Weddings and Honeymoons in Puerto Rico

Many other Caribbean destinations make a big pitch as wedding destinations, and Puerto Rico often gets overlooked. But it has all the ingredients of a spectacular place to wed and/or honeymoon. Gorgeous beaches dissolving into warm turquoise waters and a sensual tropical climate induce romance, and many an enamored couple has tied the knot here on the spur of the moment.

Choosing the Perfect Place

You can be as stylish or as informal as you wish. Although Puerto Rico has fewer ritzy beach resorts than many other islands, there's no shortage of exquisite boutique hotels with just the right ambience to inspire "I do." In San Juan, Villa Herencia and El Convento have just the right romantic style. The Hix Island House on Vieques will suit honeymooners seeking a reclusive escape. Also, in Guánica, along the island's southeast coast, consider the Copamarina Beach Resort, which has spa- and diving-themed packages for honeymooners. Many larger hotels have their own wedding planners to take care of all arrangements—a distinct advantage over smaller hotels if you're seeking to wed on the island.

Getting Your Licenses

You must get an application from the Demographic Registry Office, which is in the Plaza Las Américas Mall in the Hato Rey neighborhood of San Juan. There are no special residency requirements, but U.S. citizens must produce a birth certificate, as well as a driver's license or other state-issued photo identification. Non-U.S. citizens must produce a valid passport for identification purposes. Medical certificates that conform to the requirements for marriage in your state of residence are required; these can be completed by your own doctor, but must be valid for 10 days beyond their issue date. Finally, you must produce a letter from an attorney or a Puerto Rican affidavit affirming that you are not a resident of Puerto Rico and that you intend to marry in Puerto Rico. Again, this document is also only considered valid for 10 days after issuance.

Both you and your intended must appear together at the office to purchase a marriage license. A judge or any member of the clergy may then perform your ceremony. The fee is usually between $150 and $350. Most large hotels on the island have marriage coordinators who can explain the necessary paperwork and help you complete it on time for your marriage ceremony.

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