Behind the Scenes: Table setup in Costa Rica

Just a shot of a gorgeous table during set up to brighten your day!  Still to go: place cards and straightening the succulents. After that – showtime!

Thank you to Artflower for the beautiful flowers and Renee at Renascent Photography for the beautiful shots!

Costa Rica Wedding Details. Photo: Renascent Photography

Costa Rica Wedding Details. Photo: Renascent Photography

 

Real Wedding – Tatiana & Patrick – Waterfall Ceremony

Tatiana & Patrick were married at the base of a beautiful tropical waterfall, deep in the rainforest of Costa Rica. This couple was focused on the experience and immediately drawn to a destination wedding in Costa Rica.  They worked with Meghan in making this an unforgettable day. When you are in a location as pretty as this, it is hard to believe it can adequately be captured on film but Toh Gouttenoire was up to the challenge.  We love the results and we are happy to say Love + Wander agrees as they have featured this waterfall ceremony in their blog.  Love + Wander’s focus is to “live an inspired life” … wouldn’t you agree that being married in Costa Rica is doing just that?

 

Love+Wander Costa Rica Wedding

Love+Wander Costa Rica Wedding

Christmas Gifts for your Guests

Recently one of our brides contacted me with a brilliant idea.  She wanted to arrange for resort gift cards for their guests, to be used as Christmas presents, for guests use at their resorts during the wedding getaway next year.

I love this idea and wanted to share with it all of you other brides-to-be!  What a great way to solve the question of what gift to give while also getting your guests excited about their trip to Costa Rica!

While loving on the resort gift card idea, it prompted me to think about other great Christmas gifts that could be given to your guests over the holidays. Items such as coffee or chocolate covered coffee beans to give them a taste of Costa Rica… useful travel items such as passport covers, luggage tags, or sarongs for the beach… less obvious items like jewelry perfect for an exotic locale…

I ended up creating a board to gather these ideas. Check out the Pinterest Gift Board here for some initial thoughts. Be sure to follow the board as I’m sure there will be many more to come!

Holiday Gifts for your Destination Wedding Guests

Holiday Gifts for your Destination Wedding Guests

Real Wedding – Paul & Belen – Manuel Antonio

Traveling from Switzerland and Scotland, Paul and Belen were looking for a luxurious elopement ceremony in Costa Rica.

They enjoyed the simple sophistication of Arenal Nayara with stunning views of the Arenal Volcano, the cozy cloud forest mountain lodge El Establo, and the beautiful 5 Star Arenas del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort in Manuel Antonio. It was during their stay at Arenas del Mar that Paul and Belen exchanged vows on the beach. I love Paul’s kilt and socks, along with Belen’s classic look. The white phalaenopsis orchids were in keeping with the earthy tones that were captured in the photos… the white, brown, green, and blue/gray of the sky and water.

There are many reasons Arenas del Mar makes for a great wedding site for a wedding in Costa Rica but one I love for elopements is that they will prepare an intimate dinner for two in a location of your choosing – in your suite, on the beach, or in their oceanside restaurant. What a sweet way to celebrate your marriage!

Congratulations Paul and Belen!

And thank you Kevin Heslin for the lovely photos of this Costa Rica Wedding! I am particularly smitten with the photo of Paul & Belen sitting on the rocks.

Manuel Antonio Elopement Photos

Real Wedding – Meghan & Tom – Jaco Beach

It was a complete joy to be part of Meghan & Tom’s wedding celebrations. They truly are a couple that embodies how effortless love can be.

Meghan & Tom had been guests at another of OCRW’s weddings and gave us a call as soon as they became engaged. To us, it’s the ultimate compliment to be hired AFTER they’ve seen what we can do!

The super talented Jeremie Barlow captured this event beautifully. So beautifully that Destination Weddings & Honeymoons decided to include this event in this month’s Beach focused issue.

 

Destination Weddings & Honeymoons Costa Rica

Destination Weddings & Honeymoons

Meghan & Toms’ friends and family were right on board with taking over Jaco for this wedding weekend, filled with surfing, ziplining, and plenty of Imperial while lounging poolside at the oceanfront condo property, Bahia Encantada.

