Soon after we got engaged my fiancé, Chris, and I decided to have a small and intimate destination wedding. The key was finding a place that would be more personal than staying at a big resort where we’d get lost in the crowd and our wedding would simply become the next thing to do on the list of activities for the day.
I sought the advice of my well-traveled brother who immediately suggested Bluefields Bay Villas in Jamaica. He and his family had stayed there and were completely thrilled with the “old world” charm of the luxury villas. He described the secluded seafront villas as being gorgeous with each one having an adjoining pool. He had nothing but high praise for the expertly-trained staff and the amazing gourmet meals. I was immediately sold on the idea and after doing some research, was delighted to discover that Kensington Tours offers customizable villa packages and Jamaica Tours at Bluefields Bay. I had traveled with Kensington Tours before and was always impressed with their service, price point and ability to customize my trips the way I wanted. I had a lengthy chat with the sales associate who was incredibly knowledgeable about the property and planned a fantastic itinerary that suited all our wedding requirements and more! We ended up having 35 people join us and used five of the distinctive villas at Bluefields Bay. Each family had their own villa, our friends were conveniently housed next to each other and we rented two 12 seater vans for the week to shuttle people around.
Upon arriving at Blue Fields Bay, we were all stunned and amazed by the picturesque property and charming accommodations. We walked in to the main villa to see silver candelabras lit, flowers spelling out “welcome”, fine China adorning the table and a smiling staff waiting to serve dinner. The rooms had gorgeous four posted beds, elegant hardwood floors, and were authentically decorated. I later learned that Bluefields is the largest collector of Jamaican antiques, China, and silver in Jamaica – and it showed! The next morning we were greeted by each of our butlers who were very attentive and helpful. We also met the village manager, Carmen, who made arrangements for our stay: welcome cocktail party the first night, full day at Black River & YS Falls, rehearsal dinner and of course – the wedding! She arranged every detail of the wedding to suit our desires precisely; from the flavours of our cakes, to flower arrangements and the three-course meal, Carmen made sure we got exactly what we wanted! She also reviewed the planned activities for each day, asking if we wanted to set up any special meals, arrange any spa services or set up excursions into town for shopping or sight-seeing.
Each morning I started my day with fresh Jamaican coffee (the best I have ever had, by the way) and would later recline on the deck chair with a mimosa, go swimming in the pool, and then take in the dramatic vistas of sugar cane fields and the sparkling waters of the Caribbean Sea. As a group, we spent the rest of the week snorkeling off our private beach, enjoying massages and meeting up for meals and drinks. Our butler, Kaneel, always seemed to show up at the right time to handle any requests and even made up a theme drink for our friends’ villa! Breakfast and lunch were made whenever we were ready to eat. Dinners were a three-course affair and we were always pleasantly surprised by the amazing flavours and variety of the meals served. Whatever we chose to do, from morning to night, we were taken care of – from the management, to our butler, the kitchen staff and even the night watchman. The Bluefields’ staff really made our stay incredible.
Our day trip to YS Falls, with our own private guide and drivers, was the most memorable excursion and by far the most fun activity on the trip! We all had so much fun swimming in the pools at the bottom of the falls and we even had a rope to swing from! As we were eating our lunch which was prepared for us on picnic tables, my sister told me, “Christine, this place is like the garden of Eden. I have never been somewhere so beautiful!!”
The wedding day went off without a hitch. We chose the San Michelle villa to host the special event and the ceremony took place on the beautiful pool pavilion. When I arrived, it was the first time I had seen the set up for the wedding and it took my breath away. White muslin netting hung from the ceiling decorated with flowers, the pillars were wrapped in palm fronds and flowers, and flowers were strewn all down the aisle - it was stunning! The temperature during the ceremony was well over 30’C and everyone was sweating. Thank goodness for Martin – another of Bluefields’ famous butlers – who met us at the end of the aisle with a cold cloth and stood ready with a tray of cold water and fruit smoothie drinks for me and Chris as we got our photos taken. Dinner that night was served out on the lawn with fine China, crystal ware, and a delicious four- course meal. My nephew broke out the music and we invited all the staff to come and enjoy dancing with us. Our special day was made even more perfect because the staff was so incredible, helping with whatever was needed.
Our vacation was unforgettable – from beginning to end. Everyone left Jamaica wanting to stay for another week! We kept discovering new nooks within the property: hidden hammocks, waterfront pavilions, pristine beachfront, beautiful pathways between villas and hiking trails. The incredible food, attentive staff, fun activities, and the ability to create our own custom vacation made our stay at Bluefields Bay Villas incredible! Kensington Tours really came through in organizing a unique and personal destination wedding, just as we had envisioned. The sales associate was careful to take note of all our requirements and was on point in making it happen the way we wanted it. It’s not only a fantastic option for a destination wedding but is perfect for anyone seeking personalized service in an authentic and picture-perfect vacation spot. I cannot recommend Bluefields Bay Villas enough!
Click here for more information on Kensington Tours' packages at Bluefields Bay.
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