Against the dreamy coastline of the Riviera Maya in Mexico, Estrella and Sam’s elegant ceremony unfolded beneath a dramatic arbor enveloped by wildflowers. In a wedding imbued with sentiment and family tradition, loved ones gathered to celebrate over the span of a weekend, their festivities framed by tropical vignettes, luxe furnishings, and textural layers in sun-bleached palettes.
Fusing luxe styling with oceanic surrounds, Estrella wore a modern Vera Wang silhouette, softened with ethereal tulle detailing. As post ceremony drinks segued into dusk celebrations, the location transformed into an ambently lit reception dripping with icicle lights woven throughout decadent blooms.
Capturing all the magic was photographer Camila Urrea.
Names / Estrella & Samuel
Wedding Date / February 7, 2021
Guest Numbers / 150
Budget / Undisclosed
How We Met
Sam and I met in the summer of 2015 when we were both in our second year of university. I had gotten an exciting summer internship and headed to Los Angeles for it, where Sam is originally from. A mutual friend of ours introduced us at a Fourth of July party in Malibu and we went on a few dates throughout my LA stint. We thought we wouldn’t see each other again once the summer ended and we went our separate ways back to school. About a year later, we coincidentally both chose to study abroad for a semester in Madrid and reconnected there. We’ve been together ever since!
Our Engagement Story
As COVID-19 was spiking throughout the summer of 2020, Sam opted for a spontaneous and secluded proposal with just the two of us. He planned a beautiful picnic on a beach that you can only get to by kayak. When we got to the island, it started downpouring rain! We couldn’t believe how strong it kept storming but made the best of it, jumped in the water, and had a great time. Once the sky cleared, Sam opened a bottle of champagne and told me he had a gift for me. It was my birthday the following week so I thought it could be an early present, but he brought a ring box out of the picnic cooler and got down on one knee! It ended up being such an exciting and perfect moment, soaking wet and all.
Marriage To Us Means…
Unconditional love and friendship. Creating a new union and family that will transcend our time.
We got married on the beautiful beach of Maroma, along the Riviera Maya coast of Mexico. Our venue was Chablé Maroma, a boutique resort nestled on the edge of the Mayan jungle and the beach. My family and I are from Mexico originally and it had always been a dream of mine to get married there. Since we were planning in the midst of COVID-19, it was really important to us that the resort was completely airy, open and outdoors, and that it was a place that could accommodate all of our guests in one place. The resort consists of a few secluded villas, each with its own private plunge pool and outdoor showers that make you feel one with the nature around you. The decor is minimal and organic, something we felt went perfectly with our aesthetic.
Our wedding was a destination weekend and I loved having all of our guests in the same place, it made everyone close and all of the events that much more special.
Our wedding was on a Sunday and we had events on the Friday & Saturday nights leading up to it. We both come from very diverse backgrounds with unique traditions and it was special to us to incorporate them leading up to the wedding.
On Friday night we had a traditional Jewish Shabbat dinner, with long communal tables and a family-style celebratory meal. Sam’s family is Moroccan and it’s customary to have a ‘Henna’ party before the wedding. We lit up the beach with lanterns on Saturday night, everyone wore kaftans, and we danced the night away on the sand.
I really wanted to incorporate a spiritual custom on the morning of my wedding day. The ‘mikveh’ is a Jewish ritual dating back to ancient times. Mikveh, literally meaning ‘collection’ refers to a pool of natural water in which ritual cleansing is performed. Originally, the ritual immersion would have taken place in a body of flowing water: an ocean, a lake, a stream, or in a pool of collected rainwater. For mine, I invited an intimate group of the closest women in my life to head to a nearby cenote and we all jumped in the refreshing waters to kick-start the day. The ceremony associated with it is a cleansing ritual that marks the transition from single to married and it was the perfect way to start my wedding day in a mindful, present, and connected manner.
Afterward, we headed back to the resort and I got ready with my sister, mother, and mother-in-law.
Overall Aesthetic / Style
Clean, elegant, and minimal. An all-white wedding with lots of fresh flowers. The venue was an inspiration as well, as we looked to bring in some of the natural elements from around the area like palm leaves, coconuts, and orchids.
The ceremony design was inspired by the beautiful location. Maroma is famous for its white sand and clear waters. When designing the ceremony, it was important to us to make sure all of the elements blended in and that we didn’t take away from the beautiful natural backdrop. The chuppah, the canopy under which a Jewish couple stands in during the ceremony, was made with white hydrangeas, orchids, roses and wisteria.
Just like the ceremony, we looked to create a beautiful setting inspired and integrated with the venue. We aimed for an elegant beach wedding look that included proteas, roses, hydrangeas, orchids and a touch of tropical leaves.
The ceiling was a bed of tropical foliage with decorative golden spheres and disco balls for a jungle disco spin.
Wedding Planner & Stylist
Our planner was the incredibly talented Rodrigo Mora. He was extremely helpful from beginning to end, especially as I was planning a wedding from a different country, at a venue I had never seen in person before committing to. He has a wealth of experience with the most beautiful events and is actually an architect by trade, which comes through in his incredible design and attention to detail.
