8 of the Best Destination Wedding Ideas from Engage!17: Cayman Islands

Today we’re recapping the recent Engage!17: Cayman Islands wedding industry event on Grand Cayman. The summit is where the best of the best of our field from all over the globe come to dish about weddings and destination weddings and improve our businesses so we can be better for you.

This “hard work” doesn’t come without a few fabulous parties and oodles of great destination wedding ideas.  And we’ve brought back those ideas to share with you today.

So take a look at our top 8 favorite destination wedding ideas from Engage!17: Cayman Islands at the brand new Kimpton Seafire Resort and Spa.

Penthouse Parties:

If your hotel has a penthouse or rooftop setting that can be booked for intimate gatherings or for a hotel stay, consider an intimate meet and greet for the maids and men, close families, or even a post-wedding day sendoff. It will give your guests a chance to see the destination from a whole new angle and treat them to something a little extra special on location.

Electric Signs:

Destination wedding or not, electric signs are hot, hot, hot in reception décor. Engage used these creative signs by Name Glo to welcome guests, jazz up the bars, and even say good bye after the festivities were over.

Beer Trucks:

Yep, beer trucks.  Food trucks may still be great, but what about a beer truck for your groom and guests on the wedding day?!  Let loved ones fill up on their favorites and try a local brew or two too!

Surfboard Stands:

If you’re hosting a beach destination wedding, why not repurpose your boards to serve as tabletops, signage and other party décor. We love how the Engage team used these surfboards as a shoe valet station!

Boozy Snow Cones:

When the weather is hot, nothing delights kids and the kid in all of us like an old-fashioned snow cone. For the grown ups in the group, consider spiking them with your favorite liquors and create a fun twist on old faithful. Serve this at your kick-off welcome party and your friends will know what fun is to come!

Signature Desserts:

Infusing the local culture, cuisine and flavor into a destination wedding is a must and dessert is a great way to do it! Kimpton Seafire created a ‘torched sweets’ station and served fresh-made popsicles at one of the Engage events and it was a crowd favorite for sure!

Adventure Activities:

Traveling is all about new experiences and making memories so why not give your guests something to talk about and plan a bucket list experience for all!? In the Cayman Islands, you have the rare chance to swim in the wild with friendly stingrays after an afternoon at sea on a Red Sail Sports catamaran. Your guests will not forget this wedding weekend activity! See what your destination has to offer that’s something a little bit different than the ordinary.

Celebrity Appearances: Because, why not?

The Engage Summits are known for big surprises and this event was no different. For the finale night gala, we were treated with a surprise performance by one of my old favorites, En Vogue! I can say from personal experience as a guest, budget permitting, this is money well spent to dazzle your friends and family and take the party to an entirely new level. Loved ones will be talking about that night for years to come.  And wedding music agency, Elan Artists, can get you groups like this – just as they did for Engage.

And a big thanks to the hosts of this fantastic event, Kathryn Arce and Rebecca Grinnals from Engaging Concepts and the Engage Summits.  Without the two of these amazing women, the wedding and destination wedding industry that we get to work in wouldn’t be what it is today and frankly, weddings around the world would be a little less inventive, creative and well-done.  So thank you to Rebecca and Kath (pictured below) for always showing us what it means to be an innovator in the world of weddings!  …And thanks for a really great time in one of my favorite places, the Cayman Islands too!!

Stay tuned tomorrow for one more favorite destination wedding idea from Engage – this one was too good, it needed its own post!  Don’t miss it.

Photos by: Rebecca Davidson Photography, Laura Dee Photography, Love Life Images, John Cain Photography, Paul Morse Photographs, Carla Ten Eyck


New Caribbean Destination Wedding Location: Kimpton Seafire

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We’ve got a bit of breaking news to share with you – about a stunning new Caribbean property that’s picture-perfect for a destination wedding, posh bachelorette weekend or romantic honeymoon too!  The new Kimpton Seafire Resort & Spa recently opened on the famed Seven Mile Beach of Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands and we had the chance to see it just a few weeks after the doors opened.  The property boasts four restaurants, multiple wedding venues (large and small), a stunning spa, and plenty of activities to keep your guests enjoying every minute – from jet skiing right off the shore to sleeping under the Caribbean sun or sitting by a fire pit sharing stories at night.

