The Ultimate Guide: Planning Your Destination Wedding in Costa Rica
Your wedding should be as special and unique as your love story. For many engaged couples, that means foregoing the traditional wedding plans in favor of a destination wedding. Destination weddings offer the opportunity to enjoy a luxurious and exotic locale, such as Costa Rica, while making your wedding an intimate event that only your closest family and friends will enjoy and remember.
Tips for Planning for a Costa Rica Destination Wedding
- Book your villa/venue 12-18 months in advance
- Notify guests well in advance so they can make arrangements
- Hire a wedding planner/vendors who will travel or secure local and trusted vendors
- Consult with concierge to arrange travel to and from airport/villa
- Arrange with concierge for your meals/chef or caterer
- Plan with concierge the best excursions/itinerary
- Obtain passports for guest travel and any information for marriage documents
- Notify guests on what to pack and additional costs that they may incur
- Relax and enjoy your wedding!
Our Guide For Must-Have’s & Must-See’s and Do’s
Costa Rica is a premiere location for destination weddings, a lush country full of wildlife, breathtaking coastlines and amazing cultural experiences that are sure to wow your guests. Whether you’re an honorary Tico or visiting Costa Rica for the very first time, the following are the “Musts” to add to your destination wedding itinerary.
Why Have a Wedding in Costa Rica?
Costa Rica is a small country located in Central America, boasting 1,300 miles of varied and remarkable coastline. It remains one of the world’s top locations for destination weddings. Its beautiful and diverse landscape — featuring beaches, volcanoes, lush rainforests and mountains — coupled with its warm climate and even warmer people make it a desirable location for engaged couples and their guests and an ideal locale for destination weddings.
Last year, twenty percent of engaged couples opted for a destination wedding. Traditional weddings last only a few hours, with couples feeling pressured to thank and greet all of their guests. Guests often leave feeling disappointed that they didn’t get to spend any time with the bride and groom, and the newly married couple usually leaves feeling tired and hungry.
Destination weddings offer couples the benefits of simpler planning, less pressure and more quality time to spend with their guests. Since the average duration of a destination wedding is six days, this is a valuable opportunity for you and your most cherished guests to have a great time relaxing and spending time together. The chance to have your ceremony and reception in a tropical and luxurious locale, with your cherished guests residing nearby, is priceless.
There are many reasons to have a destination wedding in Costa Rica. Destination weddings in Costa Rica offer benefits that traditional weddings cannot. This beautiful country provides an incredible backdrop for your wedding, which you simply can’t recreate in a traditional venue. This beautiful and scenic country promises not only beautiful wedding photographs but also a fun, unique and exotic experience for your guests.
Having a destination wedding usually means hosting a smaller and more intimate event with a more select guest list. You can have your dearest friends and family there and forego inviting acquaintances, business colleagues and other people you would be inclined to invite if you were having a local wedding. Since the guest list is exclusive, your guests will all feel they are truly important.
What Season Is Best for Having a Destination Wedding in Costa Rica?
Costa Rica is renowned for its warm and tropical climate. Temperatures average about 80-85 degrees with a cool and refreshing ocean breeze keeping the heat at bay. At night the temperature dips into the mid–60s and 70s, which is ideal for watching the beautiful sunset, dining outdoors and enjoying nighttime activities.
Unlike many other tropical destinations, Costa Rica is hurricane-free. Located along the Pacific Coast, Costa Rica is below the hurricane belt and protected from Caribbean storms. Since it is in the rainforest, Costa Rica does experience a rainy season in the months of September and October offering usually warm and sunny mornings with afternoon showers and occasional thunderstorms. From May – August there is a transition season with mostly sunny days with only occasional (and refreshing) showers some afternoons. The dry season runs from December to April with little chance of rain.
Although drier weather opens the possibility to an afternoon beach wedding, There are many advantages to planning your wedding during Costa Rica’s transitional or rainy season. Since there is an abundance of moisture, the rainforest and its inhabitants come to life. The lush rainforests burst forth with tropical flowers and bright colors. There is also an abundance of food for the native wildlife, which makes them more active. For visitors, the rainy season also means cooler temperatures, fewer crowds and better rates.
Costa Rica is beautiful at any time of year. Things to consider when deciding what time of year to plan your Costa Rica wedding may have more to do with the weather conditions in your location than those in your destination. Your guests will relish the opportunity to escape the harsh winter conditions if you plan a winter wedding while it’s warm and sunny in Costa Rica!
Benefits of Having Your Costa Rica Destination Wedding at Villa Punto de Vista
You want to choose a location for your Costa Rica destination wedding that will truly set your event apart and wow your guests. Manuel Antonio is a small and beautiful Costa Rican town that overlooks the beaches, jungles and mountains. Its unique location gives guests a panoramic view of all of the beauty Costa Rica has to offer. Fortunately, planning a destination wedding in Costa Rica is easy when you find the perfect venue.
Villa Punto de Vista, a five-star luxury villa, is a premier wedding venue for destination weddings in Manuel Antonio. Here, you and your guests can enjoy the luxurious accommodations, beautiful palm trees, water and golden sand beaches while our anticipative staff attends to your every need. The villa offers the amenities of an exclusive hotel with the intimacy of a secluded villa.
