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Yucatan, Mexico Wedding With Loads of Old-World Charm

With guests attending from all across the world – Italy, U.S., South America and the North of Mexico – Lizbeth and Massimiliano knew a destination wedding in Merida made perfect sense. They wanted a feeling of old-world charm and the Hacienda San Diego Cutz did just the trick. Elizabeth Medina Photographic Artisans captured the day and you can see it all inside The Vault.


From The Bride…I’m from Baja, California and Massimiliano (Max) is from Italy, luckily he decided to study his PhD in San Diego, where we met in 2007. From the start it was an instant spark and a mutual feeling of being at home in each other’s presence. I now believe that when two souls find each other again, the imprinted memories simply come back.

We dated for a while, with our ups and downs, but with no less love. Max did not believe in marriage, or thus he said so. So when during one of our holidays in Italy he went down on one knee, pulled a beautiful sparkler out of his pocket and proposed, I was startled and speechless! Wedding preparations immediately followed.

We both agreed our wedding was a “once in a lifetime celebration” and we wanted to make ours an affair to remember. We were looking for a destination wedding, since guests would be coming from Italy, U.S., South America and the North of Mexico. We wanted something classical with old world charm. After considering several cities and visiting different venues, we were both enchanted the minute we stepped into the mesmerizing Hacienda San Diego Cutz in beautiful Merida! We immediately knew we had found the perfect place!

Our wedding had a piece of both of us in all the details we selected. Music for me is what makes the world go round, for him it’s food! So as much enthusiasm as I dedicated in selecting each song, he equally meticulously selected each edible item from the initial appetizers to the final after coffee. We had a wonderful wedding planner who made a huge production seem effortless. It was a fantastic night, filled with fireworks, a full orchestra, endless food, decadent desserts but most importantly it was filled with family, friends and love!

From Elizabeth Medina Photographic ArtisansLizbeth and Massimiliano are a well traveled couple. With the groom hailing from Italy and the bride from Northern Mexico, they have made their home on the West Coast of the US. It seems clear to me that this cosmopolitan couple could have been married just about anywhere. Having shared the wedding day with this lovely couple and the large group of family and friends who travelled to Yucatan for the wedding I feel qualified to say that they made the PERFECT choice! Seeing the surprised excitement of the wedding guests as they discovered the wedding locations was a great reminder- Yucatan packs a destination wedding punch that is all its own.

Vault CTA

Vault CTA

Photography: Elizabeth Medina Photographic Artisans | Event Planning: Six Sens | Floral Design: Juan Pablo Camara Proyecto Floral | Wedding Dress: Romona Keveza | Bride's Shoes: Christian Louboutin | Catering: Rigel Gonzalez Banquetes | Hair + Makeup: Salon Blanca Chi | Calligraphy: Twinkle And Toast | Venue: Hacienda San Diego Cutz | Getting Ready Venue: Hotel Mansion Merida | Hair Accessories: Twigs & Honey

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Glamorous Black Tie Beach Wedding in Isla Mujeres

Any couple that is willing to haul 80 all white maracas – crafted by Printerette Press – to Mexico to make their wedding that much more memorable…is kind of awesome. Then layer on really good fashion (can we talk about the bridesmaids dresses?), a stunning backdrop and a lively, festive mood and you have the kind of wedding that SMP dreams are made of. And guess what? There is so much more from Jen Meneghin Photography right here in the gallery.

Beach Resort

From the beautiful Bride… We wanted to bring a modern and chic vibe to a relaxed island location. I always envisioned Giscard in a black tuxedo on our wedding day, being the tall, dark & handsome man he is, therefore, the dudes sported black tuxedos (which wowza, they looked amaze!) The lovely ladies sparkled in their metallic & sequins (everyone who knows me knows that if I wasn’t in sequins, my girls sure would be!). I pictured lots of candles, ivory flowers and greenery to make our “simple” decor look sharp and elegant.

When we first arrived to Isla from freezing Minnesota, first things first, we headed to Zama to meet our wedding planners, Tiffany and Heather of SunHorse Weddings. We INSTANTLY knew this was the perfect place for us to say “I Do!” It was way beyond our expectations, especially considering we had never been there before! The vision we had was such a reality at that moment.

The fun of wedding planning started with my longest, dear friend Catherine Polacek, who happens to be the mastermind behind Printerette Press. She designed our Save the Dates based around what we pictured the overall vibe to be, simple, neutral, and chic with metallics! I described it to be a destination wedding, but not too “destionationy,” for lack of a better word. The invitations were matching to the Save the Dates and included a luggage tag with a drawing of Giscard and Louisa and our prized possession, our dog Henry. Unfortunately, Henry was not able to make it to our island wedding, he was toasting from afar! Our guests were swooning over our invites!! Giscard’s Mom, sported her luggage tag on her bag, all the way from Lebanon!

After our super fun engagement photo session around Minneapolis, with the incredibly talented Jen Meneghin of Jen Meneghin Photography, we knew she was the most perfect fit to photograph our Mexican destination wedding!! Jen immediately became a friend, cause that’s just the person she is! We were so lucky to have Jen and her second shooter, Ashley, for 6 days in Mexico! They ladies snapped candids at our Welcome Party and preparing for a catamaran cruise and spent the whole day documenting the details and emotion of our wedding day!

With myself working in the beauty biz, hair and makeup were important to me! I am lucky to surround myself with the best of the best of the business! Ashley Matthew and Clarissa Cristobal have been dear friends and colleagues of mine for years. I was so thrilled to have the best “glam squad” to make me and all the ladies look so fabulous! Clarissa is an artist with a makeup brush and Ashley can rock out an undo and blowout like you’ve never seen!!!

