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storkLA

***5 Star*** Wedding on the Sapphire Princess

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Back from our spectacular Wedding Cruise aboard the Sapphire Princess to the Mexican Riviera on March 19th-26th. The wedding was on Day 3 - at sea, and we had 68 wedding guests sailing with us.

 

We did pretty much as "high-end" a wedding as Princess has ever done at sea. We pulled out all the stops, and threw in every bell-and-whistle, so anyone contemplating planning this sort of wedding at sea on Princess can contact me regarding how to handle the chaos. (and there was an unbelievable amount of chaos in the planning phase).

 

Going through TWE was incredibly frustrating (I almost cancelled the whole thing), but ultimately we worked our way up the chain and were finally being helped by one of their senior managers - Ginette who who I believe really did go out of her way to help answer our many questions and try get us what we wanted - which was about 90% of what we had requested. That being said, the Staff aboard the Sapphire went above and beyond every step of the way and gave us the wedding of our dreams, and we are so incredibly grateful to them for all their hard work.

 

A few little details you should know about what i'm describing here that will differ greatly from the regular package Princess offers. We did a traditional Jewish Ceremony and brought our own Rabbi with us. (We did the civil paperwork before we sailed to avoid having a marriage certificate from Bermuda so we were technically legally married already). We also had some family friends who are professional florists who did all of the wedding decorations, and handled all the details a formal wedding planner would manage for us. We chose all silk flowers and brought them on board with us (22 LARGE boxes of wedding decorations). I had a friend who is a professional hair stylist and make up artist come with us - as i'm too much of a control freak to leave that to chance. The rest of the wedding party and several guests had their hair done at the salon and everyone ultimately end up looking great.

 

Our wedding ceremony took place from 1:30pm - 3pm in the Skywalker, and our wedding reception was from 3pm - 6pm in the Wheelhouse Bar. We did passed appetizers with open bar and a cheese station for the first hour - the 3 other food stations for the 2nd hour, and an "enhanced" wedding cake (which was spectacularly beautiful and delicious) with the dessert food station for the 3rd hour. BTW - the food was excellent the entire week.

 

Other "wedding events" that took place on board included a private "rehearsal dinner" the night before the wedding in the Sterling steakhouse, and a post-wedding private dinner in Sabatinis, and lastly a private cocktail costume party on the last night of the trip.

 

We also had quite the "Swag Bag" - ie. OOT bag - that we provided to everyone who came aboard - and most of those ideas came from this website - so thank you to everyone who shared their wonderful pictures with me.

 

I'm working on a website to showcase the whole trip but wanted to attach a few preliminary pictures here in the meantime..

 

Best wishes to everyone who is planning their own Wedding at Sea - I truly hope it turns out a magical as ours did.

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WOW! Looks like you had a great time! I'm glad everything went well. Your pictures look beautiful! :)

That cake looks so good! (I would like a piece of the chocolate layer!!)

Thanks for writing a review for us!! I hope you come back and post your wedding website address, I would love to see it. Did you feel like you were going to fall off the chair when they lifted you? I've been to many Jewish weddings, and I'm always afraid the bride will fall off the chair!!

Congratulations!!

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Beautiful pictures and thank you for the review. I'm looking forward to the link to see more of the pictures on your website. Congratulations!

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Back from our spectacular Wedding Cruise aboard the Sapphire Princess to the Mexican Riviera on March 19th-26th. The wedding was on Day 3 - at sea, and we had 68 wedding guests sailing with us.

 

We did pretty much as "high-end" a wedding as Princess has ever done at sea. We pulled out all the stops, and threw in every bell-and-whistle, so anyone contemplating planning this sort of wedding at sea on Princess can contact me regarding how to handle the chaos. (and there was an unbelievable amount of chaos in the planning phase).

 

Going through TWE was incredibly frustrating (I almost cancelled the whole thing), but ultimately we worked our way up the chain and were finally being helped by one of their senior managers - Ginette who who I believe really did go out of her way to help answer our many questions and try get us what we wanted - which was about 90% of what we had requested. That being said, the Staff aboard the Sapphire went above and beyond every step of the way and gave us the wedding of our dreams, and we are so incredibly grateful to them for all their hard work.