But what about the actual wedding itself?  If you’re looking for a jaw-dropping ceremony site with a tropical setting, I think we may have found just what you’re looking for!

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The highlight of the property for me is not only its gorgeous wedding ceremony site, but its aisle too!  That’s right, the grand entrance for brides and grooms is just that grand!  Picture walking down a curved stone path in the sun and entering the sand under a modern archway to greet your guests sitting on the beach, framed by two large tropical trees.  Then of course the clear blue Caribbean water sets the scene as the backdrop for your vows and you’ve got a ceremony site no one can soon forget!

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For your reception, just steps from the sand you’ll find intimate spaces among the Beachfront Bungalows as well as a large lawn space on the Seabridge Green, both ideal for al fresco dining with epic sunset views and some serious stargazing at night.  With spaces to suit over 500 guests, you can invite all your loved ones to celebrate in the sand and sun with you!

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Speaking of dinner, when visiting the Kimpton Seafire Resort & Spa don’t forget to dine at a number of the four swanky eateries on property (and even partake in the complimentary wine hour for all hotel guests every night in the lobby!).  My personal favorite spot was the casual Coccoloba Bar & Grill where you can cozy up to the bar facing the waterfront and stay all day with a fresh cocktail in hand.

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When you retire at night you’ll find that the 266 rooms and suites are modern and chic yet inviting and even fun!  Most all have floor-to-ceiling windows and ocean views and if you’re planning to entertain during your wedding week then I highly recommend you stay in the posh oceanfront bungalow suites.  These spacious suites have gorgeous indoor and outdoor spaces with plenty of room to party among friends, and in the evening, the view sets the scene for a romantic evening for two!

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For a spectacular beach wedding with all the finer amenities, service, staff and food and drink you could want, check out the new Kimpton Seafire Resort & Spa to call home during your destination wedding weekend in the Cayman Islands.

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Engage!14 Gala – Formal Destination Weddings

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If you’re planning a black tie wedding, a big destination I do or a formal affair of any kind, then you won’t want to miss these party pics!  Today we’re sharing the gala decor from the finale night party at the international industry event, Engage!14 that took place at the fabulous Ritz Carlton Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands.

We celebrated with friends new and old island style – but with a twist of red carpet glam instead of beach boho.

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Local event producers and designers Celebrations LTD assisted the talented Karen Tran Florals to create a look that was unforgettable!

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There were oodles of orchids and other flowers (to give a little nod to the tropics) and even a floral hallway for guests to enter through to wow the crowd!  Flowers even lined the dance floor and DJ booth!

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Nuage Designs created these gorgeous custom linens that sparkled throughout the night.

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A one-of-a-kind photo booth was even erected with flowers!  A wall designed to mimic the movement of wave was built from flowers and lounge furniture sat below it for fun photo ops.

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But my favorite part of the event?  The people!  Thank you Engage!14 and Rebecca and Kath (our fab hosts) for giving me the chance to know so many beautiful people (and parties too)!  If you’re in the wedding and event industry and want information on attending the next event, check out Engage!15 – via Mexico!  Hope to see you there!

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Photographers for Engage!14: Carla Ten Eyck, Rebecca Davidson, Picture This Studios, David Wolfe Photography, Melissa Wolfe Photography, Better Angle

 Event Vendors: Design: Karen Tran Florals, Event Production + Support: Celebrations LTD, Custom Linens + Furniture: Nuage Designs, Champagne: Veuve Clicquot, Invitations + Menu Cards: Momental Designs, Entertainment: Oneworld Ltd


Engage!14 – Tropical Beach Wedding Ideas

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We just got back from an incredible week at THE industry conference, Engage!14 in the Cayman Islands and all this week we’re bringing you some amazing destination wedding inspiration from the best in the business across the country and the globe!  Twice a year we travel to some fabulous locale and touch down to teach, learn, play and get inspired for another season of weddings and what the team at Engage produced at the beautiful Ritz Carlton Grand Cayman this time around was nothing short of jaw-dropping.

If you’re planning a beach wedding, then this welcome party we attended is full of ideas for you!

