Real Wedding – Colourful Caribbean: Cuba

18/09/2013 | 0

You Mean The World To Me

Bridget & Paul   ♥   Cuba, Caribbean

Photographer:   Iberostar Varadero – Mayrelys Benitez Herrera

Abroad Wedding

Bridget and Paul jetted off to the crystal-clear waters of the Caribbean to say ‘I do’, or ‘Si’ in this case! The location choice for their destination wedding was the 20 kilometre stretch of white sandy beach which is Varadero in Cuba.

 

This stunning tropical setting with year-round blue skies created a colourful Caribbean backdrop to their relaxed, destination wedding day.

 

You Mean The World To Me

 

Bridget says:

“We are not that traditional so we knew we didn’t want to get married in a church and the cost for a UK wedding was quite high so we decided on going abroad. Originally we looked at Europe but with some destinations you have to have been in the country for so long beforehand and we found it was cheaper in the Caribbean. Cuba was recommended to us by the groom’s brother and there was lots to do to suit everyone.”

 

“We did have a bit of trouble convincing some of our family, but we had decided so nothing was going to stop us! It was our day after all and this was what we really wanted.”

 

You Mean The World To Me

You Mean The World To Me

You Mean The World To Me

“We couldn’t book the wedding until March (we were getting married in the November) due to the travel agents. Before we booked it, we sent out postcard invites so everyone had the choice to come along – 19 people in total came with us.”

 

“I knew I wanted a chiffon style dress due to getting married abroad but also wanted some volume in the skirt. I chose a strapless Maggie Sotterro dress with beaded detail and a chiffon skirt, but I added an underskirt to add some volume. It took me a while to choose my shoes as I had my heart set on some Jimmy Choo’s, but when I tried some on they didn’t really suit me. I found a vintage necklace on Etsy, my earrings were a Christmas present from a few years before, my bracelet was from my mum and my hair feather and bag were from Accessorize.”

 

“The theme was going to be turquoise originally but I couldn’t find much in this colour so I choose purple and silver in the end which fitted in better for a beach wedding.”

 

You Mean The World To Me

You Mean The World To Me

You Mean The World To Me

You Mean The World To Me

 

“The flight to Cuba was an exciting and nervous one – having our family and friends there made it all the more enjoyable. The second day of the holiday we met up with our Wedding Coordinator to choose our wedding date, wedding venue, flowers, wedding breakfast menu and all other details.  We choose the following Monday for the ceremony date so we had a week before to do all the trips and relax. We decided on the beach for the wedding ceremony, a Bird of Paradise Bouquet and the A La Carte Restaurant for the wedding breakfast, so we could have the Lobster ‘Surf and Turf’ – yum!”

 

“We held Hen and Stag parties in Cuba as well as already having them in the UK before we left. The groom had a boozy night out with the lads dressed in leopard pants, a shell bra and a big moustache and stayed with his best man and brother. The bride had a civilized meal with all the girls and then drinks at the bar and then stayed with her two sisters-in-law.”

You Mean The World To Me

 You Mean The World To Me

You Mean The World To Me

 

“On the morning of the wedding I went to get my hair and make-up done at the salon. I had already been in and showed them what I wanted. I went for a side up-do with a feather clip and they used my own make-up, for a simple look. When I was returning to my room I nearly bumped into my husband-to-be but I hid behind a pillar! He was spending the morning sunbathing.”

 

“I spent the morning with my sisters-in-law who helped me stay relaxed. They got me lunch and a couple of Malibu and Cokes to calm the nerves. My mum came and helped me get changed and we had some photos done with my Dad as well, before going down to the beach. Me, my dad and the bridesmaids went to the venue via a golf cart which was very funny. The groom was very excited and emotional when I got the alter.”

 

You Mean The World To Me

Ceremony music:

  • Entrance of the bride: traditional Cuban music

You Mean The World To Me

 

“The guests seats had purple paper fans on them and there was purple paper lanterns around the wedding pagoda. The ceremony was all in Spanish and then translated. The wording for the marriage was really beautiful – we found it funny that we had to say “Si” in the wedding vows. After the ceremony we had group photos and we had our first dance on the beach.”

 

You Mean The World To Me

First dance: 

  • A saxophonist playing on the beach

You Mean The World To Me

 

“Some of the people we had met while on holiday had come along and watched the wedding from the beach in their bikinis. When we turned round and saw them it was very thoughtful.”

 

“The wedding party went for drinks while we had the rest of our photos done then we went for our wedding breakfast at the A La Carte Restaurant, which we had all to ourselves. We did speeches and had a lovely Lobster meal. On the tables all the guests had flip flop key ring favours and there was a wooden Mr & Mrs sign on our table.”

 

You Mean The World To Me

You Mean The World To Me

 

“On the evening we sat out on the patio alongside the pool and had drinks and played a quiz we had already prepared. This is a family tradition which added to the mood. Everyone had prizes like blow-up guitars, straw glasses and fake tattoo sleeves! It wasn’t a late night but we ended up in the buffet restaurant at 12am having snacks, still dressed in our wedding clothes! Then we walked along the beach back to our hotel room.”

 

You Mean The World To Me

You Mean The World To Med To Me

What were your highlights and your favourite memories from the day?

  • “The whole day was just amazing and I am always recommending people to get married abroad. I was so relaxed and enjoyed every minute of it, if I had done it here I would have been so stressed.”
  • “I really loved that we had played a quiz on the evening, how many people can say that about their wedding?”

 

Can you give any advice for brides-to-be who are looking to have a destination wedding?

  • “GO FOR IT!”
  • “Don’t forget to check you luggage allowance. I didn’t know we had an extra 10kg until about a week before we went, so I could have taken more things for the wedding.”

 

You Mean The World To Me

 

Would you do anything differently?

  • “I wish we had paid extra for a professional video to be taken and taken more money for the photos and video, they are not very expensive but we wanted to buy them all.”

 

Do you have any wedding budget tips? 

  • “I made a spreadsheet and kept it updated so I could see how much I had spent and still had to pay out.”
  • “Shop around for favours on the internet.”

 

You Mean The World To Me

 

Venue and suppliers: 

You Mean The World To Me

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