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The Ultimate Destination Wedding Set in Puerto Rico

If you consider yourself a serious floral lover – and let’s be honest, who doesn’t? – this wedding is for you. Starting with a cascading bouquet followed by one incredible ceremony arch, and ending with tabletop florals fit for a tropical reception, this entire day is a Bows + Arrows masterpiece. They styled a destination celebration set in Vieques, Puerto Rico infused with a mid-century vibe, and sourced their blooms straight from the island locals and land. NBarrett Photography captured the gallery, with lots more to see in The Vault.

From NBarrett PhotographyWillie and Maria’s destination wedding weekend was filled with memorable experiences for friends and family set in the un-touched tropical island of Vieques, Puerto Rico with pristine beaches, wild horses, and the incredible bioluminescent bay!

The wedding was designed with a Tropicana vibe, think mid century tropical glamour. The bride and groom wanted to convey a low key/high end vibe. Inspiration was gathered from 1960 Caribe Hilton and Palm Springs as well as the sleek modern lines of mid century interior design.

The Punta Mulas Lighthouse was the beautiful sight of the ceremony and reception. It’s quaintly nestled off the Vieques main port, North if Isabel Segunda. “Faro Punta Mulas was built by Don Juan Puig Cerber in 1895, and it was restored in 1992. As you walk up you will enjoy a beautiful vista of Isabel II, and the colorful boats of fisherman along the beautiful blue waters. You can watch ferry arrive, and in the distance enjoy the views of the main island of Puerto Rico and the sister island of Culebra. El Faro Punta Mulas is now a small museum, which exhibits a collection of artifacts and photos of the island’s history, the natural history of the coast, and marine time history.”

For the flowers, Bows + Arrows wanted everything to feel fresh and “of the land”. They sourced much of the flora from the land, foraging and working with the locals to buy straight from their gardens! Native floral included bougainvillea and queens wreath.

WILLIE’S VOWS TO MARIA…

Maria Teresa Rodriguez,
I, William Burton Binnie,
offer you my blood and my bones,
my flesh and my collection of souvenir pens,
the one’s with the parts that move when you tilt them.

I stand before you today,
surrounded by our absolute dearest friends and family,
to offer you my heart and my soul,
and the other guts no one ever talks about, like the gall bladder,
as well as my perpetual and infinite love.

What I’m trying to say is:  I give you everything I am,
not just the one or two organs people usually mention.
My hope is that our respective minds, bodies, and souls will continue to join together, becoming one, not in a literal way, forming some mutant hybrid creature,
but in the figurative way, forming a sacred bond of eternal and everlasting love.

I promise to always care for you when you are unwell,
to carry you when you are weary,
celebrate you, cherish you,
and try to offer critical analysis of your writings,
even when I do not fully understand  all of the concepts, the big words, 
or the small words that mean other things in a theoretical context.

I take you as my wife, to love you and hold you as long as I shall live,
despite being an left-handed person,
who, statistically, die earlier than the right-handed majority.

I shall always be your sidekick in adventure,
your consoler in despair, and backup vocals when the stereo is playing Puerto Rican music I only yet know mostly phonetically.

You are the salsa to my chip and the bean to my rice, 
my best friend, my greatest critic, and the love of my life.  
I was lost until I met you. I owe you my life, today and always.
Además, voy a mejorar mi español. Te amo, ahora y siempre.
 
I offer myself to you as your husband.

Me ofrezco a ti como tu esposo.

MARIA’S VOWS TO WILLIE…

William,
I stand here today to affirm my deepest love for you,
to cherish and commit myself to you forever.
I treasure you now and always as my companion,
and vow to love and care for you,
to be a true and loyal friend,
to actually refill the Brita pitcher after I’ve served myself a glass of water,
and to encourage, cherish, and honor you,
in sickness and in health,
through sorrow and success,
for all the days of my life.
 
I take you as you are, loving who you are now and who you are yet to become.
I love you infinitely and unconditionally,
and I promise to listen to you and to learn from you,
to support you and stand by you through all that life may bring us.
 
