Getting married in Antigua

Jul 17th, 2003, 01:06 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 2
Getting married in Antigua

My fiance and I are planning to be married in December. We have both been married before and want to have a very quiet but romantic ceremony, without any family or friends.
We have chosen Antigua and the Siboney Beach Club for a venue. Does anyone have any up to date advice? We'd love to hear from any couples who have done it already.
beggs30 is offline  
Jul 17th, 2003, 02:27 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 4,870
Congratulations! I was married at a small inn on Antigua last month, so if you have any specific questions, please let me know under separate cover. [email protected]

What kind of advice are you looking for? Have you visited Antigua before? It was my first wedding, his second, and we decided to invite our family and friends to join us there. We chose Long Bay hotel for its intimate but highly laid back atmosphere. The staff took care of everything, even baking a wedding cake, and for a reception we had a huge barbecue on the beach.

I'd advise going down at least 2-3 days in advance of your desired wedding day. The first day you get there, you'll want to relax on the beach after a day of traveling. That leaves you the next day to go to town to fill out your paperwork. What they don't tell you ahead of time is that you have to leave your passport overnight at the goernment office while they process the paperwork. You then have to go back to St. John the following day to pick up the passports and papers. Because of this, we were glad that we arrived in Antigua on a Wednesday and got married on a Saturday.

A big upshot of getting married in Antigua is the relaxation factor. 90 minutes before the ceremony was to start, my fiance and I were still lying on the beach reading and sipping rum punches. (Wedding was at sunset) We looked at our watches, then at each other, and realized we'd better go get ready.
ejcrowe is offline  
Jul 18th, 2003, 08:35 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 160
I was married in Antigua last October and we loved the island. We were married at Sandals and they did a great job with the ceremony.

We took a trip to St. John's the day before the ceremony to fill out paperwork and this took all of an hour, there and back. We didn't have to leave our passports or anything behind. Maybe it differs depending on where you are being married. We also found it the most relaxing way to get married. The resort took care of every detail. It was just the 2 of us too, we didn't have any guests.

Congrats! I know the wedding will be perfect for you. You can't get any more quiet and romantic then Antigua!
beachlover99 is offline  
Jul 19th, 2003, 04:41 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 264
We had a similar experience with the passports. Flew in on Wednesday, went in town to do the paperwork on Thursday and were uncomfortable leaving our passports but were told that was the only way to do it. We went back the next day and sat waiting for the woman who had our passports to return from lunch. After a very long wait, it was determined that she was not coming back from lunch. We were then told that our passports could not be found. After a very anxious (for us!)15 - 20 minutes, they were located in the drawer of a random desk in the office. I always travel with photocopies of our passports but, not knowing how long it would take to get replacements, was concerned we would not be able to sail out of Antigua on Monday as planned.

All was well however. We, too, stayed at Siboney. The owners offered their gardens or the point out front for the ceremony but we already had our hearts set on Shirley Heights. The ceremony was beautiful, the setting was perfect. You will need two people to stand up with you (we did anyway).

pegoode is offline  
Jul 19th, 2003, 10:35 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 4,870
I think there's a different procedure with Sandals weddings from non-Sandals weddings. Sandals has a full time person who lets the couples fill out some, if not all, of the paperwork ahead of time and then they get walked through the procedure in the government offices. Our small hotel didn't have a wedding rep, so we had to wait for the Sandals couples to finish before we began. With about 10 couples in front of us in line at the office, it took us about an hour from the time we arrived until when we were finished.

If I may be solicitous for a moment... please do not show up at the office in St. John's wearing minimum attire and flipflops. This is the Antigua seat of government, the equivalent of our Washington, DC, after all, albeit on s smaller scale. My fiance and I were embarrassed by the Sandals couples in the waiting room with us (I'm sure not all Sandals wedding couples are like this!)--they were very skimpily dressed, talking very loudly about how hungover they were and making many gestures referring to their great two-fisted drinking stunts the night before. Okay, no more soapbox.
ejcrowe is offline  

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