St. Thomas USVI Destination Wedding in Purple

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Colleen and Allen wed with family and friends present in beautiful St. Thomas, USVI. Though due to a few travel delays, a few almost missed the ceremony! We asked Colleen to share their special trip with us and how the big day came to be.

“We chose to do a destination wedding because we knew we wanted to incorporate travel into our wedding plans. I had never been anywhere tropical and knew that it would make for the perfect backdrop. We settled on St. Thomas, V.I. because we fell in love with the gazebo view from The Marriott Frenchman Reef. It was also a much easier destination for our guests to attend. Choosing the venue for our reception was all based on one thing… how late we could dance! Sunset Grille would allow us to stay the latest with a dj. We wanted to be able to dance as long as we could. Those are the best memories for us.”

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“The groomsmens’ “RAWR” tee shirts stem from an every morning text Allen and his best man share. For the last 7 years, every morning, before they do anything else they send a Rawr text to each other. Talk about an adorable Bromance!”

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“Allen and I met at a retail store I was managing. He came in shopping and chatted me up. We talked for a while and he was totally my type but I was dating someone at the time and before he hit me with the “can I get your number” line, I simply told him I’d see him around. One night when my roommate and I were having some drinks and scrolling through Myspace I saw his picture and recognized his name. I told my friend, “hey, that’s that guy”. With a little liquid courage and some pressure from my friend I sent him a message and we’ve pretty much been inseparable ever since.”

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“We had always talked about travel and how that would be a priority before we got married as marriage was not a necessity for either of us. We were both very content in our relationship. So in 2012 we planned a 2 week European trip that started in Amsterdam and 2 days later we were in Venice. One night he took me on a gondola ride, nothing out of the ordinary and while we were in the middle of our ride he got down on his knee and purposed. I was in complete shock, so much so that I thought he was kidding and told him to get up before he knocked us out of the gondola. It was the most romantic night and a trip I will never forget. When he thought about purposing he didn’t have a ring because it was a last minute decision and when speaking with one of his girlfriends she told him he had to purpose with something so he bought a simple band with intention of having me pick out a ring when we returned, however, I did not want to. I told him I wanted him to pick out my ring.

He had it custom made for me and he did an amazing job because I love it!”

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“We had 2 major “set backs” when it came to shipping items and travel. First, we shipped our flower bulbs and they all broke in shipment. I ended up buying more, prepping them and carrying them on my carry on so they wouldn’t break. Once on the island I spent an afternoon in my room putting them together with the hanging crystals. I wasn’t 100% satisfied with the way they were hung around the gazebo but with such a beautiful back drop I couldn’t complain.”


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“Second hiccup was guests arriving on the island. Some guests had delayed or cancelled flights and didn’t get to the island on their scheduled days. Allen’s parents being one of them.  We delayed our ceremony to make sure they were there. Once they landed they headed straight to the ceremony and never got a chance to change as their luggage was missing. What great sports to show up in, what they would consider, undesirable outfits but we were just glad they were there with us and didn’t miss their only sons ceremony.”

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“Our guest sign in book was a thought I had of not wanting a book full of pictures of us. So I created our book putting pictures of us with all of our friends. Leaving blank pages for them to sign. It was a much better idea for us to have the memories of the last 10-15 years of friendship and the lifetime of family on those pages that we can now look at everyday.”

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“I am not a girly girl and am not a big fan of lace and frills etc. I am girly in the sparkly, glittery way. I fell in love with the look of the silver sequined table cloth so we started with that and went from there adding pinks and purples as those are my favorite colors. Thank god for Pinterest, I got so many ideas from there. My favorite pieces from the wedding were our hanging bulbs from the gazebo at the ceremony. I put them all together myself, hanging them with crystals to tie in with the blingy theme. Allen added his touch too, wanting mustache and kisses on the back of the place cards. All the guests loved those little details.”

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For more prettiness from this big day, check out their wedding video here by Awolfey Productions:

Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Hoffmann Photographer

Wedding Vendors: Wedding Venue: Marriott Fisherman’s Reef, St Thomas USVI, Reception Venue: Sunset Grille, St Thomas USVI, Gown Designer: Winnie Couture (Style: Katarina), Florist: East End Flower Shop, 
Videography: Awolfey Productions, Make-up & Hair: Sugar and Spice Artistry, DJ: Virgin Islands DJ, 

Men’s Attire: Express, Cake Topper: Etsy, Decor: Melissa Denny Designs

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Beautiful Beach Wedding in Turks & Caicos

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Did you catch Elaine and Graham’s rehearsal dinner on the blog yesterday? Check it out here if you missed it! This happy couple landed in Turks & Caicos for their destination wedding weekend with loved ones and at the helm of the production was one of our favorite destination wedding planners, Ali Phillips of Engaging Events by Ali.

