From Italy with LOVE

Andrea and Daniela wrote over a year ago, they are both from Casale Monferrato, Italy, in the delightful hills of Piemonte, which means at the feet of the mountains.

They wanted to come to Playa, which they love dearly, with 40 friends and get married symbolically to celebrate 20 years together. I love that, because it is clear that getting married is the promise of love, but celebrate twenty years together means that the promise was kept… and keeps going!

So i jumped on the occasion and proposed the semi secluded beach of Paamul, between Playa del Carmen and Tulum. Paamul is a hidden gem a bay with very few hotels, one restaurant only and few tourists.

They loved it, so the party was organized with a prompt visit to their home town in Piemonte by yours truly (they do have excellent Dolcetto D’Alba, there and the food? mmmm… to die for!).

Ten months after the planning, Daniela, Andrea and a large group of Italian friends arrived in Playa, at the Magical Hotel Iberostar. We went to see them and had incredible fun shopping to accessories like sombreros, masks, collars and colorful blankets, to add folklore to the wedding.

When the Big day arrived, Daniela was very emotional, but Andrea was even more! Unfortunately, a deep rain fell just few minutes before the wedding, having us all wet and allowing us to use no chairs as the pillows were wet. Alas, Andrea was not missing one beat, wearing a sombrero as umbrella!

A big full moon was romantically hanging in the sky for us and Alessandro Banchelli, photographer, decided to immortalize the two before going home after an incredible dance party.

thanks to Kalu restaurant for the food and drinks, Floreria Jardin for flowers and decor and AB Photostudio for the great pics.

To Daniela and Andrea, i can only say one thing: auguri e figli maschi, like we say in Italy…(best wishes and boys!!)

Wedding trends 2019: it’s all about You!

Hola everyone,

i hope you all are having a great 2019.

This is Maria here offering a personal and uber selected array of wedding trends for 2019. Ready?

First of all, let’s keep something very clear: it’s YOUR wedding.

Not your mama’s, not your sister’s and not your best friend’s.

So get personal! Hire vendors you connect with on a personal level, not just the ones that suit your aesthetic or budget, you will be working with your planner for a year or more so it would be grand if you 3 click.

You 2 are the heroes of this story and you 2 are going to decide together what is important to the  both of you. Never mind grandma wants a Catholic Wedding: if you want to get married by  a Mayan shaman on the beach at the sound of drums on a full moon, that is what grandma should see (and she will like it too, because your happiness is her happiness).

Be bold enough to be you: aren’t you worth it?

I always tell my clients : this is YOUR day  and you pick how the day will unfold… so go big.
This year’s trends finally are listening to the wisdom of the centuries (ours! LOL): that’s why I am particularly excited about  them and happy to introduce my top fav coming up in 2019.

They’re proof that these major life events are becoming more and more about the couple : weddings are getting more personalised and that is a great sign!

No more FOMO nor following the trend: you are  the trend, you never missed out anything, because you are creating this Moment!

The year is shaping up to be one of the most incredible wedding seasons ever.

So here we go:

1.

Be you

I  never address this topic long enough  but mark my words: this is the one day that will be in your memory forever: why not just go all the way?

if you  like purple, go purple.

If you want to get married in moody colours, go with them (colour will feature more heavily than in previous years, think deep shades like burgundy and hunter green for a striking and moody look to your day or mix several shades from the same palette to create a fresh style….gowns with asymmetrical elements will also be trendy… bridesmaids no longer in same colour but shades of same palette…)

 

This one-shoulder dress is from Justin Alexander’s spring 2019 collection. Ovidiu Hrubaru/Shutterstock

2.

Smaller weddings but unique experiences

No one wants to have a cookie cutter wedding or copy  Meghan Markle and her prince: the trend now is

THINK UNIQUE

Expect 50 to 70 guests weddings but a lot of flare.

We will see more planners getting out there to  create a journey and experience for all the guests to enjoy…  not only on the wedding day but also at welcome parties and post wedding brunches (sometimes on a catamaran, sometimes in a cave), something we have always done and got rewarded with lots of loving gratitude from our over 500 clients (yep we have started in 2001, many of our clients are parents and soon will be celebrating 20  years married… Erica Bressan how come we got so grown-ish up?)

 

Photo Alessandro Banchelli

www.photostudioab.com

www.weddingmexicophotography.com

3.

Food : artistic edible displays

Food as art, amazingly yummy and beautiful to look at!! that is a trend i relate too, as Italian. Many couples are ditching traditional wedding buffets for more memorable options. Popular examples of interactive food stations include tequila tasting with meat and veggie tacos, ceviche bars and churros carts.
Also a trend: grazing receptions, where there won’t be a sit down dinner but more of a selection of different appetisers and snacks with something for everyone, from the vegan to the meat lover. Tom and Jon you are totally 2019!!

Also a trend: less traditional array of seating elements and more fluid use of space: high top tables, pillows and carpets to create a Maroccan suuk with hookas and belly dancers, use of beach chairs covered with Mexican blankets, use of indigenous art like Huichol and Otomi…. in a word: Whimsical!

