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Romantic Wedding at the Land of Eternal Spring

Overflowing with fresh Expressions Artes Florales , this garden affair has officially put Guatemala on my bucket list. The chic factor exponentially increases with a firework ending and the Bride’s calligraphy skills, and with Saguzo Eventos on hand every detail was flawless. Joe Simon Wedding Films and Megan Robinson shared their favorite moments from this dreamy destination ceremony, right here.

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Spring
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Romantic

From Megan Robinson… I have been looking forward to sharing this wedding ever since I was fortunate enough to document it. Of course traveling for, and telling the story of a destination wedding is always a dream come true, but this one is very dear to me. “The Land of Eternal Spring” is even more beautiful than it sounds with it’s colors, textures, foliage, music, culture, people, and landscapes being so dynamic and enchanting. Guatemala happens to be my mother’s native country, so when Amy and Jorge contacted me about documenting their wedding in a place that is home to so many people I love, I was overwhelmed with excitement.

One of the most unique details of this wedding was that the Bride, Amy, is a calligrapher, Letter Love Studio, and she custom designed her invites, envelopes, cake topper, the menu, gift tags, etc. Seeing how much heart was put into this event, even down to the details Amy created made this one of the most memorable days I have been fortunate enough to document.

From the Bride… If there’s one thing Jorge and I love to do together it’s travel. After getting engaged in Thailand (where my dad is from) on a family trip, we thought it only fitting to get married in Guatemala ­ where Jorge’s parents are from and where he lived as a child. We felt it would be extremely meaningful to honor our backgrounds as our families came together as one, and Antigua was a no ­brainer. I fell in love with photos of the cascading bougainvilleas, lush green volcanoes, and colorful worn facades of this little colonial town that Jorge had treasured as a kid. When we visited in February to do the bulk of the planning with Gladys Santizo of Saguzo Eventos the “Land of Eternal Spring” really stole my heart and I couldn’t wait to experience it with our closest friends and family.

Our wedding day couldn’t have been more surreal. I felt so beautiful slipping into my custom Tatyana Merenyuk silk chiffon and vintage lace gown, and Jorge looked so incredibly handsome in a way I will always remember. We always knew that we wanted to get married in a venue that would stand the test of time. Somewhere significant we could visit time and time again and take our family to many years later… and the 18th century ruins of Las Capuchinas and 16th century church of San Jose El Viejo fit the bill perfectly.

The garden of Las Capuchinas was overflowing with fresh flowers and the sound of latin guitar and violin music filled the ceremony air as we exchanged our hand written vows. After the kiss, all of our guests piled into an army of little tuk tuks which took them to San Jose for the reception, bouncing in one long line along the cobblestone streets. It was one of the most fun and memorable moments for our guests and really set the tone for a laughter-­filled reception.

I had a very specific vision for our reception décor, and seeing that come to life really took our breath away. One of the hardest parts of having a destination wedding was that I couldn’t make as many décor items as I wanted to, but I designed and calligraphed every piece I could conceivably bring to Guatemala! From the invitations I collaborated on with uber-talented

Yao Cheng Design, to the welcome bags, programs, menus, escort cards, cake topper, etc. It was so incredible to see all of the little details come together and us and our guests had an extraordinary time. To cap off the evening, Jorge surprised everyone (myself included) with a fireworks display and it was the perfect crescendo to an unforgettable day. The best thing we did (besides get married of course!) was to hire our dream team ­ Megan Robinson and Joe Simon Wedding Films to document our special day. To be in the hands of such wonderful and talented professionals let us truly relax and enjoy ourselves. We were ecstatic to see how they captured our wedding day and their photos and film help us relive it over and over. We could not have asked for more!

