“Our love story started before we knew it started.”
I have never heard words that better describe true love! This beach wedding at Kukua, that happened just couple of days ago (October 2020), was all about that – celebrating true love!
There’s nothing we love more than a totally personalized wedding that is a show-stopper. Kendra and Elysia’s destination, beach wedding at Kukua Beach Club in Punta Cana was exactly that and then some. With help of Kukua’s wedding planning team Rachel and Mayte Mari, these ladies created an extraordinary day with Kenrdra & Elysia’s loved ones witnessing while they profess eternal love to each other.
With a million (and this is without exaggeration) flowers filling every corner and an airy color palette, highlighted with black and gold details pronouncing the beauty of tropical space, this wedding was a page straight out of a fairy-tale. Kendra told us: “I knew before being engaged that I wanted a destination wedding. I had somehow found this venue called ‘Kukua’ and was in love with it. I lived on Pinterest while planning our wedding. I knew I wanted flowers and lots of them. Our wedding planner said we had over 6000 flowers and yes, all of them were real. I changed our wedding colors 7 times lol. We finally decided to go with black, white, ivory, and blush pink. We had a gazebo for our wedding cake and it was beyond beautiful. We even had a memory table with photos of us, showing the years that we had been together, it was a big hit. I wanted us to have a wedding that was unique, elegant, and EXTRA lol. Every time I saw something on Pinterest that caused my mouth to drop, I would say to myself, “oh I got to have this.”
Kendra and Elysia have known each other since middle school and after high school they became best friends. Even then there was a spark between them. Elysia told Kendra: ”I have been watching you since high school, when you use to wear that red dress all the time to school.”
This is how Kendra relived their love story for us: “We started dating in 2008 until 2010 when broke up slowly stopped talking. The break-up was very hard on the both of us. I honestly think we were just young at the time and we both needed to grow. Throughout the years Elyisa and I would talk from time to time but it was nothing major, unfortunately our friendship faded away from the breakup as well. Four years passed when on May 26th 2014, while on Facebook I get a message from Elysia saying “you still have that scarf I see,” the scarf was something I bought when Elysia and I were together. At first, I was saying to myself, “what does this girl want?.” Lol Since then, I can honestly say we have been inseparable. We do almost everything together. We have seen each other at our lowest and highest.
I totally believe in the saying “if you let someone go and they return, then it is meant to be.”
Elysia proposed to me on March 8, 2019 and I knew it was going to happen but after we finished dinner and nothing happened, I said to myself, “well it’s not happening tonight,” so I excused myself and went to the ladies room. When I came back our waiter brought me dessert and when he took the lid off the plate there was a beautiful ring. Elysia, was recording the whole thing and I, I did not even know it. The proposal was priceless. It’s been a joy doing life with Elysia. And it doesn’t hurt that I’ve known my wife since middle school!“
“Phil and I met through mutual friends at a local bar that he was working at. We talked on and off for about 6 months before we decided to give it a try, but once we did, we were inseparable. Our relationship is special for so many reasons but I think a huge thing that’s special about it, is that we challenge each other without hurting each other. We can be really honest with one another without being mean and I think that is so important in a relationship. We started dating in February of 2016 and got officially married in the U.S. on February 29, 2020. We got married on Leap day in Colorado and had our ceremony and reception at Kukua Beach Club in Punta Cana with our friends and family. Our wedding day at Kukua was the most beautiful day we could have asked for. We had perfect weather and so much love around us. The highlight for both Phil and I would definitely be seeing each other at the end of the aisle. It was the best.”
Bride and Groom Wedding Day Story:
Q: Tell us about your wedding! What was the inspiration behind your day?
Did you have a specific theme, style or color palette? Did you incorporate any cultural or religious traditions in any part of your day?
A: We got married at Kukua beach club. Our inspiration was simplicity. We just wanted it to be really classic and not too fussy with a pastel dusty kind of color palette. We didn’t have any religion incorporated in our wedding and no strong cultural traditions at all.
Q: Let’s talk wedding decor. How did you decorate your space for the ceremony and the reception? Was any part of the decor DIY?
A: We decorated the wedding with lots of pastel florals and eucalyptus and greenery. Because we were planning the wedding in a destination, we weren’t able to do any DIY.
Q: What were the florals like in your wedding? Did you use flowers in any of your design elements like the bridal bouquets, centerpieces or ceremony backdrop? Did they play an important part in the overall style of your wedding?