Photo subject to Author’s right

4.

Greenery instead of too many flowers, but also colours!!

We love palms leaves, they  are cheap and beautiful! So many brides are chosing the option of a mostly  green arch or bouquet.  But also bright and rich colours… You can incorporate these colours in all aspects of your wedding decor from table settings, candles, linens and florals. Turquoise is definitely one of the key colours for 2019… Coral as well.

Matt and Holly, you are trendy!

Photo Alessandro Banchelli

www.photostudioab.com

www.weddingmexicophotography.com

5.

Meaningful ceremonies: variety and real feel

We love our couples and we would love to see something personal in every ceremony. Whether it’s writing vows that tell an untold story, a touching song from your brother or the newest and original rings warming passage (all guests pass the rings in a pouch and hold them in their hands sending their blessed energy to the couple), we love that unique touch that talks about you. Also signs in all languages and fonts!!

Lots of unexpected twists on the traditional wedding in the year….

 

Photos subject to Author’s right

So you got the idea: it’s all about you! We are here to simply send an invitation: an invitation to living  every  moment fulfilled. We want to invite you to a dance that will never cease to amaze you. The dance is your  life. The invitation is to live it in joy, amazement and infinite Bliss. Your guests will thank you. And years from now, the memories will be amazing!!!! 

Kesha & Kevin Wedding at Paamul Beach – Playa del Carmen

Kesha and Kevin Wedding in Paamul Playa del Carmen

This wedding was a family affair: Kesha and Kevin knew Paamul as the parents of Kevin spent a few years living there . The joint families, friends and the kids came to celebrate one week of absolute bliss, crowned by the wedding day, on a warm February afternoon.

We love our clients and we enjoy the happiness on their faces when all is said and done. The work  done before it, you do not see….

only the end result. But before  that there are hours and hours  of precious planning. It is my privilege to  share all the tricks i have learned in 18 year  of event planning with all of my clients.

Here, on this pages, i will let Kesha and Kevin talk and tell their story …. so you can see what happens before, during and after:

She said:

i would love to get married in Playa del Carmen and … I got married in Playa!

Kesha and Kevin Wedding in Paamul Playa del Carmen

This is Kesha :

When we decided that we were having our wedding in the Playa del Carmen area, I was determined to do all of the work myself.

But I quickly found out that i was very overwhelmed and lost. It didn’t even occur to me to hire a wedding planner. I happened to be talking to a girl at work that I  knew and found that her brother and sister-in-law had used Maria for their PDC wedding. I immediately emailed her and set up a Skype appointment with her almost 2 years prior to our wedding date.

Wedding couple in Paamul playa

When we spoke with her, she was so warm and friendly and calming. What really sold me was after describing to her what we were looking for, the first place she suggested was the one of the places that we were thinking about. My husbands parents had lived in Paamul(12 miles S of PDC) for several years and we had always said that if we did get married it would be there.

Since they had sold their place and moved back to the states, we weren’t 100% positive that we would still do it there. But it seemed like fate when she suggested Paamul, it just was meant to be that we were to get married there and Maria was the person that was supposed to make that happen. I was elated! and we worked at it for 22 months…..

 

Weeding ceremony at Paamul Playa del Carmen

 

Maria made my every wish come true!

Kevin: I wanted to make Kesha happiest: Maria respected all of our wishes and could see our exact vision in her head. She has amazing contacts and was able to facilitate any relationship with the vendors. We got the best flowers decoration and the  DJ was incredible!

There is not one single thing that I would change about our day except to make it last longer. I not only had the wedding of my dreams to share with the people most special to me, I gained an amazing friend out of it. Much love Maria!!!

…. simply… happy ever after!

Kesha and Kevin

 

Photo credits Alessandro Bacchelli AB Photography

Paamul restaurant Kalu’

DJ Diego Alvarado

 

Laura and Joe destination wedding

Weddings In Playa Laura Joe

Laura and Joe are an  international, incredibly high powered and super laid back couple that I met over 1 year ago starting their wedding plan. Laura was always traveling to remote destination like Laos and Argentina and that made the planning even more interesting.

Being both athletes (they met preparing for a triathlon) and loving outdoors, their choice for the wedding was without doubt a location with zest, open space and lots of jungle: our favourite Blue Venado.

 

During the year of planning their ideas merged into a vision that wanted only one thing: that all had fun, fond memories and great food (they are both gourmands).

Their expectations were met.

 

After an hour preparing with our lovely Sarah Garnier, excelsius Hair and Make up artist, Laura was ready for a little fun with her girlfriends and arrived at the wedding location totally cool and relaxed.

Joe was already there and with great emotion and awe saw her bride to be for the first time, when mom and dad (directly from Argentina) delivered the stunning bride.

Blue Venado Wedding Laura Joe

The bilingual service, officiated by a friend, Gonzalo, was full of stories about them and of how they met and continued to date year after year, trip after trip, adventure after adventure.

