Tropical destinations for your dream wedding
These three stunning tropical wedding destinations can each serve as the perfect backdrop for your special day. | By Elizabeth Wellington | October 8, 2021
Experts predict that 2022 will be the busiest year for weddings since 1984 because of the delay in celebrations due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Rather than try to find a venue close to home that fulfills your dreams, make grander aspirations. A destination wedding is a great way to begin this next memorable chapter of your life, as it’s a vacation and a celebration in one with:
World-class service: Every couple deserves to be relaxed on their wedding day. With remarkable service and five-star amenities, you’ll be able to stay present during a magnificent moment.
Breathtaking beauty: Natural wonders abound at these three destinations, whether in glorious gardens or crystal blue waters.
One-of-a-kind wedding: Plan your wedding at a unique destination that surpasses your wildest dreams, and then revisit the place with your partner for the rest of your life.
Seychelles, the archipelago of 115 islands located in the Indian Ocean, is synonymous with honeymoons, but it’s just as ideal for a destination wedding. The off-the-beaten-path destination is rich in flora and fauna, as well as banana and cinnamon farms, all set against the backdrop of ivory sands and blue seas. Given its natural beauty and the near-constant inspiration in this paradise destination, there are many artists who have made the south of Mahé their home. It’s the ideal place to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of daily life and celebrate with a destination wedding that will set the tone for the rest of your marriage.
The intimate Mango House Seychelles, LXR Hotels & Resorts recently opened in south Mahé, where it benefits from a secluded spot along the “Anse Aux Poules Bleues,” or the Bay of the Blue Chickens. And if you’re planning a small family wedding, consider booking the Cliff House at Mango House Seychelles for extra privacy; it is the country’s only 13-bedroom villa. Or, you can reserve the hotel’s 28 rooms and suites — plus the villa — for a larger event that has the intimacy of your own private property. A beach wedding venue that will surpass all expectations, it’s also the perfect place to soak up the sun after your nuptials. After you say, "I do," you’ll need to carve out time to explore the “aquarium” at your feet. See wildlife up close on daily snorkel excursions, including giant Aldabra tortoises and dolphins. This is the right spot for your special day if you want a combination of natural beauty, art and culture in an island setting.
Koh Samui, Thailand
Arguably one of the most beautiful destinations in the world, Koh Samui is world-renowned as a tropical island within the Gulf of Thailand. Discerning travelers appreciate this destination for its remarkable restaurants, crystal clear waters and island charm. The town of Chaweng’s street markets offer an authentic cultural experience, and the breathtaking island of Koh Madsum — reached by private boat — ensures that you experience sea life up close. No matter what your interests are, carve out time by the water, whether you’re lounging on majestic white sand beaches or embracing the adventures at sea.
When you’re staying on the island, you’ll want to choose a base on the less-populated southwestern coast, away from the crowds. The eco-conscious resort Conrad Koh Samui is perched in a quiet spot atop dramatic cliffs that give you views of the five islands. Here, you’ll feel like it’s just you and your betrothed. A sunset wedding looking over Aow Thai beach will elevate your day to the most memorable experience, not just for you and your partner but also for any of your guests. If you opt for an elopement, a personal concierge who can speak English, Mandarin and Thai can help you plan a trip to remember. Visit the sailing and diving center to rent Jet Skis or paddleboards and to explore the breathtaking coastline around the resort. When you want to wind down, look no further than a delectable Thai feast at the hotel’s restaurant, Jahn.
In Maui, you can experience the wonder of Hawaiian culture at your dream wedding and beyond. The island includes 30 miles of white sand beaches and the dormant volcano at Haleakala National Park, which is ideal for hikers and adventurers. The magic of the Hana Highway, a 64.4-mile-long stretch of breathtaking northeast coastline, is the ideal post-wedding road trip to take with your spouse. You’ll see waterfalls, black sand beaches and romantic vistas worthy of a postcard. Best of all, this tropical paradise doesn’t require leaving the United States, making it easy to invite a large party to join you for a long weekend or extended wedding celebration.
Celebrate at Grand Wailea, A Waldorf Astoria Resort on Maui’s southwestern coast. Many couples opt to get married at the Wailea Seaside Chapel — the only of its kind on the island — that overlooks the private Molokini Bluff. The beautiful white church with custom stained-glass murals brings undeniable charm to your big day. If you get married in the winter or spring, you may be able to spot migratory humpback whales from November to April who come to the Hawaiian waters to calve. If private beaches and humpback whales aren’t enough to connect you to the healing mana (energy) of Hawaii, kick off a rejuvenating wedding weekend with a visit to Spa Grande for signature massage therapies of Hawaii. Indulge in rhythmic lomilomi and pohaku (warm stone) with an infusion of island essences like mango, cocoa butter and vitamin E.
No matter where you choose to have your wedding — the Seychelles, Thailand or Maui — the joy that you experience and the beauty of the beach will stay with you forever. Plus, planning your big day at one of these properties means that you can enjoy every moment and let the experts take care of the details.
Elizabeth Wellington is a travel writer and brand copywriter whose work has appeared in Vogue, Condé Nast Traveler, Travel & Leisure and BBC. When not writing in her Vermont farmhouse, she's usually en route to a new destination with a notebook in hand.