque vistas and gorgeous weather, San Rafael, Mendoza is the ideal region for newlyweds seeking | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Algodon Mansion (1st-3rd) and Algodon Wine Estates


Honeymoon HIDEAWAYS Algodon Wine Estates Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Algodon Wine Estates and THE GRAND HOTEL (2nd-4th)





a romantic honeymoon in the countryside,” notes Scott Mathis, CEO & Chairman of Algodon Group. “At Algodon Wine Estates, couples can enjoy beautiful suites with private patios amongst the vineyards, award-winning wines, culinary innovations and endless choices of outdoor and resort activities. Couples may even fall in love with the opportunity to own a piece of the estate’s vineyard and have their very own custom wine label!” The next stop is Buenos Aires, South America’s most romantic city, mixing old-world glamour with modern-day charm. “Situated in the chic Recoleta district, Algodon Mansion is the city’s only Relais & Châteaux property. “With just ten luxurious suites, the hotel provides an intimate honeymoon experience offering 24-hour private butler-service, a rooftop pool and spa, on-site tango lessons and plenty of Algodon’s private collection wine,” notes Mathis. Couples can enjoy a stroll down the lovely treelined streets, pop in and out of boutiques, galleries, cafés and restaurants or travel to any number of nearby neighborhoods, each rich in history and personality.

Our final stop is Punta del Este, Uruguay. “Punta del Este is the ideal destination for celebrating a wedding or romantic honeymoon,” says General Manager, John Iriondo of THE GRAND HOTEL. “The area features sprawling beaches, beautiful sunsets, gourmet restaurants with international fare, boat excursions, horseback riding on the beach and an exciting nightlife during the summertime. In addition, Gorriti Island, with its very own beach, is just a short boat ride from the coast and offers stunning views of the mainland and the surrounding Rió de la Plata.” THE GRAND HOTEL is a fabulous spot for couples to visit before returning back to reality. The first luxury hotel to open here in 15 years, THE GRAND HOTEL boasts 120 beautifully appointed rooms with many overlooking Brava Beach. “We’re a little country with a big heart,” says Adriana Ruiz, a concierge at THE GRAND. And it’s that wonderful feeling that lingers.

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Casting a Beautiful Spell:


Escape to the mythical island of Bali, where gods walk through ancient forests, princesses dance by moonlight and romance floats on the lemongrass-scented breeze. 64 | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photo courtesy of: Viceroy Bali

Words by by John Roark

Honeymoon HIDEAWAYS Photos courtesy of: Viceroy Bali

Our coach carried us past filigreed palaces into an emerald landscape, traversing impossibly green terraced rice paddies. We spied macaques surely on their way to some mischief and herons silently sailed the sky. When we reached our destination, we were instantly enveloped by the magical spell of the Viceroy Bali. Family-owned and operated, it was the World Winner of the 2015 Conde Nast award for “Best View” and one of TripAdvisor’s 2015, “Top 25 Romantic Hotels in Indonesia.” Viceroy Bali is the go-to for discerning travelers craving privacy and luxury. The 5-star Viceroy’s 25 expansive villas are carved into the steep hillside overlooking the Petanu River gorge. Garden and terrace villas with private pools immerse you in a sense of peaceful serenity and hypnotic views transport you to a place where fairytales come true. For an intimate, traditional Balinese wedding for two or a ravishing event for 50, the Viceroy team will make your day as beautiful and unique as a brilliant sunset.

It’s hard to believe Viceroy Bali is not make-believe. Entranced by the spell of this magical kingdom, once-upon-a-timers return again and again. EXPLORE Take a Helicopter Tour - Viceroy is the only hotel in the Ubud district with its own helicopter pad. Tour Bali and the neighboring islands by helicopter, arranged by the resort staff. Ubud - Bali's center for arts and culture is a short drive away, ideal for wandering day or night. Museums, shops, galleries, restaurants and cafés abound. Pura Taman Saraswati (Water Palace) - Commissioned by the royal family in the 19th century and named for the Hindu goddess of learning, literature and art, this temple features lush gardens with thousands of blooming lotus flowers. Pasar Seni (The Art Market) - We found the best bargains early in the morning and bartering is part of the fun. Keep an eye out for exquisite Indonesian batik fabrics, known the world over for its vibrant colors and intricate detail.

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This particular wedding was a standout due to its vibrant floral creations. These extended even onto the cake with its intricate lace-inspired details. CAKE BY: LYDIA’S CAKES VUE PHOTOGRAPHY


Takes on Cakes

When planning a destination wedding, you’re going to spend months deciding on countless details and making endless style choices. While it can be daunting at times, picking a theme or honing in our your personality as a couple will really pay off in the end. As an example of thoughtful planning done right, we’ve selected ten of our favorite cakes – each of which had its own unique style and made its own W-Day statement. 66 | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5


Not for the faint of heart, this cake is more like a piece of art. From the bold pattern choice to the interesting size and scale – this was sure to be a showstopper.

Marie Antoinette herself would sit-up and take notice of this classic Parisian confection. The dramatic feather topper and goldenribbon stand add personality.









Delicate sugar flowers take center stage on this classic, shabby chic dessert.

Ideal for a modern twist on the nautical wedding, this cake is classic with a golden surprise. Including the trendy pattern on only one tier makes it pop.






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This cake appears to have been made for the Italian countryside. Bright, ripened berries add textural interest and a touch of natural sweetness.

If shock and awe is your aim, this dramatic cake is sure to turn heads. The dark fondant is softened by touches of laceinspired details.







This cake is an example of a monogram done right. The quilted technique provides visual interest and a personalized, fabric feel.

Pick a wedding theme and stick with it! This simple, yet refined cake is a perfect example from a cliff-side Big Sur destination wedding.