 

A few little details you should know about what i'm describing here that will differ greatly from the regular package Princess offers. We did a traditional Jewish Ceremony and brought our own Rabbi with us. (We did the civil paperwork before we sailed to avoid having a marriage certificate from Bermuda so we were technically legally married already). We also had some family friends who are professional florists who did all of the wedding decorations, and handled all the details a formal wedding planner would manage for us. We chose all silk flowers and brought them on board with us (22 LARGE boxes of wedding decorations). I had a friend who is a professional hair stylist and make up artist come with us - as i'm too much of a control freak to leave that to chance. The rest of the wedding party and several guests had their hair done at the salon and everyone ultimately end up looking great.

 

Our wedding ceremony took place from 1:30pm - 3pm in the Skywalker, and our wedding reception was from 3pm - 6pm in the Wheelhouse Bar. We did passed appetizers with open bar and a cheese station for the first hour - the 3 other food stations for the 2nd hour, and an "enhanced" wedding cake (which was spectacularly beautiful and delicious) with the dessert food station for the 3rd hour. BTW - the food was excellent the entire week.

 

Other "wedding events" that took place on board included a private "rehearsal dinner" the night before the wedding in the Sterling steakhouse, and a post-wedding private dinner in Sabatinis, and lastly a private cocktail costume party on the last night of the trip.

 

We also had quite the "Swag Bag" - ie. OOT bag - that we provided to everyone who came aboard - and most of those ideas came from this website - so thank you to everyone who shared their wonderful pictures with me.

 

I'm working on a website to showcase the whole trip but wanted to attach a few preliminary pictures here in the meantime..

 

Best wishes to everyone who is planning their own Wedding at Sea - I truly hope it turns out a magical as ours did.

 

I am glad to see someone else had as much control as I have now with their wedding. You really can make a cruise wedding your own. I wish I could extend my reception but Carnival doesn't allow it. :( Beautiful photos and Congrats!

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Yay! It's great to hear from another Princess Bride! Was the Wheelhouse Bar very open? Did you have non-wedding guests around you or peeking in? If you end up putting all of your photos in an online album please let me know, I'd love to see more pictures.

 

My coordinator told me that I couldn't have my wedding and reception in different locations, did you have your locations decided before you got on the ship?

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Yay! It's great to hear from another Princess Bride! Was the Wheelhouse Bar very open? Did you have non-wedding guests around you or peeking in? If you end up putting all of your photos in an online album please let me know, I'd love to see more pictures.

 

My coordinator told me that I couldn't have my wedding and reception in different locations, did you have your locations decided before you got on the ship?

 

 

Locations - ahhhh, one of the MANY issues. Having never sailed on the Sapphire before, we didn't really know what to expect. Since we were such a big group, and had so much stuff to set-up they gave us 2 different rooms for the wedding - one for the ceremony and one for the reception, but i don't know if this is standard practice or if they were making an exception for us.

 

There were many discussions about the locations for the different events with TWE. It wasn't until 6 weeks before the cruise that the venues were confirmed, and it wasn't until 5 weeks before we sailed that they confirmed we could keep the wheelhouse for the 3rd hour of our reception private for our group only.

 

The folks at TWE have never been on the boat before and weren't able to answer the majority of our detailed questions (ie - how wide an aisle runner to get? where would people be seated during the ceremony? what exactly is included in the food stations? can we see pictures of the food stations? what format to bring our wedding music with us to give to the DJ - CD's, flash-drives, DVDs?)

 

In the planning phase, we decided to go on several "Bon Voyage" tours of the Sapphire (through Princess - at $39 per person) before the wedding, so we had an opportunity to see the different venues and get an idea of what to expect and what to bring. We even paid the extra $250 fee to have someone from TWE meet us and give us a personalized tour on one of the trips, but she wasn't much help and we felt it was a total waste of money. They wouldn't allow us to set up a meeting with the on-board Cruise wedding coordinator during our tour either, which was particularly frustrating, as I believe having had the opportunity to talk with one of them about how they've done things in the past - what worked and what didn't - would have eased a lot of the stress of uncertainty. We brought our florist/wedding planner with us on one of the tours, and a camera and tape measure and walked about answering most of our questions ourselves.

