You want how much to rent the island?
Photo credit: Elite Islands Resort
I knew there was a reason we had stalled picking a date and this is definitely it. Finding a location for our upcoming nuptials has quickly become a royal pain in my arse. :/
From the git go, my consort and I both said we wanted a casual beach wedding. That was easy. Both of us barefoot, me in a tank dress and him in a linen shirt and pants (or shorts), a quick ceremony (I mean, really, how long does it take to say I love you?), slap the rings on, then we would party. Would be great to have a huge BBQ of local favorites (lobster, crab, conch) and then dance the night away to live calypso and a DJ with some of our favorite tunes. God that puts a smile on my face. And it 'was' a perfect plan.
That is...until we tried to find THE location. Part of our problem is we would like it to be a fun destination spot for us and our friends. Most of them will be making a vacation out of this trip and If they are going to spend money to see us tie on the old ball and chain, they should be surrounded by fabulousness.
We thought we had gotten through the first hurdle and settled in on four locations; California (Big Sur or Napa), Florida Keys, Italy or Greece. I mentioned the reasons for these locations before so I won't go into it again - but we were quickly able to knock California off the list as Big Sur's weather is too unpredictable for me and my tank dress, and the wineries we were looking at (Gloria Ferrer, Chimney Rock and Viansa) are already booked. Damn those other brides work fast. Guess I better pull an Emeril and kick it up a notch. I know it wasn't the beach setting we really wanted, but it would have been nice to keep it local and I think we could have forced ourselves to have a good time in the valley. :)
Italy and Greece were quickly marked off the list as we realized we would be traveling during high season and it made the average trip $4,000 per person (for seven days). It was alright for us as it is our wedding, but I really felt guilty asking people to spend this. I know some of my friends would have coughed up the dough no matter what - but this day should not be about creating hardships for those close to us. Besides, one week is not really enough time to enjoy the beauty of Italy or Greece, so Chris and I will save that destination for either our honeymoon or another time.
We now have the Florida Keys. I have never been, but Chris and others tell me it is a mini Caribbean and a fun place to be for a couple of days. Ok, I think. We will turn our 'wedding week' into a 'wedding three day weekend' and party it up Florida style. Trouble is, the only place I found I like wants something like $128,000 to rent their island. Seems our party is too big (we have 47 confirmed as of today with another 15 highly possible) to just rent a couple of rooms - they have asked us to take over the whole place. Wouldn't be so bad if this was the weekly rate - but this is for three days only. Yikes.
Chris has several friends in Miami who are looking for alternate spots, so the Keys are not completely out of the picture, but I figured I had better start looking elsewhere.
So on to the Caribbean we go. I like the hassle free style, so all-inclusive resorts were at the top of my list. My buddy Jenn did this recently when she and her Chris got married in Jamaica and it was great not to worry about your wallet for a week. Trouble is, I don't want to get married in Jamaica (been there twice now and ready for new territory) and most of the other places we have found that make us go 'ohhh ahhh' will require our buddies to pull out a mortgage or siphon from their 401k to pay for it.
There has to be a happy medium.
Oh wait - there is. Enter Tortola, St. Martin, Barbados, Turks & Caicos, and the Dominican Republic. All reasonable - all stunning in their own white sandy beach and teal colored ocean ways. Now to just nail Chris down for a few minutes to see if any grab him. I love the Turks & Caicos place and we can rent that entire resort without costing us an arm or a leg. Tortola isn't too bad either so that has definite possibilities. Yeah - there is hope. Vegas is not going to be the only option after all. Yahoo!
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