This marks the first time I’ve ever featured a real destination wedding in Barbados. And boy, was it worth the wait! Mahlet & Aaron’s big day was modern, elegant and nothing short of epic. There’s so much I love about this wedding, I don’t even know where to begin. I’m not trying to be hyperbolic when I say it was epic. For starters, the couple exchanged vows in front of 150 guests at St. James Parish, the oldest church on the island. They followed that with a blessing on Folkestone Beach, which was then followed by an elegant reception complete with Ethiopian and Barbadian Carnival dancers.
And can we talk about the gorgeous bride for a minute? She rocked not one, not two, but three different looks – each more stunning than the last.
But my favorite part of it all, was how the couple seamlessly blended the cultures of Barbados, Ethiopia, Cuba and St. Lucia throughout their destination wedding. It was perfection. Life Photography by Aniya did an amazing job of capturing every detail. It is my first time featuring her work and I look forward to many more in the future. Just wait until you see the gorgeous shots Aniya captured! I’m blown away by her talent. I hope you enjoy these as much as I did.
Real Destination Wedding Advice from the Bride
Describe the ceremony and what made it special?
- Celebrating with family and friends that traveled from far and wide
- Emotional groom
- Hearing each others vows
- The exceptional Reverend that married us
Where was the reception? Why did you choose that location?
The Beach House Restaurant. It is located ocean front on the gorgeous west coast, St. James, Barbados. It offered spacious, open, tented space for cocktail, dinner and dancing.
Describe your reception and what made it special:
- It brought families, friends and cultures together
- Beautiful ocean front scenery and being outdoors
- Special cultural entrance with Ethiopian dancers and Barbadian carnival dancers
- Live saxophonist and jazz/soul singer Kelly Patrick
- Heartfelt tributes by family and friends
- Dancing under the stars and fairy lights
- Colorful environment lighting
- Classy, elegant but simple décor
- Unique black head table backing the ocean
- Floral living wall with chandelier
What advice do you have for brides planning a destination wedding in Barbados?
Don’t try to do it all by yourself. Family, friends and the bridal party especially want to help and get involved. Don’t let anything get you down on the day. Smile, be present and enjoy every minute. Remind each other to be present and enjoy it. It’s only one day and it goes by so fast!
Photographer: Life Photography by Aniya
Ceremony: St. James Parish
Wedding Dresses: 1st dress – Justin Alexander and 2nd dress – Maggie Sottero
Brides Shoes: Badgley Mischka
Hair Stylist: Hair by Donna
Groom’s Attire: Surmesur
Bridesmaid’s Dress: Weddington Way
Bakery: Ladyfingers Cake and Pastry Shop
Reception: The Beach House
Bride’s Makeup: Faces By Ackeem Francis
Day of Coordinator and Décor: Shalana Waterman Designs
Video: Ceilo Production
Featured:17 Welcome Bags & Favors Your Guests Will LOVE (and ones they won’t)!
Welcome bags and favors are a great way to show your love and appreciation to your family/friends who are attending your destination wedding. To get some ideas of the best favors and welcome bags, we polled hundreds of destination brides who already got married. They shared their thoughts on the type of welcome bag items and favors their guests loved, as well as the misses.
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