May 08 2015

Mark and Cheri Holmes met 11 years ago through mutual friends. Three years ago, while in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, Mark proposed. The couple, who currently live in Bellingham, Washington, wed in Sayulita on February 28th, 2015, just before sunset. Cheri tells El Sayulero why they chose Sayulita as their wedding destination, what their wedding was like, and much more.

How did you first hear of Sayulita?

We heard about Sayulita through friends, and Mark and I first traveled to Sayulita seven years ago. 

Why did you choose Sayulita as the location for your destination wedding?

Sayulita is so magical and special, and the town is close to Villa Amor, where we got married. We wanted our guests to be able to walk to everything they wanted to see. 

Which wedding planner did you choose and why?

We chose Karen Ruezga with Mexico Wedding at Villa Amor. She had spoken to us on a visit we had two years ago. While we were speaking to her, we saw our dream wedding coming to life. She was so sweet and wonderful to work with. 

Were there any other local individuals/companies that helped out with your wedding plans or made your stay in Sayulita more enjoyable?

We had a girls’ pedicure day at Bliss Spa It was fun to refresh our polish and it presented a good photo opportunity too! We also had a private party on Chica Locca a few days before the wedding with 45 guests! The best day besides the wedding! Everyone loved it! Whales were jumping, sun was shining!! Flor Mimo was our florist. Her work is so beautiful and she used my ideas to design beautiful table centerpieces. Our photographer, Joann Arruda, was so amazing to work with. She captured the love and fun of the day. Raul with videotaped and designed an amazing video set to music of our day! We can’t stop watching it! A videographer is a must for any wedding!!!

What was it like planning a destination wedding?

I loved it! I didn’t have to book anything. I communicated with Karen via email and she used my ideas to design a beautiful wedding for us. The only thing we had to do was bring an extra suitcase full of stuff for the wedding.

Where did you have your wedding and what was your wedding day like?

We had our ceremony at Villa Amor O overlooking the water. It was so magical and it couldn’t have gone any better! Mark and I, along with our guests, had such a good time! The reception was held at the La Grand Villa de Amor courtyard at Villa Amor. That is a perfect place for a party! We ate and danced under the stars. 

How big was your wedding? Where did your guests travel from?

We had 62 guests join us from all over. Most people came from the Seattle area, but others flew in from California and Colorado. My maid of honor brought her children too. Sayulita is a great place for kids!

What is your most memorable moment from your wedding?

Our first dance was so special. I loved our song playing and just being able to relax in each other’s arms. And I really liked our donkey, Igor. He was a hit with the guests. We loved having the freshly made churros as a late night snack! Our DJ was spectacular! There are so many great memories. 

What did you like about having a destination wedding in Sayulita?

Mark and I, and our guests, got a vacation at the same time. There is something for everyone in Sayulita. You can play in the ocean, shop in town, surf, and zip line....just to name a few things!

What most impressed you about your wedding planner?

Karen is so gracious. She took care of any problem or concern. She always responded to my emails within 24 hours. It was great to get such service! I didn’t feel like I was far away at all! She put all my plans together and offered suggestions and ideas. Karen helped us throw our first great party as husband and wife!

What did you enjoy most about your stay in Sayulita?

We loved the pool that Villa Amor put in! We had many days with our guests there. We just love the food in Sayulita! It was always amazing when we would show up at a restaurant with 30 people without a reservation, and how they would make it happen! The service is amazing!

Some people have a preconceived notion that Mexico is unsafe? How did you and your guests feel about your safety in Sayulita?

I have never felt unsafe in Sayulita, and we travel there frequently. We walk the little road in town at night and have never had a problem. There is a clinic close by if you or your guests need medical care. It’s perfectly safe for all ages!

How did the cost of your destination wedding to Sayulita compare to the cost of friends’ wedding in your home of origin?

The price to have a wedding in Sayulita was so much better than if we had planned one at home. A wedding in Bellingham would have cost us twice as much. You also have a smaller guest list when it’s a destination wedding. We were very happy with our prices. The 0 Restaurant at Villa Amor catered our rehearsal dinner and wedding. Their chef is amazing and her food is so good! We loved it all!

What advice would you give others considering a destination wedding in Sayulita?

DO it! You won’t be sorry! It was the best decision we ever made. 

Any final words or thoughts?

I’m ready to plan another visit!