Let us be the first to tell everyone that we had the most fantastic week photographing Shannon & Chris’ beautiful St. Thomas wedding! To start our story, I never thought that we would get this chance of a lifetime to not only go on a little mini-vacation during wedding season but also to do what we love the most- and that is capturing a love story in one of the most beautiful places on earth!
When we first met Shannon & Chris, we had an instant connection! They were so down to earth and then we found out that they love Harry Potter (if you don’t know, Rach is a little obsessed). Originally the two of them were planning a destination wedding in the Outer Banks but quickly decided that wasn’t the wedding that they particularly wanted. They changed their plans and decided to take all of their immediate family & close friends on the Norwegian Escape (cruise) and planned their St. Thomas wedding while they were docked at port. When Shannon & Chris decided to hire us, we were ecstatic! Beach weddings are terrific and all (we see a lot of them), but the thought of crystal clear water and swaying palm trees made our heart skip a beat!
Fast forward to the big destination adventure…
We flew from Washington DC to Miami, FL on Friday to photograph their welcome dinner at Prime One Twelve. The dinner was absolutely fantastic and we were not only excited to be there, but also to be treated as we were part of the family.
On Saturday, we boarded the cruise ship and we were sailing away on the beautiful crystal clear waters of the Caribbean where Ryan and I spent the first few days preparing for the wedding and catching up on some much needed naps- yes, wedding season took a little toll on us this year so some much needed R&R (no pun intended) was definitely a welcomed perk to the trip.
Our first port was beautiful St. Thomas (Wedding Day)! We woke up early and made our way to the fabulous spa located on board the ship where Shannon and her bridesmaid’s were pampered with hair & makeup services. Shannon put on her beautiful Maggie Sottero gown and she was absolutely stunning! When we left the ship, we were greeted by Presidential Limousine in St. Thomas where they escorted us to the beautiful wedding located at Magens Bay. Magens Bay is breath-taking with pristine white sandy beaches, clear sapphire blue water, swaying palm trees, and the view of the mountain peaks emerging from the waters of the Virgin Islands. The location is picture perfect and post card worthy. After a 30-minute delay (due to mother nature’s crying fit), the ceremony began as Chris’ sister officiated the heartfelt ceremony. Irie Matrimony were rockstars at coordinating & planning the wedding and wonderful vendors were chosen for their big day! St. John Catering served some of the best food that I have ever tasted! The carribean jerk chicken was to die for! Shannon & Chris’ family & friends enjoyed the views, danced to carribean music, and swam in the beautiful water (yes, some even in their wedding attire).
The day was magical and everything that we could have dreamed it would be!
As I type this blog post, I am sitting in the lobby of the ship overlooking the ocean and continuing to sail to the Bahamas! I could get used to this! To the future bride’s & groom’s considering a destination wedding, all I can say is DO IT!
Hair & Makeup- Mandara Spa & Salon (located on the Norwegian Escape)
Accomodations- Norwegian Escape
Wedding Dress- Maggie Sottero
Ceremony & Reception Location- Magens Bay (St. Thomas)
Wedding Planner- Irie Matrimony
Catering & Bar- St. John Catering and Mathayom Private Chefs
Transportation- Presidential Limosine
Flowers- East End Flower Shop
Wedding Cake & Cupcakes- VI Desserts