What this miniature cake lacks in size, it makes up for in personality. The fanned fondant pieces add interest and movement to an otherwise neutral cake. CAKE BY: CUPCAKES COUTURE OF MANHATTAN BEACH

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Words by Amber Gibson



At Curtain Bluff, the room rate includes all meals, alcohol and activities from squash and tennis to scuba diving, waterskiing and windsurfing. This setup allows your guests to truly vacation in Antigua while celebrating with you. The only additional costs are spa treatments and wines from the cellar. Both of which are worth the splurge. “We have the most extensive wine list in the Caribbean,” says Managing Director Robert Sherman. With 25,000 bottles and 550 wines, I don’t doubt it. Sip your favorite bubbly while watching the sunset after a tropical yogurt body wrap and luminous sea facial. | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photo courtesy of: Curtain Bluff

Somewhat surprisingly, the exotic Caribbean destination of Curtain Bluff, Antigua can be more affordable than a wedding at home. Here, the choice between a bluff or beach ceremony is tough. Saying your vows on the Bluff House balcony overlooking the ocean and lush volcanic hills, or nestled on the sand with a soundtrack of crashing waves seem equally romantic.

Caribbean Photos courtesy of: Curtain Bluff

“Everybody cares here," Sherman says. "We’re elegant, but not pretentious.” In just a few days, I understood him completely. The sunny weather is matched by genuine warmth from the staff, who sing as they work and treat guests like family. Come evening, the atmosphere shifts from super casual to refined, with gentlemen donning collared shirts and dress slacks for dinner. Whether you dine beachside at the Mediterraneaninspired Sea Grape or eclectic Tamarind Tree with nightly live music, you won’t be disappointed. The food at both is bright and flavorful, a mix of Caribbean and European influences. With a menu that changes daily, the culinary team is well prepared to customize food for weddings.

Reserve at least 45 of the 72 rooms during low season – October and November or May through August – for a buyout. Save the Cliff Suite, with its own terrace plunge pool, for yourself. Not that you’ll need it with the soft sandy beaches and warm cerulean sea just outside your door. Bright pops of turquoise and emerald in the furniture and artwork perfectly match the seaside landscape. Direct flights from New York, Miami, Atlanta and Charlotte bring you to Curtain Bluff in just a few hours for the oceanside wedding you’ve been dreaming of.

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Words by Carolyn Steere

Enveloped by the clear blue Caribbean Sea in the U.S. Virgin Islands sits one of Marriott’s premier properties: Frenchman’s Reef and Morning Star Marriott Beach Resort. From its vantage point on a bluff, the daytime views are exquisite and at night, the twinkling lights surrounding the harbor are magical. Planning a destination wedding at the resort couldn’t be easier with the depth of experience provided by their in-house wedding professionals. The most difficult part may be choosing from among the many stunning locations on property for the ceremony, reception and other events you may want to include as part of your wedding getaway. One favorite is the secluded gazebo garden with its azure sea backdrop, but you can also exchange vows with your toes sinking in a powdery sand beach or on one of the decks overlooking the harbor. While most ceremonies take place outdoors, the resort has numerous plan “B” locations for those occasional tropical showers.


If you are like most couples planning a wedding away from home, one of your top priorities is the experience your guests will have at your chosen destination. Your list of requirements will no doubt include comfortable and luxurious accommodations and a multitude of unique activities. Great dining and guest rooms with outstanding views and comfy beds are all part of the Frenchman’s Reef experience. The Adventure Center in the lobby of Frenchman’s Reef is the epicenter of activities for all ages and preferences: from safari excursions on the neighboring island of St. John to snorkel sails, fishing expeditions and shark or turtle encounters. One not-to-miss activity is the night kayaking tour in which you explore the nocturnal life beneath the water in kayaks fitted with clear bottoms and LED lights. When pampering is on the agenda, you won’t want to miss visiting the on-site Lazule Sea Spa. Indulge in a sumptuous sugar scrub or hot stone massage followed by sipping Champagne in the private pool with spectacular seaside views reserved exclusively for spa guests. Passports are not required and wedding legalities are straightforward in the U.S. Virgin Islands, so if you are looking for a tropical island setting for your easy-to-plan destination wedding, put St. Thomas on your “places to consider” list. | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photos courtesy of: Frenchman's Reef & Morning Star Marriott Beach Resort




Words by Carly Cylinder

Baoase Luxury Resort

Avila Hotel

Bright, colorful buildings, turquoise water, desert hills, lush green mountains, palm trees – this island has it all. Curaçao is a unique blend of European sophistication meets laidback attitude with over 50 nationalities spread over a population of roughly 150,000. About 30 miles north of Venezuela, the Dutch ABC Islands (Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao) avoid the hurricane belt and have an average year-round temperature in the mid-eighties with little rain.

Photos courtesy of: Curaçao Tourist Board

Downtown Willemstad, lined with vibrant Dutch architecture and historic yellow coral-stone buildings, is filled with quaint shops and restaurants scattered along the shoreline. Check out the floating markets where small boats dock with fresh produce from Venezuela. At Plaza Bieu, an indoor food market, taste local creole cuisine such as fresh fish, iguana stew and polenta. The island is so diverse that even the most restless couple will easily find an adventure to embark on. Past bride, Shannon Everley explains, “We decided on Curaçao because we were looking for a unique, tropical destination that offered a bit of luxury with fantastic scuba diving.”

limestone bluffs. For snorkeling, walk straight into the clear water or take an excursion out to the Blue Room cave where you’ll admire the grey-green peaks gracing the horizon on the ride out. While chain hotels are on the island, two properties, both familyowned, give a true taste of culture. Avila Hotel has a leisurely European-style buffet breakfast, infinity pool and lively schooner bar. During sunset, place your feet in the sand while listening to local singers. Farley Hollander, Sales & Marketing Manger says, “We have special packages where honeymooners and couples can pose with our vintage 1926 Rolls-Royce.” Be sure to check out the Blues bar in the evening. Even the Queen of the Kingdom of the Netherlands stays here. For a five-star stay, the Baoase Luxury Resort offers private pools, an island oasis and massages on a helipad. Jacqueline Held, a Sales Manager at the resort, explains the marriage process, “Any hotel can handle the paperwork and the couple only needs to come to the island a few days before the wedding to make it legal in the U.S..” With direct flights (five hours) from New York City and over 60 cities connecting through Miami International (three hours), Curaçao is easily accessible. And of course, don’t forget to have Blue Curaçao in your W-Day toast or honeymoon libation!