Photography: Megan Robinson | Videography: Joe Simon Wedding Films | Event Planning: Saguzo Eventos | Floral Design: Expressions Artes Florales | Wedding Cake: Pasteleria La Cenicienta | Ceremony Venue: Convento De Las Capuchinas | Reception Venue: San Jose El Viejo | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Little Borrowed Dress | Bride’s Dress: Tatyana Merenyuk | Bride’s Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Groomsmen’s Attire: J. Hilburn | Groom’s Attire: D.Jones Clothiers | Invitation + Calligraphy: Letter Love Studio | Invitation Watercolor: Yao Cheng Design

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Citrus-Infused Guatemala Wedding

Captured by Stacy Able, this Guatemala wedding is chock-full of color and whimsy, with pretty little details everywhere you look (read: citrus chandeliers!) The day was planned by I Do, Guatemala who pulled off the Bride’s vision by ending the evening with late-night tacos and a paper lantern send-off. And as for the gallery? Well, it’s a total must.

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Spring
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Whimsical

From The Bride…As soon as we got engaged, I knew exactly where I wanted to have our wedding. We had visited Lake Atitlan in Guatemala the prior year and I had fallen head over heels for the land. I’ve always had an affinity for anything tropical, especially banana leaves, bright florals, and all things citrus. The thought of having a wedding with a blue lake and volcano back drop, amongst giant palms, green foliage, and every bright flower imaginable just seemed dreamy to me.

The gardens and grounds of Hotel Atitlan were perfect – they even had butterflies, parrots, and peacocks roaming around. Our wedding was a destination for all 50 of our guests, half coming from the US and half coming from Europe, and we wanted to show them all the special parts of Lake Atitlan that we fell in love with. The more I experienced Guatemala throughout our trips, the more I admired their details and local native craftsmanship. I had fun creating the welcome bags for our guests and was excited at the thought that this would be their first impression and glimpse of Guatemala and the wedding weekend. On one of our planning trips we visited the town of Santa Catarina Palopó and picked a beautiful selection of hand woven, brightly patterned textiles made by the local women. Back home, my mom cut and sewed these textiles into tote bags with handles. We filled the bags with some of our favorite products of Guatemala – locally made bottles of spicy green hot sauce, a bag of Guatemalan coffee beans, and a bottle of the countries Ron Zacapa rum – in addition to a “Just in Case” emergency kit and some snacks and treats.

Our wedding day scene was filled with overwhelming plants and flowers everywhere you looked, cobblestone paths leading to each tucked away area for the ceremony and reception, Spanish style architecture in the background, and a picturesque view of the lake and volcanoes. My love for oranges and citrus worked perfectly in this setting and created a consistent theme throughout the wedding day decor. During the ceremony we offered chilled bottles of orange and lemon San Pellegrino drinks with pink striped straws. A simple floral arch of pink and white flowers and green leaves framed the view of the lake while guests looked on. For our reception dinner, we planned it at sundown so our guests could enjoy the sunset; they sat at one long rustic wood table along the lake.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always envisioned a single long table for my wedding dinner as I always wanted it to feel more like a large and cheerful dinner party then anything else. White linen table runners ran down the center of the tables with white chiavari chairs lining either side. Different shades of pink roses, white lisianthus and green hydrangeas filled glass vases and bottles with lit candles placed in between. The details were important to me, even down to the salt and pepper dishes. I like simple and clean but still soft and pretty.

As I mentioned before, I also love anything citrus and I think this setting called for citrus all day long! Each place setting had a clean, crisp folded white napkin with printed menu cards tucked inside. As a name place card, we set vibrant, large oranges with green leafy stems at each seat – and nametags tied on with twine. My favorite and most anticipated of the details were the citrus chandeliers hanging over the table. Multiple circular chandeliers made of oranges and leafy greens with candles hung from long vines within the tent. These were the focal point of the tables, the feature that helped create a certain tropical-naturally beautiful-whimsical vibe to the setting; a setting which I wanted to be less formal and more pretty and fun.

With my husband being European, an after dinner espresso was a must and this was one of his few requests. We asked the owner from our favorite local café, a young and cool South Korean coffee lover, to set up an espresso and coffee bar, which was not only satisfying and delicious but entertaining too! Guests drank hand-dripped coffee out of brightly colored mini ceramic mugs that fit in with the décor perfectly.

