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Thread: Planning a Wedding in Aruba-from WI

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Feb 2010
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    Planning a Wedding in Aruba-from WI

    I just got engaged in December 2009 and we're hoping to plan our wedding for January/February 2011 in Aruba. I'm already so excited I wish it was next week!! I've looked through a lot of the threads in the Weddings & Honeymoons section, but still need some help...

    1. Do a lot of people just have the resort they're staying at as their wedding ceremony and wedding reception location?

    2. What do people do for music at the actual ceremony? Local band, ipod? I'd like to use songs that I pick out during the ceremony, but I don't know if that will be possible

    3. Do you use the photographer the resort provides or hire an outside?

    Oh man, I could go on and on...I think the more threads I read the more confused I get! Thanks in advance for any helpful suggestions or answers to my questions you have!!

  2. #2
    Senior Member luvsun's Avatar
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    Jul 2009
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    where in wisconsin are you? we are in Middleton!
    Almost a year ago we were married on the perfect island!
    You can't go wrong. If you have any other questions you can email me
    but i think Kenny answered everything.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Apr 2009
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    Congratulations on your engagement!

    A lot of these questions depend on the resort you choose. If you choose a 'high rise' resort, I think most just keep everything at that location. I chose Marriott and did everything there. I didn't have to though. Marriott is pretty flexible. I could have had my wedding at a quieter beach and then come back for the reception. I believe they would have given us a good room rate even if we chose to have both functions (wedding and reception) elsewhere. The 'low rise' area is quieter and less commercial and the beaches are much less crowded. And I'm sure you're reading about Renaissance Island - the only 'private' beach in Aruba. Its not as expensive as you might think. I don't think its any more expensive than getting married at the Marriott.

    Steel pan players or steel pan / guitar duo is popular for ceremonies, but I expect most will have an iPod system available. Your ceremony can be as elaborate or as simple as you want.

    One ceremony question you need to ask though is how you want to do the legal ceremony. All legal ceremonies have to take place in Aruba's Town Hall. There are no legal ceremonies on beaches or in churches. Any beach ceremonies you see are symbolic. Many people will have their legal ceremony early in the day or the day before and follow with a symbolic beach ceremony and reception later in the day. Getting married in the town hall is a little more work but many people love their ceremonies there. It has its own charm. (We just got the legal part out of the way at home with a magistrate so we'd have one less thing to worry about that weekend. As far as our guests know, the beach wedding is the was the 'real thing'.)

    And for the photographer, all the resorts we interviewed assured us we would be able to hire our own photographer.

    Most resorts we met with were pretty flexible and really do want to make it your day. While they will tell you what most people do, they will gladly go out of their way to make it special for you. The most restrictive property was Hyatt though. They retain the most control over vendor options and you have to commit to a certain number of rooms sold. Its a gorgeous property though. They would have been our second choice if they had our date available.

    Many resorts will have an in-house wedding planner that will be available to you and they are a huge help. We also had help from an independent wedding planner.

    You just have to decide what kind of wedding you want... do you want an upscale resort (think Hyatt, Marriott, Westin, Radisson)? Do you find the idea of a private island glamorous (Ren Island)? Or do you prefer what might be a quieter, more personal, intimate setting you might find in the low rise area (Bucuti, Eagle Beach)? We considered all three. If there is any chance you can go down for a site visit it will be well worth it.

    Good luck!

    Christene

    Quote Originally Posted by HeaskedIsaidYES! View Post
    I just got engaged in December 2009 and we're hoping to plan our wedding for January/February 2011 in Aruba. I'm already so excited I wish it was next week!! I've looked through a lot of the threads in the Weddings & Honeymoons section, but still need some help...

    1. Do a lot of people just have the resort they're staying at as their wedding ceremony and wedding reception location?

    2. What do people do for music at the actual ceremony? Local band, ipod? I'd like to use songs that I pick out during the ceremony, but I don't know if that will be possible

    3. Do you use the photographer the resort provides or hire an outside?

    Oh man, I could go on and on...I think the more threads I read the more confused I get! Thanks in advance for any helpful suggestions or answers to my questions you have!!

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Posts
    2
    Thanks for the responses!

    I know I'd like to stay in the low rise area of Aruba and would like an all inclusive resort. My fiance really likes the looks of the Divi/Tam and I was looking at the Occidental. Any recommendations between the two?

    We're really a low key couple as far as planning our wedding goes so I think we'll have the legal ceremony on the anniversary of our engagement here and then have the blessing in Aruba so less stress on the most exciting day!

    I want to be able to have a quick ceremony, champagne toast & pictures, and then a great private/semi-private reception with the father/daughter, mother/son, and first dances, but then go somewhere afterward to continue the party or even a semi-private room to blast our own music and dance!

    We're hoping to have about 25-40 people join us in Aruba. Our friends and family really enjoy relaxing at the beach and doing a couple excursions throughout the week.

    Now that I'm writing this out it seems like I have more figured out than I thought! I just want to start planning everything, but until we can get our rates/flights figured out for dates I can't really do much.

    PS luvsun- we're from Neenah, WI. I'm familiar with Middleton because we stayed there with a friend during Mifflin.

  5. #5
    Member soxgirl's Avatar
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    Nov 2009
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    Congratulations on your engagement! We're getting married in May at the Divi. It sounds as though your thoughts on your wedding are about the same as what we have planned. Pretty low key, casual, small, and fun! I can tell you for us the hardest part was picking a location and a date, but once those were done everything else has fallen into place.

    We're having a civil ceremony that morning followed by a beach ceremony before sunset. This is going to be followed by pictures and champagne and then dinner at the Divi Phoenix Sunset Beach Bistro. We're having a steel pan entertain our guests for the beginning of dinner, and then we're going to use an ipod for music during the rest of dinner and all the dances. After dinner we're planing on going back to one of the hotel bars to continue our celebrating.

    Marjorie from Aruba Weddings for You has been amazing with getting all the details together. She typically responds to emails within 12 hours and is really great about making sure that all my thoughts for the wedding are met. She's taken care of all the details (photographer, cake, steel pan, dinner, hair, make-up appointments, even reservations for the rehearsal dinner and other events).

    There are 22 people going with us and I would explain them as a fun/crazy group! We're all going on the kukoo kunuku as our welcome reception and we're also planning a jeep tour.

    It sounds as though you have most of the details thought out. Good luck and enjoy the planning!

    Suzanne

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