In the northwest area of Westpunt, explore Shete Boka National Park, a pebbly plain with stunning waves crashing against FAL L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5 |


San Geronimo Fort



Words by Courtney Cox



For couples wanting nuptials accompanied by great nightlife and century-old ruins, stick to San Juan and the historic Condado


Plaza Hilton. Since it’s the only hotel located between the Condado Lagoon and the Atlantic, you get the best of both worlds with scenic ocean views on one side and a calm-watered lagoon backed by the city skyline on the other. Express “bienvenidos” by hosting an evening cocktail party for your guests with delicious passed hors d'oeuvres like truffle cheese "empanadillas" at the swanky Pikayo restaurant. Then, exchange vows over the sound of crashing waves and with the San Geronimo Fort ruins as your backdrop. For your reception, the Royal Ballroom is an easy choice with floor-to-ceiling windows, a large stage and gorgeous built-in bar. All-in-all, The Condado Plaza Hilton has 18 event spaces to choose from and its 500-plus rooms are all poshly decorated in either red or sea-blue hues. As a member of the Historic Hotels of America, the hotel lives up to its reputation with amazing food and an experienced event staff waiting on your beck and call. | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photo courtesy of: Condado Plaza Hilton

With its passport-free convenience, friendly locals and jungle-meets-beach winning combination, it’s easy to see why Puerto Rico is one of the most popular Caribbean islands for U.S. destination wedding couples. We’ve explored two potential hosts for your wedding away and found that, no matter what you’re after, Puerto Rico has an option that will suit your needs.

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Condado Plaza Hilton and El Conquistador Resort (2nd & 3rd)


The Condado Plaza Hilton

El Conquistador Resort

El Conquistador Resort


If you’re not interested in the San Juan nightlife, head to the northeastern tip of the island and the El Conquistador, A Waldorf Astoria Resort. This expansive property has got entertaining down to a science; so don’t worry about keeping your guests busy. Aside from the shopping, marina, 18-hole golf course, spa, arcade and nightly entertainment – there’s also a waterpark. Oh, and did we mention the private island? While guests can catch a free, 15-minute ferry over to Palomino Island for the day, book it for your exclusive use in the evening for a wedding “welcome” barbeque and bonfire to be remembered. Because the resort can bring their world-class cuisine to the island, think beyond the traditional BBQ staples. Treat your guests to gourmet fare like fresh ceviche served in coconut bowls and topped with crispy plantains, or the freshcatch seasoned and grilled whole – just how the locals like it.

Used to handling large conferences, El Conquistador can accommodate even your craziest W-Day request and has expert vendors on-site. "You're only limited by your imagination here,” says Lydia Feliciano, Director of Marketing and Communications for the resort. “We've seen it all and we've done it all. There's no such thing as 'no' here. We will work with you to make it happen…as long as it's legal!" For a slightly slower pace, consider moving over to Las Casitas Village – an oasis of villas set apart from the main resort. Ranging from one-to-three bedrooms, every villa comes with a full kitchen and butler service. With easy convenience to the U.S. and a history of excellence in the world of destination weddings, Puerto Rico is a safe and spectacular option.

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! 75


To Have & TO HOLD

TO HOLD Become a Skincare Sensation

Words by Jennifer Stein and Courtney Cox





by Colorescience Sunforgettable Mineral Sunscreen is a perfect traveling companion for any woman – especially the destination bride. Being that it’s a powder and not a cream, it will get right through security at any airport. As someone who suffers from sensitive skin, this is one of the only facial sunscreens I can use. It’s handy, works well as a light powder for shine and, the best of all its benefits, it protects you from harmful U.V. rays. $57 for SPF 30,


by Glow Goddess Sounds painful, I know, but after my first treatment I can say it’s worth the momentary discomfort. Most licensed estheticians will use a numbing agent to reduce the “prickling sensation.” The practitioner will use a professional-grade instrument such as Eclipse Micropen Elite to gently work around your skin and concentrate on problem areas. Micro-needling is perfect for someone with deep acnescars, fine-lines and wrinkles (especially around the lips and eyes) as well as any discoloration on their skin. Downtime is minimal, but effects are lasting. Make sure you work with someone who knows what they are doing! I worked with Glow Goddess out of Scottsdale, AZ and saw results after just one treatment. $200/treatment,

by Colorescience As a sufferer of acne scars, freckles and frequent blemishes, this product is a God-send. It will cover up just about any imperfection with easy application and without looking like you’ve piled your makeup on two inches thick. It also has a cheat sheet on the back explaining what colors it will cover up to make sure you apply it perfectly. Thank you Colorescience, thank you. $54, | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Colorescience (1st & 2nd) and Eclipse Aesthetics, LLC

Lots of couples go down the road of self-improvement en route to their walk down the aisle. Whether you’re looking to simply mix-up your makeup routine or are hitting the gym harder than ever before, you can’t forget to address your skincare regimen. In order to be truly W-Day ready and glowing inside and out, consider some of these fabulous skincare products to help get you ready for your close-up!

