Two Hearts in Love – Destination Wedding on the Beach, Ibiza

Wrapping up 2017 with Wedding Tunes on the Beach – and a Pesky Spanish Mosquito!

Celebrating the New Year is a time to reflect and look forward. My highlight for 2017 would have to be travelling to the beautiful island of Ibiza in Spain to attend my cousin’s destination wedding on the beach. Lores and Aurelio chose a stunning, intimate beach location for tying the knot on their big day which was bookended by welcome and post wedding celebrations over a 5-day period.

A destination wedding isn’t for everyone but this modern concept is rapidly increasing in popularity. One in four weddings in the US is now a destination wedding. Popular destinations on trend include Spain, France, Canada, Italy and Iceland.

Ibiza beach S'Estanyol
Ibiza’s beautiful beach, S’Estanyol

Why book a destination wedding?  This generation is passionate about travel. Combining your special day with a vacation and quality time with loved ones is a bonus. Another trend emerging in popularity is that of having two weddings. As more couples come from different parts of the world, rather than have family members travel overseas the couple celebrates in two countries. I know of several couples currently following this trend of having their wedding in Australia and another celebration overseas. One couple is celebrating in the UK, one in Italy and another having a wedding celebration in India.

About to get married Mami and Papi
Mami and Papi are about to get married

Destination weddings often include several days of celebrating.  My cousin’s wedding included welcome drinks two days prior at Experimental Beach Club (see previous post), a family dinner the evening before, catered by one of the most remarkable chefs I’ve ever met, Erika Tangari (see previous post), wedding day dinner at Cala Bonita restaurant and post wedding BBQ the following day at their wedding villa.  A VIP night followed at Ibiza’s iconic Pacha Night Club. It was an exhilarating  week and a beautiful, memorable wedding.

Lores and Aurelio’s wedding reception in September was held at Cala Bonita, an intimate beach restaurant in the small private cove of S’Estanyol, one of Ibiza’s few remaining under developed beaches surrounded by the raw beauty of wild pine trees, fennel and rosemary.

Beach wedding at Cala Bonita
Cala Bonita beach wedding

This place is off the beaten track yet not far from Ibiza Town. Once you pass through the small village of Jesus there’s a secret beach. It’s an adventure driving along narrow and rocky paths, past ancient natural salt flats cultivated by the Phoenicians. We round one more corner and the view is suddenly breathtaking. Cala Bonita’s amazing location is truly a little piece of paradise. The secluded and peaceful beach of S’Estanyol sits in the bay of San Antonio and is surrounded by rocky cliffs which create a shield of privacy.

Beach, Ibiza wedding
Lores and her mother walk down the ‘aisle’ on the beach at Ibiza

Excitement builds as Lores emerges from the car. The white wedding attired guests, travelling from many parts of the world, are here to witness Lores and Aurelio take their vows in this magical place. It’s a moving ceremony – imbued with love, promises and the beautiful simplicity of a few shells, candles and flowers on this remarkable beach. The sun is shining on this gorgeous couple, their two young children and 60 of their family and friends from all around the world.

Beautiful beach in Ibiza, two hearts become one
Two hearts become one on this beautiful beach in Ibiza

Wedding photos are taken on the beach while guests enjoy drinks and hors d’oevres as they watch the vibrant sunset. We then move into the restaurant and the view from Cala Bonita is amazing – the beach is literally our window.

hors d'oeuvre tuna and avocado Ibiza beach wedding
Ibiza beach wedding tuna and avocado hors d’oeuvre

Since 2016 Cala Bonita has been under the ownership of a group of Australian and South African restaurateurs.Well-known Australian chef, television chef/judge and cookbook author Karen Martini is one of the driving forces behind Cala Bonita’s kitchen. Designing Cala Bonita’s modern Mediterranean menu with a focus on local seafood, Karen hires and trains the chefs herself. “I inject the care factor into the food, food leaves the pass and goes to people to be enjoyed and savoured,” she says. ”The chefs must have the same respect for the food. I don’t want it leaving the kitchen without a little bit of love.”

Cala Bonita, Ibiza, wedding reception
Wedding reception at Cala Bonita, Ibiza

We then move into the restaurant where antipasto and an amazing meal is enjoyed by all. A choice of local fish or steak is followed by wedding dessert.

wedding table setting, Cala Bonita, Ibiza

After heartfelt speeches from close friends and family the bridal couple, hand in hand, have their first dance on the beach under the moonlight. We can all feel the romance in the air … Now it’s time for the night to heat up as DJ Rels breaks out the tunes and we all hit the dance floor. This was certainly a wedding to remember on one of the most beautiful beaches in the world!

Love on Ibiza beach!
Ibiza beach love!

Where: Cala Bonita Restaurant, Ibiza

PS What about that pesky Spanish mosquito? Message to self – don’t forget to pack the Aeroguard – an infected mozzie bite from the beach of love slowed me down on the dance floor and for most of the week!

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