Category Archives: Destination Weddings

Destination Weddings Real Weddings

Real Wedding: Karin & Simon by History Studio (Koh Samui)

I’m sorry for neglecting you lovely readers. My mind, spirit and body drifted to the idyllic country of Italy and didn’t want to return. Since I’m still in the travel state of mind, I wanted to start the month off by sharing a destination wedding with you that was photographed by the ever so talented Kong from History Studio.

Set on the secluded and sun-filled beach of The Tongsai Bay in Koh Samui, Karin and Simon’s day couldn’t have been anymore relaxing and laid back; they stuck to their true intentions of creating a celebration that involved love, fun, food and a never-ending flow of booze. And quite aptly put, a simple affair. Their carefree approach was highlighted by Karin’s brave move to forego hiring a make-up or hair artist and instead, with the help of her awesome bridesmaid, made herself look picture perfect (not that she wasn’t gorgeous already!). You know what they say, ‘less is more’.


Venue/Florist/Planner: The Tongsai Bay   |   Photographer: History Studio   |   Bride’s Dress: From Hitched! Bridal   |    Groom’s Suit: Gieves & Hawkes   |   Bridesmaid’s Dress: J.Crew

Beauty Destination Weddings

Top 6 Tips for a Glowing Destination Bride.

I hope today’s 97% humidity is not affecting your mood or your body. And when you’re going to be tying the knot in a few months, preceded with all the stress of wedding planning, you’ve got to start looking at maintaining a good diet and keep those sucker bugs at bay. We all know how busy life in Hong Kong can be so in our first series of guest posts from Mia, of Graciously Green (who not only is a Yoga Teacher, a Board Certified Health Coach but also a Raw Food Chef!), she’ll be sharing with you some tips on how to achieve that all-important glow on your wedding day. Obviously if you’re a groom reading this, there’s nothing stopping you from following Mia’s tips. Why not be healthy together?


“It’s almost here, your big day in the beautiful sunny destination of your dreams. You’ve worked so hard toning and honing yourself into perfection over the last few months, so don’t let your health slide and get in the way of looking and feeling your best as you float down the aisle. Destination weddings are a beautiful way to celebrate your love, but it is important to be prepared for the change in climate, water as well as food before and during your trip. So here are my top 6 health tips to make sure you’re sparkling with radiant health:


1. Rehydrate, rehydrate, rehydrate without proper hydration your skin will look crinkled and you will feel sluggish. My biggest tip would be to keep a flask or BPA-free bottle on you at all times, and just keep sipping. Add slices of lemon or lime with a pinch of pink Himalayan salt (full of minerals) to help support your liver. Nature’s best hydration drink is coconut water, so if you’re going somewhere tropical for your wedding, this should be readily available.


Photo credit: Feminspire


 2. Keep digestion going with chia there’s nothing worse than feeling bloated and sluggish; not ideal on your wedding day. Try adding chia-seeds to your diet a few weeks before your big day and leading-up to the wedding as they are full of fibre and will help to cleanse the system. Try a chia-porridge for breakfast every day – Chia seeds will literally cleanse the gut as well as replenish your omega 3 oils, helping your skin to shine. Plus, they’re very easy to throw in your luggage.


Photo credit: Endurance Films


 3. Eat your raw greens ok, seems like an obvious and general statement, but if you want your skin, digestion and overall energy to feel amazing on your big day, this is your secret weapon. Raw greens, vegetables and fruits all contain live energy, which are not only cleansing for your system but will also rehydrate and fill you with natural energy. Raw food expert, David Wolfe, says that eating raw foods increases the alkalinity of the body, which alleviates the underlying cause of inflammation and puffiness.


Photo credit: The Raw Chef


4. Cut out the rubbish at least 2 months before the big day what goes in will show outwards, so if you’re eating lots of processed foods, additives and drinking alcohol, and then suddenly stop a week before the wedding, you will start to detox.  This, coupled with a change of climate and travel, will set you up for a beauty disaster. Things could get worse before they get better. Eating a clean diet all year round is obviously perfect, however, if you’re serious about looking your best on your big day, make sure you go “clean” in plenty of time to allow for any detoxing to complete before you get to your destination.