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Embryolisse, Perfective Ceuticals, LaBelle Day Spas, Dermarie Advanced Skin Science (4th & 5th), Bellatorra Skincare and VOLANTÉ Skincare



by Embryolisse This product is known as the “24-Hour Miracle Cream.” Well, I don’t know that I’d go that far, but it sure did moisturize my skin to a point where it felt refreshed, supple and back to its former youthful glory. This three-in-one cream by Embryolisse acts as a moisturizer, primer and makeup remover and is touted by makeup artists as a go-to item in their bag of tricks. Highly recommended for the price point, scent and effectiveness. $28,

by Bella Schneider Beauty Before applying those expensive skincare products, it’s important to start with a clean base. This cleanser is gentle enough for sensitive skin, but will leave your face feeling refreshed and squeaky-clean. I tend to have dry skin, but this cleanser does the trick after a trip to the gym without leaving my skin with that dry, tight feeling. $29.50,


by Perfective Ceuticals Perfect to aid in creating that W-Day glow, this facial treatment comes in the form of a paper mask and is designed to fight dullness, replenish moisture and combat discoloration caused by sun exposure. The mask left my sunexposed skin feeling clean, even toned and ready for makeup. $42,

To Have & TO HOLD



by Dermarie This product was my first venture into serums and I’m officially hooked! According to the brand’s website, “This revolutionary topical works like Botox to interrupt the nerve signals responsible for facial expression lines and forehead wrinkles.” All I know is that immediately after using this product my skin appears supple, even toned and glowing. It’s now a “must” in my nightly routine. $68,





by Bellatorra Skincare This product is a facial in a bottle. Similar to the famed ORO Gold, only the price tag is about 90% less. It's still an expensive product, but is worth the investment as it seriously reduces fine-lines, wrinkles and gives your skin a glow usually only experienced after a professional facial. $295,

by VOLANTÉ Skincare I’ve tried my fair share of eye crèmes and, although I didn’t notice a difference with dark circles, I did notice my eyes feeling quite moisturized and refreshed. It has a combination of patent-pending botanicals, which clearly do the trick. $85,

by Dermarie While it’s important to take care of your face, you can’t forget about your neck and décolleté. Signs of aging can become visible on your neck and chest long before evidence begins to appear on your face. This rich cream contains skin-tightening peptides that lift and improve your skin’s elasticity. It left my skin feeling dramatically hydrated and smooth. $78,

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department HEADING FAL L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5 |


Ask the EXPERT


H T Take Your Jewelry from W-Day to Everyday


Everyday: Mix and match it with all of your favorite metals. Pair with your favorite cozy sweater, jeans and boots for a chic look. $64

by t+j W-Day: This will add sparkle and should be the only thing on your wrist.

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Photo courtesy of: t+j Designs

Investing in accessories for your bridal look is essential, but is there a way to extend the life of your jewelry by opting for pieces that can transition from W-Day to everyday? Absolutely! We’ve enlisted the help of professional stylist to the stars, Keylee Sanders, to help select some pieces which can go from aisle-style to street-style, seamlessly. As a bonus, she gives suggestions on how to wear them.

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): t+j Designs (1st & 5th), Alberto Parada (2nd, 3rd & 6th), (4th & 7th) and Gail Bowan (Make-Up: Lisa G Artistry)

Ask the EXPERT






by Alberto Parada W-Day: Here’s your something blue! Sapphire slices are elegant and much more cost effective than cut and polished sapphires. Make these the centerpiece of your look. A bateau or plunging neckline would work perfectly. Everyday: Keeping these in your jewelry box for a special occasion will be your instinct, but fight it! $4,100



by Alberto Parada W-Day: No matter what you wear on W-Day, these elegant earrings will work. The white quartz will catch the light without being a disco ball and rose gold is a complementary metal on most skin tones. Everyday: These will quickly become your go-to everyday earrings. They are understated enough for the office and special enough to wear with your hair up for a night on the town. $2,650

by Margaret Rowe W-Day: The design and stonework of these earrings would be perfectly suited for a bohemian-style dress, especially one with a sweetheart neckline. Everyday: After the wedding, these will make a statement at your next holiday or cocktail party, but don't be afraid to throw them on when you need a pick me up – trust me, it will work! $125




by t+j W-Day: Pair this piece with a tea-length gown or anything with vintage touches. Everyday: After you say “I do,” this would look perfect peeking out of a white collared button-up shirt and pencil skirt for the office or a bright, simple dress. $58




by Margaret Rowe W-Day: This can be worn with the most simple of wedding dress silhouettes. Add this to almost any strapless dress to create a fabulous focal point. Everyday: Take a LBD from day to night with this necklace or dress up your favorite t-shirt under a blazer. $469

by t+j W-Day: Ear cuffs are for the modern bride. Pair with small studs or simple drop earrings for your wedding day and a simple, modern gown. Everyday: Wear this piece with your favorite date-night dress or jeans and a sexy top. The only place this ear cuff probably won't work is the office. $48


Keylee Sanders is the owner of Style Studio, a full service style consultancy that specializes in fine jewelry. Her work can be seen on the red carpet, the big and small screens, the pages of magazines and on her many happy clients. Keylee and her company reside in Los Angeles, but she services clients all over the world. For fun, style and adventure;

by Alberto Parada. W-Day: Clearly you want your new sparkler to be the center of attention on your big day, but the right hand ring is a trend that is here to stay. You could wear this with nearly any silhouette. Everyday: Post-nuptials you should wear this ring as often as possible; with denim, to the office or on the weekends! $3,465

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The Southeast is known for hospitality, charm, great food and warm climates. From picturesque beaches and oceanfront offerings, to charming cabins in the woods and bountiful beauty throughout, the Southeast serves up a healthy dose of gorgeous settings. If you’re looking to say “I do” with ease and affordability, here are a few of our favorite hot spots. CITY SLICKERS:

New Orleans, Louisiana Serving up mouthwatering foods, quaint backdrops, a bevvy of places to tie-the-knot and a little mystery and mystique for good measure, The Big Easy is one of the coolest towns east of Texas. There are countless wedding professionals in town to help get you down the aisle stress-free or take advantage of the


Convention & Visitors Bureau, which offers complimentary help to any couple planning their destination wedding in New Orleans. COUNTRY CHIC:

Smoky Mountains, Tennessee Not only is the area replete with a plethora of amazing wedding venues, but the Smoky Mountains offer luxury accommodations | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

New Orleans Smoky Mountains

Photos courtesy of (top to bottom, left to right): Courtney Cox (1st, 2nd & 5th), (3rd) and Jennifer Stein (4th & 6th)

Key West Outer Banks

Smoky Mountains

Key West

The Southeast is for LOVERS

What you’ll find will last a lifetime.

