As obviously travel-biased folks, we cannot understand how a bride can spend an average of $30,000 on a wedding — instead of on an incredible vacation. But hotels these days are making it easier than ever to do both, that is, honeymoon and wed at the very same location. Check out five of the most luxurious destination wedding escapes around — brides, we promise you’ll be drooling to get away instead.
With beautiful architecture and grounds, the Fairmont Mayakoba is the most picturesque spot to wed on the Playa del Carmen in Mexico, and few properties in the area can match the unrivaled level of privacy the resort offers. Although rooms are set amidst lagoons and tropical forests, they’re well-equipped and modern featuring upscale bathrooms with glass-enclosed showers and separate jetted tubs.
With some of the Valley’s best panoramic views, the Auberge Du Soleil can accommodate weddings of up to 120 guests. The expansive deck and terrace are ideal for holding cocktail hour, and rest assured you’ll be eating the same Michelin-starred cuisine that’s served at the Auberge Restaurant. Despite its intimate size, the hotel has all the amenities of a larger resort: a 7,000-square-foot luxury spa, a lovely pool, and the much-lauded Michelin-star restaurant. Since the inn has only 50 rooms and nothing else is really within walking distance, it’s a great spot to gather a smaller crew.
Host your wedding at the celebrity-studded One&Only Ocean Club (Cindy Crawford got married here), and you’ll have your very own Celebration Consultant who will help nail down all the I-Do details, like photographers, custom floral arrangements, and unique cakes designed by the in-house pasty chef. Bringing tranquility to otherwise-crowded Paradise Island, the 105-room Ocean Club’s personal butlers, beautiful pools and restaurant from Jean-Georges make it one of the Caribbean’s best resorts.
Just like any other Ritz-Carlton, the Kapalua one makes no exception when providing its brides-to-be with top-notch service — wedding coordinator included. Plus, the 463-room Ritz-Carlton Kapalua boasts up-to-date rooms, delicious dining, a quality spa, polished service, and beautifully landscaped grounds of national park proportions. Be forewarned though: With the value-minded rates comes a trade-off — the resort is located on the windiest and rainiest portion of Maui.
On-site wedding planners here cater to every whim of the newlyweds-to-be, and offer myriad services and locations for your wedding to be held — though we’re partial to holding at sunset on one of Sandy Lane‘s pristine strips of sandy beach. Decked out in signature pink, the 112-room resort is the creme de la creme of Barbados — indeed, it’s one of the most luxurious resorts in the world — known for unparalleled service and distinct touches. Guest amenities run rampant; perhaps the most noteworthy is access to the super exclusive Green Monkey golf course with a separate apparel line that can only be purchased after completion. A Rolls Royce Phantom, top-notch spa, outstanding restaurants, and celebrity sightings are just a few aspects that set the elegant Palladian-style hotel apart from the rest. Wanna crash with the whole bridal party (and groomsmen), too? Book the villa — it’ll fit everyone.