Destination Bliss Volume 7 | Page 52

Marsha-Ann Donaldson-Brown Director of Weddings and Romance Sandals Resorts International
What mistakes do couples often make when planning a destination wedding ?
They underestimate the opportunities they can explore and are oftentimes not open-minded to weaving in cultural dynamics into the weddings . Like , they could infuse local music with a reggae or steel-drum band , or local cuisine with jerk chicken . Also , they neglect to add excursions . Excursions make their time at the destination fun by taking advantage of the adventurous side of their wedding and honeymoon .
What are some of the unique amenities , incentives and activities that your resort offers that couples might not know about ?
First off , Sandals offers a free wedding for anyone who stays three nights or longer . That ’ s an important one . Also , the more rooms you book , the more incentives you get . Many different elements become complimentary the more rooms you have . Finally , envision beyond the wedding day . Some couples are so focused on the big day that they fail to plan out the rest of their time at the destination . Add in an intimate couple ’ s massage or more to enrich the marriage beyond the I do . Or include a sporting activity like learning how to scuba dive , so that way they have a new hobby to do together after the bliss of the honeymoon .
What are some of your favorite customization options for couples ?
We believe in customization – each wedding should be as unique as the love shared by the couple . If they have a favorite color , we can weave it in using flowers or linens . Another favorite customization option is including an event or activity to thank your friends and family for coming , like a fire dancer or a catamaran cruise .
What advice would you give couples who wish to have an off-site wedding ?
The ones who choose to go off the resort are often couples who wish to have a religious ceremony at a local church . However , Sandals is proud to offer overwater chapels at our resorts in Jamaica and St . Lucia , giving couples the best of both worlds . They can still have the tradition of a chapel ceremony with an ideal Caribbean backdrop . Plus , they get to walk over water – it ’ s simply magical .
Over-The-Water Wedding Chapel at Sandals Montego Bay