Celebrate the love you’ve found on the shores of the Currituck Outer Banks, NC.

Breathtaking sound and ocean views, coastal Carolina breezes and majestic sunsets are just a few of the reasons why the Currituck OBX is the perfect setting for your destination wedding and dream honeymoon.

Call 877-287-7488 for your free wedding planner

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“I DO”

IN NEW ORLEANS EASIER THAN EVER. The New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau offers complimentary assistance to brides and grooms when planning their wedding in the Big Easy. We can assist with locating hotel accommodations for groups of 10 rooms or more. We also offer assistance with reception venues, rehearsal dinners, transportation, caterers, florists, photographers and Official Visitor Guides for your guests- anything you need to make your special day a perfect one.




(think gourmet kitchens tucked inside oversized log cabins with Jacuzzi tubs and sprawling views of the Smokies), fabulous dining, an abundance of family-friendly activities, as well as countless wedding vendors to help pull off the wedding day of your dreams. It’s one of the most popular areas in the Southeast for good reason. They even have their own wedding association (Smoky Mountain Wedding Association), which represents Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg and Sevierville.

The Southeast is abundant in beautiful backdrops and affordable offerings for any destination wedding.”


Photo courtesy of: Courtney Cox

Florida Keys Known for endless sunshine, late-night fun, a laid-back vibe and sugary sand beaches, the Florida Keys are a popular choice for many. The area is easy to get to and offers up some of the finest backdrops east of the Mississippi. Made up of Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, Key West, Big Pine Keys and the Lower Keys, any one of the Keys is a great choice for your big day away. Outer Banks, North Carolina Talk about endless options for your destination wedding or honeymoon! The Outer Banks offers a range from beautiful beaches to traditional event spaces and everything in between. From the Northern Beaches and Currituck down to Hatteras Island, you’ll find an abundance of talented wedding vendors, free planning guides and scenic backdrops. Loved ones from all over will be thrilled to visit with all there is to see and do.

Outer Banks




Words by Kinsley Brown


Images by Annamarie Akins Photography,


Rachel +James | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5


What do you get when you combine a Southern belle with a Scottish gent?

James and I were ushered down the aisle and out of the church to the sound of bagpipes as our piper led the way…”

One beautiful wedding, that’s what! For Rachel and James, their St. Andrews, Scotland union was a merging of two families, a combination of cultures and the culmination of a special love affair. “James and I met during the first week I was in Scotland,” says the bride. “We thought we would have our wedding in the place where it all began.” When it came to planning the most important day of their lives, Rachel and James were extremely hands-on. “It was unusually easy,” recalls Rachel. “I did have an entire year to plan, but I found the entire process straightforward and stress-free.” The

couple wanted a truly “bespoke” wedding and sourced most of the décor and details themselves. While it involved a lot of effort, the two felt it was key to ensuring their wedding reflected their personal styles.

Perhaps the most meaningful detail was the couple’s ceremony site: Holy Trinity Church. The 500-year-old stunner is where the couple met for their first date and was the perfect place for these two to take their first steps as man and wife. “The entire ceremony was very family-oriented and personal – which is exactly what we both wanted,” says the bride. “James and I were ushered down the aisle and out of the church to the sound of bagpipes as our piper led the way…” For the reception, the couple wanted a romantic, rustic feel and Kinkell Byre, an old stone barn which overlooks the North Sea,

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We thought we would have our wedding in the place where it all began.”

was the perfect fit. These two got the personalized and sentimental event they were after and the bride has some advice for how you can be just as lucky in love.

“I had so much fun designing and planning my wedding, but I always tried to keep things in perspective. If you’re not careful, you can get bogged down in all the wedding details and lose sight of the main reason you’re getting married in the first place.”

Vendors: Photographer: Annamarie Akins Photography,, Ceremony Site: Holy Trinity Church,, Reception Site: Kinkell Byre,, Florist: Blue Poppy Florist,, Stationery: Jonnie Piper (groomsman), Cake: Jane Bakes Great,, Catering: Gourlay Catering,, Car: Something Old,, Band: Norman MacKay’s Ceilidh Experience,, Hair & Makeup: Sandra Cormack,, Jewelry: Nordstrom,, Shoes: Betsy Johnson “I Do” Collection,, Gown Designer: Mori Lee,, Groom’s Clothing Designer: McCalls Highlandwear,, Bridesmaids’ Clothing Designer: David’s Bridal,, Groomsmens’ Clothing Designer: Personal Family Kilts and McCalls Highlandwear,

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Anchor Your Love on the Coast of North Carolina Photo Credit: Daniel Pullen Photography



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Leah +Josh


Images by Mi Belle Photographers,



Words by Kinsley Brown

Leah and Josh prove that sometimes you can find love in the most unlikely of places. While waiting for Josh to arrive for their blind date, Leah went to the ladies’ room only to find a long line. 90 | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Real-Life WEDDINGS “Per my usual stubborn self I decided I had no time to waste and steeled myself to the men’s room,” recalls the bride. “Just as kismet would have it, my soon-to-be husband was entering as I was leaving. The moment we locked eyes we were connected.”

Hotel Congress in 1985…the nearly 100-year-old hotel radiates a beautiful history, rich with art and culture.” The couple was so inspired, they designed the décor of their wedding around the desert Southwest and their historic setting.

When it came time for these L.A. lovebirds to say “I do,” Leah, an Arizona-native, had only one place in mind. “Tucson holds a very special place in my heart. My mother and father purchased the

“There is a majestic beauty about the desert,” says the bride. “The remarkable flora and fauna, the picturesque sunsets, the rich history and culture…it was important to us both to

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Love. Capturing Life. Creating Lau ghter.

