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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

A Hawaiian Holiday

Words by Alicia Clark
Photos courtesy of L'Amour Photography

Weddings are so often filled with tradition, but sometimes couples want to break away from the cliché and have a wedding which is uniquely their own in every way.

Such was the case for Cindy and John who had their destination wedding in beautiful Oahu, Hawaii. The couple wanted to do something that was out of the ordinary for their friends and family and a destination wedding in Hawaii fit the bill exactly.

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A destination wedding may force a couple to cut back on their guest list, but the people who matter the most will always go the extra mile (literally and figuratively) to be there for your special day. “We definitely didn’t have as many people as we would have had at home, but the special people came," Cindy and John said. "We had lots of family and had guests from three countries and nine states! It was perfect.”

Planning a wedding in a different time zone, which also happens to be a hugely popular tourist stop, requires a great deal of planning. The bride, was quick to get on the ball so her and John wouldn’t miss any opportunity the island had to offer. After doing loads of research, Cindy and John settled on a venue. The only problem was that there was a 14-month waiting list! “There was literally a 14-month wait to get a date, but I just knew this would be the place without even seeing it – so, we planned a 14-month long engagement! I had my name on the list literally 5 days after getting engaged. Sometimes it pays to do ‘advance research.’”

Communication with vendors over such a long distance can be a struggle, but with the help of their much-appreciated wedding planner and a barrage of e-mails sent to vendors, Cindy and John were able to pull it off.

The couple admits that having a destination wedding actually made a lot of their decisions easier when it came to choosing caterers and whatnot. Cindy ended up making a trip to Oahu 11 months before the wedding in order to look at flowers, linens and do a taste test. Cindy’s options had already been narrowed down by her wedding planner before she arrived on the island. “If I had done this at home, I would have gone to every florist and every caterer – it would have been very difficult to make decisions. With a destination – I was given choices by my planner which made the process very easy and fun.”

In order to accommodate the budgets of their guests, Cindy and John used the hotel they stayed at as a sort of “home base.” This was where close family members stayed along with where the welcome dinner was held. The couple was able to obtain a group rate at their hotel so that other guests would be able to join them there, but left the final decision of where to stay up to each guest.

After all of their careful planning, Cindy and John were even able to come out under budget.

The couple encourages other soon-to-be newlyweds to have a destination wedding and to never lose sight of their love for one another.  

Vendors: 
Wedding Planner: Seasons of Life Events 
Ceremony/Reception Site: Lanikuhonua 
Florist: Passion Roots 
Linens: Les Saison
DJ: Troy Michael
Catering: Catering Connections 
Entertainment: Tihati Productions 

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