Mexico

Mexico Says "I Do" to Destination Weddings

written by | Posted on June 1st, 2011

Mayakoba

Tying the knot in Mexico—so romantic, so dreamy, so very profitable. With an average 8-day stay in destination weddings and 23 percent of U.S.-originated destination weddings taking place in Mexico, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be a part of it. Reasons for clients? Here they’ll take in a rich history, internationally renowned hospitality and world-famous attractions. They will make their nuptials an unforgettable experience for themselves and for their guests. They’ll combine a wedding, honeymoon and more in one fell swoop.

“The feedback from past destination wedding travelers to Mexico has been overwhelmingly positive. In fact, many people who have chosen Mexico as a vacation destination have been seeing the many beautiful weddings being performed at various resorts and then requesting to have their destination wedding in the same location,” says Jacqueline Marks, v.p. of product & pricing at Funjet Vacations (funjet.com), which offers exclusive discounts, return anniversary stays, customizable wedding websites and registries and other great incentives for destination couples. “Mexico is viewed as ideal for destination weddings because of the overall affordability of the destination.”

The cost-effectiveness of ceremonies in Mexico, adds AMResorts’ romance product manager Amanda Davis, lets couples enhance their special day. “This allows couples to add these unique touches or other ‘wow’ factors, like a bonfire on the beach or fireworks display, that they may not have had the opportunity to include had they not selected a destination wedding.”

what’s hot in mexico weddings More Spending. Despite the still-thriving perk of saving money when choosing a destination wedding in Mexico, many couples are choosing to fine-tune their experience by adding more splendor. “Many people use destination weddings as a way to save money, but couples are now definitely incorporating more sophistication. I see that a lot when talking to hotels and wedding planners—events are becoming more sophisticated,” says Kitzia Morales Harbich, partner at Mexico Wed, which along with the Mexico Tourism Board offers Love Mexico, destination wedding specialist trainings for travel professionals and planners. Love Mexico is the only specialized symposium and networking event that promotes Mexico as a destination for weddings and romance, giving agents and other travel professionals the chance to learn about the wedding market through seminars, certification programs and other events.

This increase in spending—by choice—also applies to weddings of couples who have been married before or who are older. Of course, the love with the all-inclusive concept continues to cross over into destination weddings with more refinement than ever before, in the form of unique and luxurious packages. “Even if they end up not using them, they’re a great base for brides to know what they can do,” she adds.

Tequila. Morales Harbich sees the muy Mexican town of Tequila as a future hotspot for weddings, especially when complemented with nearby Puerto Vallarta. “Tequilas has all the elements of ‘Mexicanidad’ in a marvelous town with a fully assembled product,” she explains. That product is Mundo Cuervo (mundocuervo.com), Jose Cuervo’s visitors center and tequila distillery. Mundo Cuervo’s full-service team can set up weddings in courtyards, gardens and other colonial-inspired venues within the property itself, but also in the Church of St. James in the town’s main square, within walking distance of Mundo Cuervo. It offers a completely Mexican ambiance away from a hotel, booking the mariachi band or charros, setting up transportation and arranging tours and tastings at La Rojeña, Mexico’s oldest tequila distillery.

Jumping into the “Mexican-ness” of the country is part of the attraction, after all. Davis, whose employer manages Dreams Resorts in nearby Puerto Vallarta and Nuevo Vallarta, would advice couples to “…savor the richness of the Mexican culture and combine your personal style with the local traditions, colors, flavors and surroundings of the destination. The warmth and kindness of the people is sure to make couples and their guests feel welcome and at home.”

There are many ways in which to incorporate Mexican culture into the wedding, she adds, including the aforementioned tequila tastings and mariachi bands. “A very popular addition that guests will love is the tornaboda, which is the wedding after-party. After a night of dancing and celebrating, a buffet of late-night snacks—empanadas, taquitos, and other treats—is set up to make sure everyone goes to bed happy.”

Mayakoba. Nowadays, people wanting a high-end bash on some of Mexico’s most beautiful shorelines don’t just think about the Riviera Maya; they ask for Mayakoba by name. One of the benefits of this all-in-one luxury destination is that it has tons of events space for holding very posh activities and accompanying entertainment options. Here, says Morales Harbich, “…You can have the rehearsal dinner at the Banyan Tree Mayakoba, some spa time at the Rosewood Mayakoba, the wedding dinner at Fairmont Mayakoba.” For golf, spa, gourmet cuisine, ocean activities and easy access from tons of cities through Cancun International Airport, the buzz word is Mayakoba. For more information on the destination, visit mayakoba.com.