By Anya Duran
Hoping for the perfect Caribbean wedding and honeymoon? Then the Dominican Republic is an excellent choice, because local hotels really know how to pamper the bride and groom-to-be and make sure every single detail of this event is well taken care of.
Weddings in local hotels are stress free, because the bride and groom are considered guests at their own wedding. All hotels offer wedding packages and have the right personnel to organize the event, depending on the needs of the couple. Legal assistance is also provided.
The Dominican Republic hotel facilities know how to pamper the bride and groom that have chosen their particular facility to celebrate their wedding.
Although some couples do get marry in the country, others prefer to get married in their particular country and then hold the ceremony in the Dominican Republic.
There are hotels and facilities for all budgets and particular needs.
While some couples may prefer to hold their wedding at an all-inclusive resort, others prefer to celebrate this important event in small boutique hotels, where the wedding celebration will be intimate and elegant.
The following list will provide pertinent information on the best hotels to hold weddings based on ambience, quality of service, special attention to the couple, and comfortable facilities.
Casa Colonial Beach & Spa
In Puerto Plata, the north coast’s most important city, the 50-suite “Casa Colonial Beach & Spa” is considered by many to be the best hotel in this particular region.
A member of Small Luxury Brand Hotels of the World, the facility offers a very intimate and romantic setting, the ideal location for the perfect Caribbean wedding, and the idyllic getaway for couples and honeymooners.
The hotel has a special wedding pavilion, with breathtaking views to the nearby beach which serves as a natural backdrop to the ceremony (www.casacolonialhotel.com).
Situated atop a hill that provides stunning views of the Caribbean Sea, a nearby mountain range and rivers, Casa Bonita is truly a magical place.
This 12-room hotel boutique provides the wedding couple with a romantic and intimate setting to celebrate their wedding party. Casa Bonita is a member of the Small Luxury Hotel of the World (www.casabonitadr.com).
Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & Spa
This particular resort features several all-inclusive hotels within the complex, including the adults-only 372-room luxury facility Royal Suites Turquesa.
The resort offers various wedding packages or an individual wedding planner that will help the couple plan their very particular event.
Packages offered range in price from US$1,615 to US$4,665 (from eight to 14 guests, and US$22 per additional guest (www.grandpalladiumpuntacanaresort.com).
Barcelo Bavaro Beach Resort
The Barcelo Bavaro Beach Resort complex features a wide variety of locations and wedding planners to help put together that special Caribbean wedding. Wedding parties can be celebrated in the resort’s lush gardens, in a spectacular oceanfront gazebo, or on the beach itself.
The resort also features a beautiful Catholic church, where the altar features a special painting of the nearby lake where the church was built. The bride and groom can plan their particular event, or select the resort-package that better fits their budget and needs.
Packages range from a free-of-charge wedding party if the wedding party reserves 25 rooms, to more expensive options (www.barceloweddings.com).
Casa de Campo
This exclusive resort promises “A wedding in Paradise,” no matter if it’s a small event or an extravagant wedding party for hundreds of guests. Expert wedding planners will take care of the smallest details.
Packages range from US$495 to US$1,405. Reception costs range from US$172 to US$261 per person (plus tax) (www.casadecampo.com.do).
This facility provides the perfect setting for that special Caribbean wedding.
The beautiful nearby beach is the backdrop for the wedding ceremony.
It is a small and intimate setting, with 13 beachfront villas, all designed by famed Dominican-American designer Oscar de la Renta (www.puntacana.com).
The Bannister Hotel
This 31-room luxury facility, a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World, offers breathtaking views of the nearby Puerto Bahia marina.
The marina is surrounded by quaint squares and lush gardens is truly a paradisiac environment for that perfect wedding (www.thebannisterhotel.com).
The 597-room Majestic Elegance Hotel offers various settings for weddings. The hotel can coordinate weddings presided by a judge or a priest.
Wedding packages include the wedding cake, decorations, ironing of dresses and suits, flower arrangements and a champagne toast for the newlywed couple.
It is also a perfect destination for honeymooners (www.majestic-resort.com).
Situated in the north coast fishing village of Las Terrenas, the Sublime Samana is the perfect facility for a small intimate wedding.
The facility is also a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World (www.sublimesamana.com).
Excellence Punta Cana
This particular hotel (all-inclusive, 522 rooms) lives up to its name when it comes to a wedding celebration. It is the ideal spot for that perfect romantic wedding ceremony. A wedding planner will handle all the details of this important event, including securing the judge, priest or pastor that will perform the ceremony, decorations, wedding cake, flower arrangements, and many other amenities.
On the wedding day, the bride is taken on a horse-drawn carriage to the wedding gazebo, where guests are waiting for the arrival of the wedding party (www.excellence – resorts.com).
The Peninsula House
It is a cozy and intimate Victorian home with 6 rooms dating back to the eighteenth century. It Is ideal for an elegant and romantic dream wedding and memorable honeymoon. Add the ambiance of tropical gardens which overlook a pristine beach, and the luxury residence designed by French architect Serge Robi, then you will know why this facility has been included among the top 100 boutique hotels in the world, according to the 2013 Gold List of the journal Condé Nast Traveler (www.thepeninsulahouse.com).
Its relaxed luxury ambience provides the perfect environment for couples. Its facilities are excellent for wedding parties. Wedding planners handle all details, to guarantee the perfect wedding celebration (www.zoetryresorts.com).
Iberostar Grand Hotel Bavaro
This 272-room, all-inclusive, adults-only, facility is the perfect destination for couples, and is highly recommended for wedding celebrations or honeymoons. All wedding details are expertly handled by the hotel’s wedding planners (www.iberostargrandbavaro.com).
Melía Caribe Tropical
The all-inclusive resort provides the wedding couple with an excellent team of wedding planners.
Its beachfront gazebo provides a sense of intimacy and elegance for a romantic wedding celebration (www.melia.com).
Marriage Requirements in the Dominican Republic:
• Birth certificates of the bride and groom
• Legalized document stating that both the bride and groom are single. If divorced, the wedding must take place ten months from the date of the divorce.
• Photocopy of the passports (or other documents used to enter the country).
• Photocopy of the passports of the witnesses who are not relatives.
• Documents must be authenticated by the nearest Dominican Consulate.
• The documents must be translated into Spanish law by a legal interpreter in the Dominican Consulate, or in the Dominican Republic.
• Two witnesses (not family members).
• For more information: www.domrep.org/gettingmarried.html.