Photo credit: Heartburn


5. Skin-plumping sulfur for super beauty foods rich in the mineral sulfur are known to help to ward off wrinkles, promote healthy hair and skin, as well as keep acne at bay. Superfood maca is a great source of sulfur as well as being an adaptogenic herb, meaning it will help your body to adapt to any new and stressful situations. Sulfur is a component of skin-plumping collagen. Foods rich in sulfur can improve the appearance of the skin. Other foods that are high in sulfur include garlic, spirulina, cabbage, radishes, and pumpkin seeds.


Photo credit: Saule Health


6. Get moving as soon as you arrive – even on the plane, implement a bit of yoga stretching. Planes and travel are the worst for tightening-up muscles, digestion and your general wellbeing. Throw your yoga bag or running shoes in you bag and just push yourself to do at least ½ an hour of something as soon as your arrive at your destination, or the first morning. Your health will love you for it.


Photo credit: Wild Thyme Farm


One last bonus tip, don’t be scared to get a bit of unprotected sun many of the sun-creams out there contain harmful toxins, which can bring you out in rashes as well as pimples. Ten to twenty minutes of sunshine on bare skin will give you a great healthy boost of vitamin D, something most of us lack and is essential for health. If you want to stay out of the sun, a beautiful Audrey Hepburn-style hat is a glamorous and safe bet.


Mia will be hosting some raw-food workshops this month at Sol Wellness in Hong Kong so if you want to see how she can support you on your journey to health and happiness, contact her at .

Destination Weddings Real Weddings Wedding Photography

Real Wedding: Deborah & Daniel by Darren LeBeuf Photography (Boracay)

Today’s real wedding features a ridiculously good-looking couple who tied the knot at the Shangri-La in Boracay, surrounded by tall palm trees and of course friends and family from all over the world, with the night ending literally with a bang (kissing under the stars is romantic but fireworks tops it). You’ve got Deborah who’s Brazilian and Daniel, an Aussie which just makes for an awesome combo. Add to that the vintage style of the photos taken by Darren of Darren LeBeuf Photography, and you’ll feel like you’ve been transported to paradise. Oh blue sky, where art thou?


Photo credits: Darren LeBeuf Photography

Venue, Caterer, Flowers, Cake + Favours: Shangri-La Hotel Boracay   |   Photography: Darren LeBeuf Photography   |   Wedding Planner:    |   Wedding Dress: Lusan MandogusAnnasul Y   |   Wedding Shoes: Lusan Mandongus   |   Bridal Jewellery: Monique Co.   |   Bridesmaid Dresses:   |   Hair & Make Up: Bruno Henriques   |   Groom’s Outfit: Pal Zileri   |   Music/DJ: Every Day People  


Destination Weddings Real Weddings

Real Weddings: Cath & Kev (Whistler) Part I

It all began one fateful morning when Kev spotted Cath wearing a polka dot skirt at work…and the rest is history. 8 years on, the pair who are both hiking aficionados, rounded up a group of their close friends to climb up the Stawamus Chief the day before the big day and to share with them their favourite past-time. Most other couples (especially the bride!) would have spent the day frantically finishing off lastminute touches and stressed out to the brim. It’s no wonder why Cath & Kev’s wedding was one relaxed affair which was captured so wonderfully by KC of KC Photography; guests mingled over locally brewed Granville Island beer, croquet games were played and all the guests donned custom aprons for the family style BBQ. I’m so glad to have been there on the day and to witness two special friends make a life-long commitment. Marriage may be messy but love conquers all.


 Photo credits: KC @

From the bride: “I thought the entire day went perfectly and the personal touches really made a difference, from having Kev’s sister, Karen, as our officiant to the custom bathrobes and aprons to the awesome speeches. Everything felt authentic. Having events before and after the wedding meant that we were able to spend time with every guest. A word of advice for other brides is to relax on the day! Everyone kept saying what a relaxed bride I was. I’m glad that was the case so I could enjoy and take in every moment!”

Venue: Cedarstone Whistler   |   Photography: KC @   |   Wedding Planner: Marcie at Bliss Event + Design   |   Caterer: Whistler Cooks   |   Flowers: Bliss Event + Design   |   Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier from Bisou Bridal   |   Belt: Augusta Jones from Bisou Bridal   |   Wedding Shoes: Oscar de la Renta from Trinity Bridal   |   Groom’s Suit: Cerruti   |   Groomsmen’s Suits: Club Monaco   |   Brides’ Hair & Make Up: Brendan & Ya Hsun at Beauty-A-Go-Go   |   String Quartet: Musical Occasions   |   Music Band: Acoustic Grooves       

Destination Weddings Wedding Planning

Carmen Weddings: Inpired. Tailored. Unforgettable.

