A Tropical Wedding in Kona, Hawaii

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Trina and Chris said “I do” on the Big Island of Hawaii, at the Fairmont Orchid in Kona. But this big day was almost derailed by a natural disaster; luckily however the weather (and the surf) was perfect for the outdoor ceremony and reception overlooking the ocean.

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The couple came from Washington to the islands to tie the knot and found the Fairmont to be the perfect spot for their size, budget and style. Wedding planner, Erin Lindeman of Lindeman Weddings & Events filled us in on the planning and day’s details. The Fairmont Orchid is great because it carries the brand and service of a Fairmont property but isn’t very big compared to its sister property over on Maui or other surrounding mega hotels on the big island. It almost feels like a boutique hotel and is a perfect size for a smaller wedding group.”

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“The wedding was held just before Christmas so the hotel and surroundings were all decked out for the holidays.  I am so in love with the red poinsettia plants that overwhelm Hawaii during this season. Their colors of deep red-fuchsia and purple were perfect for this time of year in Hawaii.”

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“The wedding day started off a little rocky — without warning there were record breaking waves that day along the Kohala coast and a large wave had crashed into the resort at 6am that morning, flooding the property. The area that they were going to get married on was flooded as were the restaurants closest to the water.  The hotel staff didn’t miss a beat. They started working on the property immediately.  The incredibly high surf continued all day.  It was so spectacular I even saw a chef grab a surfboard and go tear up a few waves during his lunch break.  Gotta love the cowabunga dude attitude of the locals!”

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“As the day went on we needed to make the call whether or not we should do the wedding outside so close to the ocean or move into a ballroom.  This was a very difficult decision for everyone to make, including the hotel for liability purposes.  I am glad the hotel made the right decision and I am glad the bride and groom weren’t scared off by this either.  Let’s just say no one was swept away and they had the most spectacular backdrop to their wedding I’ve probably ever seen. The waves were so massive and loud, you could barely hear the ukulele player during the ceremony.”

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Rain or shine, this darling couple was going to have an amazing wedding day, and that they did!

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As guests enjoyed an amazing sunset, the reception kicked off next to where the ceremony had taken place.  One long purple-clad table was set to get the party started.

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The pair rented chandeliers to add a little drama to the outdoor setting which popped with color otherwise.

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The vibrant color palette was carried throughout the day and night, right down to the tropical wedding cake!

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This picture perfect wedding certainly doesn’t look like it faced a natural disaster that morning!  Luckily all was well!

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Fletch Photography

Wedding Vendors: Wedding + Reception Location: Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii, Wedding Planner: Lindeman Weddings & Events, Stationery: Nicole Mae Paper Design, Florist: Ainahua Florals, Linens: BBJ Linen, Chandelier Rental: Hawaii Island Events


Destination Wedding in Kona, Hawaii

Jo-Ann and Jonathan hosted an intimate destination wedding in beautiful Kona, Hawaii.  This pair were no strangers to travel as the bride tell us.  “Jonathan and I met while we were both working for NGOs in Mozambique. After getting engaged while the sun was setting on Watch Hill Beach, Rhode Island, the perfect place for a beach-girl! =), we started talking about our wedding. We both wanted it to be very simple, outdoors, all in the same place, as close to the ocean as possible, in Hawaii (where my parents live) and I remember saying that I wanted to wear my Havaianas!”

“I have always loved the ocean and wanted the wedding to reflect the colours of the sea, so we went with all blues for the bridal party.  In Hawaii you can get away with bright colours, so I decided on many shades of pink for the decor, and purple for the flowers! I love orchids and Jonathan always sent them to me when we were apart, so we chose orchids as our flower, which was fun to keep the tropical theme going too.”

“My favourite wedding-memories were the ones I had as a kid. I remember how magical it felt running around at big family weddings, and dancing the night away with my cousins. As a result, I wanted our wedding to be as kid-friendly-and-fun as possible! We had a kid’s table with all sorts of fun things for them to do and a piñata later on. It was so lovely to see them running around with their glow-sticks, sparklers and bubbles, and dancing away together on the dance floor.”

“As I’d been living in Asia for a while, I wanted to have some Asian touches. We had Korean chopsticks on the table-settings and Korean fans on the chairs at the reception. We had Thai food for the main course and sushi for starters.”

“Although Hawaii is quite far away from many of our loved ones, we were lucky enough to have family and friends come from as far off as New Zealand, India, South Africa, New York, Connecticut, California and Canada! We were so blessed to be able to celebrate with so many who are so precious to us!”

“Since we had met while both working in Africa, and we wanted to have some elements in the wedding that would reflect our heart for development work. We had a number of organisations to give to on our registry and instead of a favour, and we gave our guests a little package with a card in it explaining that we’d given a house to a widow in India through www.handsonhouses.com. When it came to my rings, we were thrilled to find Brilliant Earth, as they have a hundred percent guarantee that their diamonds are conflict-free!”

For more, check out their wedding video by Bradley Productions.

Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Bob Brown from Hawaii Photographer

Wedding Vendors: Wedding Videographer: Bradley Productions / Floral Design: Kelsi from Ainahua Florals, Waimea / Rentals: Waimea Party Rentals / Officiant: Lenny Hernandez / Location: Living Stones Church, Allii Drive, Kailua-Kona/ Catering: Orchid Thai, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii + Hyashis, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii / Wedding Dress: Maggie Sottero via Princess Brides, Honolulu / Wedding Veil: Vera Wang via David’s Bridal/ Groom and Groomsmen’s Attire: Cubavera / Brides’ engagement ring and wedding band: Brilliant Earth


Exotic and Adventurous Hawaii Destination Wedding

jessica-hill-photography-hawaii-destination-weddingI’m not to sure where to begin with this exotic destination wedding weekend in Hawaii. Perhaps the zip line, the camping, the waterfalls, the local food? Oh yes, it has it all. Mei Mei and Lou left no stone unturned when they planned a destination wedding getaway for their closest family and friends on the big island of Hawaii. They selected Ohana Living Farms, a sustainable farm with a goal of reducing Hawaii’s independence on imported good and their carbon footprint. Now if that doesn’t set the stage for a wedding like no other, I don’t know what would and Jessica Hill Photography captured every last detail! Let’s start at the very beginning a welcome luau packed with local food, loads of fun and lots of cocktails.exotic-hawaii-destination-wedding-luauAfter guests were welcomed to this land of paradise, Hawaiin style, they recieved their very own knapsack filled with everything they’d need to live on this magnificent organic farm and for the many upcoming events. Included: camp showers, sunglasses, water bottles, maps and headlamps. Not your typical coffee and pretzels welcome bag, huh?hawaii-destination-wedding-welcome-bagThe farm sits on a 500 acre ranch and guests had the chance to explore each and every part (and more!). Camping tents were pitched, avocado and mango trees were planted in a group orchard activity and ziplines were ridden giving everyone a whole other perspective of this Hawaiin island.hawaii-camping-ziplineOf course, there was a wedding too! When it came time to hop off the zip line and walk down the aisle, Mei Mei and Lou chose an utmost intimate setting, wedding at nightfall amongst all that nature has to offer. Speaking of nature, we’re loving those exotic blooms in Mei Mei’s hair… talk about taking advantage of your surroundings!hawaii-destination-wedding-ceremonyThey hosted a fittingly eco-friendly reception under the farm’s hoop house, a greenhouse turned innovative tent for the evening! Recycled newspapers holding potted flowers ran down the center of each table as guests dined on an expansive display of, you guest it, organic and locally produced dishes.exotic-hawaii-wedding-receptionThe next day guests were treated to yet another lovely meal at the farewell brunch. But for such an action packed wedding, that wouldn’t be enough would it!? Nope! Post-brunch the group took a hike for one last look at paradise and a dip under the waterfalls. Quite possibly as exotic as you can find stateside, we’re still a little jealous we weren’t a part of this multi-day wedding adventure!destination-wedding-day-after-brunch

Destination Wedding Photographer: Jessica Hill Photography

Submitted via Two Bright Lights


Disney Aulani Resort Weddings

Disney Aulani Resort HawaiiIf you’ve been following us over at Bridal Bar for a while now, then you’ll know I’m pretty much a total kid when it comes to anything Disney.  Now I don’t wear princess purses to work mind you, but I (and the entire team over here) are die-hard Disney fans.  So when we heard that Hawaii was going to be home to the latest and greatest Disney property, we had to investigate.  The Aulani Resort, located on the island of O’ahu, in a beautiful beach and marina community called Ko Olina, is a brand new (we’re talking opened weeks ago), sprawling property ideal for a destination wedding with lots of kids (or kids at heart).  Perfect for the active group, they’ve got world-famous Hawaiian Island snorkeling (really fab), sport fishing, golf, spa, pool, sun, sand, and plenty of characters and kids activities to entertain the little ones during an adult-only reception or throughout the entire week.

Tip:  Be sure to check out the snorkeling in their salt-water lagoon, the only one in Hawaii!

disney aulani resortOf course you don’t have to geek out and go totally Disney for your big day if you don’t want to, but if you love Walt and friends like we do, then don’t forget about their Alfred Angelo designed bridal gown collection to match your reception theme (or inner princess) – the sky’s the limit with Disney Wedding options, if you want them!weddings at disney hawaii resortBut I think what I love most about this resort for weddings is that it allows us kids at heart to incorporate elements of our favorite childhood memories into our big day, but it doesn’t have to be an event that is too themed.  Your big day can be a luxurious destination wedding that you share with friends and family (ask about the Makaloa Garden pictured above – beautiful!)…and perhaps you can sneak in a photo op or two with some old theatrical friends.

To take a closer look at Aulani’s wedding and honeymoons offerings, check out the Disney Wedding Site.


The Big Island

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Photo by Robert Evans Studios