From the charming and the quaint to the swank and chic, the sister islands of Antigua and Barbuda pack a punch with an eclectic array of blushing beaches, catamaran cruises on the open sea and brilliant sunsets made even more spectacular by the green flash that accompanies that last dip of the sun. The highest peak, Mount Obama, named after the President, stands proud at 1,300 feet above the sea, a game of cricket is the national pastime and weddings on the beach are world-renowned.
As the story goes, there are 365 beaches or one for each day of the year. Pigeon Point at Falmouth Harbour suits casual swimmers with its still water and a soft surf. North of St. John’s, Dickenson Bay is one of the finest with a wide strip of talc white sand. For intimate ceremonies, secluded strips are north of the Bay along the crown of the island.
Renew and Refresh
With year round sunshine, anytime is the right time to say “I do” or renew wedding vows at the Jolly Beach Resort. For couples booking a seven-night all-inclusive stay, a Renewal of Vows package is gratis and when booked in a superior room category is ideal for honeymooners who have walked down the aisle in a traditional wedding at home but would like a romantic ceremony on the beach.
Brides of all ages choose a bouquet of roses or lilies while their hubby wears a matching buttonhole. A Civil Marriage Officer officiates at a myriad of venues from the pool gazebo to a chosen spot along the mile-long white sandy beach. To commemorate the occasion, the resort presents the couple with a complimentary bottle of wine, $100.00 credit for the Palms Wellness Centre Spa and an official vow renewal certificate. “While the yearly vow renewals by celebrities like Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon certainly seem to make this a new wedding trend, we have always found our Renewal of Vows ceremony to be a very popular special celebration,” said Beverly King, wedding coordinator, “many of our couples commemorate a milestone anniversary; others want to share a celebration of their love with children and grandchildren.”
After the ceremony, guests enjoy high octane entertainment at the resort or head to the casino to tempt Lady Luck at the many slot machines and gaming tables.
For brides and grooms who want the glamour of a traditional wedding, a pair of packages designed by one of Antigua leading artists aim to please. Big on color, a wedding created by Mark Brown can be either classic white or with tropical with an aisle on the beach adorned with sea shells, lanterns and bouquets of wildly colored flowers. “We are honored to be collaborating with an artist of Mark Brown’s caliber on our new wedding packages,” said Vernon Jeffers, general manager, “his visual artistry coupled with the bride and groom’s wishes cast colorful spells on our beach wedding venue.”
The Hammock Lounge is a glorious venue for a reception with tables that have matching overlays and bold vases with tropical arrangements. .“A wedding is a couple’s ultimate personal event and I’m thrilled to be collaborating with Jolly Beach to make all dreams a reality,” says Mark Brown, “my work is inspired by light, colors, textures and lines and these in turn by my Antiguan heritage.”
The Mark Brown Classic package for couples hosting up to one hundred guests includes a consultation with the artist, scrumptious two-tier wedding cake or trendy cupcakes, bridal bouquet and matching boutonniere.
To sweeten the deal, gifts for the newly married include a $500.00 credit with a booking of six rooms with stays of seven-nights, $100.00 credit for the Palms Wellness Centre, Spa and a $40.00 credit for an island excursion. The newlyweds also enjoy an en-suite breakfast the morning after the ceremony, cozy dinner on the beach and “just married” Jolly Beach souvenir tees and mugs.
Three Easy Steps
- Visit the Ministry of Justice on Nevis Street in St. Johns’ with your passports, complete the application and pay the fees.
- Confirm a date and time for the ceremony with the Marriage Officer.
- Exchange vows and toast the bride!