Celebrating Intro

P H O T O G R A P H Y 707-239-2504 | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

incorporate those unique qualities into the theme of our wedding. We really wanted to pursue having a fun and whimsical wedding, one which honored and celebrated the act of coming together, of friends, families and each other.”

The wedding day whizzed by so fast it was a blur of neon lights.”

The couple’s wedding sounded so fun, in fact, they drastically underestimated the number of guests who would RSVP. Originally expecting 100 guests, the list ballooned to 300, causing the ceremony and reception locations to be changed. Plan "B" ended up being the right one,

since it was the couple’s open-air plaza setting at Hotel Congress which makes this wedding so special.

“We wanted a very inclusive, casual feel to our reception, like a large family get together,” says the couple. “We felt every detail [of the] classically Sonoran-ornamented plaza was a reflection of our life and love for one another. The biggest compliment was hearing that every guest felt like they were a part of the family. Even though there were so many, everyone had an unforgettable night.”

Vendors: Photography: Mi Belle Photographers,, Wedding Planner: Lisa Gorjestani & Suzanne Yarbrough for Details Event Planning,, Ceremony/Reception Site: The Hotel Congress,, Florist: Villa Feliz Flowers,, Stationery: Bliss & Bone,, Gown Designer: Galia Lahav,, Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Alice & Olivia,, Groomsmens’ Suits: BLACK by Vera Wang,, Brunch Catering: Maynards Market & Kitchen,, Cakes: Ambrosia of Tucson & Dolce Pastello,, Paper Flowers: Bon Boutique,, Cocktail Hour Music: Matt Mitchell,, Reception Music: 80’s and Gentlemen & Orkesta Mendoza, &, DJ: Cathy Rivers,, Mariachi Band: Mariachi Luz De Luna,

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Krista + Ian NORTH CAROLINA Words by Kinsley Brown



CASHIERS Images by VUE Photography, | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

A meeting with their wedding planner changed the course of this couple’s wedding destiny. “She sort of took us under her wing…she handled every last detail and didn’t miss a beat,” says the bride.


When it came to planning their destination wedding, Krista and Ian had a game plan: develop and combine unique details to create the experience of a lifetime for their guests.

Located halfway between the couple’s hometowns, Cashiers, North Carolina gave these lovebirds the Blue Ridge Mountains setting they were after. Planned group activities for 135 guests included golf, zip lining and a welcome BBQ complete with a bluegrass band. Come W-Day, the couple’s wedding was personalized from start-to-finish. “The ceremony was a mix of both of our religions – Jewish and Christian,” says Krista. “We built our ceremony… focused around the importance of family, friends and love.”

Three months before our wedding…we buried a bottle of bourbon at our ceremony site for good weather on our wedding day…it worked!” The reception was designed with guests in mind and was not only stunning, but practical. “A round, lobby-style bar kept the flow of the space open and interesting…there was no traditional drink line where guests were waiting for cocktails,” recalls the bride. Without question, the flowers stole the show at this North Carolina bash. “The tables were overflowing with lush, colorful florals,” describes Krista. “The main table had a thick runner of flowers and fruits spanning the length of the entire table…it was mesmerizing.”

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Real-Life WEDDINGS To complement the breathtaking décor, the couple also added unique touches like a guitar guests could sign as a guest book, charitable donations in lieu of favors, and an ice cream sundae and float bar. Creating an event which represented them as a couple was of the utmost importance to Krista and Ian.

“With Ian being in the entertainment industry and [my] experience in event coordinating, we knew that creating a genuine and unique experience for those we love most was paramount. Making memories is what life is all about and we wanted to leave a lasting impression and great memories with those we love.”

Vendors: Photographer: VUE Photography,, Wedding Planner: Elizabeth Fletcher with I Do Events Atlanta,, Ceremony/Reception Site: The Chattooga Club,, Florist: Rooms in Bloom Atlanta,, Stationery: Sage Sisters Press,, Cake: Lydia’s Cakes, Ceremony Music: Allegro Music, Inc.,, Reception Band: U.S. Beat,, Transportation: Stevens Transportation & Emma Bus Line,, Videography: Rodinis Films,, Event Rentals: Tents Unlimited,, Lighting: AG Lighting,, Wedding Party Accommodations: The Inn at Half Mile Farm,, Hair: Tracy DeSimone of Heat Lounge Salon & Ian Hensley, Makeup: Kimberly Mack Beauty Studio,, Gown Designer: Carolina Herrera,, Groom’s Clothing Designer: Vera Wang,, Bridesmaids’ Clothing Designer: WToo,, Joanna August,, Love Lane,, & Swoon Bridesmaids,, Groosmens’ Clothing Designer: Vera Wang,, Charitable Favor Donations: The Inspire Foundation,

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Meredith + David Words by Kinsley Brown


Images by Justin Lee Photography,

Having grown up on the small island of Lanai, Meredith always knew she would come home for her wedding. “[Hawaii] holds a special place in my heart and I wanted to share that with David. Being able to share my home and the beautiful beaches of Hawaii with our friends and family in the context of our wedding was something very important to me.� 98 | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

After getting engaged, the couple decided the island of Maui would play host to their wedding dreams. “As soon as we announced our engagement and location of our wedding, our friends and family were eager to make it happen,” recalls the couple. “It wasn’t too hard to convince people to take a trip to paradise!” After all was said-and-done, Meredith and David were joined by 170 of their loved ones come W-Day.


It wasn’t too hard to convince people to take a trip to paradise!"

When it came time to say “I do,” the couple kept things short and sweet. “The ceremony was amazing; it was very intimate and personal,” says the bride. “Being able to have such a personal ceremony along with an incredible backdrop of the Pacific Ocean really affirmed the reasons we wanted to get married in Maui.”

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The overwhelming sense of being surrounded by so much love and support was an unbelievable feeling."

The couple was smart in letting their chosen destination do the hard work when it came to decorations. “With all of the amazing natural scenery, we went with more understated décor,” says Meredith. “It didn’t take much to create such a beautiful ambience. The reception was complete with a picture-perfect sunset over the island of Lanai and whales breaching right off the coast.”

