Destination I Do
Friday, August 19, 2011

Destination Wedding Hawaii: A Maui Homecoming

Words by Courtney Kellar
Words by Courtney Cox
Photos courtesy of Amity Mason

Chloe and Drew are a vivacious couple who wanted a destination wedding to match. How do I know they’re a fun couple without ever having met them? Well for starters, when I asked them why they chose to have a destination wedding their first response was, “Um…we live in Missouri.” No offense to other Missourians, but this couple was looking for a summertime tropical wedding. The “where” was easy since the bride was born and raised in Maui, Hawaii.

The couple has family and friends all over the world, but conveniently, nearly all of Chloe’s relatives still live in Maui – ensuring only half the wedding guests would have to travel. Overall the response was positive and all the couple could have wished for.

“My family was ecstatic and our friends were equally as excited,” says Chloe. “Some had never been to Maui, so they were looking forward to the wedding and a nice Hawaiian summer vacation! We suspect that sending the ‘Save the Dates’ out 7 months in advance helped fuel the positive response and limit the negative. Providing our guests ample notice of the event allowed each of them to make arrangements while airfare was affordable and hotels had plenty of availability.”

The couple made a trip to Maui while they were engaged to scout out locations. They stayed at the Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea and had an amazing experience. “By the end of the stay, we were committed to being married on the ocean-front lawn, overlooking west Maui and the island of Lanai,” says Chloe. “Drew and I had a lot of family and friends who had never been to Maui, so we were excited to find a venue that would really wow our guests and showcase the beauty of the island.”

Planning a wedding from afar is no easy task, but Chloe and Drew had a superhero on their side. Chloe’s mom is a well-known florist in Maui and, needless to say, had some great recommendations for vendors. “My mom was a huge help, she made sure Drew and I stayed on track in terms of meeting deadlines and sometimes even made design decisions on our behalf, which we were very thankful for,” says Chloe.

While Chloe’s mom (and her amazing florist) was a huge help, the bride still strongly recommends having a wedding planner. “The planner should be someone that you trust and feel comfortable with, but also someone that will hold you to a deadline and make sure the necessary decisions are getting made.”

Once her vendors were chosen, Chloe corresponded with them primarily over the phone and via email. Another surprise perk of their destination was the time difference between Maui and Missouri. The difference was so great that the couple could make wedding phone calls when they got home from work and it was still business hours in Maui.

One project the couple spent a lot of time on was their favors. They wanted a treat all their guests would enjoy, but were limited by their summertime tropical destination (no one wants melted chocolate). The couple ultimately decided on their favorite Hawaiian treat, Ling Hing Mui Sour Watermelons. The candies are made locally in Hawaii and were a fun and delicious favor for their guests.

In the end, the majority of the couple’s invited guests made the trip and they weren’t disappointed by the big day. Chloe’s mom, Anny Heid, sure delivered with stunning and dramatic floral displays and they complimented the gorgeous seaside location perfectly. One groomsmen even came all the way from Ghana, Africa to be a part of Chloe and Drew’s big day.

The bride has some last words of advice for other couples planning their dream destination wedding, “Try and relax (I know, easier said than done) and enjoy the day…it goes by quickly! Keep in perspective that time during this event spent with family is more important than worrying about small stuff like what color the napkins are going to be.”

Photographer: Amity Mason
Wedding Planner: Denise Black
Wedding Location: Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea
Florist: Anny Heid
Gown Designer: Vera Wang
Groom’s Clothing Designer: Calvin Klein
Bridesmaids/Groomsmen’s Clothing: BCBG/Calvin Klein

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