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Destination I Do
Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Marvelous Maui Wedding

Words by Emily Garcia
Photos courtesy of Chris J Evans Photography

While explaining Tinder to her father, Danielle came across Clay’s profile. “He looks like a nice guy,” her father said. Danielle agreed, swiped right and matched with Clay. After dating and, with a look toward the future, the couple got engaged.

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They had always enjoyed attending destination weddings as guests. Therefore, they felt it was right for them as they wanted to have the people they love the most all together for multiple days. Clay and Danielle hosted 98 excited guests at Ponomakena Sanctuary in Maui, Hawaii.

Makena Danielle’s favorite place in the world. As a child, she spent a lot of time in Maui visiting family members scattered across the islands and eventually lived there for many years. Clay loves to travel, especially to locations where he gets to be near the ocean. And just like that, the wedding destination was decided!

The pair says planning a destination wedding was easier than both of them thought it would be. They visited Maui once beforehand to plan food tastings, hair and makeup trials, book the venue and do an engagement photoshoot.

Clay and Danielle’s friends and family witnessed the couple tie the knot in a traditional Jewish ceremony near the ocean under a “whimsical” chuppah draped in roses. Danielle’s dream wedding was a “fairy tale wonderland.” With sequin table clothes and a clear-top tent, the full moon was fate, pulling in magic from the sky to match the reception’s dark color palette décor and wildflowers.

Hosting a destination wedding allowed the newlyweds to take their wedding party on a kayak and snorkel excursion the day before the wedding and to host a rehearsal dinner at the Andaz Maui at Wailea Resort. “All weekend [we] hung out at the Andaz pool and beach with friends and family,” the happy couple says. 

The bride and groom advise couples planning their own destination wedding to trust their instincts. Family members and friends will weigh-in on different aspects of the wedding and the couple should remember the day is about them and their love story.


Vendor List:
Photography: Chris J Evans Photography; Wedding Designer & Planner: Opihi Love; Ceremony/Reception Site: Ponomakena Sanctuary; Florist: Lois Hiranaga; Gown Designer: Sophia Tolli; Groom’s Clothing Designer: High Society Tailoring; Hair & Makeup: Kipona Aloha; Ceremony Music: Don V. Lance & Vance Koenig, DJ: Del Sol; Caterer: Brian Etheredge of Private Chef Maui

This article first appeared in Destination I Do's Spring/Summer 2019 issue. You can order a copy here.

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