Villa Punto de Vista offers ten beautifully appointed and air-conditioned suites for up to 30 guests. Additional guests have the option of staying nearby at partner villas and hand-selected hotels with the assistance of our knowledgeable and friendly concierge to make arrangements. Our event spaces can host up to 120 guests.
Marrying in Manuel Antonio means you can have your ceremony outdoors in a casual and comfortable atmosphere, complete with lush florals and delicious local fare. Whether you decide to have an intimate ceremony on the beach just below the villa or in one of our breathtaking, panoramic ceremony/reception spaces overlooking the beach and rainforest, our staff will work to to ensure that your stay is one you and your guests will remember forever.
Wedding Venues Offered at Villa Punto de Vista Include:
- Rooftop Deck – Located on the fifth and highest floor, this architecturally remarkable and covered space provides shade and shelter from the tropical rains while offering beautiful views of the rainforest canopy and sea below. This space features a full bar.
- Events Terrace – This beautiful terrace is located one story below the Rooftop Deck and boasts endless views of the majestic beach sunsets and a verdant rainforest. The space features natural elements such as locally harvested and renewable teak wood, rose sandstone rock textures and also features a full bar.
- Ballroom – The ballroom features double-height ceilings and a mezzanine level that’s perfect for your musical entertainment. Beyond offering a full bar, the ballroom features a state-of-the-art sound system and plenty of open space for larger ceremonies and banquet dining. The ballroom’s open corner design transitions to an outdoor space near the pool which allows guests to enjoy the scenery from the Pool Deck
- Pool Deck – This space is ideal for smaller groups and features a covered lounge area next to the pool. Here your guests can enjoy champagne from a one-of-a-kind bottom-lit ice-trough and bask in the beauty of the rainforest.
- Beach & Rainforest – Just below the villa, your family and friends can watch you recite your vows among the emerald waters, tropical palms and lush green foliage. Manuel Antonio is truly where the rainforest meets the sea.
We Make Wedding Planning Easy
Villa Punto de Vista hosts only one wedding at a time, ensuring that you, your event and your guests have the utmost attention of our staff. The villa is rented only to you and your guests, providing an intimate and private setting. There are activities available for guests of all ages and five beautiful beaches where you can swim, stroll or lounge. Award-winning private chefs are available to provide a customized dining menu during your stay.
You can either bring along your dream team of vendors or hire a trusted local wedding planner (Most are from the US/Canada) to realize your wedding vision and secure local vendors to tie all of your wedding details together. Since destination weddings tend to be more relaxed and less formal than traditional black-tie weddings, there is usually less planning involved. Local wedding planners can help you to secure rentals, catering, photographer/videographer, florist, and entertainment among other services.
Hiring a local wedding planner is also a good idea since many couples may be unsure of what a Costa Rica wedding is like. They can even help you to infuse local customs into your wedding. With their help, you and your private chef can plan a custom wedding menu that can even include delicious Costa Rican dishes. A local wedding planner will also help you obtain all of the necessary marriage documents and facilitate all the details.
With the stunning backdrop that Costa Rica provides, there is little need for additional décor. The neighboring rainforest flaunts lush greenery and tropical flowers in every color while the soothing sound of the ocean waves provides beautiful music for all to enjoy. Don’t be surprised if extra guests show up at your wedding — the forest overlooking our villa is home to exotic wildlife such as toucans, parrots, sloths and monkeys, and guests frequently enjoy up close and personal visits from these exotic friends.
Travel Beyond you Villa Punto de Vista Experience
Many engaged couples appreciate the ease of having their wedding and dream honeymoon in the same location (a WeddingMoon!) with no additional travel plans needed. With all the privacy and lavish amenities offered, such as a full staff, luxury bath and spa products, infinity pool and Jacuzzi and tropical champagne mimosas, there is no need to honeymoon elsewhere.
For couples (as well as your guests) who wish to explore Costa Rica further for honeymooning or any type of travel, we can assist you with travel recommendations and often preferred rates for villa guests.
Villa Punto de Vista offers all guests assistance with travel plans and reservations for tours, restaurants and excursions, without the need to hire an outside travel agency. Costa Rica is a convenient travel destination, with many options for air travel. Guests will fly into San Jose International Airport, where they will have the option of using our luxury van service that offers a scenic drive along the region’s brand-new highway or booking a short 20-minute flight to and from the Quepos regional airport. Private charters via plane or helicopter are also available.
How to Get Your Guests to a Destination Wedding in Costa Rica
Having a smaller and more intimate destination wedding means your guest list will contain only your nearest and dearest family and friends. Many couples worry about how to get their cherished guests to their wedding locale.
Since, many wedding guests come from out of town anyway, having to travel to get to your wedding may not be a big deal to them with all the direct flights from the US and Canada. Destination weddings provide your guests the opportunity to spend time with you, a vacation in a tropical paradise and the chance to visit a beautiful place they may never have been to.
Getting your guests to your destination wedding at Villa Punto de Vista couldn’t be easier. They will no doubt be excited once you show them the villa’s location, luxurious accommodations and amenities. Our concierge will help your guests arrange their travel plans and booking arrangements and is there to answer any questions they may have about their stay.
