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A Romantic Honeymoon in Aruba

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The island of Aruba which boasts year-round ideal weather, world-class beaches and breathtaking sunsets is a picture perfect place for a destination wedding or honeymoon.

Aruba offers everything couples need to celebrate the beginning of the rest of their lives together.

Destination Weddings in Aruba

Couples choosing to get married in Aruba generally first have their civil ceremony – the legal part of the wedding – in the morning, followed by a beach blessing in the afternoon or evening. ?Civil ceremonies always take place in the Civil House, which is a historic, sea-colored renovated mansion in downtown Oranjestad. Couples then have the choice of many luxurious hotels and resorts in which to hold their ceremony and reception. From beach blessings on the sugar-white sands at sunset, to receptions aboard a catamaran, to reciting vows to the gentle rhythm of steel-pan drums, Aruba offers an authentic island experience for couples tying the knot.

Below are some wedding packages that you might want to consider in Aruba:

Customized Weddings at Bucuti Beach Resort

At Bucuti Beach Resort, weddings are designed individually for each bride and groom. ?The resort offers a choice of packages to begin the planning process which includes a decorated wedding area on the beach, services performed by a non-denominational officiate, flowers, champagne and music, plus planning assistance from the resort?s award-winning wedding coordinator. ?In addition to the beach blessing, Bucuti Beach Resort will also coordinate a couple?s civil ceremony, and can offer a sit-down wedding reception dinner on the beach for up to 12 people, or a buffet-style dinner on the beach for up to 50 guests.

?Free Caribbean Wedding? Package at The Holiday Inn Resort Aruba

The Holiday Inn Resort Aruba offers a ?Free Caribbean Wedding? package exclusively for couples who book a minimum seven-night stay on the all-inclusive plan in a Superior Ocean Front Room. ?The package includes a romantic wedding location on the beach, professional wedding planning services, a non-denominational pastor, one-tiered wedding cake, garden-fresh bridal bouquet and boutonni?re, a bottle of champagne, marriage certificate, preparation of all documents and a special gift from the resort. Themed decorations and a complimentary candlelight dinner for two are also included in the package. Videography and photography services, music and reception/banquet options are also available at additional costs.

Kunuku Traditional Wedding Ceremony at The Aruba Marriott & Stellaris Casino

At The Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino, couples have the option to get married under an archway replica of a traditional Aruban kunuku house on the resort?s pristine beach. Champagne and cake are served after the ceremony amid the sounds of Caribbean steel drums. ?Components of the package include a palm- fringed walkway to the kunuku archway decorated with tropical flowers; a professional photographer; a one-tier wedding cake; flower arrangements for the signage table, bridal bouquet and groom?s boutonniere; a bottle of champagne; one-hour of live steel drum music before and after the ceremony; the service of a non-denominational pastor; a wedding certificate as a keepsake; and services of the resort?s on-site wedding coordinator. ?This package is available year-round, and starts from $2,350, excluding service charges and taxes.

Rehearsal Dinner or Wedding Reception at Sea

For couples looking to celebrate their love at sea, they can host their private event aboard a catamaran on the Caribbean. ?For those planning their rehearsal dinner, Red Sail Sports offers a Dinner Sail experience, including views of the sunset along Aruba?s scenic coast, followed by a Caribbean buffet catered by award-winning chefs. Private charters for up to 38 people (seated) or 80 people (reception-style) are available, and prices start from $105 per person, for a minimum of 20 people. Red Sail Sports can also accommodate wedding receptions on their catamarans, and the relaxing sail is a perfect way to end a beach wedding. ?The boat departs from the Palm Beach pier and sails along Aruba?s scenic coastline. ?Guests can enjoy music, hors d?oeuvres and a complimentary bar featuring wine, beer and cocktails as they watch the sun go down over the water. Private charters for up to 100 guests are available, starting from $45 per person.

