Welcome to Moongate

Within these pages you will find information, links, answers to questions and, other wedding event resources. In one convenient location you will be able to review a wide range of wedding information.

We recommend that you post questions in response to the articles below; answers are posted freely.

Finally you may contact us to engage our services as a wedding planner. We also provide travel arrangements for your out of town guests and affordable honeymoon packages.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

La Hacienda Xcanatun Girlfriends’ Getaway

Overwhelmed by the job, mommy duties, care giving and the weather? Melt stress away by combining ancient Maya practices with luxurious, boutique hotel pampering during a 4-day/3-night Girlfriends’ Renewal Package at Hacienda Xcanatun, Merida, Mexico for only $615 per person.

After gathering those special girlfriends together, fly straight to Merida in Mexico’s Yucatan. A short 20-minute transfer brings you to the Old World romance of the elegant Hacienda Xcanatun (ssh-kana-toon) now a boutique hotel. This former 18th century sisal plantation surrounded by acres of jungle-like gardens, blends the warmth of colonial Mexico with all the comforts and amenities of a world-class hotel. Rejuvenation, renewal and stress reduction are at the core of Xcanatun's Girlfriends’ Getaway package, available for $615 per person, double occupancy, until December 15, 2010 (subject to availability, holiday blackout dates apply).

The Girlfriends' Getaway package includes ($615 Per Person for a 4-Day/3-Night Girlfriends’ Getaway):

3 nights in a garden-view Deluxe Suite, with a private terrace slung with hammocks and an outdoor hydrotherapy tub;
Daily Xcanatún breakfast
A gourmet three-course dinner with wine at the Hacienda’s award winning restaurant
Two Spa Massages, or one Massage and a Manicure and Pedicure
Roundtrip Merida airport transfers, hotel taxes/service charges (restaurant gratuities not included)
Spa treatments might include a toning Maya Puuc Clay Wrap paired with an Aura Cleansing, or a Maya Honey & Flower Massage. The Ancient Maya Stone Massage increases vitality and complements the stress-reducing Cibché Wrap and reflexology foot/ shoulder massage. Body polishing; anti-ageing hand and arm treatments, aromatherapy massages; clay, seaweed and cacao body wraps; fruit and botanical-based facials; manicures and pedicures are other options. Additional treatments run about $65 each and are also available in suite, or in the Maya garden palapa. Two freshwater pools set deep in the gardens offer additional relaxation.

Essential to any great escape is great dining and Hacienda Xcanatun’s gourmet restaurant, ranked among the top 50 restaurants in Mexico, serves the finest fusion Yucatecan cuisine. These specialties are prepared utilizing French cooking technique paired with luscious Caribbean and local ingredients. When ready to explore outside the hacienda, private excursions led by the best guides can be arranged to Maya ceremonial centers at Uxmal or Chichen Itza; flamingo eco-reserves and colorful colonial towns. On your own discover excellent shopping, outdoor concerts and street fairs in nearby Merida, a 10 minute taxi ride away.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Antigua's Cocos Hotel Introduces Wedding Package

Cocos Hotel, Antigua introduced a new Caribbean wedding and honeymoon package designed to provide couples with value and personalized wedding services on the island of Antigua. In Antigua June is traditionally the most popular month for Caribbean weddings, but nowadays couples are increasingly choosing the months of July and August for their destination weddings in Antigua. Noticing this trend, Cocos Hotel, a romantic Caribbean boutique hotel on Antigua, is offering a special wedding or honeymoon package at Cocos cottages from July 1 to Aug. 31. The new summer 2010 wedding package features a dedicated local wedding team, including marriage officer and witness. The wedding package includes personal selection of an intimate romantic location for the ceremony, decoration of the wedding, coordination of Antigua registration and legal fees, and provision of a one-tier wedding cake, bridal bouquet and button hole for the groom for an inclusive discounted package price $950 per couple. The limited time offer also offers a 5th night free for stays of five nights or more, free room upgrade based on availability, an additional complimentary 30 minute spa treatment per couple. Also included in the wedding package is a private intimate romantic champagne dinner on the beach for each wedding and honeymoon couple. Additional rooms for family and friends attending the wedding can also be arranged.

Cocos Hotel Antigua is an all inclusive romantic boutique resort featuring 26 individual wooden Caribbean chattel style cottages, each offering a private balcony with unobstructed views. Cocos is situated between two secluded white beaches providing privacy for wedding ceremonies if required. Cocos has an a la carte dining restaurant perched above the sea serving freshly prepared local dishes for honeymooners or wedding parties. As a small boutique hotel, Cocos Hotel carefully manages the number of weddings at the resort to allow for personal allocation of cottages and ensure privacy and personalized service.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Saks Fifth Avenue: Bridal Trunk Shows

Saks Fifth Avenue’s bridal trunk shows make it easy to shop complete collections from the best designers in the business, so finding the perfect dress for your big day is a breeze. They’re taking place in New York City and Beverly Hills on the dates designated below. Please call to make an appointment.

