The thought of having a casual, stress-free beach wedding sounds like an absolutely amazing idea, doesn’t it? And with miles of beachfront real estate along the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea, Mexico is a prime location for beach lovers who want to tie the knot. And if you’re looking for specific locations for a gay wedding, you may want to consider Cancun, where Pat and Yosh had their beach wedding. After four years together, the happy couple decided to have their destination wedding in Cancun, and now they’re spilling the details about their unique experience and why you should consider having your nuptials in Mexico.
Why did you decide to have a destination wedding instead of a local wedding?
This was a rather simple decision. My (Pat’s) family is primarily from West Palm Beach, FL, and Yosh’s family is from San Juan, Puerto Rico. We decided to be fair to both families since everyone had to travel. Cancun, Mexico, seemed like the perfect place to host our guests – especially because it has a reputation for being a fun city, and we knew our family and friends would want to have a great time. And of course, more importantly, Cancun was not too cumbersome for people traveling from Florida or Puerto Rico (or elsewhere for that matter).
What made you decide to choose Mexico, specifically Cancun, for your destination wedding?
We wanted to have it at an all-inclusive resort somewhere in the Caribbean or Mexico. We knew our guests would also treat it like a vacation, so it also had to be in a place that allowed for a range of budgets. With that said, Cancun seemed to offer the best resort options for a beach wedding.
Where did you have your destination wedding? Would you recommend it to other LGBTQ couples? Why?
We had our wedding festivities in Cancun, Mexico. The wedding planning staff at our hotel was top-notch. We threw a “meet and greet” party on Friday night, the wedding (cocktail hour and reception) on Saturday and a “hangover brunch” on Sunday. The spaces we selected for our events were stunning and functional. And the reception was held on the hotel’s rooftop terrace.
What were some legal responsibilities you had to take care of in order to get married in Cancun and to make your marriage official (e.g. marriage license, etc.)?
Our situation is a little unique in this regard. Gay marriage was not fully legal in the United States when we had planned our ceremony. We had considered flying to New York or Massachusetts where gay marriage was legal, but ultimately, we decided that Florida was our home and that we'd wait until gay marriage was legal there to get our license. Thankfully, the U.S. Supreme Court ended up ruling in favor of gay marriage soon after our symbolic ceremony in Cancun. We got legally married in a courthouse in Miami Beach on January 9, 2015 -- days after it became legal.
Did you incorporate any cultural traditions into your wedding?
We did a sand ritual. We poured sand from Puerto Rico and sand from West Palm Beach – which represented our hometowns and our backgrounds – into a vase as a symbol of our union. We still have that vase as a memento to remind us of our wedding day. In addition to that, since Yosh is Puerto Rican, we incorporated Latin music at the reception.
Were you able to explore Cancun and any local attractions?
Outside of the wedding events, we spent some time with our friends and family who stayed after the wedding festivities concluded on Sunday. We experienced the fun vibe along Kukulkan Boulevard. Other than that, some family members went to the Chichén Itzá ruins in Tulum, which they absolutely loved!
Would you recommend Cancun to other friends or couples looking for a destination wedding location?
Absolutely. The water and beaches are unbelievably beautiful. The people are incredibly friendly. And our resort exceeded all of our expectations.
What was your most memorable moment during your wedding weekend?
This is almost impossible to answer. The entire experience from start to finish was more than we could ever ask for. The love, family and friends, the location, the hotel... all made it an unforgettable time in Cancun!
Inspired by this article and want to speak with a Vacation travel agent about how you can plan an unforgettable destination wedding in Mexico? Let one of Vacation’s on-call travel experts match you with an LGBTQ travel specialist, who can help you plan a customized itinerary in your preferred gay-friendly destination.