Many couples elope because it's more straightforward -and less expensive- than planning a big wedding with a guest list. Elopements sure are simple, but they can still be complex events, even if it's just for two. Today on the blog, I have a perfect example of a beautiful, but eventful Old San Juan elopement for Natalie and Timo.
Yet Another 2020 Story of Travel and Wedding Changes
Timo proposed to Natalie on a sailboat in San Juan Bay on December 2019 (dates are important here). They stumbled upon my work, and as they planned a second trip to Puerto Rico for their engagement anniversary, they hired me for an engagement session in Old San Juan.
However, as many couples engaged just before the pandemic, their wedding plans changed! And a few months later, they weren't planning just any trip to Puerto Rico, but their elopement in Old San Juan!
As Natalie and Timo looked for the perfect elopement location, they wanted somewhere special to capture their love story. So, they chose El Morro Fortress in Old San Juan, a picturesque location with romance, charm, and a piece of their relationship's history.
Getting Ready at Hotel Palacio Provincial
The day began at Hotel Palacio Provincial, where Natalie and Timo prepared for their big day. They were both nervous and excited, and as they shared their first look, their emotions were palpable. Tenderness and love filled the moment, and I felt honored to witness it.
The Beautiful Elopement Ceremony at El Morro Fortress
After their first look, we walked through the narrow streets of Old San Juan toward El Morro Fortress. As we arrived at the ceremony site, we were greeted by the stunning views of the ocean and the fortress walls. It was a cloudy, drizzly day, so the fields were mostly empty. It felt like we had the fortress just for us. The ceremony was intimate and heartfelt, and as they exchanged their vows, I could see their love and devotion for each other, and it was a beautiful sight to behold.
Celebrating with a Plena Party
After the ceremony, Yuvi Plena serenaded us. Yuvi Plena is a Puerto Rican music group that adds a special traditional touch to weddings and parties, and this was my first time having them at an elopement. The vibrant music added a perfect, festive atmosphere to Natalie and Timo's first dance as a married couple.
Unfortunately, we had to take cover for a while as a curtain of rain made a surprise arrival to the ending of the plena party. Still, we waited a bit and then walked back to the hotel as we took photos and videos of the newlyweds. The colors of the buildings, the cobblestone streets, and the ocean created a stunning backdrop for their photos, and I knew they would cherish them forever.
As the sun began to set, we said our goodbyes as they ended the day with an intimate dinner for two. It was a moment for Natalie and Timo to savor their love and reflect on their journey as a couple. The day had been a celebration of their love, and I felt grateful to be a part of it. I also loved their choices to upgrade their elopement and make it feel like a grand event with the tiniest guest list.
Natalie and Timo's Old San Juan elopement was a beautiful reminder that love transcends and transforms any hurdle into poetry. And as a wedding photographer in Puerto Rico, I am grateful to have witnessed their love story.
Puerto Rico Wedding Vendors
Wedding Planner Dora Thillet
Hotel Venue Hotel Palacio Provincial
Ceremony Location El Morro Fortress
Wedding Photography Camille Fontz
Videographer The Film Writer
Florist Glow Events
Mini Wedding Cake Double Cake
Music Yuvi Plena
Hair & Make-up Caridad Vidro
Officiant Ministros de Bodas Puerto Rico
Medical Certificate for Marriage License Dr. Jose Carlos Herrera, MD