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How to Plan a Destination Wedding

Here are some great tips about planning Destination Weddings from our friends Couples Resorts!

Did you know?

As of January 2015, all Couples Resorts on-site Wedding Coordinators will be WPIC Certified.

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Newest Trend in Destination Weddings: Beachball Confetti!

by Danielle Andrews Sunkel

Photo by <a href=

Photo by Elaine Palladino Photography www.elainepalladino.com

A new trend has been turning up at beach weddings everywhere, beach ball confetti!

Photo by <a href=

Photo by Aaron Rebarchek Photography www.aaronrebarchek.com

Not only does it look great in photos, it adds to the feeling of celebration for everyone.

Get mini beach balls in 4″ or 6″ here.

Real Wedding: A WPIC Canada/Barbados Collaborative

WPIC  has over 4600 Alumni from all over the world, who work together to make the wedding industry better for clients and planners. Recently, Jennifer Borgh, a planner in Toronto, Canada,  reached out to her fellow WPIC Alumni, Sue Morris, a planner in Barbados, with beautiful results.

From Jennifer Borgh:
After a year of planning, I bid farewell to another lovely couple who I enjoyed working with!  This year, I am really thanking my lucky stars as I have had so many amazingly grateful couples who have been a pleasure to work with.  Each of them with a completely different style and ideas to make their weddings their own.  A HUGE thank you to Sue from Soulmates Barbados who was on-site for their wedding to make sure everything planned was in place! So much love for my fellow Wedding Planner network who always help me pull off the best for my clients!  I met Sue through the Wedding Planners Institute of Canada when Sue invited all of us to Barbados to experience the island for the first time a few years ago.

Guests flew from England and Canada to unite in Barbados for a beautiful beach wedding followed by an intimate dinner reception. Enjoy!

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Wedding Planning: Jennifer Borgh of Jennifer Borgh Events
Photography: Steve Cumberbatch of Magical Moments Photography
Wedding Day Coordination & Vendor referrals: Sue Morris of Soulmates Barbados
Graphic Design elements(invitations and special touches):  Sugar Rush Design
Travel Bookings: Jennifer Borgh of TravelOnly
Flowers: Christina from Simply Flowers
Decor: Celia of Marquee Events

About Jennifer Borgh, WPICC:
Specializing in destination weddings, Jennifer Borgh with her team of exceptional assistants and vendor connections ensure every single detail of your wedding is taken care of. Jennifer Borgh Events is a boutique planning company and doesn’t overbook. Jennifer Borgh plans weddings and honeymoons FULL time and is therefore available when you need her!
Her extensive background in events has taken her all across the Caribbean. Being Certified by The Wedding Planners Institute of Canada, Jamaica Tourist Board, Sandals and Travel Industry Council of Ontario leaves destination bridal parties completely worry-free in her capable hands.

About Sue Morris, WPICC:
Sue is the Owner and Manager of Soulmates Barbados. She is a highly experienced wedding coordinator and she has been coordinating special events in Barbados since 1997. As a Certified Wedding Coordinator (certified by The Wedding Planners Institute of Canada), Sue is actively involved in the wedding industry and is also the Chair of the Romance Product Club at the Barbados Hotel & Tourism Association. Sue holds a diploma in Tourism Management from Georgian College of Applied Arts and Technology and a Professional Certificate in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

Real Wedding: A WPIC Canada/Barbados Collaborative

WPIC has over 4600 Alumni from all over the world, who work together to make the wedding industry better for clients and planners. Recently, Jennifer Borgh, a planner in Toronto, Canada,  reached out to her fellow WPIC Alumni, Sue Morris, a planner in Barbados, with beautiful results.

From Jennifer Borgh:
After a year of planning, I bid farewell to another lovely couple who I enjoyed working with!  This year, I am really thanking my lucky stars as I have had so many amazingly grateful couples who have been a pleasure to work with.  Each of them with a completely different style and ideas to make their weddings their own.  A HUGE thank you to Sue from Soulmates Barbados who was on-site for their wedding to make sure everything planned was in place! So much love for my fellow Wedding Planner network who always help me pull off the best for my clients!  I met Sue through the Wedding Planners Institute of Canada when Sue invited all of us to Barbados to experience the island for the first time a few years ago.

Guests flew from England and Canada to unite in Barbados for a beautiful beach wedding followed by an intimate dinner reception. Enjoy!

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Wedding Planning: Jennifer Borgh of Jennifer Borgh Events
Photography: Steve Cumberbatch of Magical Moments Photography
Wedding Day Coordination & Vendor referrals: Sue Morris of Soulmates Barbados
Graphic Design elements(invitations and special touches):  Sugar Rush Design
Travel Bookings: Jennifer Borgh of TravelOnly
Flowers: Christina from Simply Flowers
Decor: Celia of Marquee Events

About Jennifer Borgh, WPICC:
Specializing in destination weddings, Jennifer Borgh with her team of exceptional assistants and vendor connections ensure every single detail of your wedding is taken care of. Jennifer Borgh Events is a boutique planning company and doesn’t overbook. Jennifer Borgh plans weddings and honeymoons FULL time and is therefore available when you need her!
Her extensive background in events has taken her all across the Caribbean. Being Certified by The Wedding Planners Institute of Canada, Jamaica Tourist Board, Sandals and Travel Industry Council of Ontario leaves destination bridal parties completely worry-free in her capable hands.