The Villa Punto de Vista Experience
All guests at Villa Punto de Vista receive a complimentary breakfast daily with both traditional and local dishes and will enjoy butler and bar service from our warm and friendly staff, who are continually lauded by our guests in their glowing testimonials.
High-speed internet and in-room iPads are provided for guests to stay connected with technology while enjoying paradise. Private massages and yoga classes are available, along with private chefs who will prepare a customized menu and top-notch cuisine. Guests can arrange for grocery service to keep the villa stocked with their must-have foods and spirits or have their attentive butler order in food from local restaurants. Manuel Antonio Costa Rica boasts an international array of restaurants of all types, shopping for clothing, jewelry, arts and crafts by local artisans and a lively nightlife scene with bars and other nightspots.
Let Your Guests Know Early
Notify your guests well in advance to give them plenty of time to put aside funds and make travel, work and childcare arrangements. They may also need to obtain valid travel documents such as passports or travel visas. When guests have ample notice, they are more likely to commit to attending your wedding. Be sure to inform them if your wedding will be family friendly or adults only.
Early save-the-date notification to your guests allows your guests time to comfortably plan their trip. Be sure to inform your guests about the costs that they are expected to pay. Typical costs include airfare, transportation to and from the airport, activities and villa, tours and activities, trip insurance, staff gratuities and meals.
Our concierge can provide your guests with all the information they need to know about preparing for your Costa Rica destination wedding. This includes information about the local climate, things to do and items to pack.
Informing guests of the wedding attire is also helpful. Since destination and beach weddings tend to be more casual, you want your guests to have the proper attire and footwear so they will be happy and comfortable.
Wedding couples typically plan multiple dinners or excursions where they and their guests can spend time together. Planning activities together gives guests who may not know each other well time to interact before the wedding, which makes for a more enjoyable time for all. Seating at the wedding and reception is easier when everyone is comfortable and relaxed around each other. Be sure to plan time for you and guests to do things together, but also allow guests to have a chance to do some things they would like on their own.
Guests staying at our partner villas or hotels may have full use of Villa Punto de Vista’s facility, so they will never miss out on any activities or get-togethers that are at the villa from pool parties and BBQ’s to Movie nights and karaoke competitions to name a few. In our numerous testimonials, wedding couples report that their guests still talk about everything from the food to the staff to the overall experience long after the wedding festivities are over.
How to Make Your Costa Rica Wedding Fun
There’s no shortage of fun ideas for your Costa Rica destination wedding. Whether your guests are adventurous or are seeking total relaxation, there is something for everyone in Costa Rica. Costa Rica boasts beautiful beaches, preserves and national parks that host activities for guests of all ages.
Since Villa Punto de Vista is right on the beach, getting there is just a few steps away. Throughout your stay, you and your guests have full use of the villa’s six-passenger beach buggy. You can arrange to be dropped off and picked up any time of the day by a member of our staff.
For guests who don’t like sand between their toes, our infinity pool and Jacuzzi provide a relaxing atmosphere that overlooks the beautiful beach and rainforest. Here they can sip on cocktails, listen to the sounds of the sea and jungle and even get a visit from our resident wildlife (monkey’s, sloths and toucans).
Nearby Manuel Antonio National Park offers guided tours to learn about the local wildlife and history. Visit the region’s waterfalls and plantations or spend the day snorkeling with your guests on a beautiful private island after taking a scenic voyage aboard a beautiful catamaran.
For more adventurous guests, there is whitewater rafting, jet skiing, mountain biking and taking ATV tours. Guests can also enjoy a ziplining tour through the lush rainforest canopy or a day of sport fishing and scuba diving. Horseback riding tours to explore Costa Rica’s beautiful landscape are also available.
For guests who want to sample the local culture, guitar and Latin dancing lessons along with cooking classes are available for visitors. Beautiful golf courses are a scenic drive away and relaxing spa trips can help melt your cares away. Guests can arrange transportation through the villa’s concierge or take one of the area’s colorful red taxis.
Many excursions in Costa Rica include tour guides and lunch or refreshments. It is a nice gesture for the wedding couple to book an excursion as a thank-you gift to guests.
While the purpose of your destination wedding is to marry the love of your life among family and friends, having a wide variety of fun activities for you and your guests helps enhance the occasion and create memories you and your guests will carry for a lifetime.
Booking Your Destination Wedding at Villa Punto de Vista
When you’re ready to start planning your destination wedding in Costa Rica, look no further than Villa Punto de Vista. We are proud to be Costa Rica’s largest and highest rated villa. Our award-winning architectural design provides panoramic views of the beach and rainforest and blends perfectly with the tropical landscape.
We are the proud recipients of Wedding Wire’s Couples Choice Award five years running, and guests frequently use words such as “perfect,” “magnificent” and “relaxing” to describe their wedding and stay. Wedding couples often mention their pleasure with providing their guests the opportunity to have such a wonderful experience in such a beautiful venue.
For more Costa Rica destination wedding tips and ideas or to book your special event, contact us today.