Weddings and Honeymoons Abroad

For anyone planning a wedding or honeymoon abroad – I am an independent travel agent, with a certification in ‘Destination Weddings and Honeymoons.’

Countries listed in this guide include; Saint Kitts, St. Lucia, Mexico, Italy, Spain and Costa Rica. However, I can help you with any location, in order to make your wedding or honeymoon the most memorable holiday of your life.

CARIBBEAN

The Caribbean is the most popular wedding destination, with its luxury all-inclusive hotels, beautiful backdrops, and array of water sports and excursions. The most loved all-inclusive chains in the Caribbean are; Palladium, Barcelo, Hyatt, Sandals and Club Med, but if you’re looking for something more intimate, Koi Resort is the one.

Koi Resort, by Hilton in Saint Kitts, opened at the end of 2019. The 102-room oceanfront haven, rests along Half Moon Bay, with the Royal St. Kitts Golf Club close by. It has a full-service pool terrace overlooking the ocean, a gym and spa facilities and many fine-dining options, such as the famed KOI restaurant. Each guest-room is plush, neutral and minimal, with floor-to-ceiling windows, that lead out to a tranquil terrace, with panoramic views of the ocean, mountain range or golf course. Each room has lavish features such as rain showers or appointed beds. Signature amenities include the Kaya Spa and an on-site fitness facility at Kaya Wellness. At Koi, guests can also indulge in three culinary concepts, to offer a genuine sense of style, haute cuisine and service. For intimate celebrations and functions, this resort offers a scenic backdrop for a barefoot soiree, followed by an elegant poolside reception or formal seated dinner, overlooking the ocean.

If you’re a small wedding party or planning your second honey-moon, perhaps with children in tow, Bay Gardens Resorts in St. Lucia is perfect. Recently introduced, the private luxury villa vacation rental facility – Waters Edge. It includes two villas surrounded by tropical gardens with views of the Rodney Bay Marina. The villas combine luxury living with access to resort life, as guests can choose to relax and have a secluded experience or take advantage of the neighbouring Bay Gardens properties. This includes unlimited access to the resort group’s Splash Island Water Park and non-motorised water sports activities. Each villa has four bedrooms with King and double beds, a living room with free Wi-Fi and a private swimming pool and terrace. A concierge service is also accessible.

BodyHoliday in St. Lucia, also offer villa stays, with junior suites and a penthouse level, with a fully-equipped kitchen, king-size bedroom, attached to a bathroom with a bathtub and rain shower. You can also add on a private infinity pool. BodyHoliday also offer 50-minute spa treatments, more than 40 activities per day and several food and drink options. You can also opt for supplemental activities, like I-Tal or an organic farm to table experience.

Side Note: I have travelled to a handful of Caribbean islands, my favourites being Jamaica and Dominican Republic, so if you’re interested in a specific location, I can share with you, my personal experience.

MEXICO

“To live at the House of AïA is to live in conscious balance with all living things.” – Palmaïa Resort is the perfect location for vegans, with its plant-based menus and animal product- free rooms. The new-build was designed by founder, Alexander Ferri, who wanted guests to experience his own way of living, putting emphasis on inner exploration and respect for nature and community. The property is located in Riviera Maya, a stretch of Caribbean coastline on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. It is set between a white-sand beach and cool-water cenotes, on the edge of the jungle. There are 314 suites, all with an oceanfront and private terrace. Each traveller will be assigned a Nomadic Guide, who will attend to guest’s needs throughout the stay. In addition, guests can dine from a choice of four restaurants along with a rotating food truck, all serving mostly ethically sourced food, from trusted farms and fisheries around Mexico. Palmaia also has a jungle spa, Atlantis, where ancient ceremonies, such as Temazcal are included in the menu of services.

Set high above the ocean with views of the opening and closing holes of both nines, Grand Solmar at Rancho San Lucas, is a ranch-style clubhouse with experienced wedding planners. Wedding packages have been designed to help couples make the most of the resort’s Cabo San Lucas wedding venues, with floral arrangements, entertainment, catering, makeup services and ceremonies by a judge or minister.

