*Photo: Kim reties the knot at Beaches Turks and Caicos, Oct 2014
Travel expert Kim Hartlen is our go-to for everything Sandals. Based in Bedford, N.S., Kim is recognized with the highest level of achievement as a Certified Sandals Platinum agent. She has made over 250 Sandals bookings and has visited all of their properties. At the 13th annual STAR Awards held at the Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort in Ocho Rios, Jamaica in December, Kim was chosen for the worldwide Chairman’s Award. We asked Kim her thoughts on destination weddings, and why Sandals may be the place to go for your big day.
The Sandals brand seems to be a favourite of yours. How does Sandals do weddings differently than other hotel chains? Sandals allows you to customize your own wedding your style with so many options and they even give you a credit towards customizing your own or you can go with the free Beautiful Beginnings package.
What are some of the best resorts for weddings? I have to say any Sandals or Beaches resort for weddings. Each resort is unique, and I’m able to walk a bride and groom through any Sandals or Beaches resort and describe wedding locations, beach, and honeymoon suites to make the perfect choice.
Describe your dream destination wedding. Sandals resort on the beach with lots of flowers and stars in the sky.
If someone is thinking of a destination wedding, what steps should they take to make their dream a reality? First and most important is to meet with a travel counsellor who is a wedding specialist. Make the connection with that agent and talk about what the bride and groom envision their destination wedding to be.
Planning a wedding can be stressful. There’s so much to consider- from invites to food to photos and entertainment. How is all this managed for a destination wedding? Once you pick the destination/resort and book the wedding date, the rest is very easy. The bride will be contacted by a wedding planner and they will work together on customizing all those details to make the process stress-free.
Another concern with weddings is the budget. What can couples generally expect to spend? It can vary. Some resorts will offer free weddings, but you can always purchase extras to customize your day.
Are destination weddings for everyone? I would say not for everyone; it really depends on what is most important on that day to determine if a destination wedding is best for the couple or not. But if you love to travel, I would say yes.
Now you can get a sneak peek of your dream destination wedding! Sandals is offering a test drive where potential clients can experience a WeddingMoon preview with 2 nights (3 days) in paradise that includes a meeting with the resort wedding team, photography team, cake tasting, and more. You’ll receive up to a $700 credit when you book your WeddingMoon group of 10 or more! Limited time offer, contact Kim for details.
Planning a wedding? Call Kim Hartlen at 1-800-665-4981 ext. 7217.