The Royal Wedding last year, the Diamond Jubilee in June and the more recent London Olympics has created a British fever all over the world. Now that the festivities are over, what next? Have you considered having your wedding in the UK – a country full of history and charm? It may be a good 12-hour flight from Hong Kong but Carmen at Carmen Weddings may be able to lend you a helping hand. Based in the UK, Carmen’s Chinese heritage means that she understands the ins and outs of Chinese customs as well as the formalities in Western weddings. Rest assured, she will be in regular contact with you to provide updates, arrange bookings and she will always personally coordinate the wedding day. Just relax.


To give you an idea of what the wedding planning process is like….

Where do you get your inspiration?
The bride and groom. Sometimes a bride already has a firm idea of what she does or doesn’t love but a lot of the time, we talk about their interests and work – where they’ve travelled to, what they like to do in their spare time and what is their biggest enjoyment out of work. With this, I get a very good picture of what would appeal to them. Then I can start building on designs which we then bring to life for their wedding day.

Typically, how far in advance do you advise couples to approach you or start the planning process before their big day?
Every wedding is different but I recommend a year. This allows a good amount of time to break down what needs to be done every month and we can book the most suitable vendors for the wedding they have in mind.

As you know, Chinese families can be quite traditional and there are quite a number of customs to follow; if a couple isn’t keen on it, but their parents are, what would you advice be?
I would recommend that the couple and parents sit down and discuss exactly what everyone wants for the wedding day right from the beginning. If parents insist on certain traditions on the day and the couple really isn’t keen, maybe it’s worth compromising, like carry out some and not all traditions. In my experience, most couples are happy to have some of the traditions in respect of their parents and culture.

What are the main differences between a Chinese wedding and a western wedding?
A Western wedding sometimes is known to brides as the ‘white wedding’ which may include a traditional Wedding Breakfast followed by evening entertainment of music and dance. Today we see weddings which are much more unique and design led; such as weddings in the forest, in a barn or an intimate soiree in an art gallery. A Chinese wedding may begin with the groom ‘fetching the bride’, Door Games, the Chinese Tea Ceremony and the Chinese Wedding Banquet – this could mean a huge banquet with a very large number of guests! My next wedding is a traditional Chinese wedding with a total of 600 guests.


Photo credit: Jade Alana Photography

What’s your favourite wedding that you’ve worked on?
A couple I worked for had booked me for wedding co-ordination but it will always stand out as it was a wedding over 3 exquisite city venues. Every venue had unique styling, it was an intimate celebration and was simply amazing in every way. I worked very closely with the couple over many months as there were so many details to take into consideration. You can see this beautiful wedding ‘Stylish and Intimate Affair’ at Carmen Weddings.

Destination Weddings Real Weddings Wedding Photography

Real Weddings: Jareyadee & Jay (Western Wedding Reception – Thailand)

So you thought Jareyadee & Jay’s Thai wedding was beautiful. Just wait till you see their wedding reception that was held earlier this year (the floods in Thailand back in November 2011 meant that the celebrations for the newly-weds had to be postponed) at the grand Pradhana Valanai, that transports you to an European-styled manor, surrounded by luscious greenery. Add to that Tanarak of Tanarak Photography’s artistic eye and you’ll forget you’re even in ‘Amazing Thailand’.


Both the venues, The Suan Pakkad Palace for the beautiful couple’s Thai wedding and Pradhana Vanalai for their Western reception opened up their doors for the first time for a wedding event. For Tanarak, ‘it was so special’.

Venue: Pradhana Vanalai   |   Photography: Tanarak Photography   |   Wedding Dress: Kai Boutique   |   Florist:   |   Wedding Cake: Riya   |   Wedding Invitations: A Tiny Little Something   |   Bride’s After Party Dress:   |   Hair + Make Up: Apichart ‘Ped’ Norasethaporn

Destination Weddings Wedding Photography

Real Weddings: Jareyadee & Jay (Thai Ceremony – Thailand)

When it comes to Asian weddings, the rituals are integral in highlighting the history and culture of where the couple is from. Having said that, many modern couples now forgo the traditions and instead, stick with the Western white wedding. See for yourselves how beautiful a traditional wedding can be through Tanarak’s photos of the stunning couple Jareyadee and Jay.