Aruba Offers Exclusive ?One Cool Honeymoon? Program for Newlyweds

For those who have already planned their wedding, Aruba also offers wonderful honeymoon options for those who have recently tied the knot. Honeymooning couples have always received the red carpet treatment in Aruba, and now they have access to even greater amenities through Aruba?s ?One Cool Honeymoon? program. Honeymooners at participating hotels and resorts receive a bottle of champagne in their room upon arrival, a souvenir gift from their resort, as well as one free hotel night stay upon their return anniversary visit. Honeymooning couples also receive special discounts on spa treatments, island tours, snorkeling excursions and on meals at select restaurants. ?Newlyweds only need to identify themselves while booking their hotel accommodations to automatically receive these special offers.

 

The Red Wedding

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Red Weddings at The Knot Wedding ShopI am a fan of the Billy Idol Song, “White Wedding” which hit the charts over 25 years ago as #36 on the Billboard Top 100 list.

However, recently I was introduced to the concept of a red wedding, and since red is my favorite color, I thought I’d look into it further and found that The Knot Wedding Shop
has a terrific supply of red wedding favors to brighten up your special day.

Dreams of walking down the aisle in a red Valentino gown will have to remain a dream for now, but if you are considering brightening up your look, check out the selection on their site. It will be a wedding people will never forget, as you will be remembered as “The Lady in Red” long after the honeymoon is over.

Calling All Brides – Bring The Dress, Leave The Stress

According to?Wedding Industry Trends by The Wedding Report, Inc.? 2008, destination weddings have increased by 400% in the last decade. Occidental Hotels is capitalizing on this trend and making it easy for brides to select one of their all-inclusive resorts for their wedding celebration.

allegroweddingOccidental now has an online “save the date” invitation tool along with several romantic all-inclusive packages at their locations throughout the Caribbean, Costa Rica, and Mexico.?Complimentary weddings are availabe to parties booking a minimum of 15-20 rooms in some locations.?

The hotel chain guarantees that a wedding coordinator will contact the bride within two business days after the online booking request is received to go over the options with the bride, thus resulting in less stressful wedding planing.

Couples can visit their site at www.occidentalweddings.com to review the options.

Your Mother-in-Law Should Know

daughterinlawrulesBest-selling author, Sally Shields, who wrote the book,?The Daughter-in-Law Rules: 101 Surefire Ways to Manage (and Make Friends with) Your Mother-in-Law! has provided us with some great advice in her book to ease the stress of the wedding planning for the bride.

Sally’s vision is to inspire more harmony among 20 million mothers and daughters-in-law worldwide by providing tips on how to get along with your future mother-in-law.

Sally gives five tips for remaining on good terms and happy with your mother-in-law.

1. Send Your MIL Cards and Flowers on her 3 Special Days (birthday, anniversary, and mother’s day)

2. Call Your MIL Regularly (preferably weekly)

3. Ask Your MIL for Her Advice ? Frequently (And then follow through)

4. Tell Your MIL What a Great Job She Did as Mother ?(She’ll love the compliments)

5. Compliment Your MIL?s Looks?Often! (If she looks young, let her know)

Sandals Resorts – A Dream Wedding and Honeymoon

One of the simplest and romantic ways to get married is to hold your event and honeymoon at one of the 12 luxurious Sandals Resorts in Jamaica or the Caribbean. ?Although my nuptials were not held there, it is a very romantic and beautiful couples resort. ?I had the opportunity to vacation at Sandals in Jamaica as well as Sandals in St. Lucia several years ago.

Exclusive Sale at Sandals Resorts

While on my romantic trip, I watched brides and grooms every day holding their wedding ceremonies with the beautiful backdrop of the Caribbean behind them for the perfect photo shoot. All of the arrangements are made with their on-site coordinator and you have a built in honeymoon at a luxurious all-inclusive resort including all meals and activities such as water skiing, snorkeling, and scuba diving.?Dream Honeymoons; Destination Weddings at Sandals Resorts!