Meredith was successful in making her destination wedding vision a reality and has advice for other couples taking the same path. “Establish the things that are of highest priority to you as a couple. Surround yourself with a team that you can trust and feel absolutely confident in. Doing so will alleviate a lot of stress and allow you to enjoy the moment.”

Vendors: Photographer: Justin Lee Photography,, Wedding Planner: Lindsay Val Longacre with LVL Weddings and Events,, Ceremony/Reception Site: Olowalu Plantation House,, Florist: Mandy Grace Floral and Event Design,, Stationery: Minted,, Gown Designer: Nicole Miller,, Groom’s Clothing Designer: J.Crew,, Catering: Café O’Lei Catering,, DJ: Maui Wedding DJ,, Cocktail Bar: Maui Bars Are Us,

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See what happens when girls fall in love with books. In the developing world, a girl doesn’t have a lot of options. She often has to drop out of school to work or marry young due to societal pressures. But an education can change that. The longer girls stay in school, the more likely they are to earn higher wages, marry later in life, have healthier families and educate their own children. Room to Read has helped thousands of girls gain the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in school andceremonies beyond. Honor the power of education on your wedding day with a gift From intimate gatherings to elegant and receptions, Aston is dedicated lives. Celebrate generously by visiting to makingthat anychanges dream wedding a reality. With our No Commitments special, you

and your guests can book accommodations at your leisure with no contracts, no minimum rooms required, and no hassles.

866.774.2924 | FAL L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5 |

“Wish Upon a Wedding gave us more than an amazing wedding. They gave us a day filled with memories and happiness. They gave us a day that is perfect and a day that is ours... forever ours.” Ana and Mark, Wish Recipient

A MOMENT, FOREVER YOURS. Wish Upon a Wedding is a nonprofit organization granting weddings and vow renewals for couples facing serious illness or a life-altering

circumstance. By bringing together leading event industry professionals, we provide couples the chance to celebrate their love.

Help wonderful couples enjoy the celebration they deserve. Learn more at

© 2015 Wish Upon A Wedding

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SAYULITA Words by Kate Darnell


Elisa + Kenny

Images by This Modern Romance,

When love came knocking for these two, it came perfectly packaged and delivered right to Kenny’s door. While traveling through San Francisco and staying with a friend, Elisa met Kenny and their love story began. FAL L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5 |



When it came time to decide where to have their wedding, a celebration in Mexico seemed a perfect choice. “Given that I am Canadian and Kenny is American, all of our family and friends live in different cities throughout the world,” says Elisa. “We knew people would need to fly no matter where we chose to host our wedding. More importantly, we wanted to extend the amount of precious time we would have with everyone all together in one place,” recalls the bride. After a year of investigating and planning, an eager group of 110 made the journey.

The couple chose Sayulita because of its charm, convenience and flexibility. “It’s small enough that everyone could easily get together every day at the beach or in town for a meal, but large enough that it offers something for every taste,” says the bride. The wedding day was everything they dreamed of and more. From the driftwood-canopy set on the beach for their personalized ceremony and the mariachi escort leading them to their villa reception, to the dance party that lasted until 6 a.m., this couple got exactly what they hoped for. “I knew I wanted a fairytale landscape and, with ample preplanning and our amazing wedding planner’s help, I had my dream come true,” recalls Elisa. As for what touched them most about their wedding week, it was hard to narrow it down, but this was a stand-out: “We put so much love out to our guests and they gave us so much back! To see all of our friends and family come together laughing, dancing and sharing in support of us and our love is something we will cherish forever.”


Vendors: Photographer: This Modern Romance,, Wedding Planner: Yazmin Gizeh of Sea of Dreams, Ceremony/Reception Site: Villa del Oso,, Florist: Francisco Salazar of Detalle de Lujo,, Stationery: Serendipity Beyond Design,, Gown Designer: L’ezu Couture Bridal Gowns (custom-made by Patricia Nevil & Corina Lewinzon),, Jeweled Hairpiece: BHLDN,, Bolero: Cleobella,, Groom’s Clothing Designer: Custom-made by Jake Wali of Artful Gentleman,, Groomsmens’ Clothing Designer: Banana Republic (pants) and Rookwood Shoes by Cordwain, &, Catering: Don Pedros Catering,

We knew people would need to fly no matter where we chose to host our wedding."


When love came knocking for these two, it came perfectly packaged and delivered right to Kenny’s door.




Kristina + Larry

ISLAMORADA Words by Kate Darnell


Images by Ozzy Garcia Photography,

Love was in the air for Kristina and Larry the moment they met through a mutual friend. The theme of “love” continued straight through to their wedding day and beyond. The New York couple knew they were planning to relocate to Chicago and felt a destination wedding made the most sense. Islamorada, Florida offered the convenience they craved for their 130 guests, but with the laid-back atmosphere they were after. “We fell in love with the idea of a ‘classic-wedding-meets-


Havana-chic’ and found that Islamorada embodied the natural Caribbean beauty we were looking for,” says the groom. The group rented out an entire property, creating the ultimate experience in “togetherness.” “The Caribbean Resort was just the right balance of an intimate setting and beautiful island feel,” recalls the bride. “It made the weekend even more special.” As an event planner, Kristina knew all that goes into making a wedding perfect; sourcing good vendors and trusting your gut. It paid off. “Kelly and Leslie, our day-of event planners, were one of the best investments we made,” says the bride. “We were completely at ease on the big day and they handled everything from start-to-finish.” | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

Real-Life WEDDINGS FAL L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5 |


Real-Life WEDDINGS As they overlooked the ocean on the edge of the property, the beautiful couple exchanged personalized vows and said their destination “I do’s.” “It was genuinely the most romantic and loving day of my life,” says Kristina. “Larry also surprised his grandfather during the ceremony when he asked him to stand with him as his best man. No one but Larry and I knew he was going to do this, so there was not a dry eye in the house! There was just a lot of love that day – it was beautiful.”

