Riviera Maya Real Wedding


July 12, 2023
Words by Pascale Bushaw
Photos courtesy of Isabella Rodriguez Photography

Alexander and Jaqueline began their love story after meeting online. The bride visited Playa Del Carmen as a teenager and immediately fell in love with the Riviera Maya. While they were dating, Jaqueline took Alex to the Riviera Maya where he, too, fell in love with the location and decided that this is where they wanted to tie the knot!

“We still remember the first time we toured the resort and found the location where the ceremony was held. It was exactly what we wanted. Nothing more. Nothing less. We couldn’t believe how perfect it felt,” the couple says.

The couple shared their love for turquoise blue water, soft white sand, and Mexican culture. They had a specific vision to get married by the ocean, but not on the sand. While touring wedding venues, the Grand Velas Riviera Maya had the perfect spot for the ceremony with an oceanfront garden.

“We toured over 15 resorts, and none of them had that option except for the Grand Velas,” Jaqueline says.

One issue they ran into when planning their wedding was that in the Riviera Maya hotels, they require a certain percentage of wedding guests to stay a certain number of nights at the resort. At first, they thought this might be an issue for their guests, yet everything worked out perfectly.

By choosing a destination wedding, Alex and Jaqueline were able to accomplish the intimate wedding of their dreams. At first, they were afraid that most of their guests wouldn’t be able to attend, yet with 55 guests attending, they were able to interact with every guest on a more personal note.

“After a lot of thought, we decided that we were going to move forward with our wedding in Mexico despite the terms and conditions,” the couple says.

The wedded couple said that knowing Spanish allowed them to opt out of using an event planner. They had visited the resort twice before choosing their venue, which allowed them to visualize their plans more through meeting with vendors and food tastings.

“Doing pre-wedding visits helped us visualize our planning more.”

The couple knew that their main priority would be flowers when creating their wedding vision board. They decided on white roses for their centerpieces, the main table, as well as their backdrop. With florals being the main focus, the aisle and arbor were covered in white flowers, bringing their fantasy to life.

“We wanted flowers everywhere. Our colors were white, gold, and sage green,” Alex says.

One unique feature they added to their wedding was a guest audiobook. This allowed their friends and family to leave voicemails instead of writing in a traditional guestbook. Another special element they included was, in order for guests to find their seats, they had a shot wall designed for the sign seating.

When it came to wedding traditions, the couple performed a “wedding laso” that was performed after the exchange of vows. The rope/laso joined the couple together around their shoulders and symbolized everlasting union and status as one in the eyes of the Lord. They also included a “Sand ceremony” where they poured sand into a single container. This symbolized their life-long commitment and joining their two lives.

The couple’s advice to other couples is that destination weddings are not for everyone, so you shouldn’t let anyone stand in the way of your big day.

“Choose the venue, the colors, the destination, the date that only YOU and your partner want. In the end, the people that truly want to be there will make sure to be there.”

Vendors: Photographer: Isabella Rodriguez Photography; Venue, Cake & Coordination: Grand Velas Riviera Maya; Florist: Pure Love Floral Weddings; Stationery: Velvet Event Design; Hair & Makeup: Zoe Elizabeth Makeup; Gown Designer: Estee Couture; Men’s Attire: The Black Tux; Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Jenny Yoo; DJ, Live Saxophonist, Live Mariachi Band & Lighting: Celtrev Audiovisual

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