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This might seem elaborate for your destination wedding welcome party, but why not consider lounges like this for your wedding reception or even after party?  The colors popped off the sand but the white anchor color meant the design didn’t take away from the stunning setting on Seven Mile Beach.

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A local production and design company on Grand Cayman, Celebrations LTD was responsible for creating all this prettiness (hint: they can help you with your wedding too)!

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These are our two fabulous hosts, Kathryn and Rebecca from Engaging Concepts.  They produce this event every year for the wedding industry and each one is more unforgettable than the last!  Thank you ladies for including us again!!!

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What beach party would be complete without our own private fireworks show?!?  That’s right, we ended the evening with a bang as fireworks were shot off from just outside the shore break.  Amazing!  Such a special end to the night and beginning to the trip!

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Stay tuned for more Cayman Islands wedding planning ideas all this week from Engage!14.

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Photographers for Engage!14: Carla Ten Eyck, Rebecca Davidson, Picture This Studios, David Wolfe Photography, Melissa Wolfe Photography, Better Angle

 Event Vendors: Location: Ritz Carlton Grand Cayman, Overall Design, Decor, Planning: Celebrations LTD, Steel Pan Drummers: Steel Attitude, Fireworks: Fireworks Limited, Tequila: Casa Noble Tequila, Linens: Nuage Designs


Seven Mile Beach, Grand Cayman Destination Wedding

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Jeorjina and Michael landed on beautiful Seven Mile Beach for their Cayman Islands destination wedding.  With sixty of their closest friends and family, they traveled from Washington DC to touch down in paradise for a week of festivities.  We asked the couple what made them pick this place for their big day?  “It was important to us to have a memorable location for our wedding and the opportunity to spend time with our guests beyond the day-of-activities. Our wedding was a perfect excuse to invite our family and friends on a mini-vacation with us. Grand Cayman’s beautiful beaches, several accommodation choices, and friendly residents made the choice easy for us. 

We visited Grand Cayman a year before our wedding and were immediately sold when we figured out a way to have our wedding at Luca and Caribbean Club. The staff was tremendous and the reviews we received were exceptional. About half our wedding party stayed in the condos that week and everyone continued to rave about the Caribbean Club all week long, and to this day!”

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The palette the couple picked was one of dark blues, light pinks and white – all that blended nicely with the beautiful backdrop of the ocean.  With a chevron pattern in play and lots of destination details, guests knew from the moment they touched down that this would be a special week of celebrations!

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On the wedding day, guests were welcomed to remove their shoes before the ceremony on the sand.

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And mini beach balls awaited them to shower the bride and groom after the “I do.”  Love this idea!!

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We asked Jeorjina about the many memorable moments that day.  For her?  Walking down the aisle…”Seeing all of our loved ones gathered at the ceremony for the first time. (I cried the whole way down the aisle!) We know destination weddings can be more difficult logistically in terms of time and expense. It really meant a lot to us both that they traveled to Grand Cayman to share that moment with us.”

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That love was felt by all.  Wedding planner Meg Paterson of Octopus Events said, “There was just so much love between the two of them all day. Jeorjina is so beautiful anyway but she just glowed and Mike looked as though he could pinch himself to check that it was really happening.”

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The couple kept the ceremony decor simple to let the landscape speak for itself.  But beautiful white florals adorned with starfish marked the spot they said “I do.”

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Then – the beach ball toss!

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After the ceremony, photographer Aaron Rebarchek took the couple out and about to capture a few fabulous photos.

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Then dinner and dancing at Luca commenced.

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Meg filled us in on the couple’s personal details at the reception.  “The fusion of Panamanian, Greek and American heritage was acknowledged with a table of family photographs going back four generations.”

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“At each guests place the Bride’s mother had placed a bag of 5 Jordanian almonds representing Health, Wealth, Happiness, Fertility, and Longevity which was a lovely touch and was a tradition passed down in her Greek family.”

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Then a calla lily cake awaited the couple before they jetted off to Italy for their honeymoon!

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 Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Aaron Rebarchek Photography

Wedding Vendors: Ceremony Location: Caribbean Club, Reception Location: Luca, Wedding Planner: Octopus Events, Wedding Dress: Ellie’s Bridal