201759(火)

From the South Shore to a warm beach


From the South Shore to a warm beach

Destination weddings have become a favoured choice for couples eager to tie the marital knot in countries offering azure waters, silky sand beaches, constant blue skies and warm local hospitality.

Middle LaHave residents Kevin Corkum and Amanda Nauss recently invited 30 family members and friends to witness their nuptials and participate in a week of fun at a resort in Cayo Coco, Cuba.

“Cuba is one of our favourite places, and relying on someone at the resort to take care of most of the arrangements left Kevin and me more time to enjoy our family and friends during the week,” said Nauss, an administrative assistant with the Nova Scotia Health Authority in Bridgewater.

Assembled on a pristine beach in Cayo Coco, Cuba, newlyweds Amanda Nauss and Kevin Corkum kiss as members of the wedding party admire them. From left, bridesmaids Denby MacRae, Christine Abreu and Kim Freeman, and groomsmen Bruce Sangster, Johnny Nauss and Aaron Henley. Destination weddings are popular. (Kevin & Christine Photography)
Images: backless wedding dresses外部リンク

“The wedding and honeymoon co-ordinator at the resort was very organized. Her attention to detail was phenomenal, and the staff went above and beyond to make everything perfect for us,” she said.

“For the entire week we were treated like a king and queen. During the days before and after the wedding, we would return to our room to discover gifts, champagne and rose petals. It wasn’t just a wedding day, it was a wedding week.”

The Melia Jardines del Rey resort hosts many weddings, particularly during the spring. The ever-cheerful co-ordinator said she and her staff were involved in 18 weddings in April alone, and 25 ceremonies were held at the resort during April, 2016.

Corkum said the resort staff’s hospitality and determination to make his and Nauss’s wedding special was exceptional. “For me, the appeal of Cuba is its people and culture,” he said.

A career firefighter and paramedic, Corkum is a captain with Halifax Regional Fire and Emergency. In fact, the wedding group had a definite emergency-responder feel to it, with firefighters, emergency-room nurses, paramedics and one RCMP member in attendance.

Although single, Jamie Macumber of Wileville is an old hand at destination weddings. He has attended two weddings and one vow renewal in Cuba.

“They were mostly South Shore residents with some Cape Bretoners. I like coming down with larger groups because no matter where I go on the resort, I bump into someone I know,” said Macumber, who works two weeks of every month in Nunavut, trucking iron ore 100 km across the tundra from the minesite to the port.

“Maybe one day I would consider having my own destination wedding, but right now I’m having fun at other people’s weddings,” he said.

Vanessa Legay of Upper LaHave attended the wedding with boyfriend Aaron Henley, a groomsman and first cousin to Corkum. The trip down to Cuba with Air Transat was Legay’s maiden flight, and she was “super excited” to be going south, and experiencing for the first time all the activities offered at a beachfront resort.

“The beach wedding was wonderful. The weather was gorgeous and the resort was beautiful. We had an amazing time sailing on a catamaran, and spending time in the ocean and pools,” said Legay.

“Aaron and I snorkelled, took a Jeep safari, toured a crocodile farm, and visited a remote island for lunch. It was a busy week, but we enjoyed ourselves,” she said.

With a record four million tourists visiting Cuba in 2016, tourism is a key component of the Cuban economy. Currently, Canadians make up more than 60 percent of all tourists, although predictable weather, safety, friendly and accommodating people, and good value are attracting tourists from Europe. During the week of the wedding, sold-out flights arrived from England and Italy.

The town of Moron is home to most of the nearly 10,000 workers who are bused daily to their jobs at the 18 resorts and one villa located across the causeway on Cayo Coco. The worker count swells to 15,000 when you factor in construction workers at three resorts being built. Cubans are not allowed to reside on the island.

One of Nauss’s three bridesmaids, Christine Abreu, (both lifelong friends married men named Kevin) said she and her husband exchanged vows in the Dominican Republic four years ago, and the next week they photographed a destination wedding at the same resort.

“During our honeymoon I was speaking to a girl who said she was getting married the following week. I mentioned that my husband and I photograph destination weddings, and after viewing our work online she asked us to shoot her wedding,” said Abreu.

“Since then we have photographed weddings in Vietnam, Thailand, Jamaica and two in Cuba. We also photograph many weddings at home in Nova Scotia.”

Abreu believes there is less pressure on the bride and groom during a destination wedding.

“If you get married at home, you spend a good part of the wedding and reception talking to people you haven’t seen for months, maybe even years. So you spend a lot of time socializing and catching up,” she said.

“At a destination wedding you see and speak with those people all week, so your actual wedding day is just about you and your spouse.”

Abreu said if couples are planning a destination wedding and want to ask Uncle Bob to be the photographer because he has an awesome camera and always takes good pictures, think again. Uncle Bob likely doesn’t have the right equipment or know-how to shoot successfully in a hot, humid climate.

“You really have to know your equipment and how it operates in different weather conditions. We are used to travelling overseas with our equipment and can easily adapt to changing conditions,” said Abreu.

Shooting 20 to 30 weddings a year at home and abroad together has created an intuitive on-the-job dynamic between Abreu and her husband. Often they don’t communicate for hours during a shoot.

Also see: bridesmaids dresses外部リンク






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