I Do

Wedding ceremonies for all styles and all tastes

16

Jan
2017

Wedding ceremonies for all styles and all tastes

By Amy Gordon 209 0

Puerto Rico has magical indoor, beachfront, city, seaside, and countryside locations.

With its tropical weather, colorful scenery, and vibrant culture, Puerto Rico is ripe for romance. The island is a picture-perfect spot for destination weddings, particularly for American couples who don’t need to secure a passport or visa to get married here.

“The biggest draw to destination brides is the fact that Puerto Rico feels foreign but it’s still domestic,” says Jillian Anderson of E. P. Anderson Studios and Green-Eyed Girl Weddings & Events. “With U. S. marriage licenses and currency, it’s a lot easier to get married here than it is on other Caribbean islands.”

But Puerto Rico offers more than just convenience and ease. Whether brides prefer to strut down the aisle in stilettos or go barefoot on the beach, they’ll find what they’re looking for at dreamy venues all over the island. Below are five whimsical wedding locations that BIENVENIDOS highly recommends.

 

 

Beachfront Bashes

Seclusion and intimacy are all the rage on Puerto Rico’s western shore, offering private to semi-private beaches where the water is not a single blue but rather a shimmering mosaic of turquoise and deep sapphire, stunning panoramic views, and amazing colorful sunsets surrounded by natural beauty; all idyllic qualities for weddings.

Rincon Beach Resort delights couples looking to tie the knot with salt in the air and warm, unspoiled sand between their toes perfect for kicking off your shoes and exchanging low-key I do’s. The hotel backs up to a serene beach where romance and local charm captivate guests.

From the flowers to the cake, Rincon Beach Resort handles all of the wedding details in house, freeing up couples to enjoy time together on the island.

“We even have a minister that will take couples to complete all of the paperwork they need to get married in Puerto Rico,” says Stephanie Ramirez, sales and marketing director. “We want our brides and grooms to enjoy their time here with as little stress as possible.”

City Celebrations

Centuries-old blue cobblestone streets and brilliantly colored historic buildings as if you stepped out of a time machine is what you will discover in the Old San Juan, situated in the northern coast of Puerto Rico.

Once the crown jewel of the Spanish Empire in the Americas, the Old City still preserves its stunning colonial architecture ranging from imposing fortresses to the best museums, restaurants, shops and nightlife Puerto Rico has to offer.

An exclusive ambiance makes the Antiguo Casino the epitome of glamour.
An exclusive ambiance makes the Antiguo Casino the epitome of glamour.

 

Couples who want a wedding address that’s sure to impress say “I do” at the landmark Antiguo Casino in Old San Juan. Elegance seeps into each and every affair at this stunning venue, which originally opened its doors in 1917 as a social club for Puerto Rico’s elite. Today, beaux arts architecture, stunning gardens, ample balconies, white marble floors, a majestic staircase, grandiose chandelier, attention to detail, in an exclusive ambiance make Antiguo Casino the epitome of glamour.

They can reserve the outdoor courtyard or choose to celebrate in the marble-columned ballroom, adorned with romantic French doors, and a dramatic mezzanine. Want to keep the party going? Weddings don’t have to end when the band has packed up and gone home; city bars and nightclubs are within easy reach for groups that want to celebrate into the early morning hours. From Thursday through Sunday it’s as if there’s a celebration going on nearly everywhere in San Juan.

Ballroom Brides

Couples dreaming of a fairytale wedding in a majestic hotel ballroom needn’t look any further than El Conquistador Resort, A Waldorf Astoria Resort in Fajardo.
Couples dreaming of a fairytale wedding in a majestic hotel ballroom needn’t look any further than El Conquistador Resort, A Waldorf Astoria Resort in Fajardo.

Located in the east region of the island bordering the Atlantic Ocean is one of the most beautiful resorts on the island, El Conquistador, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, situated in the town of Fajardo. The town’s perfect beaches are bounded by calm waters ideal for snorkeling, sailing and plenty of scuba diving.