We also had a French hipster DJ named Olivier keeping the music and dancing going throughout the night. It was a worldly and eclectic group of not only guests but vendors as well! We ended the night with a firework show that left an excited and awe-inspiring feeling for all who experienced it. Late night, we chowed down on what we’ve collectively agreed were “the best tacos ever” and sent off large paper lanterns into the night sky over the lake. This was the sign off to a beautiful and adventurous weekend in Guatemala for all our guests and us. Carlo and I felt so happy and fulfilled with our closest family and friends surrounding us in this beautiful place. It was simply perfect.

Photography: Stacy Able Photography | Wedding Planner: Diana | Wedding Gown: Jenny Packham | Brides Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bridesmaids' Dresses: J Crew | Grooms Attire: Dries Van Noten | Grooms Shoes: Paul Smith | Wedding Venue: Hotel Atitlan | Coffee Station: Cafe Loco | Headpiece: Untamed Petals | Invitation Suite: Lucky Penny Paperie | Wedding Gown Shop: Panache Bridals

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DIY Destination Wedding in Antigua, Guatemala at Las Capuchinas Templo

This wedding is pure magic. And I don’t say that lightly. Intimate and elegant, the images from Julie Comfort paint the picture of a wedding that played out like a dream. With the romantic Las Capuchinas Templo setting the scene and one seriously gorgeous couple tying the knot, this gallery is a destination dream come true. See even more here.

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Summer

From The Bride…My husband and I live to travel, taking every spare moment to explore and see a new place or part of the world. (He more than I, I must admit as his country count is over 90!) I had fallen in love with Guatemala and its raw beauty when I taught there a few years back and introduced its splendor and charm to Rishi just before we were engaged. (BTW, he popped the question on stage at the end of a concert of my absolute favorite singer in the world…Anthony Hamilton …a surprise is an understatement and it was a dream to say the least!) If I were asked to describe Antigua in one word, it would be “Magical”…

When we were trying to decide where to get married, we pondered the simplicity of a small wedding in our home city, thought about cruises or all-inclusive type destination weddings, but nothing seemed to stick or excite us. It was not until Rishi simply suggested, “Why not Guatemala?”…and that was it. We immediately jumped on the idea that night without even putting much thought into it (well, 5 minutes worth) we sent an email out to our closest friends and family that night which sealed the deal. Rishi’s family lives in Trinidad and mine in Toronto…both families don’t travel often. It was important to us that we provide everyone with an “adventure” where friends and family would have time to grow true relationships and see a place they would not have otherwise.

I found the most gorgeous group of houses (6 in total…which we called “Melrose” because they surrounded a pool just like the show) which we rented for a week to accommodate our guests and family. It was cost friendly, allowed everyone to be close, and provided the perfect “get to know you” atmosphere. Each room was stocked with a welcome bag filled with goodies and necessities like a hangover kit (with emergency meds, earplugs, and an eye mask), snacks, sweets, personalized lip balm, water and more.

The days before the wedding were filled with events for guests to choose to participate in (or not). We had a meet and greet day filled with a hop-on/hop-off tour of the city, followed by a night around the pool with catered traditional Guatemala food, music, and drinks. After the rehearsal dinner we had a salsa night out with salsa lessons, music, drinks and fun.
The day of the wedding was just the icing on the cake to the whole week we got to enjoy with the closest people in our lives.

Our venues (being built over 300 years ago) matched our theme…magical. We loved the simplicity of both venues. I would not have called myself crafty before the wedding, but I kicked up my inner craftiness and became a DIY guru. I made (and discovered I loved making) a ton of personlized paper products and decor and we brought literally suitcases full of DIY to add to the decor.

The ceremony was held at San Jose el Viejo; a smaller, more intimate ruin, followed by a cocktail hour with our signature “Flirtini” drink and apps. The sound of thunder and heavy rain added a warm feel to this already magical venue. As part of the ceremony, we held a “Sand and Soil” ceremony. Rishi used sand from Trinidad where he grew up and I used soil from the backyard of my childhood home in Toronto. We exchanged personalized vows and our wedding bands made from aircraft titanium (adding a special meaning because of our travels) and sealed the deal with a smooch.

