Tips for Hosting a Black Tie Beach Wedding

Posted on April 27th, 2016 by Elsa Dilasser

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AS WEDDING PLANNERS IN MEXICO, we get this question a lot from many of our couples: “Can we host a black tie wedding in Cabo?” Turns out, that’s a very good question. The fast answer is YES! Of course you can wear black tie to your wedding, you can also invite your guests to do the same for the ultimate in formally attired nuptials. It’s your wedding and if hand-tied silk bow ties and fancy party frocks are your thing, then wear them. But, “black tie” on the invitation is more than apparel. It’s about tone and formality, and let’s be honest here, you may want to take all the practical information into consideration before you order that custom Brioni tuxedo.

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LOS CABOS, MEXICO is paradise personified with its endless white beaches, rocky cliffs and aqua blue waters. But it’s the clear skies and bright sunny days that keep the weather ideal year-round. Or, almost anyway. Indeed, some months such as the summer months, July thru October, are warmer with temperatures hitting between 85 F and 95F, and with the humidity rising up to 85% at least. Steamy, sexy days with a tropical feel!

You can imagine how choosing to host a formal black tie wedding with these sticky weather conditions might turn into a total nightmare for the bride and groom, as well as the wedding party and the rest of the formally-attired guests. Not to mention, how all those sweaty suffering men in their fitted, black tuxedos will effect the photos captured by your photographers. Now, take that dripping sweat and suffocating heat, multiply it by 20 and you’ll have an idea what it’s like to wear a heavy wedding gown on a hot day.

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So, with all that in mind, HERE ARE OUR RECOMMENDATIONS for hosting a black tie wedding in Cabo San Lucas:

TIME OF THE YEAR. Of course, the best and most obvious way to avoid issues with the hot climate is to avoid scheduling your black tie wedding during the hottest months of the Los Cabos season. Pick a date in the months of November through May over sure-to-be-sweltering July through September.

CONSIDER AN INDOOR CEREMONY. Before you throw tomatoes at the computer, hear us out on this. If you can only host your seaside wedding in September but your families insist on a formal, black tie bridal party, look for a local church like the Mission Church of San Jose del Cabo, or a charming historical chapel like the one at One & Only Palmilla, or an indoor or partially covered secular space at your luxury hotel. After the ceremony, the cocktail party, dinner and dancing reception can all take place outside under the stars.

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WAIT UNTIL SUNDOWN. If your dream is to exchange vows on the beach, and who could blame you, make sure you at least consider the time of the ceremony. The best time for that soft, golden light is just before sunset and, BONUS! it’s also the coolest part of the day. It’s also fairly common to have soft breezes come across the water for an added cooling effect.

SHADY SPOTS. If you don’t have to have the wedding ceremony on the sand, make sure to ask your wedding venue about shady locations for outdoor ceremonies and photo sessions. We know some resorts offer breathtaking views and scenic settings for those dramatic ceremony backdrops you see in our photos. But, please, do yourselves a little favor and either wait until the “magic hour” just before sunset or compromise by choosing a shady spot to avoid the hot, harsh direct sunlight.

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LAY DOWN SOME FLOOR. If you’ve just got to be outside on the beach, don’t neglect your fancy dress shoes and expensive high heels. Lay down a hard floor for the ceremony aisle and ceremony setting. Indeed, trust us, you don’t want to have your Gucci loafers filled with sand. And, just between us, have you ever tried walking in the sand with high heels? It isn’t pretty or elegant viewing on your wedding video.

WALKING ON WATER. If you love the look of marrying on or next to a sparkling blue swimming pool, just keep in mind all that water just increases the humidity. Make sure to get married between November and May if this is something you want to do for your black tie wedding.

GUEST DRESS CODE. If black tie or black tie optional is just the level of dress you can’t live without on your wedding day, fine. Embrace it from the get-go by informing your guests of the dress code on your invitations. However, put yourself in your guests’ shoes and offer as much shade, air conditioning, short walks and easily accessible hydration as possible. Remember, they are sitting and waiting in that sun in their fancy dress and dark suits long before you ever walk down the aisle.

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KEEP IT LIGHT. The type and weight of the fabrics you choose for your wedding gown and tuxedo will make or break your personal comfort on the day itself. Keep in mind, you’re wearing your wedding attire for at least 12 hours!

CHOOSE A WHITE JACKET. For an added dash of debonair and a little less heat, why not wear a light weight cream linen jacket? They are traditionally worn in the warmer Spring and Summer months instead of the black jacket. It’s a simple, but supremely elegant change up on the traditional. The better quality means your jacket will be cream or ecru, not stark white. Anything bright white, whether a gown or a jacket, tends to have a little polyester or rayon in it. Both textiles keep in heat and moisture, never a good thing on a hot Los Cabos day!

BRIDAL PARTY ONLY. Many of our clients choose to wear black tie and long gowns for their bridal party and parents, only. Not for the whole wedding guest list. This seems to be the most popular way to enjoy the formality and keep the guests happy.

HAVE A BACK UP PLAN. For our groom’s we highly recommend ordering two formal dress shirts, one to wear for the first look, portraits and ceremony; and a second, fresh shirt to change into for the reception. For our brides, what better way to cool down than by hanging up that layered lace gown and changing into a sexy sheath or short party frock after dinner?

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{Photos courtesy of Chris Plus Lynn and Paola Tassinari}


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