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Welcome bags, paper details, a wedding monogram and more – no details were left undone at this big day!

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We asked Ali to tell us a bit about all the festivities on island and here’s what she had to say!  “One hundred family and friends enjoyed a gorgeous (and windy) sunny day at the pool at Seven Stars Grace Bay Hotel and met Elaine and Graham on the beach at 5:30pm as they said their vows on the white sand of Turks and Caicos on Grace Bay beach at the Seven Stars Grace Bay Hotel. It was a gorgeous backdrop for a very special ceremony that the couple helped write with their officiant.”

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The on-the-sand ceremony had such a breathtaking backdrop it didn’t need much, but the pops of color made the otherwise all white decor scream with celebration!

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“Guests were invited to enjoy appetizers after they washed off the sand on their toes at the shoe station, donned their heels and made their way to the 7th floor Penthouse Suite to enjoy a gorgeous view of Grace Bay Beach and the magical sunset.”

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“The cocktail hour featured a fun photo montage of the couple and a toast by the father of the bride, who then invited everyone to dinner.”

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“Guests made their way to the sun deck for a seated dinner on the West Deck. Candlelight, colorful flowers and crisp white linens greeted the guests as they took their seats for dinner.”

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“The DJ took over after dinner and kept everyone entertained with general dancing until 11pm. But the party continued once the music stopped at 11pm with a bonfire on the beach, a cigar roller for all and completed with S’mores stations for guests to enjoy.”

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Brilliant Studios, Andrew Mann

Wedding Vendors:  Planning and Design: Engaging Events by Ali, Ali Phillips, Location: Seven Stars Grace Bay Hotel, Wedding Invitations and Paperwork/Logos for welcome bag: Clementine Ink, Music for Ceremony: Kelci Talbot, Keyboards, DJ: Cliff Sampath, Flowers: Environmental Arts

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Beach Rehearsal Dinner in Turks & Caicos

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Today is day one of our two part story of the darling destination wedding of Elaine and Graham to Turks and Caicos where they kicked off the weekend with a beachside rehearsal dinner for all their excited guests. We chatted with their destination wedding planner, Ali Phillips from Engaging Events by Ali to get the scoop on all the details.

Elaine and Graham expressed to me that they wanted to have a fun experience for their guests on the beach for their welcome dinner. They also wanted guests to experience a different beach area than the hotel the guests were all staying at so I found this specific location on the beach.”

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“We worked with the local catering company, Kissing Fish, to create a fun buffet style menu. Then we added the tent to protect the guests from the sunshine and possible rain.”

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The decor complimented the setting perfectly with blues and white tones along with some starfish and nautical touches.

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“Guests enjoyed a beautiful sunset and Kelci Talbot performed on the steel drums and also brought his keyboard and sang. Guests set up an impromptu dance floor in the sand!”

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Stay tuned tomorrow where we share Elaine and Graham’s destination wedding in Turks and Caicos!

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Destination Wedding Photographer: Brilliant Studios, Andrew Mann

Wedding Vendors: Planning and Design: Engaging Events by Ali, Ali Phillips, Location: Bay Bistro Beach at Sibonne, Catering: Kissing Fish Catering, Music: Kelci Talbot – Steel drums and keyboards and singing

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New Sandals LaSource Caribbean Honeymoon + Destination Wedding Location

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Looking for an off the beaten path place to touch down for your honeymoon but you don’t want to forgo luxury for a little taste of untouched paradise? Then look no further than Sandals LaSource on the island of Grenada, the Spice Isle. Known for it’s local nutmeg, beautiful beaches and Southern Caribbean hospitality and charm, Grenada is an island lush with rainforest, peppered with quaint and quiet beaches, and perfect for those who want to say “I do” to something tropical but a tad different too.

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When you stay, whether to wed, moon, or both, the must go-to is the new Sandals LaSource Resort – an all-inclusive property complete with butler suites, plunge and infinity pool-clad rooms and all the amenities you’ve come to know and love from a luxury property.  If you like a little adventure, they’ve got that too!  From scuba to paddle boarding, boat cruises to secluded snorkel spots and even Jeep tours to waterfalls deep within the rainforest, you will never run out of things to do while you’re here.  Oh, and how could we forget the spa!  Ahhh-mazing!

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Not only to honeymoon, this spectacular place is also great for destination weddings. With only one wedding at a time at the resort, couples have the luxury of making last minute location changes due to weather or simply a change of mind. When you arrive, you’ll meet with your onsite wedding specialist to finalize all those destination wedding details that are oh-so important to you. Meanwhile, the planning and prep work has been done for you, but this is your chance to touch and feel, even taste your choices, giving you the time and freedom to make changes as you see fit on the spot. Then, once the details are ready for the big day, you hit the beach and let Sandals and their dedicated and truly enthusiastic staff take care of the rest!