A great friend of ours, Barb, is a regular of Isla Mujeres. She suggested that we be married at Zama, and we strongly trust her opinion and so we went with it! Saw lots of pictures and then hired the SunHorse Wedding Planners and they helped plan the week on Isla, and the details of the wedding day! It was great having their expertise to plan our dream wedding!

We hauled 80 all white maracas down to Mexico, with everyone’s name written on them (writing by Catherine of Printerette Press) to be placed at each place setting. Guests were given Welcome Bags that were hand stamped (stamp designed by Printerette Press) filled with an itinerary, personalized cups, vodka shooters and sunscreen!

I know everybody says their wedding day is “the best day ever” but for us, February 17th, truly was the grand finale of our “best week ever” on the fantastic island of Isla Mujeres! From California to Lebanon, eighty of our amazing family and friends, surrounded us with their support and love, coming from 6 different states and 4 different countries! It was impossible for us to not feel overwhelmed with love from these wonderful people! We started the celebrations days before the big day, hanging out on the beach, grilling on our penthouse, enjoying the Carnival festivities and bumping into our guests as they trickled to the island each day! We hosted a Welcome Party at the Fenix Lounge on  Valentine’s Day, where we enjoyed tacos, margaritas and mingling! The next day we set sail on the most fun boat party I’ve ever been on! Dancing, snorkeling and we can’t forget the Pink Panther cocktails! Great time had by all!

Then the finale: the wedding day! The girls got all done up at our suite, while the dudes went for a jog and had lunch on the beach! The ceremony itself was exactly what we wanted, guests arrived greeted with a welcome cocktail and were serenaded by acoustic guitar player, John Cain. The guests sat facing the sea, fanning themselves of the heat as the wedding party and Bride entered to “Jesu Joy of Mans Desiring.” Reading our personally composed vows, Sister Annelisa’s tear jerking vocal performance, and our cousin’s readings, really made the ceremony exactly what we  wanted. We took sand from the Mediterranean Sea of Lebanon, where Giscard was born and raised, and sand from the lakes of Minnesota, where Louisa was born and raised, to combine with sand from Isla Mujeres where we became Husband and Wife!

We kissed, the mariachis played, and  we started the party off with cocktail hour and ceviche! Speeches — there were lots! — got everyone to laugh, cry and even sing, thanks to the Mother of the Bride! Dinner was delicious and romantic, as we sat under cafe lights surrounded by infinity pools and all white maracas shaking for us to kiss! The dance party started off with the Bride and Groom entering lifted in the air to the Lebanese wedding song, “Mabrouk!”  We all danced the night away, especially, cousin Peter’s choreographed dance to “Uptown Funk” got everyone shredding the rug! Possibly  one of our greatest highlights! It truly was a dream….come true.

Photography: Jen Meneghin Photography | Videography: Cancun Wedding Video | Event Planning: SunHorse Weddings | Floral Design: SunHorse Weddings | Wedding Dress: Katie May | Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Makeup Artist: Clarissa Cristobal | Hair Stylist: Louisa Bechara | Groom's Attire: Boggi Milano | Accomodations: Ixchel Beach Hotel | Ceremony And Reception Venue: Zama Beach & Lounge | Earrings: Nordstrom | Hair Colorist: Louisa Bechara | Hair Comb: J.Crew | Paper Goods: Printerette Press | Vow Book: BHLDN

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Mayan Riviera Destination Wedding

I consider it a really good destination wedding if I find myself mindlessly reaching for my piña colada (which, unfortunately, isn’t there) as I flip through the gallery. This one is really good. Heart + Sparrow Photography captured the very essence of the day, and that essence is warm waters, white sand, and buckets full of sweet love.

Beach Resort

From the photographer… Anya + Brody live in Calgary, Alberta, one of the coldest places in the country, so they decided to get away from it all and marry in the hot and sunny Mayan Riviera, Mexico. For the 30+ family and friends who were able to take the trip across the continent, it was well worth the trip. Their wedding took place at the the beautiful Azul Sensatori Resort on the Skydeck of the resort, overlooking the oh-so-blue Caribbean Sea.

Anya was inspired by the turquoise of the sea as well as the floral accents that the tropical location provided, and her idea of the perfect wedding was one that was whimsical, yet incorporated Mexican elements like “Dia de los Muertos” skulls into the decor and invitations. Most of all, the bride and groom wanted an environment where everyone felt comfortable and ready to enjoy themselves! With a morning of an and off downpour, Anya + Brody married atop the resort’s rooftop deck, and the skies opened up to the most beautiful deep blue for an unbelievable and moving ceremony.

The reception was to take place in the sand, underneath the palm trees that had been strung with twinkling lights – however, the weather took a turn for the worse and the event had to be moved indoors to a nearby restaurant on the resort. Regardless of the change in location, the bride and groom weathered the storm with smiles on their faces. After a few heartfelt and hilarious toasts, the guests enjoyed a traditional Mexican family style meal followed by tequila and dancing! Anya + Brody’s wedding was truly an event to remember!

Photographer: Heart + Sparrow Photography | Invitations: The Social Page | Bride's Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bridesmaid Shoes: Tory Burch | Bridesmaid Dresses: BCBG | Hair & Makeup: Azul Beach Hotel | Groomsmen Attire: Banana Republic | Venue: Azul Beach Hotel | Bridal Party Hangers: Vintage Lizy | Bridal Party Robes: Singing Slowly | Bride's Dress: Amanda Masson | Groomsmen Shoes: Navy/Tan Sperry Topsiders