 

Bahia Encantada, Jaco, Costa Rica

Bahia Encantada

Imperial Costa Rica Wedding

Imperial and Patron

We had an absolutely gorgeous day for set-up.  The guys enjoyed the pool while the girls drank mimosas and got beautiful! Meghan is a hair stylist as are some of her closest friends, so a couple of the bridesmaids took care of the ladies styling for the day. They even found time to give me a lesson on the sock-bun which held my hair nicely throughout the day and night, and I still use that trick frequently! Thanks ladies!

 

Wedding Day Preparation Costa Rica Wedding

Wedding Day Preparation

The color scheme was green, pink, and soft brown brought together with bamboo effects in the canopy, runner on the table, chairs and bar (Meghan even put bamboo coasters in the welcome bags!) and the wedding party’s attire. Love the guys shirts in this wedding! Meghan did a great job pairing the brighter pink on the girls with the softer hue on the guys.

 

Wedding Canopy Jaco Costa Rica Wedding

Wedding Canopy

 

Wedding Canopy Jaco Costa Rica Wedding

Wedding Canopy

Beach Wedding Photos Jaco Costa Rica

Bridal Party in Pink

Beach Wedding Photos Jaco Costa Rica

Groomsmen & Bride

Signature drinks of Sangria and Mojitos emphasized the color palette, as did green cocktail tables with under-lighting that lit up as the sky darkened.

 

Beach Cocktails Costa Rica Wedding

Cocktail Hour

The couple stole off for a few quiet moments while guests enjoyed cocktails & hors d’ouevres. There are way too many gorgeous images from this bit of time that we couldn’t decide which to share but here are a couple…

 

Beach Wedding Jaco Costa Rica Wedding

Bride and Groom

Beach Wedding Jaco Costa Rica Wedding

Bride and Groom

Flowers consisted of plenty of native plants to Costa Rica, ginger, hydrangea, dendrobium orchids, and beautiful phalaenopsis orchids. The bride’s bouquet was white and pale green hydrangea with white phalaenopsis orchids.

 

Tropical Flowers Costa Rica Wedding

Tropical Arrangements

Bridal Bouquet Costa Rica Wedding

Bridal Bouquet

Meghan’s earrings were stunning, I am sure you’ve noticed them in other photos already but here’s a well deserved close-up:

 

Beach Wedding Jewelry Costa Rica Wedding

Bride’s Earrings

The guys wore starfish as their boutonniere’s, a token from the bride’s sister’s wedding.  Placecards were made by the bride’s mother, and included the starfish as well.

 

Starfish Details Tropical Wedding Costa Rica

Starfish Details

In lieu of a traditional guestbook, guests were asked to sign a board made of native Costa Rican wood crafted by a local artisan and engraved with their wedding date.  This piece now hangs in the couples home.  As March can be a windy time of year on the Pacific Coast (though we lucked out with gorgeously calm weather) this couple elected to frame their menus instead of using paper menus at each place setting. They then re-used those frames for their wedding photos in their home and also in gifting photos to family. Nice touch!

 

Wedding Details Costa Rica Wedding

“Guestbook” & Menu

Dinner was privately catered and served Family Style to encourage interaction and in keeping with the couples laid-back style. One long table accommodated all of the guests and resulted in a dramatic effect with globe lanterns hanging above.

 

Dinner Costa Rica Wedding

Dinner

The cake was a two tier vanilla cake with strawberry filling, and decorated with green dendrobium orchids. Though fondant holds up better in Costa Rica’s tropical climate, Tom & Meghan preferred buttercream frosting which was easily arranged by keeping the cake in cool storage until closer to when the cake would be cut.

 

Tropical Wedding Cake Costa Rica Wedding

Wedding Cake with Orchids

We could dedicate an entire post to the party that ensued. Multiple bottle dances occurred and I’m not sure there was a guy left with his shirt on by the end of the night! We couldn’t be happier for this couple and are so thankful to have had the opportunity to be a part of their day. Congratulations you two!!