Camila Urrea is the most talented & professional photographer with the sweetest energy. She was there every step of the way, making us feel comfortable and at ease. The editorial nature of her photos instantly drew us to her. Her youthful and refreshing energy was contagious and it was as if she was another lifelong friend at our wedding – breakdancing on the dance floor with us and all!
Jero from Gallo Media shot our video. I wanted something that felt fun and not at all cheesy. His videos are refreshing, with exciting cuts and great music.
I wore a Vera Wang strapless dress with long, ethereal, tulle sleeves that draped to the floor. I also designed a custom cape out of tulle for the ceremony.
Manolo Blahnik, Lurum Crystal-Embellished Lace Mules.
Flowergirls / Pageboy Outfits
Our adorable flower girls wore white dresses with a tulle skirt and a deep v-back. I sourced them via Etsy from a designer named Pink Peony. Pageboys wore beige pants and white shirts.
My mom gifted me a beautiful pair of diamond earrings to wear on my wedding day. They are sourced and designed by Luisa Alexander. They will always mean so much to me and I hope to pass them on to my own daughter one day.
My engagement ring is a very thin yellow gold band with an oval-shaped diamond. My wedding band is another yellow gold band. I always wear gold jewelry and wanted my rings to feel like an extension of my everyday look. Sam wears a white gold wedding band.
I really wanted to look and feel like myself on my wedding day. I typically wear my hair in a sleek low bun with a middle part, so I did a more refined version of that look.
My makeup followed that same lead with a bronzy, warm, and natural look.
Stationery / Invitations
Our invitations were designed in a large square format (11”x11”). The envelope closed in a unique way, with a diagonal cut on the back that highlighted our wedding logo etched into the bottom right-hand corner. Guest names and addresses were hand-written in beautiful calligraphy on the front.
We didn’t want to send something that just gets read and thrown away, so we commissioned custom lithography from one of our favorite contemporary Mexican artists, Rocca Luis Cesar, and included a serialized print within each envelope. We loved the idea that our guests could frame it and keep this memory of our wedding forever. This was also a way for us to incorporate our love for art into our wedding. We love seeing the prints framed at our friend’s homes – it’s so special!
Each guest had a welcome gift waiting to greet them in their rooms along with the weekend’s itinerary and a thank you note. We created custom white crewneck sweatshirts with tiny black text on them. We also had custom candles made in a sea salt + orchid scent, a homage to Maroma. We didn’t want to gift anything wasteful and both of these items were designed to be kept, used, and loved at home. A sweet way to reminisce on the wedding weekend!
Flowers & Bouquets
For florals, we continued with the all-white color palette to keep things consistent and clean. We used flowers like hydrangeas, roses, ranúnculos, orchids, lysianthus, majolica roses and calla lilies to create beautiful and elegant arrangements.
We didn’t want anything that competed too much with the simplicity and structure of my dress, so we opted for a hydrangea and orchid bouquet.
We opted for no cake! Neither of us really connected with that tradition.
Food & Beverages
Food and drink is something that my husband and I are very passionate about. We had a three-course sit-down dinner. Chable Maroma’s food and beverage program is led by the acclaimed Jorge Vallejo, whose restaurant Quintonil in Mexico City has been recognized several times within “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants”. We loved everything they prepared! We also served a Mexican-style breakfast of chilaquiles, tamales, and more at around 3 am which was a crowd-favorite.
We stayed local for a mini-moon around the Yucatan Peninsula. We stayed in Holbox, Merida, and Yucatan. All three places were so unique and beautiful – it was a perfect mix of beach, city, and jungle.
We registered through Zola and really appreciated that you can add your favorite gifts from any site.
Entrance Song: ‘No Diggity‘ by Blackstreet & Dr. Dre
First Dance: ‘Lovely Day‘ by Bill Withers
Our DJ was Alan from Capital DJs and he was sensational. He crafted the perfect mix of music – hip hop, funk, some classics and reggeaton.
Our long-time family Rabbis.
Sources of Inspiration
I found a lot of inspiration through editorial accounts like The Bridal Journey, Over The Moon, Brides Journal, The Lane, and more.
A Memorable Moment
The ‘Henna’ party was incredible! Sam and I wore traditional wedding garments that have been preserved and passed down for generations. The Moroccan rugs and lanterns on the beach created the most special ambiance and the music had everyone dancing all night.
One Thing I Wish I Knew Before I Started My Wedding Plans…
No matter how much time you think you have, most of the planning happens last minute. The most spontaneous decisions make for the best moments!
If I Could Give Brides to be One Piece of Advice…
Enjoy every step of the way, even the planning. It goes by so fast and is truly a once in a lifetime experience. On your wedding weekend just let go – the bride and groom set the tone and if you’re having fun, everyone else will too.
Photography / Camila Urrea
Bride’s Dress / Vera Wang
Bride’s Shoes / Manolo Blahnik
Wedding Rings / Ruth B Designs
Jewellery & Accessories / Luisa Alexander
Hair / Bridel MX
Makeup / Ana Euribe
Stationery / Casa Donato
Wedding Stylist & Planner / Rodrigo Mora
Florist / Moni Junco
Catering / Chable Maroma
Celebrant / Rabbi Forta & Rabbi Palti
Venue / Chable Maroma
Videographer / Gallo Media
Entertainment / Alan from Capital DJs
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