From the couple: Originally high school crushes who had met on a school trip to Europe but who were then separated by over 1,000 miles and 12 years apart, we knew we were a non traditional wedding couple that wanted to celebrate our big day in style after waiting so long for that special day. With families spread across different states, from Arkansas to Virginia, we decided t a destination wedding in a tropical locale was a no brainer. After months of research and planning we decided on the breathtaking scenery of Ocho Rios, Jamaica. An easy choice due to proximity for travel, and the amazing terrain of the rainforest covered mountain top, coupled with the beauty of the Caribbean seaside. The wedding day itself was a magical day that celebrated our love for one another shared with our 14 closest family and friends that were gracious enough to travel out for our special day. The Bride was dressed in a Grecian style Vera Wang Dress from David’s Bridal and choose a antique style jewel encrusted head piece instead of a veil to help complete her effortless destination look. The Groom wore a lightweight white linen suit to fit in with the surrounding beach environment. In a private ceremony atop the Reef Terrace Gazebo at Sandals Grande Riviera, we shared our handwritten vows overlooking the beauty of the Caribbean ocean . After the intimate ceremony and pictures with family and friends down on the white sand beach, our reception kicked off in the same Gazebo providing an amazing backdrop as the sun was setting on the horizon. Guests were seated at tables draped with soft sea blue linens adorned with seashells surrounding an incredible centerpiece of a striking branch painted red to evoke the feeling of coral straight from the sea. The wedding décor was inspired by the seaside locale, hues of soft ocean blue with pops of bright coral red. Personal touches for the day came from our love of anything DIY. The Bride’s bouquet, as well as the Groom’s boutonniere, were handcrafted of silk orchids trimmed with a soft blue ribbon. At the reception we hung our hand painted Mr. and Mrs. Chair signs and our handcrafted ETSY items brought a touch of whimsy with the personalized Bridal hanger and Burlap “Just Married” sign. To keep cool guests were greeted with a raffia fan embellished to fit in with the rest of our wedding décor. After a beautiful sunset a fabulous three course meal was served: a first course- an array of fresh seafood: ahi tuna, jumbo shrimp cocktail, curried mussels, and spicy scallops, a second course of filet mignon with a champagne butter sauce, salmon fillet, whole lobster tail, garlic whipped mashed potatoes and seasonal vegetable, and our final course of chocolate cake paired with our wedding cake. Our wedding cake was a delicious vanilla two tiered cake enveloped in a beautiful teal blue fondant, trimmed with red ribbon, and topped with deep red roses. To end the night guests joined us on the beach to release giant paper wedding lanterns. As they were released guests made their own silent wish for the bride and groom. One of our absolute favorite moments of the entire day was standing on that deserted beach surrounded by our closest family and friends watching the magnificent lanterns rise into the clear, dark sky feeling the immense love of such an overwhelming magical day. The day after our wedding we were excited to head off the resort for an amazing intimate photo shoot with our amazing photographer from Hello Gorgeous Photography. Surrounded by Jamaican waterfalls and a private white sand beach, we were able to capture the beauty of everything this island had to offer and this shoot led to some of our favorite shoots from the entire wedding celebration. In the end our wedding day was beyond our wildest expectations. Committing to our love in front of friends and family in such a picturesque location was more than we ever could have asked for. With the help of Sandals, our amazing travel agent , wedding planner, and rock star photography team, it was a truly a stress free day and now we have breath taking images of every aspect of that day to cherish for the rest of our lives.
Venue: Grande Ochos Rio Villa Beach and Golf Resort
Photography: Hello Gorgeous Photography
Dress: Vera Wang for David's Bridal