 

Bride and Groom Costa Rica Wedding

Tom & Meghan

Many thanks to Jeremie Barlow for the lovely photos, Cristina Coronas at ArtFlower for the gorgeous flowers, Chelsea Brandau for the delicious cake, Los Mojitos for the sweet ceremony music (“Somewhere Over the Rainbow” was beautifully done!), and Joshua Wilson for keeping the party going!

 

JetBlue Announces Flights from Fort Lauderdale to Costa Rica

Budget airline JetBlue Airways announced daily nonstop service from Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport to Juan Santamaria International Airport in San Jose.

Service for this route began this past week, will run daily, departing Fort Lauderdale at 9:45a.m. and landing in San Jose at 10:38a.m. local time.

To celebrate the new route, JetBlue is offering sale fares from $135 one-way through Tuesday July 2, for travel between Sept. 6 and Dec. 13.

Plenty of time to plan an elopement or small event!!

Real Wedding – Marjean & Dave – Manuel Antonio

Traveling from Salt Lake City, Marjean and Dave were looking to experience Costa Rica to its fullest and planned their time accordingly. With two weeks to explore Costa Rica these adventure-seekers filled their days with whitewater rafting, horseback riding, snorkeling, kayaking, and guided tours near Arenal Volcano and through the Cloud Forest in Monteverde.  With a very full wish-list in hand, we’re glad to say they also fit in some time to relax, with an evening at the Tabacon Hot Springs and of course sunny days lounging on the beach in Manuel Antonio.

Towards the end of their getaway, Marjean & Dave were married on the private beach at Tulemar Reserve while enjoying their stay at Buena Vista Luxury Villas.

Wedding photographer, Kevin Heslin, was able to capture the couple’s sweet and personal elopement ceremony thanks to fantastic weather and one beautiful couple.

One of the best parts about these two is their spontaneity as Marjean called us around a month prior to their travel dates.  There’s a lot to be said for being able to start packing as soon as you finish your planning!

Congratulations you two!

Marjean & David Manuel Antonio Elopement, Costa Rica

Photographer – Kevin Heslin

 

Ideas for Wedding Photography

Looking for some creative shots for your wedding photos? Check out this slideshow on The Knot for a guide to 50 must-have shots for your event. Some couples elect to just let the photographer “do their thing” while others give a very specific list of desired must-have photos. We definitely recommend finding a photographer you “click” with (no pun intended) and allowing them creative freedom (they will appreciate that!), but browsing shots and poses is a good way to give your wedding planner and photographer an idea of what types of shots suit your style. These will be hanging on your walls for years to come afterall, so it’s important they make you smile!

Costa Rica Wedding Party

Man of Honor and Bridesmaids, Wedding Party in Costa Rica

 

Interview with Awayding.com – Wedding Planning in Costa Rica

Recently Awayding.com interviewed us to get a little more personal view of what we do & why we do it!  We chat a bit about my role as a wedding planner in Costa Rica.  Some clips of recent couples were included, and also a shot or two of me with my handsome hubby :)

Check the article out here!

Meghan Cox Wedding Planner

We love receiving notes from couples after events!

This Thank You note from a recent bride greeted me in my inbox this morning. What a wonderful way to start the day! Had to share:

We wanted to thank you for all the hard work and time you put into making our wedding such a special and unforgettable event for my Husband and I and all of our guests.  As we think of our wedding day and the time we spent with you, what we feel is that our wedding surpassed all our wildest hopes and dreams.  We could not have asked for a more prefect event.  In sending this email too you and thinking of the trip, tears come to our eyes. We truly could not have asked for anything more.  We were pulled aside by each one of our guests and whispered to about how much this was a life changing event for each of them.  Words cannot express adequately our thanks and appreciation.  From the beautiful rainforest setting, gorgeous rooms, delicious food, professional wedding planning assistance, and expert staff; in my opinion there is no better place in the world to visit and celebrate a new beginning.

Thank you again so very much with all our heart.

Pura Vida
Ashley and Arthur