A cantor added pathos to the service, incorporating elements of the Jewish tradition.

After a few photos by our amazing Chess of Quetzal Wedding Photo, all guests enjoyed mariachi live music and a cocktail with margaritas and mojitos.

Blue Venado Wedding Laura Joe

Dinner was served among the greenery of tables and golden accents of candles, creating with the light a romantic atmosphere for all.

The 4 course meal culminated in the naked cake with chocolate and berries ended and the great celebration with dancing and more started. Dj Orly from Evolution mix really gave his best and all danced, including yours truly!

What can I say? These 2 are bound for a lifetime of incredible adventures and great happiness: they are totally in Love and they know each other well, it is a true honor to be present at such important gathering.

Congratulation Laura and Joe for a life of incredible happy moments!!

Tamara and Russell, Gran Coral Beach Club Wedding

We have been blessed to witness many weddings, listen to many ceremonies and seen many exchanges of vows. I have to admit there is one ceremony that I will never forget. Not just because the groom came to the ceremony on a boat, but due to the way the ceremony had been performed.
Let me tell you this whole story.

Russell, the groom actually wanted to get to the wedding site with a catamaran.
As any good planner, after also seeing the desperate look on the his bride Tamara’s face, I had completely forbidden it! I could see the groom stranded in the ocean, if the wind was not cooperating! No way that I could give him that chance!

So we settled on a fishing motor boat.

As in any good story, the two moms got lost on the way to the venue and they had the rings too. No moms. Ceremony delayed till their arrival.
The groom had to wait offshore and was offered to fish to try to entertain himself.
Tamara was waiting in the limo and getting nervous for him.

Anyways, like any good tale, we finally started.

They had their own minister and made a sand ceremony as well.

The highlight of the ceremony were Russell’s vows. I have never seen anything like that before and I do not know if I will… well maybe somebody will be inspired.

He was actually very clever and did not have to work hard on preparing them. He got everybody in the party involved. The microphone was passed from one to another. Each one of the 50ish guests asked him a question to which he answered I DO or I WILL.

Will you take her as your beloved wife?

Will be with her in good and bad times?

Will you embrace her family as your own and seek out ways to strength these ties?

Will you wake up every day early in the morning and prepare a coffee for Tamara and not talk till she has finished it?

Will you let her go out with her girlfriend every Thursday night?

Will you help her taking care of your future children, change diapers and feed them in the middle of the night while she is resting?

And so on. I will let you imagine the questions!

At the end, the final surprise. Diego, our dj, had the recording of Grandma’s question? She was not able to come due to her age and health but she was there with us, in more than spirit!

Well we were all crying, from laughters and emotions.

It was very romantic

And spectacular with a fire show, when they were still allowed!

Party time

Well, i have one more anecdote to share about Tamara. That goes way before the wedding. She had the biggest tasting in the history of all the tastings I have done in 17 years. Chef Luis accepted it, not without grinning. It was Tamara, her mom and of me. They loved everything, but half way through the tasting we had way more than enough.

My beloved chef came out of the kitchen after hearing that and from his 5 6” height (he kind of looked 6 4” that moment) and he said very quietly: I am sorry. You made me cook all this and now you are going to try it all. We all felt like little kids and very obediently did as we were told. I won’t comment on the way we ended up walking to my car!

It has probably been 7 years since that wedding.
We do not remember the names of all the couples. Though we remember the faces, those little stories and what they made us feel. This is what makes our job the best in the world.

With love
Erica and Maria

 

 

 

 

Details of the wedding

Pictures courtesy of www.playaweddings.com
Details of the wedding

Tonia & Michael, Paamul Beach, Destination Wedding, Playa del Carmen

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In 1997, I Maria, and my man decided we were eloping. We woke up one morning and he asked if I wanted to head down to the courthouse and get married. We had been engaged for 1 month, together for just 9, and were feeling overwhelmed. We weren’t overwhelmed by our quick decision to get married, but by the reaction to our wedding plans—our day of choice was shot down (it was on a Wednesday, six months in the future).

We were young and in love, so when he told me to go all in on eloping, I did and we got married later that day.

Therefore I always am very happy when I meet other couples who want to do the same, like Tonia & Michael who got married last Nov. 12th on Paamul beach. I love when people make a conscious joyous decision to just do it, so be it. I am thrilled to say that, to get married on a deserted beach legally, they needed 4 witnesses and their dear friends accompanied them in the happy occasion: congratulations Tonia and Michael, I adore your joie de vivre!

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The couple exchange rings

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It’s always hard not to cry at weddings!

Inky fingers from signing the register

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And they’re married! Time to have some fun…

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IMG_4615-22To elope, most literally, means to run away and to not come back to the point of origin. More colloquially, elopement is often used to refer to a marriage conducted in sudden and secretive fashion, usually involving a hurried flight away from one’s place of residence together with one’s beloved with the intention of getting married …

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Thanks to Kalu Restaurant for food and drinks, Flowers Jardin for bouquet, Isaura Rodriguez for photos and Styling Trio for Hair and Makeup.