Located on the countries breathtaking Yucatan peninsula, TRS Coral Hotel offers newlyweds quiet beaches, innovative cuisine, amazing views and a personalised service in a sophisticated, adults-only setting. From picturesque excursions to adrenaline activities, the hotel offers a variety of entertainment and fun. Couples can create and share magical memories together by exploring caves and sinkholes, the coral reefs or by visiting nearby cities and villages flourishing with history, culture and a booming nightlife.

TRS Coral hotel is my idea of heaven – It has 469 modern suites, each with a balcony or furnished terrace, hydro-massage bath and gorgeous views. You can upgrade to the luxury swim-up suite or two-story loft suite. The hotel features modern architecture built with eco-friendly materials and is surrounded by virgin beaches and mangroves. One of the hallmarks of TRS, is its Infinite Indulgence. An all-inclusive concept evolved; 24hour in-suite service, with a butler who can assist with practically any request! From arranging oceanfront dinners, setting up bubble bath in the guests’ tub after a private yoga class or scheduling a jaunt on a catamaran.

If you’re a foodie then TRS is perfect for you. It has five exquisite a la carte restaurants. From Spanish Tapas and Pinchos, with a modern twist, plus an extensive selection of wines to an Argentinian Steakhouse or an Ibiza-inspired beachfront restaurant, preparing fresh seafood and rice dishes. TRS Coral hotel can also take a romantic dinner for two, to the next level, with the Mayan Cenote Dining Experience. Surrounded by crisp mineral waters of a magical cave under a prehistoric jungle-framed sky – a portal to the ancient Maya Gods. Together, the couple can celebrate unity with a traditional blessing ceremony by a Mayan Shaman, with music, indigenous flowers and culminates with a seven-course dinner inspired by local flavours.

EUROPE

Ava Gardner Suite (Belmond Splendido Mare) in the Italian fishing village of Portofino, is the top accommodation for honeymooners. It has 14 guestrooms and public spaces. The inspiration for its new design is Italian mid-century modern and Portofino’s maritime heritage. The rooms will feel like you’re on a traditional fishing boat, decorated with vintage pieces, original commissioned artwork and Murano glass lamps and fabrics by Loro Piana and Rubelli. Guests of this hotel also have access to the facilities at sister property Belmond Hotel Splendido, including the spa, gardens and saltwater infinity pool.

Another favourite, is in the island of Capri in Italy’s Bay of Naples. It is the site of Dubai-based Jumeriah Group’s newest hotel- Capri Palace. There are 68 guestrooms designed in a Mediterranean style, with whitewashed walls and traditional ceramic tiles. Facilities include a private beach club, outdoor pool, and the Capri Beauty Farm (medical spa). Capri Palace is also home to the signature restaurant L’Olivo and II Riccio, which is the only beach club awarded a Michelin star.

Hotel Ritz Madrid, in Spain, is a palace that dates back to 1910. Now, after a restoration that’s billed as the most extensive in the hotel’s 110-year history, the landmark will be reopening this summer as the Mandarin Oriental Ritz, Madrid. New facilities will include, a spa equipped with a heated indoor pool, a vitality pool, showers, steam room and a fitness centre. The 153 guest-rooms, including 53 suites, will give you a real sense of place, with historic and cultural details. Plus, views over the famous Prado Museum.

COSTA RICA

Andaz Costa Rica Resort has become a favourite, offering three beaches, including one that couples often have all to themselves. Rooms and suites have a tree-house like setting, offering a front-row view of the monkeys playing in the trees. Andaz is part of the Peninsula Papagayo luxury resort community, so guests have access to 1,400 acres of a beautiful natural playground with access to expert-led activities and many other world-class amenities. This resort has seen wedding demand explode – “Clients love the unique style of our venues and the tropical forest provides a unique backdrop for truly extraordinary weddings.” This resort is also family friendly, with a complimentary kid’s club. All-inclusive meal plans are available for wedding groups, too.

Note: I have travelled to Costa Rica, therefore I can offer my personal experience.

Start planning your wedding or honeymoon now by using the contact form on my website (www.rhyiasrucksack.com) or email rhyiasrucksack@gmail.com. Alternatively, my Instagram is @rhyias_rucksack. I look forward to assisting you with, what will be the most incredible experience of your life.

(All photos from resort websites.)

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