A: Florals were definitely a big part of our wedding. For our ceremony backdrop we had two giant vases filled with pastel flowers and lots of greenery. We wanted everything to look very organic and natural. For our centerpieces we kept with similar ideas. We wanted a boa style centerpiece with lots of greenery and some candles for a romantic addition. The flowers were definitely a very important part of our wedding.
Q: Did you personalize the day in any way (food trucks, guest entertainment etc.)? What were some of your favorite parts of your wedding?
A: We personalized our day by making it exactly what we wanted from top to bottom but we didn’t have any entertainment or extras. Some of my favorite parts of the wedding were the decor, I was obsessed with our cake. And we loved our reception. It was so fun to hang out with all of our friends and dance and enjoy ourselves after all the stress of the wedding day was over.
Q: Let’s talk fashion. How did you both choose your wedding day look? Describe the looks in detail.
A: As a beach bride I was always thinking that I wanted a simple classic kind of dress. Something that wouldn’t be too hot and wouldn’t be too fussy. I really wanted my dress to speak for itself. When I went to try on dresses I tried a lot of different styles and the simple ones were the ones I was most drawn to. I ended up picking a simple ivory fitted dress with a sweetheart neckline and off the shoulder sleeves. Because we were getting married on the beach we almost wanted it to be a little more casual. Originally, we didn’t even think he would wear a suit jacket but when we were shopping for another friend’s wedding he found a jacket that he loved and decided it would be perfect for OUR own wedding.
Q: How did you meet? Tell us about the proposal.
A: We met through mutual friends and dated for 2.5 years before we got engaged. Phil proposed when we were on a trip to Europe. He knows that I don’t do well with grand gestures in public. So, when we were in Austria, he got a beautiful hotel on the lake and took me out to dinner so I would be dressed up and have some makeup on. Then once we were done with dinner he said we should go back to the hotel to watch the sunset over the lake and when we got to the lake, he got down on one knee and proposed.
Q: What was the most anticipated or special moment of your wedding day?
A: My most anticipated moment of the wedding day was seeing all the details that we had talked about finally come together. It was so amazing to see something that so many people have worked so hard to turn into something real and even better than I ever imagined. But I think we both agree that the most special moment was seeing each other for the first time at the altar.
Q: Do you have any wedding planning or marriage advice that you’d like to share with other couples planning their day?
A: We definitely don’t feel like experts on the subject but my main advice would be to figure out the top things that are important to each of you for the wedding and make sure you keep that as the focus. Everything else will work out and no matter what, you are marrying your favorite person and everything else kind of falls away. Even with all the stresses 🙂
“When we got engaged, we knew immediately that a destination was the right way for us! My now husband Joe is from Colombia, it was very important that his family was able to attend! We live in Canada and that would cause some hindrances, plus… who doesn’t love a vacation packed with your favorite people!! When we first started planning, we went with the typical “Beach Theme” however once we realized that we could make it what we wanted we shifted to our peacock theme! We decided to go with the blues, bright green and purple from the eye of the peacock feather! Neither of us are super religious, while we do have beliefs, we didn’t feel it was important to impede these upon our guests! We did however write our own vows and we had my dear aunt officiate the wedding for us! It was simply wonderful!” Amanda.
Kukua venue at Punta Cana. It was a perfect day in the Caribbean. We were heading towards another piece of haven secluded in between two major hotels on Punta Cana shores, Bahia Principe Luxury Resort and Riu Palace. Passing by golf courses we hit the fairy-tale view, cozy road full of greenery, side entrance prepared for wedding guests and incredibly decorated covered salon. From the salon, over the sparkling blue pool, you can see in the full Caribbean glory gorgeous gazebo nested in the middle of the beach overlooking the ocean. Kukua venue wedding was in full preparation swing. Perfectly orchestrated, stuff was decorating straight from the heart to fulfill Bride’s dream… On the side of gazebo there was prepared a covered beach house, Palapa. A solution for the case of rain. Little decorated chapel, next to the ocean but not on the beach which make it perfect for religious ceremonies. While I do’s ware echoing over the ocean, indistinct murmur and cheering of guests at Kukua venue amazed with pure manifestation of love in front of their eyes, starts to expand on the beach and streams of good food and exotic drinks start to flow all the way into the reception. Party by the pool… Love ware shining… While we were leaving into the night our hearts was full of love and joy.