You like to say I’m ever the optimist
But it is that with you, the world is full of wonder and promise
of finding beauty and humor everywhere.
Life is wonderfully intriguing with you.
It is a constant adventure,
one that I will happily share with you as long as we both shall live.

I promise to always care for you,
to be your loyal proofreader and ad hoc studio assistant,
and your steadfast sous chef  
to respect you and celebrate you forever.

You are the warmest soul, my greatest friend, my favorite conversation.
You are everything.
Me ofrezco a ti como tu esposa.
I offer myself to you as your wife.

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Photography: NBarrett Photography | Coordination: Eva Bolivar | Wedding Dress: Rosa Clara | Bride's Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Jewelry: Heirloom | Catering: Restaurante Bili | DJ: Islands Entertainment | Venue: Punta Mulas Lighthouse | Bridal Boutique: Nordstrom | Event Rental: Flora By Arquetipo | Floral Design + Styling: Bows And Arrows | Invitation Design: Willie Binnie | Invitation Printing: Boxcar Press

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here

You'll love these vendors in Puerto Rico

Akua Event Design Group
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STEM Events
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Maria A Lugo
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Maria A Lugo
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Romantic Caribbean Wedding at a Forgotten Chapel by the Beach

When Victor and Analiz decided to get married, the beautiful Bride decided she wanted to marry in an old, abandoned chapel where she could make their dreams come true. With the help of STEM Events, this couple transformed the forgotten chapel by the sea into their own “sacred piece of land.” See the transformation and the rest of this beautiful day, thanks to E.P. Anderson Photography, in The Vault!

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
ChurchResort
Styles
Classic

From STEM Events…“We want to get married at the Vieques Ecumenical Chapel, that is a meaningful place for us.” This was among the first things the groom, Víctor, told me when we first met. I immediately knew this was going to be a special wedding. I knew very little about this forgotten Chapel and they were very sure they wanted to get married there. Almost all brides and grooms that choose Vieques for their weddings want to hold their ceremony by the beach, but not these couple, they chose a historic Chapel; a chapel that has been a symbol of peace for Vieques island.

For a destination weddings event designer at the Caribbean like myself, my biggest stress the day of a wedding is that it might rain. When I opened my eyes that morning I immediately went outside and look to the most blue and beautiful sky I could ever asked for. It was a perfect Caribbean day to celebrate a wedding, I was happy.

If you have a stunning venue, such as the Vieques Ecumenical Chapel, you don’t need much in terms of décor, you just have to take advantage of what nature offers you. A Eucalyptus garland was the main décor item used at the altar. We hung white fabrics from the sides of the Chapel that were blowing and moving all day long because of the wonderful seaside breeze of the area. Some wild horses got closer to the Chapel as if they were guests to the wedding adding a touch of wilderness and nature to the surroundings.

Analiz wanted and selected very simple botanicals. She didn’t want anything too overdone or elaborated. She chose Peonies in coral and pink tones, Lisianthus and Hydrangeas in bottles, mason jars and simple crystal vases.

They enjoyed a wonderful ceremony and a great party at the W Retreat and Spa and an after party in one of Martineau’s private villas. Today they are as happy as the first day I met them for planning.

From The Bride…When Víctor and I decided to get married, I told him that I was going to find my own chapel, a magical place where I could make my dreams come true. I did a little bit of research and we ended up visiting Vieques to see with my own eyes the abandoned Chapel that looked so beautiful and interesting on the internet. The forgotten old Chapel was sitting by the crystal blue ocean in a beautiful field invaded by wild horses, our eyes could not believe it.  It automatically became our sacred piece of land. We asked the mayor of the island to donate the repair of the Chapel if the state would let us marry in it, and he approved our proposal.  The Capilla Ecuménica has an incredible history. This chapel was used as a safe ground to protest the band of the Navy from Vieques Island, it is a signature of Peace and Love. My now husband is an event producer and I do all hospitality for his events, so coordinating a wedding did not seem like a challenge to us. However, without having Stem Events on our corner, it would not have looked so stunning. The effort, passion and love we put into fixing it reflected into the awaited date. It was a perfect windy afternoon for friends and family. The sun filtered through the missing walls and over 50 wild horses showed up to witness our beloved union. Everyone in our ceremony felt special, they all understood that true love had prevailed, and for a split second I felt that my fairy tale became a reality. 