Couples dreaming of a fairytale wedding in a majestic hotel ballroom needn’t look any further than El Conquistador Resort. Spanning more than 500 acres, the hotel is the largest in all of Puerto Rico, but its thoughtful design, breathtaking oceanfront locations, perfectly manicured palm-dotted grounds, and caring, attentive staff make every wedding feel intimate and personal.

El Conquistador, A Waldorf Astoria Resort has several exquisite reception venues to celebrate your big day. Its stately Grand Ballroom is the ideal setting for luxurious wedding receptions and ceremonies featuring over 20,000 sq. ft. of space.

Opt to host your lavish ceremony or reception in the exquisite Grand Caribbean Ballroom featuring elegant décor and crystal chandeliers as well as a built-in stage.

While its Pablo Casals and Magnolia Ballrooms even though are much smaller indoor venues accommodate up to 800 guests but both provide the opulence of a Waldorf Astoria Resort that is flawless for an unforgettable intimate affair.

El Conquistador Resort includes swimming pools, a championship golf course, tennis courts, a private island, a spa, 23 restaurants and bars, and even an on-site waterpark. From pre-wedding events to after-hours parties, everything that happy couples need to entertain their guests is located right on site.

“Couples and their guests use their stays as vacations,” says Kamil Rivera Lopez, catering sales manager. “There’s no need to leave the hotel. Everything you need or want is right here.”

Seaside Ceremonies

Just seven miles off the east coast of Puerto Rico lies Vieques, a rustic island of lush mangroves and forests, calm beaches, and a glow-in-the-dark aquatic wonder that must be seen to be believed.

Vieques, affectionately known as Isla Nena, is equally beloved by locals and visitors. It’s a true spot to unwind, slow down to Caribbean time, and beach-hop. And we are not talking about just any beaches; they come in all shapes, sizes, and sand colors.

El Blok Hotel, Restaurant and Bar adds a dose of high-style to the otherwise laid-back island of Vieques. Since it opened in 2014, the uber-chic adults-only hotel has been a hit with cool couples who want to get married with breathtaking, awe-inspiring Caribbean views.

The hotel’s alfresco rooftop dazzles guests as soon as the elevator doors open. As day turns to night, stunning sunsets offer a gorgeous backdrop for ceremonies and receptions. Funky package enhancements like a coconut shucking station, a piraguas cart, and a Caribbean rum station add Puerto Rican authenticity.

“Every event we host is as individual and unique as the property itself and the people who patronize it,” says Laine Gorman, general manager.

Country-Minded Couples

The bustling town of Carolina borders the Atlantic Ocean and many who visit are familiar with its tourist district called Isla Verde, a popular beach spot in the San Juan metro area that lures both locals and visitors to the pleasure of sun worshiping, swimming, and a vibrant nightlife.

Just a short ride away in the lush, tranquil countryside of Carolina is Hacienda Campo Rico where its flora and fauna surroundings make it feel a world away from urban life. Exquisite chandeliers, intricate woodwork, and uncommon artwork feed the senses all over the estate grounds.

 

The grand double staircase at Hacienda Campo Rico in Carolina offer two of the most memorable outdoor ceremony on the entire island.
The grand double staircase at Hacienda Campo Rico in Carolina offer two of the most memorable outdoor ceremony on the entire island.

 

This grand hacienda used to be a coffee plantation during the Spanish colonization. Its expansive open lawn and grand double staircase offer two of the most memorable outdoor ceremony sites on the entire island.

The ground level at Mi Casa can host a wedding party for 500 guests and its Blue Room, situated on the upper level, is used for small affairs with a seating capacity for 120 people. It overlooks the wide expanse of the undulating plains and there is a dining room for guests. Tropical flowers and herbs as well as surrounding ponds enhance the beauty of this one-of-a-kind countryside plantation.

After the vows, partiers dance the night away on the charming interior patios. When the last of their guests have gone home, brides and grooms can spend their night as man and wife in Hacienda Campo Rico’s stilted lakefront suite bungalow. It doesn’t get more private than that.

So whether you’re here as a bride, a groom or a guest, let the Island of Enchantment work its magic. Fall in love in – and with – Puerto Rico.

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