A BRIEF story of us.

Hello everyone and welcome to our new blog!

This is Maria, we have reached  this  year 18 years of Life at weddingsinplaya.com. Finally we can vote ( or drink)!

Many clients ask us: what is your  story?

how did you become  wedding planners?

how did you land here in Playa del Carmen?

Today we  will  unveil  the story of us, Erica and Maria. 

We were born in Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy, a region of great wines (Picolit, among all) and intense wind (bora winds can  arrive to  160Km/h in winter through the Julian Alps). 

I am the  third of three and Erica is only child, but she grew up with her 3  cousins just next to her.

Here is me at one, in the middle, with my two Brothers. They are honorary bros. to Erica as well!

 

Growing up in a little village, even if  Leonardo Da Vinci created  the project, is boring ( I tried running away at 2 years old  but I  was found on the  road, happily walking, by a neighbour). Erica, born 6 years later, was facing  the same challenges.

Finally one  day in 1990, one cold day in October, we met. It was Fun at  first sight! We recognised a kindred spirit in one another and we decided to have a  good time, whenever we could.

It was a great friendship and we planned a lot of trips and adventures together…. one summer we left with our motorbikes for Rimini, in the Italian Riviera, on board of our Vespa and Ciao, for a long haul of 390 Km… Needless to say it was a cool adventure and a fond memory!

Over the years we lived in different countries: Erica left for Shangai and I went to Australia. After 16 months around the  world, after many countries and many beers, at the beginning of 1996, i first saw Playa Del Carmen: it was  a simple paradise: 5th Ave. stopped at  8th street  and Constituyentes was jungle! Can you believe it?

I fell in love!

This was Playa   in 1996. All green…. Porto Real Hotel had not been built and neither the others. I found a job at Viva Maya and  met the future husband i did not know  I was going to marry. 

  Destiny is grand and after a year in Playa I went to live in Texas, happy new mother  of a baby girl, born in 1998, Skylar. Erica came to  visit me and my husband, Sharky, in Houston and assisted to the birth. Happy times! And life flies: we move back to Playa in 1999. Immediately Erica and I got together, just to find out that she was pregnant with Maia, who was born in  the year 2000, another incredibly happy event! Here they are, all grown!

 

 

But back to business: in 2001, Erica was working at the famous Yaxche’ Mayan Restaurant and was getting a few inquires from American  couples to organise a wedding  in Mexico. I owned the Coffee Press, a cafe’  for  expats that used to wake up  at 7a or return from the  beach  at that time after the party….

One day we  were chit chatting and she blurted out: What do you think, Maria, do you want  to enter into business and do weddings together?

I said YES I do ( right in theme… ahaha), and that was 18 years ago.

There was only another wedding planner in town, Brenda, an American restaurant owner that organised weddings at her restaurant.

The first year we planned 3 weddings, asking very little money and making a lot of mistakes.

We knew a Mayan shaman and started organising Mayan weddings first at Yaxche’ and then in many other locations.

Then we started getting an education from the best, going to courses and meetings in Usa, like Weddings MBA and courses with Alan Berg.

Once we were on our 3rd years, we were making some sense. On our 10th  year, about 30 more  wedding planners  started to work in town, now we  have celebrated over 500 weddings! What i love about wedding planning is that for 1 year,  you are the confidential sister of the couple. Then after the wedding has ended, you  go  back to being  nobody: it’s healthy for the  ego!

Life has been a wonderful gift, i still meet  a lot of ex clients that 15 yrs later come to Playa with their kids and stop by to say hi:  we love to see how our clients have kept the promise of Love of their wedding day and transformed into a lovely family!

Photo courtesy of A. E.

So, this is our Story,

we have been so lucky to arrive in  Playa at a time when there  was so much opportunity, so little people, so much  to live. We know that.

We can only  say:

Gracias, Playa. Gracias to all of our  clients, past and future, that love us, support us and  believe in us. We give  the best to all of  you!

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!!!! 

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.

Lilian and Sergio, Playa del Carmen Wedding at Xcaret

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Todays wedding at Xcaret‘s Chapel of Guadalupe is so special. We absolutely loved all of the intricate details that make this venue so magical. The shadows, the lighting and the dramatic tone make this an absolutely unforgettable experience for you and your guests. It’s truly one of the most unique venues to host your wedding.

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There were many romantic details incorporated into the evening. The reception took place in the Hacienda and was beautifully decorated with crystal and white.

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Congratulations Lilian and Sergio and thank you to Jaime for the beautiful photos!

Jackie and Andres, Xcaret Wedding and Trash the Dress

BODAJACKIE&ANDRES-222The photos we receive back from our Xcaret weddings are always so beautifully dramatic. It’s an excellent choice for large weddings and as todays couple, Jackie and Andres, know well… it will have your guests talking about how amazing and unique it was for years to come.

BODAJACKIE&ANDRES-266 BODAJACKIE&ANDRES-270 BODAJACKIE&ANDRES-598 BODAJACKIE&ANDRES-487 BODAJACKIE&ANDRES-638 The wedding and our couple were so fun and we had a great time coordinating the romantic trash the dress session for them as well. jackie-2 jackie-8 copia Jackie-15 copiaThanks to our wonderful couple for sharing these photos. Check out the highlight video by Ken Brownlee below!
https://youtu.be/WzG7GlkJzmI

 

Jenny and Hanley, Destination Wedding at Belmond Maroma, Riviera Maya

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The always beautiful Maroma Beach was the perfect venue for Jenny and Hanley to bring their 75 guests to. November in the Riviera Maya is perfect. Balmy temps and smaller crowds make it super enjoyable so it’s no doubt it is a very popular time for weddings in our world!

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Thank you to Juan Euan for the gorgeous pics!