Elopement in Moorea

wedding on mooreaJason and Yien Sing eloped to the beautiful island of Moorea in French Polynesia.  Originally from Malaysia and currently living in Phoenix, AZ, the two caught a flight across the world to one of the most picturesque, clear blue water locales on earth.  The duo said “I do” with just the two of them present (along with a few locals to enhance the ceremonial experience).  We asked the couple who wed without friends and family surrounding them if that was a unique experience.  The answer?  They certainly never felt alone as the love was pouring in from all directions.  We wouldn’t say that we had no guests present, tourists from all around the world were blessing us, the friendly hotel staffs, the fishes, the singing birds and the ocean. We couldn’t have asked for more.”

moorea honeymoonsbora bora weddingsbora bora honeymoonsSo many factors go into the wedding location selection – the guest count, cost, view, amenities, and other material needs.  But Jason and Yien Sing had different reasons for selecting Moorea as their destination wedding spot.  They shared with us, “Chinese describes a solemn love as mountain and sea because a pledge of love should be as firm as a mountain and as wide as an ocean. In Chinese also an eternal love last till the sea dries up and the rocks are rotten. This is the reason we chose Moorea over other islands.  Moorea has very beautiful mountains and spectaculars bay.”

destination weddings in tahitihilton bora bora honeymoonshilton moorea weddingThe ceremony infused local culture and bright vibrant colors, both of which we just can’t get enough of!  “The ceremony was fun, special, warm and natural.  The Polynesians are very loving and friendly. They are also very good dancers and musicians; we just love the simplicity of the ceremony, too organic! We felt the Mother Nature’s hugs throughout.” 

wedding lei ideasbora bora destination weddingWhat was this blessing of paper, we asked.  “Well, we registered in the U.S and had a symbolic ceremony in Moorea, so regarding the paper, it’s a piece of certificate made from tree bark with our vows and Tahitian names written on it. The leaf was placed in between the bride and the groom’s hand and then the high priest poured coconut water on our hands. We don’t remember what is symbolic of the leaf but our guess is to seal our vows.”  Love this!  A great idea if you don’t meet the legal requirements to wed at your destination.

weddings on mooreapink orange and yellow weddingsdestination weddings mooreafrench polynesia weddingsover water bungalow honeymoonstraditional french polynesia weddingfrench polynesia wedding locationsWhen the wedding was said and done, the newlyweds remained on property for a week, enjoying the sun and sand on their romantic Moorea honeymoon “We knew that resorts in French Polynesia are known to decorate the newlyweds room, the wedding coordinator was so sweet, they tried to find out what time we were out for our romantic diner and they snuck into our room and decorated it with fresh fragrant tropical flowers and flickering candles all over and filled up the Jacuzzi tub with colorful flowers.”

tahiti wedding locationsover water bungalows destination weddinghilton moorea weddingsbora bora hilton honeymoonsdestination wedding moorea“Another surprise was from our next door neighbors, Rick and Gary.  They saw our ceremony and felt touched so they bought us a local souvenir as our wedding gift and had the hotel staff deliver the gift together with the wishing to our room.”

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

 Destination Wedding Photographer: Helene Havard Photography

Wedding Location & Honeymoon: Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa


Propose at Fairmont Pacific Rim

Official engagement season is well underway and with Valentine’s Day quickly approaching, what better gift to give than an engagement ring?!  For those of you still looking for that perfect way to pop the question, we have quite the idea for you! Fairmont Pacific Rim in beautiful Vancouver recently developed several Perfect Proposal Packages and even has a personal proposal coordinator on hand to help you plan the engagement of a lifetime. Luxurious suites, private dinners, shopping sprees, even an airplane overhead carrying a banner professing your love – the list goes on! If you know your future bride or groom-to-be would enjoy a little luxury and pampering (and who wouldn’t!?) listen up, there’s sure to be a proposal idea here that’ll be the perfect fit.Fairmont Vancouver hotelTo give you an idea of the dream-come-true packages the Fairmont offers, take a gander at the “Rock Star” package. Your honey will be swept away to the hotel in a luxury car, greeted by their own personal shopper at LEONE for the perfect outfit and then off to Palladio for the final touch of bling. Once your future fiancé is dressed to impress, it’s off to a private hotel suite where a solo guitarist, romantic dinner and you (on one knee!) awaits them.

Foodie love birds will enjoy the custom dinner and dessert menus that created just for the two of you! For the true chefs-at-heart, how about a private tour and lesson from the hotels executive pastry chef, too?