Shuttles whisked guests off to the reception held in the temple of Las Capuchinas where we had a Cuban band, Ignacio (he’s the grandson of one of the original members of the Buena Vista Social Club) playing for their entrance. By that point, everyone was relaxed, happy, ready to celebrate and enjoy a few drinks made by our flare bartenders. A delicious meal, followed by mini desserts, a candy station and s’mores were there to satisfy everyone’s sweet spot. The atmosphere was fun and full of joy and having guests come from all over (Canada, US, Trinidad, Guatemala, and as far as Scotland and Nigeria!) made for the best night and week of our lives.

Photography: Julie Comfort | Cinematography: Jonathan Yonkers | Videographer: Jonathan Yonkers | Wedding Planner: Wedding Chicas | Wedding Cake: Cake Company | Ceremony Location: San Jose El Viejo | Reception Location: Las Capuchinas Templo | Engagement Ring: Tacori | Wedding Bands: Jon Pollack | Catering: Camino Real Antigua | Accomodations: Philippa Myers | Antigua Accommodations: Philippa Myers | Birdcage Veil: Melinda Rose Designs | Birdie Logo/Wedding Stamp: Paper Sushi | Bride's Dress: Pronovias | Ceremony Programs: HandStampOlogy | Event Design/Floral: Mario Ayala-Escencia | Event Design/Florals: Mario Ayala | Father of the Bride gift-Personalized Handkerchief: Inspired Stitches | Favors/Paper Product/DIY Decor: Handstampology | Hair flower worn at reception: Rainwater Studios | Hair/Makeup: Melissa Collins

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Romantic Guatemala Wedding at San Jose El Viejo

If I’m being honest, Guatemala has never really been on my radar as a vacation destination.  But this beautiful wedding made me realize that, well… I’m basically crazy.  Because any locale as stunning as this is one I need to visit sooner, rather than later.  And tying the knot with my honey amongst the breathtaking backdrops and amazing ruins?  Even better.  See it all captured by Stacy Able right here.

And an amazing film from Katie Destry?  Yes, please.

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Winter

From the Bride… I knew that I wanted to have our wedding in San Jose el Viejo when Chris and I first drove by the ruins together. An event was going on there and it was so beautiful. After we got engaged we went for a site visit to reserve it. Addy’s Florales was there doing an event that day. We met Beatriz, the florist and decided to go with them after seeing their designs and creativity within the ruins. I wanted really simple and elegant colors to not distract from the beauty of the ruins. I chose cream and gold with accents of purple. Beatriz from Addy’s Florales and Maya from Hotel Antigua were both awesome with seeing the vision of simple elegance.

One of my favorite moments was my dad’s speech followed by our dance. Chris and I also both loved that Ignacio from Buena vista social club was able to play. We love his music and have enjoyed getting to know him and hear stories about Cuba and his past. He is so talented and we were really blessed to have him share in our day. I loved riding to the ceremony in Tuk Tuks. I think the bridesmaids loved it as well.

From Stacy Able Photography… When Kamille and Chris emailed me about shooting their wedding I was ecstatic. Being the adorable pair met in the Peace Corps in Guatemala, it was only fitting their wedding was to take place in Guatemala. Thankfully, with me shooting digital and Katie filming we were able to be a part of their celebration and were super excited.

Chris and Kamille’s wedding day was a mild 70-degree day with a few clouds hovering over the volcano which overlooks Antigua. The Porta Hotel near the San Jose el Viejo was the perfect backdrop for the bridesmaids and bride to get ready. A Tuk Tuk (mini Guatemalan taxi) ride away was the ceremony, where Chris and groomsman and guests were playing corn holl. After the I do’s, Katie and I had the bridal party and newlyweds stroll through the cobblestone 15th century streets for photos and such. Then, the sun set and it was time for the reception at the San Jose el Viejo which was elegantly lit with candles.

Believe me, this Destination wedding at San Jose el Viego in Antigua, Gutemala wedding was as awesome as it sounds! Chris and Kamille, it was so much fun and thank for putting up with Katie and I’s exuberance in photo/video taking. It was so wonderful getting to know you both and we look forward to seeing you guys again in the future.