Saks Fifth Avenue Bridal Salon, 611 Fifth Avenue, fifth floor, New York (212-940-2269)

4-6, Kenneth Pool
11-13, Junko Yoshioka
18-20, Anna Maier Ulla-Maija
25-27, Jenny Packham

8-10, Marchesa
15-17, Anne Bowen
22-24, Monique Lhuillier
29-May 1, Selia Yang

6-8, Douglas Hannant
13-15, Angel Sanchez
20-22, Vera Wang

17-19, Carolina Herrera

15-17, Monique Lhuillier

Saks Fifth Avenue Bridal Salon, 9600 Wilshire Boulevard, Beverly Hills (310-887-5509)

4-6, Vera Wang
11-13, Melissa Sweet, Priscilla of Boston, and Platinum
18-20, Oscar de la Renta
25-27, Reem Acra

15-17, Romona Keveza
22-24, Douglas Hannant
29-May 1, Jenny Packham

6-8, Angel Sanchez
13-15, Anne Bowen

Monday, March 8, 2010

Barbados Weddings made in paradise

Barbados has a long tradition of hosting newlyweds and the island can provide all the necessary ingredients to ensure the intimate sojourn you'll always remember with great pleasure. Explore their ancient cultural history or some of the world’s oldest rum distilleries and buildings. Reminisce in the splendor of a former plantation house or discover our world underwater. A romantic escape to Barbados is limitless and so are the possibilities.

Adventurous couples will enjoy discovering the many facets of Barbados by indulging in the best spa experiences, exploring Barbados ancient sugar history, its run distilleries and former plantation houses, or an exciting surf or scuba lesson or two. In Barbados it's always the season for love. Our rich unique culture, tropical island breeze and beautifully restored architecture sets the perfect atmosphere for a truly quintessential romantic experience.

Discover your perfect place whether it be, in a secluded flower forest, in a picture perfect chapel or synagogue; or the epitome of old world charm, at a Barbadian plantation house. Old stone churches, mahogany groves, heritage sites. Botanical gardens, breathtaking hilltops, secret covers. Where better to say I do.

Maybe it's the promise of fabulous, world class, dining that you and your loved one will feast upon every day and each night, or the option of the most beautiful white sandy beaches to relax and languish in by day, which intrigues you. Perhaps it's the serenity of 70 miles of glorious beaches, with gently swaying palms that will lure you to honeymoon in Barbados.

Things to know about getting married in Barbados:

A valid passport or the original or certified copy of the applicant's birth certificate or travel documents

If either party was married previously and widowed, a copy of the previous marriage certificate and the deceased spouse death certificate

If either party was divorced, an original decree absolute or certified copy of the final judgment.

If the decree absolute is in a foreign language, the document should be translated by an authorized notary public officer.

Roman Catholic ceremony

Premarital inquiry completed and signed by the couple

Baptismal certificates for both parties indicating their freedom to marry

Statement of freedom to marry signed by the couple’s parish priest

Certificate proving participation in a marriage preparation program

Permission to marry or dispensation from disparity of cult issued by the bishop of the Catholic Church, if only one member of the couple is Catholic

Copies of applicable declarations of nullity, or death certificates for previous marriage ending with spouse's death

Testimonial letters from the bishop

Civil Requirements
A civil marriage license must be obtained here in Barbados by visitors. Parties need to present suitable identification.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Origami a New Style of Bridal Jewelry

Origami is a beautiful art taking ordinary pieces of paper and creating something to treasure. Jewelry designer and now author Cindy Ng, transforms delicate sheets of fine silver and gold into unique, gorgeous, and intricate necklaces and earrings. Fashioned from a single sheet of fine silver, origami pendants and charms are folded in the same tradition as paper. Each bijou comes in a custom keepsake box to protect your new-found treasure!

Origami actually started in China as Chinese paper folding and was later introduced to Japan where it became what we know as origami today. The origami I'm talking about though is not the precious paper trinket kind; this origami is strong enough to last through the ages, chic enough to wear everyday yet just as precious as its paper predecessor: Origami Bijou. Origami Bijou features jewelry that's made using the traditional paper folding technique, but instead uses sheets of fine silver and 24K gold. The results are stylish and delicate, sure to start some conversations, and will last for many years to come! Head over to Origami Bijou to check out all the amazing designs, and find your perfect good luck charm. Every one of Cindy's creations have traditional symbolism the turtles for wisdom, the crane for longevity and the spinning windmill which can turn your luck towards good health, wealth and a romantic lover.