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I had the pleasure of touching down at Sandals LaSource recently and I was blown away by the service, the staff, and the caliber of suites available to couples (I highly recommend the Rondoval Butler Suite complete with a private pool, patio and room in the round!). If you want a place to call home on your big day that has all the amenities you could ever ask for while maintaining the natural experience of a virtually untouched island in the Caribbean, then you’ve just found it at Sandals LaSource.

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For more information about Sandals LaSource on Grenada, check out their website and wedding planning tools.

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Four Seasons Destination Wedding in Nevis

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Sarah and Nate said I do at a small church on the island of Nevis in the Caribbean before celebrating with friends and loved ones at the beautiful Four Seasons Resort Nevis.  But let’s back up a minute and first take a look at how these lovebirds met – in a very unusual way, back when it all began!  Sarah shared with us their love story.

 “Nate and I met on twitter. Our initial exchange debated the merits (laziness) of using the valet at the gym. Nate didn’t see the wisdom of using the valet, but I did. From there it was more weighty debates like how Khloe Kardashian affects Lamar Odom’s play, why anyone would want to be a Montreal Canadien’s fan and how many chicken wings Nate should eat that night. The rest was history!”  True love can be found on twitter!  So great!

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So how did this happy couple land on the small Caribbean island of Nevis for their big day?  “We knew we wanted a destination wedding, but not the typical destination wedding places, somewhere unique and different. It was while in Nevis for the baptism of my goddaughter that the idea was put in motion. We loved the Four Seasons and the attention and care they provide their guests and felt that Nevis would offer our guests a unique experience; an idyllic, unsullied and often unheard of Caribbean island.”

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“To set the mood, the invites were brightly colored and margarita-scented. The RSVP cards were created with special attention to the geographically challenged destination and for our Caribbean friends. We included a photo Welcome booklet in a welcome bag for our guests designed from Minted, as well as Sea Turtle adoption certificates from Sea Turtle Conservancy, Nevis Group. We wanted to give back to the island, so on behalf of our wedding, we adopted two Hawksbill Sea Turtles – Caribelle and Banjo.” 

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The inspiration for the day came from the remoteness of Nevis – the theme was The Great Gatsby entertaining pirates. We wanted guests in black tie and gowns celebrating on this tiny secluded island, dancing on a wooden deck, under the stars.” 

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“Pedro from the Four Seasons understood the theme perfectly and suggested their restaurant Mango.” 

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“To lessen the formality and add a Caribbean laid back vibe, the escort cards had everyone’s nicknames instead of their proper names. One can’t think of pirates sailing around the Caribbean without thinking of rum. We included a Tiki Rum Hut with rums from all over the Caribbean. Guests were invited to rum tastings and to create custom rum cocktails.”

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“We wanted an authentic nautical map of Nevis as our guest book, and chose a navigational map issued by the United Kingdom Hydrographic Office; the same map used by the British Navy.” 

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“Kathy and her team from Meeting Dynamics flew in and built custom shadow box tables. The shadow boxes were filled with sand, twinkling lights, coral and seashells and the table had a centerpiece of candles and hydrangeas. Walking into Mango and seeing the set up with the backdrop of the water was breathtaking.” 

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“One of the best surprises of the evening was recorded message from my ninety-eight year old grandfather who couldn’t attend. It was so nice that he was a little part of our day.” 

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“Nate wanted a chocolate cake but acquiesced to a vanilla sponge cake so I surprised him with a groom’s cake. Nate is an avid baseball fan so the pastry chef at the Four Seasons created a cake that was baseball shaped with double chocolate.” 

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“Being in Nevis with our closest friends and family was so special and wonderful – sunbathing by the pool, the welcome party at Sunshine’s (THE beach bar to visit on the island) and the wedding itself. It was really amazing having this time with everyone who traveled so far to celebrate with us.”

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Janice Yi Photography

Wedding Vendors: Ceremony location: St Theresa Catholic Church, Reception venue + catering: Four Seasons Resort Nevis, Reception styling: Meeting Dynamics, Guestbook: Nevis Nautical Map, Wedding favors: Sea Turtle Conservatory, Reception music: Green House Band, Welcome booklet: Minted, Invitations: Wedding Paper Divas, Bride’s fascinator: Blair Nadeau, Bride’s shoes: Christian Louboutin via David’s, Bride’s gown: Justin Alexander via Diva Boutique, Lace capelet: Pronovias via Diva Boutique, Groom’s attire: Tom’s place, Florist: Bloom Bridal

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