Destination I Do

A Destination Wedding at the Breakers

Words by Carolyn Steere

 Swept Away Southern Style

destination weddings in the US



From the Panhandle to Key West, Florida offers a plethora of romantic locations for a destination wedding. For Margie Lee Maddux and Dave Newman, Florida was the one location that everyone agreed with. “We looked at every potentially romantic destination wedding site you can imagine, but wanted our friends and family to be able to come with us if they wanted. Every time we settled on one location, someone would offer up a different one, making it very difficult to choose a destination that everyone would agree on." They changed wedding locations about 10 times and were about to book a flight to Vegas … when they discovered Key West.


Janie Lawrence and Hunter Collins were engaged at the Breakers Hotel in South Florida; the same beautiful location at which they would have their tropical theme wedding, two and a half years later.

Having always wanted to be married in “a castle near the ocean,” Janie said, “I felt like a princess and the wedding was “everything I’d ever dreamed of.” With 110 years of history, the Breakers Hotel, Palm Beach prides and names itself on the foundation of its breathtaking ocean view. The beautiful scenery held special meaning to the Collins as the site of their engagement.

“We went down to the Breakers to meet with someone about having our wedding there. Keep in mind we were not officially engaged yet. After the meeting Hunter took me to the terrace -- one of the most romantic of all the locations. It overlooked the ocean and was at sunset.  That is where he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.”


Palm Beach has become known as one of the premier destinations for southern Florida vacationing and weddings. It offers 40 miles of gorgeous beach front, plenty of attractions, cultural venues, and festivities involving local custom and culture. It integrates a tropical local with the busyness and charm of an ocean-side community.  Janie and Hunter incorporated this exotic theme into their wedding with local island music, an exotic menu and pineapple-orchid centerpieces: all of which was catered and arranged by the Breakers Hotel.  Having the wedding at a hotel that was able to take care of everything, Janie was able to plan the event all herself and “had the best time doing it. Everything was put together like a dream.”


Janie’s most precious memory was of a moment before the ceremony. She recalls, “I was heading through the hallways of the Breakers and caught a glimpse of my five-year-old son with my husband to be all dressed up in his tuxedo. It made me cry.  That was the only time I cried at the wedding.”  With a gorgeous Florida setting, surrounded by their family and friends, Janie and Hunter’s wedding was all they could have imagined.


Janie & Hunter Collins Wedding

Wedding Ceremony and Reception:  The Breakers

Photographer:  Debra Weisheit,

Florist:  Cameron Keating, The Design Studio at The Breakers

Cake Designer:  The Breakers

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