Toasts and adoring speeches dominated the reception and brought a sense of togetherness for the group. From the bride’s little brother starting off cocktail hour with an “incredible” speech “that kept everyone laughing” to the bride’s mom culminating the evening with her own special words, the couple felt touched – as did everyone in attendance. “There was so much love in the tent that I think all of our guests really felt like family at the end of the evening – and they are!” says Kristina.

Vendors: Photographer: Ozzy Garcia Photography,, Day-Of Event Planner: Kelly Fowler,, Ceremony/Reception Site: Caribbean Resort,, Florist: Erin Souder of House of Earnest,, Stationery: Designed by bride with printing by Masterpiece Printers,, Gown Designer: Watters with custom sleeves,, Groom’s Clothing Designer: Armani,, Videographer: Regan Kramer Media,, Hair/Makeup: Blo Bridal, DJ: Reid Waters,, Ceremony Music: Sasha Zhuk, Valet: Guardian Golf Carts, Rentals: Décor for a Day,, AV: Keys Audio Production,, Catering: Hugh’s Catering,

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Catherine + Raymond THAILAND

KOH SAMUI Words by Kate Darnell


Images by Christine Farah Photography,

In this day and age, it’s rare to hear the term “high school sweethearts,” but for Catherine and Raymond, meeting at a high school dance some 11 years ago would be the night fate brought them together. The fairytale continued on the island of Koh Samui, Thailand where the couple made their eternal love official. 110 | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5


real-life WEDDINGS


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Real-Life WEDDINGS As a professional wedding planner, Catherine had a leg-up on most brides, but she still used the help of her own wedding planners to make sure the event went off without a hitch. “I knew I could depend on the two planners we flew to Thailand with us, and they allowed a planner person, like me, to be worry-free and able to enjoy every single moment,” recalls the bride. The couple selected Thailand for a few reasons. Catherine’s aunt, who was like a second mother to her, had passed away a few years earlier and had her ashes spread in front of the ocean in Thailand. It was important to the bride to be as close to her as possible. The bride also has a Thai background, while the groom had fallen in love with the food, people and country on previous visits. Thailand seemed the perfect choice. With 75 guests in attendance, the couple was exceedingly generous and covered all their guests’ expenses except the flights. “These people have been a huge part of our lives and we couldn’t have imagined the weekend without them,” says Catherine.

The only major aspect the couple was apprehensive about was the weather: “We were nervous, but God truly watched over our wedding and made the sun shine beautifully,” says the bride. The ceremony was a standout moment for the couple when they gave emotional speeches to their families. “My dashing groom could barely hold in his tears with just the thought of having to thank his parents for everything they have done for him throughout the past 28 years. He was absolutely humbled and grateful.” Their reception was a combination of fun design details, amazing food, dancing, laughter, sky lanterns and fireworks. “It was even more magical than I could ever have imagined,” says Catherine. “The last thing I said was ‘Thank you for the #BestWeekendEver,’ the guests cheered, the lights all went out, the song ‘This Is The New Year’ played over the speakers and the first fireworks blasted into the air.” We couldn’t agree more…it all sounds pretty darn magical.

Vendors: Photographer: Christine Farah Photography,, Wedding Planner: CCL Weddings & Events – Gloria Lee and Gloria Yi,, Ceremony/Reception Site: Villa Riva,, Florist: O.K. Flower Samui,, Stationery: Lani Choi Designs, Gown Designer: Watters,, Groom’s Clothing Designer: J Crew,, Hand Lettering: Skye Cho, Hair and Makeup: Jessica Tu & Susan Schroeter,, Videography: Studio 205 Films,, Catering: Toast Catering, Fireworks: The Firework Shop,, Favors: Krazy Straws,, Custom Toiletry Products: Dermaesthetics Beverly Hills,, Officiant: Sarah Chang Lao, Hotel Accommodations: The Sea Koh Samui,

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“Love is like the wind, you can' t see it, but you can feel it.”

Photo courtesy of: This Modern Romance

© Nicholas Sparks, "A Walk to Remember"

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new beginnings at hyatt regency maui Begin your new life together on Maui, the most romantic island in the world. Say ‘I do’ in the warm glow of a Maui sunset, surrounded by friends and family, amidst topical gardens and waterfalls, overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Book your wedding by December 31st, 2015 and enjoy exclusive added gifts with our New Beginnings special which includes complimentary room upgrades, spa services at Kamaha’o, a Marilyn Monroe Spa, a resort dining credit and a complimentary champagne toast for all of your wedding reception guests! For complete details on our New Beginnings offer, please contact your wedding specialist and mention ‘Destination I Do.’ 808 667 4430 | email |

Napili Pool Lawn is just one of the resort’s many indoor and outdoor wedding locations. For more site options visit

The trademark HYATT and related marks are trademarks of Hyatt Corporation. ©2015 Hyatt Corporation. All rights reserved. *New Beginnings promotion is available for Loko Maika’i, Lokahi Aloha or Pau’ole Aloha sunset wedding ceremony packages only. Please contact a wedding specialist for full offer details and terms. Accommodation upgrades are based on availability. Dining and Spa credits have no cash value and cannot be redeemed for cash or substituted for any other resort services or products. Offer applies to NEW weddings booked by December 31st, 2015. May not be combined with other offers or promotions. Offer expires 12/31/2015.

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sense your wishes coming true department HEADING

Perfection is just the beginning when it comes to your wedding at Le Blanc. Brilliant luxury amenities await you, as impeccable butler service ensures your every desire is fulfilled. Bask in the sublime serenity of our acclaimed


spa, while expert planners handle every aspect of your ceremony, so your special day is as blissful as you’ve always imagined. Since it’s all-inclusive, all you have



To find your local Romance Travel Specialist visit our website at today. | FA L L & W I N T E R 2 0 1 5

to do is revel in the pleasure of your perfect wedding coming true. When we’re poised to fulfill your every wish, suddenly three seem like too few .

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