Mexico

See Our Latest Travel Picks in the Spring 2016 Issue of Destination I Do!

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Pardon my braggy moment, but I was so excited to go to my bookstore today and see the latest issue of Destination I Do! I travel a lot, scouting for clients and writing about top honeymoon and wedding spots for various magazines. Destination I Do is one of my favorites; they share my undying passion for travel, and are some of the smartest, kindest people I’ve ever had the privilege of working with.
For this issue, I headed to Los Cabos, Mexico, which is a fave spot personally as well as for weddings and honeymoons, thanks to the abundance of great hotels, gorgeous natural beauty and the fact that  …

Architectural Digest-Worthy Villas for a Destination Wedding or Special Occasions

Casona Don Carlos in Nicaragua, photo courtesy of Mukul ResortCasona Don Carlos in Nicaragua, photo courtesy of Mukul Resort

I loooove hotels; few things make me happier than scoping out a new resort, or revisiting an old favorite to see how its changed. But hotels aren’t the only way to go for luxury travel — there are some spectacular villas out there, offering a different take on the luxury experience. For instance, Villa Manzu in Costa Rica comes with household staff and a garage filled with surfboards and kayaks, so guests can easily get out and play in the Pacific.
To me, the best villas offer a sense of place, with great views, beautiful views and outdoor space to enjoy the location, and unique furnishings  …

Globetrotter: Bernadette Smith of Gay Wedding Institute on Why She Loves Riviera Maya

Courtesy of Blue DiamondCourtesy of Blue Diamond

Our friend Bernadette Smith has long been a leader in same-sex weddings. She started planning same-sex weddings in 2004 with her company 14 Stories, and has written three books on the topic. When legalization began sweeping across the country, she wanted to bring her passion and knowledge to other planners. So in 2009 she founded the Gay Wedding Institute, which works with individual planners and travel corporations like Marriott, teaching them all how to best serve their same-sex clientele.

Bernadette travels a lot for work, educating on same-sex wedding planning, but when she needs a break, Riviera Maya, Mexico  …

Mexico Destination Weddings at Banyan Tree Mayakoba

Banyan Tree Mayaboka by jhan karlo photographyBanyan Tree Mayaboka by jhan karlo photography

We love Riviera Maya for destination weddings. It’s easy to get to, and has loads of hotels that work as wedding locales or honeymoon destinations. One of the most elegant is Banyan Tree Mayakoba, just north of Playa del Carmen. This summer they debuted their newest wedding venue, the chapel at El Pueblito. The plaza is designed to recall the traditional town squares you find throughout Mexico, only this is private to the resort so you have it all to yourselves.
The interior of the chapel is simple yet stunning, with wooden pews, mosaic tile floor and gorgeous gold alter backdrop and chandeliers. The chapel  …

The Honeymoonist Picks The Best Honeymoon Plunge Pools on About.com Travel

Courtesy of Jade MountainCourtesy of Jade Mountain

We LOVE a good plunge pool — it’s the top request we get for a honeymoon suite. And with good reason: A fantastic plunge pools is the ultimate romantic indulgence, a place you can relax and connect away from the crowds (and splashing kids!) at the main hotel pool, and a nice retreat when you’re have your fill of beach time. But it’s also one of the biggest areas for potential disappointments, if you don’t get what you think you’re getting. We know this firsthand: We’ve experienced plunge pools that look great in photos but when you get there, the pool is only a few inches deep–more  …

Inside Engage! at Romantic NIZUC Resort in Riviera Maya

Photo by Dave NoonanPhoto by Dave Noonan

Earlier this summer I headed to Mexico to speak about honeymoons and destination weddings at the Engage! Luxury Wedding Business Summit. I’ve been going to this conference for quite a few years now, and it’s amazing for many reasons. First and foremost, at Engage! I get to connect with top event pros from all over the world, from amazing event planners to rock-star photographers, which expands my network of connections for our honeymoon and wedding clients. Secondly, the Engage! family is a tight-knit bunch, and many of my fellow attendees have turned into close friends, so it’s as much about community and having fun as it is about sharing intel and inspiration. Last but not  …

Cool Los Cabos all inclusive resort

Courtesy of Hacienda EncantadaCourtesy of Hacienda Encantada

Los Cabos, Mexico is one of our favorite places for destination weddings, due in no small part to the amazing five-star hotels there. But let’s face it; not everyone can afford five-star, and even if they can, not everyone wants to ask guests to pony up that much. Enter Hacienda Encantada, a 150-room, all-inclusive resort that’s a sweet blend of plush and convenience. It’s still a luxury property, but the fact that it’s not as well known as some of the bigger names means it offers unexpected value.
The resort is 20 miles east of downtown San Jose del Cabo, so you’re far enough away to enjoy Cabo’s rugged natural beauty, but it’s an easy taxi  …

Globetrotter: Photographer Donna von Bruening in romantic San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

Courtyard mariachis in San Miguel de Allende on a Mexico honeymoonCourtyard mariachis in San Miguel de Allende on a Mexico honeymoon

Photographer Donna von Bruening recently traveled to one of our favorite places: San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. Set in the highlands 170 miles north of Mexico City, SMA is an artist’s haven, with cobblestone streets and marble-fronted buildings dating back to the 1700s. The atmosphere makes it an amazing spot for destination weddings. Donna was there for the Celebration of the Birthday of General Allende, a street party in honor of the town’s founder. Here is the city through her eyes:
We stayed at Casa Hyder (aka Casa Elegantes), an 11-bedroom compound that belongs to art collector.  It is comprised of three homes, and everywhere you turn  …

See Our Mexico All-Inclusive Picks in Destination I Do

Courtesy of Generations Riviera MayaCourtesy of Generations Riviera Maya

We’re thrilled to see our feature on Mexico All-Inclusive picks in the new issue of Destination I Do magazine! These gals have their pulse on what’s cool and different in the world of romance travel, and we love working with them.

 
In the feature, we spotlight a few of our favorites all-inclusive resorts along Riviera Maya. We love all-inclusives for their ease — there’s one bill, for as much food and drink as you want, not to mention activities and sweet rooms, which makes them a favorite for destination weddings. But be warned: They range wildy in terms of style and  …

Hotel Crush: Viceroy Riviera Maya, Mexico

Courtesy of Viceroy Riviera MayaCourtesy of Viceroy Riviera Maya

Falling in love with a hotel is like falling in love with a person—it can take a while, or it can happen at once. The Viceroy Riviera Maya had me at the check-in, which takes place in an open-air thatched-roof lobby that reminded me of the South Pacific as much as it felt like Mexico.
Immediately after greeting, they take you by the spa for a special blessing, done with aromatic resin from the Copal tree, prized by the Mayan culture. It’s a wonderful way to shake off the outside world for your stay, and maybe book a treatment at  …