Already married? Why not celebrate with a romantic anniversary trip. Renew your Vows and Reaffirm your love with a Sandals vacation.

Green Wedding: Planning your Eco-Friendly Celebration

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Mireya Navarro, an environmental writer for the??New York Times,?has just written a wedding book for today’s eco-friendly world called?Green Wedding: Planning Your Eco-Friendly Celebration.

The book features stories from couples who have “greened up” their dream weddings, along with beautiful photos and ideas for an eco-friendly wedding celebration. If your guests are interested in global-warming, and they should be, they will appreciate the efforts made by the?environmentally responsible bride and groom.

Green principles will give you a much needed reality check as you grapple with the emotions and stresses of wedding planning. If you risk drowning in the wedding 100-item to-do checklist, a green wedding throws you a no-waste life ring. ?It gives you an armor to fend off unwanted pressures from relatives, friends, or vendors trying to covince you to spend lavishly on fancy tablecloths or flower arrangements. It adds clarity, sorts out priorities and choices. “That’s not??green!” you can resond to a pushy helper and move on.

In addition,?Green Wedding: Planning Your Eco-Friendly Celebration?will make a great gift for a couple who just got engaged.

Bridesmaid Dresses – Un-matching is the New Trend

bridesmaidsdressesBridesmaid Dresses ? Is Un-matching the New Trend??

If you have attended a wedding recently, chances are you noticed the popular trend among?bridesmaids. More now than ever, bridesmaids are wearing dresses in different styles or colors and more brides are starting to choose this option for their attendants.?

There are several reasons why this new trend is catching on. First of all, if bridesmaids are given the option to choose their own gown, chances are they?ll love it and be able to wear it again in the future. Many of us still have several bridesmaid dresses hanging in our closets from past weddings. Second, it’s ?difficult for a bride to choose one dress style that will look good on several different ?ladies with varying shapes. ?Third, and most important, it?s one less decision for the bride to make during what ends up a very stressful time. Typically, brides will choose a color theme or style and send their attendants out to search for a dress on their own.

Finally, if bridesmaids are to pay for their own dresses, the bride can feel better about the expense their honored attendees will be purchasing for their wedding day.

For the easiest solution for un-matching bridesmaid dresses, shop through a bridal company where you will find the best selection. ?The bride can choose the fabric and color, then the bridesmaids can simply choose their favorite style.?

Overall, the trend for un-matching bridesmaid dresses can be a positive experience for everyone involved.

Contributed by Krista Dunk.

Destination Weddings

The destination wedding celebration. It’s the latest trend for brides and grooms. ?According to Adrienne Sasson, a Certified Destination Wedding and Honeymoon Specialist, over one out of six wedding couples are choosing a destination wedding for their ceremony and celebration.

So if you’ve just become engaged, after “Congratulations” the first question from everyone is, ?When is the big day?” Today, we also need to ask, ?Where will you be married?”?Just this year alone I know some newlyweds who were married in Mexico, Hawaii, and the Caribbean.

Why has the destination wedding become so popular? There are so many reasons brides and grooms are choosing to take the show on the road. The destination wedding is perceived as a less stressful way to plan a wedding. Since most of the planning is done with the on-site coordinator and the travel planner, it reduces the time for couples to look at wedding sites as well as talk to caterers, photographers, and entertainers.

With so many families and friends geographically spread out needing to fly to the wedding anyway, guests can combine your celebration with a long overdue vacation.

Once the bride and groom arrive to their chosen destination almost everything has been completed. Some destinations will require a blood test and perhaps signing official papers. ?The pre-wedding dinner will most often be held at the hotel or resort as will the wedding.?

After the ceremony, guests can stroll over to the reception area while the photographer is snapping pictures of the new couple. All this at a leisurely pace with wonderful scenery. Who can ask for more?

Contributed by: Adrienne Sasson,??Accredited Travel Counselor and?Certified Destination Wedding and Honeymoon Specialist?