Dominican Republic WeddingWords by Katie Martin
Photos courtesy of Anny Photography
Seneca and Melissa wanted to have a fun, relaxing and low-cost wedding for all of their friends and family to enjoy as well as getting to go to a place they had never traveled to before. With a little bit of research and some help from their wedding planner, the couple chose to have a Dominican Republic destination wedding.
When the couple shared the news with their friends and family, they got mixed feedback. Many were excited to be able to share the destination celebration with the couple, but others responded negatively. “A lot of people were excited to go on a vacation with their friends and have a 4 -5 day party,” says the bride. “To those who responded negatively, we just explained that this was our decision and moved on.” While the couple knew that not everyone would be able to travel for their destination wedding, they cherished those who would be joining them.
Working with their wedding planner, Geomyra, and their travel agent, Adrienne Lyon of En Route Vacations, the couple started planning their wedding away and making sure everything ran smoothly and stress-free. “Our travel agent was amazing,” says Melissa. “She handled all of the hotel reservations and our guests contacted her directly regarding the deposits and full payment. Our wedding planner coordinated directly with the hotel wedding coordinator for a smooth transition for when we arrived. We knew the design we wanted months prior to arriving, but all of the details were not solidified until about one month before the celebration.”
With one month left until the celebration, the little details needed to be taken care of. The couple had a variety of handmade décor items that were made for their wedding and they took on a few do-it-yourself projects. “My sister made our customized pillows for the lounge seating on the dance floor,” says the bride. “Our theme was white and gold, so she designed the gold script lettering and placed them on the cream colored pillows. We also wrote personal letters for each guest that was tied to their welcome bag.”
With the couple’s wedding day around the corner, they were looking forward to their big day. While having a wedding at home can be fun, the couple was excited to be having their wedding day in a different location, especially since it saved them a couple bucks. “We definitely spent less money, which is one of the reasons why we decided on a destination wedding,” says Melissa. “We live in the DC/Maryland/ Virginia area and the average cost for a wedding is between $28k-$40k. From the beginning, we both agreed that we didn’t want to go into debt for our wedding/celebration and I’m pleased to say that we stuck to our goal.” This wedding away from home allowed the couple to not only save money, but it also allowed the couple to have their dream reception too.
After having their destination wedding, the couple offered advice for others planning a wedding away. “Hire a wedding planner and work with a travel agent,” says the couple. “I highly suggest having both as they are experts and know the ins and outs of wedding planning, travel and logistics. Having a wedding planner educated me on having realistic expectations.”
Vendors: Photographer: Anny Photography, Reception Site: Majestic Mirage, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, Wedding Planner: Geomyra Lewis Wedding and Events, Florist: Majestic Mirage, Stationery: Wedding Paper Divas, Cake: Majestic Mirage, Hair & Makeup: Olga Kislitsina with Punta Cana Hair & MUA, Gown Designer: Martina Liana, Groom’s Clothing Designer: INC International Concept from Macy’s, Bridesmaids Clothing Designer: Show Me your MuMu, Lulu’s, Groomsmen’s Clothing Designer: INC Interantional Concept from Macy’s, Travel Agent: Adrienne Lyon of En Route Vacations, Bridal Store: Couture by Posh Bridal
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