Venue: The Suan Pakkad Palace | Photography: Tanarak Photography

Destination Weddings Real Weddings

Real Weddings: Jasmine & Alan (Bali)

I’m so giddy over this destination wedding at The Khayangan Estate in Bali. Last week, I gave you a glimpse into Jas & Alan’s big day with their DIY invitations, which was produced at low costs and with lots of creativity, so it’ll come as no surprise that their wedding had a great deal of personal touches. With such busy jobs and the fact that much of the planning had to be done remotely from Hong Kong, Jas & Alan managed to pull off a beautiful day that showed us what love can do. Their love has been brewing since 2001 and there’s no better way to witness this than through the eyes of KC Chan, whose natural style of photography makes me you feel as though you’re sharing the special day with the couple.


One special mention was the catering company, M&M, who Jas spoke highly of, “They allowed us to let each of our guests choose their own appetizer, first and second course out of a couple of choices in advance AND they provided the menu tailored for each guest according to their choices and had their name on it!! They delivered everything perfectly on the day!!”

Venue: The Khayangan Estate, Bali   |   Photography: KC @   |   Caterer: M&M Catering Bali   |   Wedding Dress: Ian Stuart   |   Bridesmaids’ Shoes: Something Thine   |   Groomsmen’s Pants: Bossini   |   Groomsmens’ Suspenders: TaoBao   |   Custom Hangers: Etsy   |   Wedding Signs: Gloriosa Flower House   |    Balloons: Smile Party Bali   |   Guestbook: Prints    

Destination Weddings DIY Projects Wedding Stationery

Real Weddings: Jasmine & Alan (DIY Invitation)

By now, you’ll probably know I’m in love with all things DIY. It demonstrates one’s creativity and most important of all, their personality. When I found out that Jasmine & Alan’s wedding invitation was designed by the couple themselves, I knew I had to feature their creation. Both in the professional sphere, let’s just say their daily work involves numbers and documents and as you can tell, a world away from the arts. Together with two bridesmaids and an iPad in hand, this invitation is truly a reflection of “great teamwork”.


The Design: 

“I first drew/wrote the draft and then we tried to look for a couple of printers to estimate costs. So glad we found a cheap local one (run by a couple of warm-hearted middle-aged women!) as we wanted to keep it under HK$15 per set.” 

“With the printed cards in single colour, I got two talented bridesmaids, Joanne and Viv, to join me to paint all of them.”

“At last, Alan and I finished with our fingerprints and two smiley faces at the back to add a personal touch on a rather commoditised wedding accessory these days.”

 ”You can probably tell how excited I am with the end product!”

Wedding Photography: KC @
Invitation Printers: Kam Shing
iPad Drawing App:

Destination Weddings Inspiration Board Wedding Decor Wedding Food Wedding Stationery

Love Makes the World Go Round.

It’s the weekend…almost. Which means, for many, an after-work dash to the airport to catch a flight to a nearby city, or for those who are lucky enough to escape work for a week or more, a flight to an exotic destination. Mauritius anyone? Oh, the travel bug. Once you’ve caught it, it doesn’t seem to ever recover and you’ll be wanting to go to farther and even more unheard of places. If you want your wedding to reflect who you are, why not go for a travel inspired theme? You don’t need your wedding to be held on an idyllic beach in Bali for it to work. Remember, happiness is a journey, not a destination. Send guests a postcard invitation to your big do with customised stamps, use maps as a table seating plan, fold paper planes for the table centrepiece, have your wedding cake made into a shape of vintage suitcases, give personalised luggage tags as favours and serve food from your favourite country. Include these elements subtly without boasting about how ‘well-travelled’ you are and please refrain from showing a slideshow of your travel photos. The guests are there to witness you tying the knot and have fun, not to see photos of you next to the Eiffel Tower or posing with Niagara Falls at the back. Wanderlust with class.

p.s. The photos taken by KC @ below are from the wedding of yours truly. Did I not tell you that I love to travel? Who doesn’t?

Send your guests on a journey.

Travel themed stationery
Photo credits (clockwise from top left): In the Treehouse, KC @, Last Forty Percent, Andrew Garfitt 

Paper planes and maps. Vintage and fun.

Travel Themed Wedding Decor
Photo credits (clockwise from top left): Tracie Howe, Erin Courts Heart, Matthew Parker Events, Wild Flowers via Style Me Pretty, Erin Courts Heart, Stone Crandall

Subtlety is the key.

Travel Themed Wedding Accessories
Photo credits (from left): Hazelnut Photography via Ruffled Blog, KC @