 

When they finally told us the confirmed locations, I was a little skeptical about Skywalkers for the ceremony - i really didn't want a "Disco" feel, but we brought some nice decorations and were able to change the "mood" in the room dramatically (thought I have to give that credit to our florists). The big windows let in beautiful sunlight which actually enhanced the mood and the pictures so far are amazing. I wanted an indoor ceremony due to the uncertainty of the weather conditions and my concern over too much wind from the moving vessel that might reek havoc with my veil, and this way I feel we got the best of both worlds. We held the "Bedeken (Veiling) and Ketubbah signing ceremonies on the dance floor, and set up the Chuppah and held the rest of the ceremony on the other side of the room. We did take some family and wedding party pictures outside on the deck as well since the weather was so nice and the views spectacular at sea.

 

The Wheelhouse Bar was great for our reception. They allowed us to close all the heavy drapes to make it feel more like a 1930's night-time supper-club, even through it was bright and sunny outside, which was exactly the look we were going for. We brought in little electric "tea lights" that we placed on all the tables to soften the mood. They had all the doors except the one near the forward elevators closed and blocked with a sign that read "private event." So everyone entered from that one door. We weren't bothered by any non-wedding cruisers as far as i could see.

 

Hope that helps!

Here are a few more pictures....

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.....and in the end it was a wonderful wedding!!!

Congratulations and thanks for giving us a review!

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Was there enough room to dance in the Wheelhouse bar?

 

We felt there was plenty of room on the dancefloor. We had 70 people doing a jewish dance called "the Hora", and it was tight, but do-able. My husband and i did a choreographed swing dance with aerials as our first dance and had plenty of room.

 

Best Wishes!

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Wow, storkLA! Amazing wedding! I'm also trying to plan a Jewish wedding on a princess cruise and I'm having so much trouble figuring out all the details. Not sure if you're still checking this thread, but would love some advice on getting decor on the ship (particularly the chuppah! I had given up hope of having one, but your pictures make it seem doable!).

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So our date has finally been announced and we also want to plan a wedding at sea.... I was so excited that we finally have our cruise picked out but I don’t know what to do next lol. The invitations/announcements have me stumped. How did you do yours and how far in advance? I want to give people plenty of heads up so that if they want to attend they have plenty of time to save/plan.

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So our date has finally been announced and we also want to plan a wedding at sea.... I was so excited that we finally have our cruise picked out but I don’t know what to do next lol. The invitations/announcements have me stumped. How did you do yours and how far in advance? I want to give people plenty of heads up so that if they want to attend they have plenty of time to save/plan.

 

Hey Kerrbear319! I sent my save the dates out earlier this week and my wedding is on July 9th, 2018 (cruise starts on the 8th). I can email you what we sent out if you’d like, just let me know!

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Hey Kerrbear319! I sent my save the dates out earlier this week and my wedding is on July 9th, 2018 (cruise starts on the 8th). I can email you what we sent out if you’d like, just let me know!

 

That would be amazing!! Thank you so much! We are doing the SF to Alaska July 5, 2019 but a lot of people have asked us for plenty of time to do payments.... the payments are due by April 21, 2019 so should I send them out by April 2018? Some of his family has a lot of kids or just a lot of family members so I know it can get expensive for them.

My email is kerrbear319@gmail.com

Congratulations by the way!!

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That would be amazing!! Thank you so much! We are doing the SF to Alaska July 5, 2019 but a lot of people have asked us for plenty of time to do payments.... the payments are due by April 21, 2019 so should I send them out by April 2018? Some of his family has a lot of kids or just a lot of family members so I know it can get expensive for them.

My email is kerrbear319@gmail.com

Congratulations by the way!!

 

Thank you, congratulations to you too! Just e-mailed you our save the dates. I think sending yours out by April 2018 would be more than enough time! It's great you're thinking about this so soon! Most of our guests ended buying their tickets on cyber Monday because there was great sale. It sounds like some of your guests won't want to wait that long, but if they do, definitely check out the sales that day. I hope this helped!

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