THE PROPOSAL: Mark and I opened our gifts to each other on Christmas Eve, and when we finished, he told me there was one more gift on the tree. Our Christmas tree always has a million ornaments so it took a while, but I finally found that Mark had hand painted, and wrapped inside was a tiny red felt scarf that said, “Will you marry me?”
THE PLANNING: I lived in St. Kitts for three years while attending veterinary school, and I always wanted to have a Caribbean wedding. We visited Bermuda before we became engaged to check it out, and we fell in love. The Bermudian beaches are jaw-droppingly beautiful, the islanders are always warm and friendly, and it’s only an hour and a half flight from NYC. Hiring a wedding planner was the best decision we could have made. Emma of Memorable Moments Bermuda orchestrated baby goats for our wedding photos and helped us make welcome bags for our guests with Gosling’s Black Seal Rum, Barritt’s Ginger Beer, and Bermuda Tourism Authority maps and island guide books.
THE LEAD-UP: Mark and I planned a fun-filled itinerary for our guests, all at the Elbow Beach Hotel, where all 125 of our guests stayed. Two days before the wedding, we hosted a pool party, where DJ Donnie played great music and we served Caribbean beach party food. The night before the wedding, we hosted a welcome party at the Lido Complex’s Marina Terrace. The Big Chill band played while our guests chatted and enjoyed the sunset. After the event, we moved to the Sea Breeze Terrace, where we partied and danced until closing time.
GETTING READY: The morning of the wedding, we got ready in my bridal suite while sipping on white wine. Our outstanding team of makeup artists and hair stylists did a terrific job on our very large party of 16 women and girls. Mark and his groomsmen enjoyed beers while getting ready in the best man’s room nearby. Before the wedding, we had a reveal at the bridal suite followed by photos with the family, wedding party, and the goats. The photos were absolutely stunning.
THE WEDDING: Elbow Beach was set up with white wooden chairs decorated with sea grape leaves and ribbons. Our programs doubled as fans to keep guests cool. Coming down the stairs to the beach, it was so heartwarming to see all our loved ones waiting for us, knowing they all traveled from far away to be there. We were married under a flower-adorned chuppah, and Reverend Gordon Shaw kept the ceremony fun and light. Our favorite photo from the whole wedding was all of our guests and the wedding party on the beach, taken from our bridal suite above.
THE PARTY: The party kicked off with cocktail hour at Sea Breeze Terrace. Paul kept the island vibe going on his steel pan and we served passed canapes and fun signature cocktails. Afterwards, we headed to Cafe Lido for dinner and speeches. Chef Stefano allowed us to make our own menu with our favorite foods. The reception followed outside on the Sea Breeze Terrace, where our guests danced and had fun, and took hysterical photos in the photo booth. We had a bonfire on the beach and we served s’mores and ice cream sandwiches, then partied at The Deep Lounge and Nightclub, where we had glow necklaces, glow glasses, and after-party food.
THE HONEYMOON: We took one day to relax on the beach after the wedding, and then we had get back home for work. In all we were in Bermuda for six days, so we were happy. In February 2019, we’ll go on a three-week honeymoon in Africa. The first half of the honeymoon will be super exciting. We are spending a few days in Cape Town, then two nights at a South African vineyard, followed by safari at a lodge in Kruger National Park. We then fly to the Seychelles for a week to relax and tan.
THE FUTURE: The future is wide open. We live in Hoboken, New Jersey, with our dogs Bo and Buddy. Our careers are going pretty well. Mark works for an advertising agency in the city and I am a veterinarian. In the coming years, the plan is to move to the suburbs, start a family, and hopefully get some backyard farm animals. For now, we are just enjoying being married and loving the free time we have.
CEREMONY: Elbow Beach
RECEPTION: Lido Complex, Elbow Beach
WEDDING PLANNER: Memorable Moments Bermuda
PHOTOGRAPHY: Zeudi Hinds, Alexander Masters
CAKE: Lido Complex
CATERING: Lido Complex
HAIR: Salon Pink
MAKEUP: Afroditi Yiovreki, Serena Brangman, Paloma Pernicka West
RECEPTION LIGHTING: Class Act Designs
GOATS: Wild Island Farms