In March, Patricia and Siri got married in the quaint, historic town of San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. I was there both as a guest and as a professional, which is so fun! It makes both roles that much more satisfying. They were originally going to get married at a luxurious Santa Barbara venue, which was generously offered by a family friend, but they pivoted to bringing the party down south. Here are some reasons why it was a perfect decision for them.
1. Instant Vacay for Friends and Family
The beauty of any destination wedding is that you’re giving some of your closest friends and family the excuse to vacation together! My husband and I arrived to Mexico around 9PM the week of the wedding, and it was so exciting to round the corner from customs and be greeted by a flock of our favorite goofballs and lovely ones. The joy of celebrating Patricia and Siri’s wedding was mounting, and we were already poised to have a great time!
2. Excited Guests
Not only are guests primed for vacation, they’ve also ventured outside their familiar culture. The wonder of travel is its ability to take you out of your own world. It transports you to a place where you’re naturally more present, more alert, and ready for anything! Being already so engaged, and without distraction, made enjoying all the festivities that much richer of an experience. Our brains were so open and ready for anything new and beautiful, and we were not disappointed.
3. All the Colors of the Wind
The wind might as well have been colorful, because everything else definitely was! The Spanish architecture of this charming small town is enchanting, with elaborate and oversized doors lining each side of the cobblestone streets, which are just wide enough to be functional. San Miguel is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, meaning it has been judged by the United Nations as a significant and historical landmark. It's an absolute treasure of humanity, and looks and feels like the place a Mexican maiden might do her provisions shopping on a Sunday morning in the 16th century. Flower crowns included.
The city itself is compact, and most things are within walking distance or a quick and affordable taxi ride. No matter where we were in the city, we were always close to the various locations of the event, as well as shops, restaurants, and other points of interest. Convenience added to the ease and charm of this darling town.
5. Street Tacos
Melty gooey cheese, pineapple, veggies, tart lime. So much yum. So much joy wrapped in one warm tortilla. You think that tacos can only be so good. And then you eat tacos served directly from the scorching hot surface of a street cart that sputters on generators, and is lit by one swaying light bulb, jerry rigged with an extension cord - and your tacospective explodes. The food in San Miguel de Allende is exceptional. From simple eats to more elaborate meals, some of the world’s greatest chefs work here and they blew our guacamole loving mind.
Have you ever been at a high end venue, flouncing about in some of your finest fashions and thought, I wish the fountain in the center of this baroque Spanish style mansion would transform into a jacuzzi so that my friends and I could soak our high-heeled feet. At Casa Cariño, your wish is literally their command, and you are in fact invited to dip your party-weary bodies in a perfectly heated fountain-turned hot tub. As if this wasn’t already enough, the Casa was out of this world beautiful, sleeping 16, with a magnificent rotunda where our couple pronounced their vows, and an outdoor swimming pool which converted to a hand painted dance floor, come reception time. Serious beauty. Serious luxury. Serious love.
7. Oh My Florals
Because Mexico is so abundant, the variety and quantity of available and affordable floral installments is jaw-dropping. Come wedding time, almost every surface of Casa Cariño was covered in soft pink roses and indigo centered anemones. It was enough to spoil this girl forever.
8. Wedding Parade!
The Callejoneada is a San Miguel traditional wedding parade, complete with oversized paper mache puppets of bride and groom, mariachi band, flowing tequila, and so much celebration! Patricia, Siri, and all their wedding guests got to march through the cobblestone streets of SMA, singing, dancing, and receiving all the support of the local community. It is a San Miguel de Allende specialty and was the perfect lift off for this couple's crazy fun life together.
9. Golden Hour in Heaven
Golden hour here is stunning, with the glow of the sunset dancing across the colorful rooftops of the buildings. The city seems to be lit from the inside, and untouched by contemporary distractions. The photos, of course, are gorgeous.
10. Rooftop Views
One of my favorite things was sunset on top of this city. There are many rooftop restaurants and bars in town. The Rosewood hotel is an high end spot to get snacks and drinks, and watch the sun descend behind the fairy tale city of San Miguel de Allende.
San Miguel de Allende was a dream, but my own perspective can only say so much. I asked Patricia and Siri to share some of their experience during their wedding week in Mexico and here's what they had to say.
What was the inspiration to get married in Mexico?
Our inspiration came from our desire to have a really intimate wedding in a beautiful location. I knew if we planned a wedding in my home town it would be impossible to keep the guest count down, so we had to think destination. San Miguel de Allende ended up being the perfect fit!
What was the most memorable moment for you and Siri?
Walking into the ceremony in the rotunda surrounded by our dearest friends and family to the sound of our friends showering us all with their beautiful voices. They surprised everyone (except for me!) by singing an acapella version of “Can’t Help Falling in Love” arranged by my dear friend, Corey Wachala. It was INCREDIBLE.
What was the biggest challenge of planning a wedding from far away?
Surrendering control and learning to have faith in strangers. Luckily, we picked all the right people who pulled it off like a dream!
What advise would you give couples planning international destination weddings?
Connect with other brides/couples who have gotten married in your location. Instagram was so helpful for this. Find a bride or groom whose style you love and reach out and pick their brain for advice. You’d be surprised at how willing they are to help and how invaluable their advice will be. And most importantly, hire a great wedding planner!!!
Thank you to Gurusurya Photography and Har Narayan Khalsa for allowing me to share their photos and video.