Photographer: Stacy Able Photography | Videographer: Katie Destry | Floral Design: Beatriz With Addy's Florales | Wedding Gown: Maggie Sottero | Invitations: Minted | Ceremony Location: Jardín Doña María | Reception Venue: San Jose El Viejo | Bride's Shoes: Via Spiga | Catering: Hotel Antigua | Groom's Attire: Indochino | Bridal Shop: Wedding Treasures | Getting Ready Location: Hotel Antigua | Ice Cream: Sobremesa | Men's Suits: Jos A. Bank

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Antigua, Guatemala Engagement + Wedding from Summer Street Photography

Sometimes we meet a couple so incredibly adorable, we can’t wait to share every.last.moment of their wedding.  I’m talking everything from their beyond gorgeous engagement session to their devastatingly beautiful wedding.  And this too-cute-for-words Mr. and Mrs.?  They are just that duo.  A refreshingly fun, totally stunning twosome tying the knot in Guatemala with the talented Summer Street Photography on hand to capture all of the pretty.  Ready to dive into their incredible journey?  Click here for even more of their beautiful e-session… and then stay tuned for their breathtaking wedding.

And, as promised, a pretty little peak into a day that was literally overflowing with lovely.  From the beautiful blooms from Flor Morena to the stunning traditional ceremony to a candlelit reception that was all kinds of amazing, this, my friends, is what we call “seriously dreamy.”  See sooo much more captured by Summer Street Photography in the full gallery.

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From Summer Street Photography… When Kelsey and Danny approached us about photographing their big day in Antigua, Guatemala – we were head over heels for their wedding vision and for them as a pair. Kelsey and I go back to our college days in Minnesota. We danced together and I always admired her photography skills (she’s a talented photographer herself) and heart for helping people. Naturally, these two things left me Facebook stalking all of her travel photos to Guatemala when she used to visit with her dad for medical outreach work – which only deepened my admiration for her. Fast forward a few years when Kelsey and Danny met in Guatemala. They fell head over heels for one another and the rest is history. We’d never met Danny in person, but once their wedding planning arrived in full force and we started talking with them more – it was clear what a great match he was for Kelsey. Grounded, compassionate and a heart of gold; Danny is a keeper. The hotel they got ready in was crazy gorgeous so we took full advantage of the nooks and crannies for their attire details and found a quiet little spot for their adorable First Look. After some additional portraits on the grounds of the hotel with their families, wedding party and the parrots (hello!) we wandered around the streets for a few photos where Kelsey and Danny were literally stopping traffic with excited on-lookers. We eventually made our way up to their ceremony and reception venue which was owned by the same hotel but was the outdoor art-museum portion of the property.

The venue was up a large hill which overlooked the city and the three volcanoes that surround the town, so the view was breathtaking. After a few more portraits we all prepped for the ceremony and I had my breath taken away when I saw their entire ceremony space FILLED with candles. Overlooking the city with volcanoes and hills, it was such a beautiful space to begin with, but with the addition of candles, sunset and the calm, joyous energy of their multilingual Catholic Ceremony – it was a truly beautiful experience. After the ceremony the party got started on the right foot with a gorgeous candle-lit reception set-up draped with roses and pearls. Kelsey and Danny made a lasting impression with their grand entrance by wowing all 300 guests with the most amazing first dance I’ve EVER seen. I later learned that they made up the entire thing on the spot. The evening continued with sweet words from their loved ones and went on to be an amazing dance party that lasted until 3:00am. The Guatemalans know how to party (and dance)! We loved every moment of working with these two and their wonderful families.

Photography: Summer Street Photography | Location: Antigua, Guatemala | Floral Design + Decoration: Flor Morena, Maya Nuñez  | Linens and Chairs: Alfa y Omega Eventos | Ceremony: Capilla Santo Hermano Pedro | Reception + Catering: Casa Santo Domingo | Reception Music: Grupo Honh’s | Cake: Pasteles Artisticos | Wedding Dress + Veil: Brides of France | Dress Designer: La Sposa | Tuxedos: Tuxedo Impresiona | Bridesmaids: White by Vera Wang | Makeup: Daniela Zirion de Kong | Hair: Liam Piggott, Social Statement Salon | Hotel: Casa Santo Domingo

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These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
For membership information, click here