If you’re looking for a little more adventure, take a look at the packages that include a private helicopter tour or, for the very daring, why not propose and tie the knot all-in-one, a perfect option for couples who prefer to elope, but want the help of the hotel’s experts!Fairmont Pacific Rim engagementsOf course, if you’re really wanting that one-of-a-kind vibe, Fairmont Pacific Rim allows you to customize your very own package from start to finish. Perhaps a relaxing spa treatment followed by a custom dinner in a secluded poolside cabana or a harbor cruise followed by a romantic private movie screening? I told you, the options are endless!  And with grounds as gorgeous as this resort’s, you may just want to plan your destination wedding there too…Fairmont Pacific Rim wedding


Christmas on the Beach Engagement Shoot

jessica claire engagement shootIn the spirit of the holidays we couldn’t help but fall in love with this inspiration shoot captured by our talented friend Jessica Claire. This soon-to-be-wed couple got snuggled up in the cool California air on the beaches of Laguna to capture what would turn into a fantastic Christmas card (or so we hope) and a magical engagement shoot.

Designer and planner, Lindye Galloway wanted to create an elopement setting befitting of a California Christmas – mission accomplished!  “The ceremony had a simple elegance with a custom chandelier made out of ornaments suspended above the couple, embracing the ever-popular ombre style.”holiday engagement shootsFrom ceremony to “reception” and even a snuggle station in a cave, no detail was left undone.  How they managed to get a Christmas tree onto the beach without incident is pure holiday magic!  I wonder if they surprised each other with real gifts under that tree?christmas weddingsWhat a great time it must have been to produce a shoot so festive!  Especially knowing the bride and groom are getting married next year and what a gift this will end up becoming for them!

But back to the decor – when frolicking in the sand when finished, the duo settled down at a dinner table built for two!winter wedding ideasFor dessert, the couple delighted in a two tiered ruffle cake and two jumbo cupcakes tying in the theme of what winter in California is really like. Oh what fun!christmas engagement photosPhoto Shoot Credits: Location: Private Beach, Newport Beach, CA, Photographer: Jessica Claire, Designer & Planner: Lindye Galloway Events, Flowers: Honey and Poppies, Rentals: This & That Vintage Rentals, Hair/Makeup: A Lovely Bride, Invitations: Copper Willow, Cake/Cupcakes: Design Cakes and Cupcakes, Model’s Attire: H&M and Zara


Four Seasons Lana’i, Manele Bay Weddings

Four Seasons Lanai beach weddingsToday is part one of our two part look at the Lana’i Four Seasons sister properties.  For those of you unfamiliar with Lana’i, it’s a tiny island of Hawaii with little on it but a small village and two absolutely breathtaking resorts by Four Seasons.  Once a private pineapple plantation island, it’s now one of nature’s wonders with everything from sand dunes and rustic mountain tops to horse trails and beautiful beaches and coves.  One of the two Four Seasons properties on the island is located on the beach at Manele Bay and the other, high above in the mountains, Koele Lodge.  And I had the insane privilege of visiting both hotels last year.  I must say, they are equally special and equally unique.

The Four Seasons Manele Bay has an Asian influence mixed seamlessly with the rest of the Hawaiian culture.  Perched just above its beach on a cliff overlooking two bays, you often see dolphins swimming outside your windows.  But that’s not the best part.  While they discourage it (I must admit, I encourage it), a swim with the dolphins in the morning hours when they come practically up to shore is an unforgettable experience.  Something all honeymooners should get to experience, given the chance.  And what a story for your wedding guests to come home to tell their kids.

But it’s not just what nature has to offer that makes this a must visit destination.  Whether honeymooning, hosting a destination wedding, or both, this property has it all.  Fantastic pool deck, luxurious spa (complete with custom blended perfume consultations – a great bridesmaid gift – hint, hint), fantastic food and restaurants, and a secret garden-like atmosphere as you wind around paths through a gazebo to get to your beautifully appointed room (outfitted with a wonderful tub for two).  And when the time comes to say “I do,” do so in style on the 12th hole of the world famous course, The Challenge at Manele Bay (the spot where Bill Gates wed).  Then cart over to the beautiful Lu’ua Gardens for a private outdoor reception on the grass, or if you came to Hawaii for the beach, wed right on the sand of Manele Bay. four seasons lanai weddingsFor couples or wedding parties that want the perfect mix of golf and spa, sun and sand, and total relaxation away from it all, Four Seasons Lana’i Manele Bay is for you.  Just a forty-five minute ferry ride from Maui, it’s easy to get to, but worlds away from everything and everyone else.

If you’re looking for a blend of activity and privacy, and perhaps your wedding is on Maui, then I recommend a quick jet over to this island to get away from it all when the “I do’s” are done (and say good bye to the in-laws before you do).Four Seasons Manele Bay Traveler Tip: Book nights at both Four Seasons properties on Lana’i and get a completely different experience at each (with guest rights at both).  It will feel like two honeymoons in one!

Check back tomorrow for part two when we go north to the Four Seasons Lodge at Koele.


Elopement in Rome – Jacqueline & Greg

 Jacqueline and Greg exchanged vows along the river in Rome before a car and driver drove the couple and their photographer around town for some very special photo ops.  But this wasn’t a traditional elopement, the couple actually tied the knot back home without anyone knowing about it.  Then they jet set to Italy where they “eloped” and returned home to tell friends and family the good news.

eloping in Rome

Destination Wedding Photographer: Rochelle Cheever – Rome Weddings Photography