Maui, the island home of happy endings and magical getaways, is an idyllic setting for a destination wedding. With so much to offer, it’s no wonder that couples choose to get married in Maui every day of the week. When looking at the options for your own Maui wedding, there are several factors you should take into consideration when planning your big day. Things like guest count, time of year, accessibility and cost should all play a role in determining where you’ll say “I do”. Whether you’re eloping with just a witness or inviting those closest to you along to watch you exchange vows on this beautiful island…Read on to discover everything you need to know about having a destination wedding in Maui.
Important Things to Know About Having a Destination Wedding in Maui
If you’re lucky enough to find yourself engaged and dreaming of a Maui destination wedding, you’ll want to make sure to do your research before booking your trip. While it may seem like a dream to have your Maui wedding in the tropical sunshine, you’ll have to be prepared for some important differences from traditional weddings back home. You basically have three options: Plan your wedding through a resort hotel on the island and use their in-house wedding planner, hire an independent wedding planner, or do everything yourself from selecting flowers, decorations, the photographer, caterer and venue. Even a simple beach wedding takes planning, and a permit.
When you think about it, working with an on-island wedding planner makes sense. Without help, you and your entourage will need to transport everything from the cake to the flowers, decorations and gifts. When planning in advance, you’ll be dealing with different time zones. You may need to rent and transport everything you need to throw a party, including tables and chairs.
Most of all, you may miss out on that tropical flare that makes your Maui destination wedding special.
Maui Wedding Planners
While not a personal recommendation from us, here are a few of the top-rated wedding planners on the island.
Finding the Right Location
When it comes to choosing where you’ll have your destination wedding in Maui, you’ll have many different options. As with anything, you’ll want to make sure to do your research and find the place that fits both you and your spouse-to-be perfectly. One of the most important things to do when finding the right location for your Maui destination wedding is to decide what type of venue you’re looking for, and make your reservations early.
Here are your main options:
- Traditional venues. There are some beautiful churches on the island, including hotel chapels like the Wailea Seaside Chapel at the Grand Wailea or the Pineapple Chapel in Kapalua. Opt for a historic sea side church like Keawala’i Congregational Church, founded in 1832. Overlooking the ocean in Makena, the church was originally built of pili grass, which was eventually replaced with a stony cement made from beach coral, with a wood from brought from forests on the slopes of Haleakala. Go off the beaten path to St. John’s Episcopal Church in Kula. In cool upcountry Maui, the church grounds have sweeping bi-coastal views.
- Beach weddings. If you want to say your vows on the beach during summer, you’ll need a permit. Also, if arranging the wedding yourself you will need to purchase liability insurance. Here is a list of beaches where weddings are allowed in Maui County, and this FAQ page to answer other questions. There are few things you can do on the beach other than the romantic ceremony and photography, so your reception would be at an adjacent beach park or other location. If you want to get married in the sand in winter, you will have to contend with less reliable weather and potentially high surf.
- Gardens. If you’re looking for a more private setting without the hustle and bustle of a traditional venue, you may want to consider a garden wedding. Some of the best gardens for a Maui destination wedding are found at the botanical gardens or on a private estate like Kukahiko Estate or Sugar Beach Events.
- Think outside of the box. You may want to think about having your Maui destination wedding at an unusual location like a golf course, on a charter boat or while snorkeling or diving, at Maui Ocean Center aquarium or a historic museum.
The details: Food, decorations, photographer and music
When it comes to the food for your wedding in Maui, you’ll have a few different options depending on the type of venue you choose. If you’re having your wedding on a resort property, you’ll likely be restricted to in-house catering. At other locations you can bring food in. Find out the restrictions of the venues you are considering. When it comes to the decorations for your Maui destination wedding, you’ll want to make sure that they’re easily transportable. You’ll also need to make sure that they’re easy to take down at the end of the night. If you’re planning on having a musician or band at your wedding in Maui, you’ll want to make sure there is space for the musicians, and you schedule the event early enough to avoid noise complaints.
Again, with all these details to arrange, an on-island wedding planner can save a lot of time and headaches. They can also help you make a budget.
Wrapping up: Is a Maui Destination Wedding Right for You?
When you’re deciding if a Maui destination wedding is right for you, you’ll want to make sure you consider every aspect of the big day. From cost to how many people could reasonably make the journey with you, to all of the details that make a beautiful and meaningful event that reflects you as a couple.
Also plan ahead for where you will stay for the best options and rates. Some prefer resort amenities. Many agree it is fantastic to have those in the wedding party close by in a condominium resort. As one of the largest vacation rental companies on the island, Destination Maui Vacations has multiple properties with numerous rentals in one location. Please contact us for custom support!
Before you make the decision to have a destination wedding in Maui, make sure you do your research, plan ahead, and make the most of this incredible opportunity.