If you love this look and have a jewelry budget, Cindy also produces the most adorable handmade gold and silver origami earrings and necklaces. Be sure to browse through the online store and we're sure you'll find the perfect piece that suits you.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Tips for St. Maarten Destination Weddings

If you are looking for a destination wedding in St. Maarten, here are a few tips to keep in mind before getting hitched.

First, you must submit requests at least 14 days before the ceremony to be conducted by the Registrar. You also must arrive on the island one week before the wedding date. Marriages are performed Monday through Saturday. A $410 fee is put in place, which includes civil ceremony, marriage book, stamps and certificate.

In addition, the following notarized documents must be submitted to the Registrar: ]

1. A full abridged birth certificate for the bride and groom. Documents should have an "Apostille" stamp, which can be obtained at the Secretary of State's Office.
2. Addresses and professions of the bride and groom.
3. Declaration of marital status, no older than three months.
4. Names of parents, their dates of birth, and places of birth, mothers' maiden names, and the parents' professions.
5. If a widow, a death certificate is necessary, and if divorced, a divorce certificate or a final judgement decree with ‘Apostille’ stamps.
The bride and groom must have six witnesses if the marriage is performed outside of the Marriage Hall and two witnesses if the ceremony takes place in the Marriage Hall. Foreign witnesses must present a valid passport or birth certificate with valid photo identification.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Almond Resorts Promotes Destination Weddings

With five all-inclusive properties on Barbados and St. Lucia, Almond Resorts is promoting destination weddings. Complimentary at all Almond Resorts when booking seven or more room nights, wedding basics, such as clergy/magistrate, government fees, witnesses, champagne, bouquet and boutonniere and a wedding coordinator, are included in each wedding package, starting with Wedding for You. Taking steps further the Treasured Wedding for You, Opulent Wedding for You and Platinum Wedding for you all offer different levels of luxury for the discerning bride and groom.

Starting at $1,729 as an upgrade from the Wedding for You when booked on or after Jan. 1, Treasured Wedding for You adds upgraded amenities including a 24-photo album and CD, a two-tiered wedding cake and toasting flutes, as well as a couple’s massage for the bride and groom and breakfast in bed the morning after the wedding. Opulent Wedding for You, starting at $1,989 when booked on or after Jan. 1 offers brides and grooms all of the amenities of the Treasured Wedding for You, plus an album of 36 photos from the big day and the couple’s very own real star from the International Star Registry.

The ultimate upgrade from the Wedding for You and Platinum Wedding for You, starting at $3,279 when booked on or after Jan. 1 offers brides and grooms extras such as a candlelit dinner for two on the beach, a spa day, hair and makeup for the bride and an island tour of Barbados or St. Lucia. They can also participate in an array of activities provided in the all-inclusive price, such as learning how to sail together, kayaking and windsurfing, yoga at sunrise or simply lying in the shade of a palm tree. Also covered with the one price are activities such as snorkeling, banana boat rides, water skiing, tennis and golf at Almond Beach Village or in St. Lucia at the St. Lucia Golf Course.

Ireland's Dromoland Castle Offers Ultimate Proposal Package

The Dromoland Castle in County Clare, Ireland, is offering the Ultimate Proposal Package. Dromoland Castle, a property of The Dromoland Collection, is a Renaissance structure built in the 16th century and surrounded by a 410-acre estate. The package includes two nights in a Signature Suite, a full Irish breakfast in the Earl of Thomond Restaurant, champagne breakfast delivered to the suite one morning, and a “decadent couples” treatment at The Spa at Dromoland.

Also included in the package are three experiences delivery of the engagement ring to the hand of the groom-to-be by one the castle’s trained falcons; a private helicopter trip to the Cliffs of Moher, the limestone palisade ascending 1,220 feet above the Atlantic Ocean; and a catered dinner under the stars in the Temple of Mercury. The package is available now through September 30, 2010. And April 1 through September 30, 2011, subject to availability. The cost is $3,322 per person sharing, VAT and service charges included.

St. Barth's Carl Gustav Hotel Offers Honeymoon, Spa Packages

St. Barth Properties is offering special pricing on two value-laden packages at the Carl Gustaf Hotel on St. Barth. Accommodations are in one-bedroom suites with private balconies and plunge pools. The seven-night Honeymoon Package includes breakfast in bed, or on the guests’ private balcony, every morning; flowers; bottles of bubbly; dinner at Victoria’s Restaurant; a Mini-Cooper to explore the island and visit all its beaches; treatments for two at the hotel’s Boutique Spa by Carita; and more. The package is priced for the week at $6,488 per couple.

Carl Gustaf’s five-day Spa Package for two incorporates a spa service daily for four days, with massages, facials and body treatments, and access to the new fitness center. There is champagne upon arrival, continental breakfast, dinner at both the sophisticated Victoria’s Restaurant and the more casual Carl Gustaf Lounge, a rental car for the duration of the stay, and more. The package is priced at $5,119 for two.