Destination Wedding in Guanacaste, Costa Rica

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Gloriana and Carlos are both originally from Costa Rica but now live in the US. So when the duo got engaged, it seemed fitting for them to return home for a destination wedding in Guanacaste at the Hacienda Pinilla. Wedding Planners at Four Nineteen Weddings were enlisted to help with the big day and Barbara shared with us her experience working with the lovely family. “They wanted a destination wedding within their destination wedding, so that even their local guests (her parents and family still live in Costa Rica) could make a vacation out of the wedding weekend. They also wanted to get married in the Church, so the beautiful chapel at Hacienda Pinilla made perfect sense. They rented Villa Tranquila for the week and it turned out to be, with its lovely poolside garden, the perfect spot for their wedding reception. So in one place they were able to find what they wanted: a lovely chapel, a house with a nice flat garden and the beach.” 

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“Gloriana is a graphic designer, and she designed the entire invitation suite, which ended up being fabulous inspiration for the wedding day design. Gloriana added some bright colors (turquoise being the predominant one) to the invitation suite, and some traditional Costa Rican oxcart inspired details that were added to all the paper goods.”

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“As with most outdoor weddings, a big consideration is the weather. In Costa Rica particularly, with the “official” rainy season being between May and November, and weather being very unpredictable, the rule of thumb is always to “expect the best but plan for the worst”. We fully prepared for rain by renting a tent, and luckily, there was no rain… but it was quite windy so we had to improvise ways for the linens to stay put, while doing the setup. The wind eventually died down for the reception, so all was good!”

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“We also had a minor setback with the Priest being late for the ceremony (yikes!!!). Instead of making the couple wait for him to arrive (he was about an hour late), the photographer took them for their photo session (they had done a first look before, so they had already seen each other, which was a great thing) while the Priest arrived.  As soon as he got in, Carlos and Gloriana arrived and the ceremony began (and they were able to get some lovely sunset photos).”

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“They originally thought of going with a classic table setup (all white linens, chiavari chairs, etc), but later on decided to give the table a more rustic feel by adding bamboo chairs and rattan charger plates. One of the cutest details were the ceramic bird whistles which double up as seating cards and favors. Gloriana wanted to add an extra pop of color with something very local, and this was how we managed to do it!”

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“As the guests came in from the ceremony into the reception space, they were greeted with cute mii coconuts with coconut water to quench their thirst (it was a pretty hot day!)”

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“The menu they picked had a lot of local flavor, mixed with more international flair (they didn’t want it to be too typical Costa Rican, since a lot of Costa Rican guests were attending and they wanted the menu to be special and different for everyone). The icing-free chocolate wedding cake was a point of conversation, as it is not something people too often see in Costa Rica. It looked fantastic and tasted even better.”

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Ale Sura

Wedding Vendors: Wedding coordinator: Barbara at Four Nineteen Weddings, Flowers: Artflower, Catering: Catering Costa, Cake: Victoria Zoch, Rentals: Oceano Rentals and Eventos Boadicea, Ceremony Music: Entre Cuerdas, Reception Music: Cara Luna, Ceremony Venue: Chapel at Hacienda Pinilla, Reception Venue: Villa Tranquila at Hacienda Pinilla