“I Do” Cabo Style, by Anna Urbanik, Los Cabos Magazine – Issue #12.
Well, you can. You can plan a destination wedding in Los Cabos, and not only find that deserted beach, but find a wedding planner to take care of all of the details for you as well. More and more couples are choosing to have a destination wedding for many different reasons. Maybe they fell in love here, maybe they want to have a wedding that is different from everyone else’s, or maybe she’s from San Francisco and he’s from Atlanta and Los Cabos is kinda in the middle and won’t make anybody’s mother mad.
Whatever the reason, there are many advantages to having a destination wedding in Los Cabos. Ask anyone who’s tried it, and she’ll tell you that the best thing about a destination wedding is having someone else do all the drudge work: the wedding planner. You do the big picture; your planner does the detail. Planners even do the worrying for you––and your mom.
Mary Bragg started the first wedding planning company in Los Cabos 13 years ago––Weddings in Paradise. Since then, many others have followed, until, today, there’s an abundance in the area. Do an internet search for “Weddings Los Cabos”. You’ll be surprised at the results, and it’s a good place to start your search for help with planning a wedding abroad.
If you’re considering organizing your own wedding, think again. If you’re even considering organizing your own destination wedding, don’t. It is so much work and worry that it will take all the fun out of what should be one of the happiest days of your life. Imagine finding and hiring all the different vendors separately, dealing with language problems, often incomplete and/or incorrect information on the internet—this is just the beginning of a list of problems you may encounter.
But why even go there? Instead, relax, and put everything into the hands of the experts. Big picture/little picture, remember? And most of the wedding planning companies provide access to a full range of services from food and flowers to music, photography, and transportation. And more. Ask your planner. As a rule, most planners have a lot of experience and can suggest things that you hadn’t even thought of. They also take care of all the legalities for you, so that your marriage will be as legal back home as it is in México.
Weddings in Paradise is still around and still one of the top companies in the field. They have some of the area’s most professional and experienced planners on their team, all of them working under the philosophy that they should treat each wedding as if it were their own. “We keep photos of each and every couple that gets married with us. We receive pictures of their children. They share vacation photos with us, and they become part of our Weddings in Paradise family,” says Mary Bragg, thinking back over the over 800 special weddings her company has planned.
Sunset Weddings is another well–known and highly praised Los Cabos wedding services provider. Attention to detail and team work are two strong characteristics of their team that set them apart from the competition. “We do not send a wedding planner to do a wedding by herself,” says Sunset Wedding owner Elizabeth Shoell, “We are a team.” They also have their own lab technician who can perform the blood tests necessary to make your Mexican ceremony legal, and you can have the results within 2 hours.
A fairly recent addition to the Los Cabos wedding business is A Baja Romance Wedding. Karla Casillas is an experienced wedding planner who recently decided not to work for someone else but to start her own wedding planning business. I asked Karla about what can be very misleading at times—expenses. Like most area planners, she agrees that having your destination wedding in Los Cabos is NOT inexpensive. So talk with your wedding planner about money matters right from the start. Karla said, “The easiest way to know if your dream of a destination wedding in Cabo is doable is to tell your planner your budget.” She suggests around $40 U.S. per person just for food and beverage is a good number with which to start budgeting.
If your budget is limited, don’t worry. Cut the guest list. Check for cheap flights and group discounts. At Los Cabos Wedding, another local wedding planner, they offer affordable packages ranging from basic to deluxe. The basic package includes the handling of legalities, some decoration, a copy of your marriage certificate, a bouquet for the bride, some sparkling wine and the coordination of all. The deluxe package also includes a wedding cake, dinner for two and a photo package. The rest is just love.
If you are thinking about a wedding that involves one of the fantastic hotels in Los Cabos––whether for accommodations for your guests or as a location for the ceremony or reception––go to Illeana Reyes at Romantic Cabo Weddings. She has extensive training and experience in hotel business and management, and her company shares the principles of our finest local resorts––“uncompromising service with a smile and one hundred percent satisfaction.”
Your wedding planner can do almost everything for you, but there are a few decisions that fall on your shoulders. The most important ones are date, location, and number of guests. And in Los Cabos, locations for an unforgettable wedding are practically endless: Think private, luxurious villa; an historic church; a beautiful new chapel; poolside at your favorite resort; at the restaurant where he proposed or … maybe … underwater.
One consideration is the Mexican bureaucracy. Because of the growing popularity of Los Cabos as a site for destination weddings, choose a date at least six months in advance. You see, there are only two judges in all of Los Cabos who can perform the ceremony, and their open spots fill up fast.
In Los Cabos, there are many companies here willing to help you plan the most romantic, unforgettable wedding ever. But don’t rush into things. Shop around and check references. You may end up like Doug and Jenée who got married here and later wrote their wedding planner: “Thank you so much from the bottom of our hearts. Our wedding was better than we could have ever dreamed it could be! It was perfect!”