The First Sight:
Ashley calls it, “Typical (; ” The lovely couple met at a bar called Shenanigans.
We had just bought our first home and were out to celebrate both our home and our 3 year anniversary. After coming home from a fancy dinner, he put on our song. He danced with me right there in our kitchen for a while, then got down on one knee. I was completely surprised in the moment! We will now be able to show our kids exactly where “dad proposed to mom” one day.
We decided to “legally” get married in the United States before our destination wedding. We did so at a local church (St. Agnes) surrounded by only immediate family. It was quiet, intimate, and very special. We wanted to save the party for Mexico!
We decided on a destination wedding because were knew that we would be paying for the majority of our big day. A destination wedding allowed us to also have a honeymoon, which was very important to us. We were shocked to learn that a destination wedding is actually much more affordable than a big wedding at home.
In Mexico, we got married on the beach at Azul Beach Resort. The crystal blue waves were feet away from us, and my bridesmaids and I were all barefoot. It could not have been more perfect.
The Favorite Moment:
The number one thing that sticks out to me about our wedding is the location. Azul Beach Resort in Mexico is a fairly small resort complex in Riviera Maya, Mexico. They only have 148 rooms. The resort was unlike any place I’d ever been. We travel a good deal, but the hospitality, service, and food at this resort made our experience (and all of our guests’ experiences) unforgettable! As a bride and groom, they treated us like royalty. From special drinks, to candle lit dinners, and even partying with us on the night of wedding! The size of the venue allowed us to have our own intimate time in our pristine ocean front suite, yet it was easy breezy to run into family and friends at any of the all-inclusive restaurants. Every time we turned the corner, we would run into someone that was there celebrating our special day. It turned our special day, into a special week! We never felt more surrounded by love!
Being a beach wedding, there was one detail I was certain of: backless. I looked at several bridal stores, but all of the backless dresses seemed to have heavy fabric or to be made of lace. I envisioned a flowy light fabric with that same deep back cut. I ended up finding one on Pinterest that I loved. I google searched the designer and found that a local bridal shop carried the designer. When I called to inquire about it, they told me that they did not have the specific dress. However, I could pay $25 to have it ordered and brought to their store. Once at the store, I could try it on, and if I loved it – I would receive 10% off. It was a done deal! I ordered the dress, tried it on, and was instantly in love. Morilee style #6853.
Our groomsmen sported gray pants with white button down shirts, accessorized with brown shoes and a belt, all from Mens Warehouse. Being a beach wedding, I wanted my bridesmaids to wear something comfortable. They wore asymmetrical pale pink dresses with spaghetti straps and a lace bodice to match my dress! They found their dresses at Charlotte Russe and paid $30 a piece!
Advice from the Bride:
For any bride considering a destination wedding – I cannot promote this experience enough. Despite what most may think, it was much more affordable than having a big wedding at home. We were able to save money, and have a honeymoon (which we did in Tulum, Mexico – about 1.5 hours south of Riviera Maya). What made the destination wedding so special was that it wasn’t just an amazing experience for us, it was an unforgettable vacation for EVERYONE that came! Even the handful of guests who were hesitant about the travel ended up leaving the resort boasting about returning for a reunion! I worked with the most seamless planner, Ketti Menne, who was by my side the entire way. She answered all of my questions. Once I arrived in Mexico, Shelley at Azul Beach took care of every last detail to a “T”. They completely exceeded my expectations in everyway. For instance, I sent them one picture of an idea I had for my wedding cake. Just one picture. The cake was not an important detail to me, but I had a vision in my head. When I arrived at my reception, the cake was exactly the one I sent them! From only one picture they were able to capture exactly what I wanted. This is only one of the many examples! The hair, the makeup, the s’mores bonfire reception, and endless all-inclusive 5 star dishes and drinks! My list goes on and on. If I could re-do this experience all over again…I wouldn’t change a thing! I would do it again and again!
The Wedding Team
Photographer: Caribe Photo
Reception/Ceremony/Location: Azul Beach Resort Riviera Maya, Mexico
Planner: Ketti Menne Paradise Weddings
Bridal Shop: Elaine’s Bridal Green Bay, WI
Menswear: Mens Warehouse Green Bay, WI