Are you dreaming of having a beach wedding in the Caribbean? Walking down an aisle of soft, white sand with palm trees, a gorgeous ocean, and beautiful wedding decor as your backdrop. Your closest family and friends celebrating with you as you marry the love of your life. For Jackie and Tyler, this dream became a reality when they had their wedding at Excellence El Carmen in Punta Cana. And you can make this dream come true, too!
Here I’m going to start by showing you some beautiful photos from Jackie and Tyler’s wedding day, and then I’ll tell you all about this amazing resort. Finally, I’ll give you some insight into what to expect during the wedding planning process. Hopefully, you find the information helpful and it can make your own wedding planning a little bit easier. Now, let’s get started!
Jackie & Tyler’s Wedding at Excellence El Carmen
This beautiful couple is from Wisconsin, USA. They decided to get married in the Dominican Republic because they love the beach and knew their friends and family would have a fantastic vacation here. They wanted a relaxing stay at an all-inclusive resort where they wouldn’t have to worry about a thing throughout their trip. Food, included. Drinks, included. More drinks, yep, they’re included too. So why not order another?
Jackie had a gorgeous bouquet of white lilies with a pop of turquoise that tied in with her wedding arch and ceremony decor. The beach had quite a bit of seaweed on their wedding day, but it still looked nice (and they wouldn’t let a little seaweed ruin their day).
They had an intimate beach wedding ceremony with 14 guests total. And even though it was a small wedding, the celebration was big! They had a full reception at Las Olas Beach Restaurant with dinner, speeches, cake cutting, and first dances. And all of their guests were up on the dance floor throughout the night, celebrating the happy couple. There was lots of dancing, lots of champagne, and of course, a shot or two of tequila along the way.
Check out some of their photos here:
Doesn’t it look like they had a blast? They are just the sweetest couple, and we’re so glad we got to be a part of their special day.
Let’s talk a little bit about the resort.
Excellence El Carmen
This is one of my favorite adults-only resorts in Punta Cana. They offer wonderful service, beautiful views, and nice, clean rooms regardless of whether you’re in a basic junior suite or a glamorous two-story terrace. Oh, and did I mention there are 23 pools lining the property? Take your pick and choose a different pool each day if you’d like!
If that’s not enough, they have 11 restaurants, 24-hour room service, and even a food truck. Try Spice if you’re into Asian food or Oregano for the classics like pizza and pasta. Is anyone else getting hungry?
The best thing about this resort is its staff. I stayed here for a long weekend, and everyone I met was kind, friendly, and helpful. Not to mention the bartenders who quickly learned my name and go-to drink order, and the animation crew who were very entertaining at the daytime and nightly events. All of the staff really go above and beyond for their guests.
If you have the chance, I’d definitely recommend an upgrade to the Excellence Club. You’ll get even more personalized service as well as extra perks like a private check-in and access to exclusive areas of the resort, like a private pool, beach area, and restaurant. It’s a little extra touch that can make your wedding experience that much better!
Speaking of weddings, this resort does an amazing job! Their ceremony and reception locations are beautiful, and the lighting at this resort is divine. As photographers, this is what we live for! To learn more about planning a wedding at Excellence El Carmen, check out Ashley & Joe’s Wedding Experience here.
Otherwise, let’s talk about the not-so-fun challenges that come with planning a destination wedding.
The Hardest Part about Planning a Destination Wedding
It might seem easy to plan a resort wedding as you’re looking through their wedding packages and the various inclusions they offer. Resorts usually have set packages that include the basics like your ceremony location, standard decor, and a wedding planner. Some packages may offer extras like a cocktail hour and reception. While others may include flowers or complimentary room upgrades. You’ll select from one of their packages and add all of the extras you need to create a package that works for you. Sounds easy enough, right?
But here’s the hard part:
Most of the wedding planning happens 1-3 months before the actual wedding day. For many brides, this feels like you’re waiting until the last minute. It can be very frustrating because you’ll want to plan everything right away. You’re excited about your upcoming wedding (and you should be!) but it’s easy for those emotions to turn into something else as you’re waiting to get the ball rolling.
You’ll want to pick out your wedding decor. Your flowers. The menu. You want to confirm all of the little details. You’ll definitely have lots of questions, and you’ll expect your wedding coordinator to answer them.
Resort wedding planners are veryyyy slow to respond. It may take a month or two for them to email you back. And even when you do receive a reply, it may not be as thorough or detailed as you’re expecting. Even for the most laidback brides, this can be a challenge.
You really have to put all of your faith into this person. You’ll have to constantly remind yourself that you made the right decision by having your wedding at Excellence El Carmen. And know that everything will come together at the end of the day!
So Why Am I Telling You This?
Honestly, I’m not trying to scare you. I just want you to be prepared for the wedding planning experience in Punta Cana. It can make it a lot easier and less stressful if you know what to expect from the beginning.
Try to be patient.
Trust that your wedding day is going to be amazing – because it will be!