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Photography: E.P. Anderson Photography | Floral + Event Design: STEM Events | Wedding Dress: Eclíptica | Ceremony Venue: Vieques Ecumenical Chapel | Reception Venue: W Retreat & Spa Vieques Island | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Nativa | Hair + Makeup: José Quiñones & Janice Cuadrado | DJ: DJ Gulembo And DJ Dennis López | Groom's Attire: Calvin Klein | Event Management: Vanessa Valedón | Flower Girls Dresses: Prettyflowergirl.com | Invitations + Table Numbers: Lisa Semidey

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
Garden-Inspired Puerto Rico Destination Wedding

When a wedding is set in a location as gorgeous as the St. Regis Bahia Beach, it rises in ranks pretty quickly. But add in Maria Lugo’s magic touch and a dress this stunning and well, we’re happy wedding campers. Our Labor Of Love captured the whole celebration, from fun first looks to dancing the night away thanks to The Flash Dance – see it all in our VAULT right this way!

Colors
Seasons
Fall
Settings
BeachOutdoor
Styles
Al Fresco

From the Bride… Even though this was technically a destination wedding planned from NY, marrying each other in Puerto Rico really felt like home. Both John-Michael’s mother and father call Puerto Rico home, so it’s always had a special place in his heart and had real significance to his family. Ironically, my family had vacationed in Puerto Rico for several years, even before we had met. We spent New Years 2012 in San Juan, and joked that when we get married one day, we would bring all of our family and closest friends back to our favorite place. Once we got engaged in August 2014, it was a no brainer choosing where our wedding would take place, so we flew out to San Juan and toured a few venue options. When we drove into the gates of the St. Regis Bahia Beach in Rio Grande, we knew we would be so lucky to be married there. We hired Maria Lugo, an incredible wedding planner based in San Juan, and she helped bring our entire weekend vision to life.

We brought in the incredibly talented Yeah! Weddings from LA for our photographer, videographer and DJ. We knew they would capture our day perfectly and we wouldn’t settle for anyone else. We worked closely with Arquetipo for flowers and decor – they completely blew our mind and brought our garden-inspired, rustic-elegant vision to life. When we first saw the table presentation about a month before the wedding, it actually made me cry! Throughout planning the wedding, we really focused on the details – from the steel band and cigar roller at our Friday Night Welcome Dinner, to the incredibly fun Rumelier, authentic Puerto Rican cuisine, personalized sunglasses, and cocktail napkins featuring our English Bulldog Norman, we really wanted to make the wedding feel intimate and put our “stamp” on it. We had hand painted menus, laser-cut gold calligraphed names for every guest which we set on their place setting, and even found a late-night grilled cheese truck which served hot grilled cheeses inside brown paper lunch bags with a sticker caricature of our faces on the front. The 16-piece band (locally-based Cuenta Regresiva) was absolutely incredible and kept everyone dancing all night (they were the band that actually played on New Years 2012 when we first promised each other we would return to PR to get married!). It felt like Spring Break all over again with our best friends; it was wild! Everyone was in vacation-mode; our childhood friends from near and far were swimming and eating and dancing and drinking with our aunts and uncles and grandparents and college friends – we just felt so much love all day, every day of the entire weekend. Our favorite part of the weekend was just that – the fact that we had an entire weekend to celebrate with our family and best friends, each day was better than the one prior. I think we both kept waiting for it to pour or for there to be some minor disaster, but the weekend was flawless from start to finish. We felt calm, excited, not one bit of anxiety and kept thinking to ourselves… “We’re just SO lucky.” It really was a dream and we wouldn’t have changed a thing.

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Peruse more Puerto Rico weddings here!

Photography: Our Labor Of Love | Cinematography: Shark Pig | Event Planning: Maria Lugo | Floral Design: Arquetipo | DJ: The FlashDance | Venue: St. Regis Bahia Beach

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here