About Sue Morris, WPICC:
Sue is the Owner and Manager of Soulmates Barbados. She is a highly experienced wedding coordinator and she has been coordinating special events in Barbados since 1997. As a Certified Wedding Coordinator (certified by The Wedding Planners Institute of Canada), Sue is actively involved in the wedding industry and is also the Chair of the Romance Product Club at the Barbados Hotel & Tourism Association. Sue holds a diploma in Tourism Management from Georgian College of Applied Arts and Technology and a Professional Certificate in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

Sandals & The Courtyard Marriot Wow WPIC Alumni

By: Tracey Manailescu

WPIC Alumni at the Sandals CSS Training at Courtyard Marriott Downtown Toronto

Well blow me over with a feather, why don’t you? On May 6th, 2012 we had the pleasure of being educated, fed and wowed by some wonderful companies.

84 WPIC Alumni were trained as Certified Sandals Specialists (CSS) by the lovely Lorna Richards, Sandals National Training Manager.  Most Alumni were renewing their CSS certification, while other Alumni got a chance to learn about why we gush over Sandals at WPIC. (This needs to be renewed every year.)

We love the fact that Sandals has added some wonderful additions to their wedding planning packages and apps to make the wedding planning process easier for couples. Sandals/Beaches work very well with WPIC certified wedding coordinators.  Thank you, Gina Tsirmpas for introducing us to Sandals so many years ago…

Lorna Richards, Sandals Trainer

Danielle and I have two places left to visit through Sandals, and those are Antigua and The Exumas.  We have  enjoyed several personal vacations, sent clients, families & friends on personal vacations and honeymoons, we have attended many Sandals FAM trips, and WPIC has held  Conferences at Beaches, Turks & Caicos and Sandals Royal Caribbean in the Bahamas.  I have coordinated a Destination Wedding to Royal Caribbean in the Bahamas where the bride was from Romania and the Groom was from B.C.

Trust me, WPIC, Danielle and myself love the Sandals/Beaches brands.

Erin Pleizier, WPICC, Catering Sales Manager at Courtyard Marriott Downtown Toronto

After the CSS training, Erin Pleizier, Catering Manager and also happens to be WPICC,  along with her team at the Courtyard Marriott(our host venue), blew us a way with a welcome reception that was amazing!  So many vendors were brought in to showcase what they can offer to our clients. There was an ice cream station, photo booth with props, a mind reader, food stations, cupcake station, open bar, DJ, videographer, photographer, decorator, florist and even a prize giveaway of an overnight stay at the Courtyard Marriott and brunch.

 

       

We are so appreciative of the opportunities that we were given.  We hope to be able to give back to all of those who participated.

Here is a list of the vendors involved:

The Courtyard Marriott

Sandals Resorts

Mysterion The Mind Reader

Inside the Booth

Chair Decor

Classic Elegance
 
Sweets From the Earth

Flowers of the World

TKO Cakes

Michael T Photography 

Impact Entertainment

Baron Media

 

Thank you!

Sandals unveils new “Island Routes” at Chairman’s Dinner

Island_routesPicture 36-1by Danielle Andrews Sunkel

Last night, Sandals Founder and Chairman, Butch Stewart held a Chairman's dinner here in Toronto at the Delta Chelsea Hotel. Sandals CEO, Adam Stewart, was also in attendance along with top Sandals Executives, distinguished guests from the Jamaican Government, representatives from various Tourism Boards, Tour Operators, many Travel Agents and of course yours truly, WPIC President, Danielle Andrews Sunkel, and WPIC Vice President, Tracey Manailescu.

Tracey Manailescu, Sandals Butch Stewart and Danielle Andrews SunkelWPIC Vice President, Tracey Manailescu, Sandals Chairman and Founder Butch Stewart and WPIC President, Danielle Andrews Sunkel 

Sandals Chairman's Dinner 2WPIC President Danielle Andrews Sunkel, CEO of Sandals International Adam Stewart and WPIC Vice President Tracey Manailescu

The night started with a cocktail reception and trade show, where guests could speak with Tour Operators and Representatives from the various Tourism Boards and Sandals staff representing each of the properties and products.  We then gathered in the Ballroom for sit-down dinner and presentations.

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DSC03783The Mr. Stewarts, who spent the night decked out in Team Canada Hockey Jerseys, delivered updates about Sandals International, the Sandals Foundation and introduced their newest product, Island Routes.

IslandRoutes-logo 

Island Routes is their new line of adventure tours that promises to show you the islands as you've never seen them before.  How about 4 x 4ing through the Blue Mountains? Swimming the ocean, on horseback.  Making Rum at the Appleton Estates!  Floating down the rapids in inner tubes! Swimming with sharks. Being up close and personal with aligators as you ride a pontoon down the river.  Eco-tours and Safaris.  Bobsledding or zip-lining through the jungle.  Romantic Bamboo River Rafting with your significant other.  Or have you ever fantasized about being stranded on a deserted island with your honey?  Your wish can be granted for an afternoon in the Exumas. 

Thanks to Sandals' newest venture, and 120 tour offerings, you can do it all.

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As WPIC Certified Sandals Specialists, we are so happy and excited that Sandals is now offering Island Adventure Tours!  It is difficul
t to know who to trust when you travel to other countries.  You worry about the safety and upkeep of the vehicles, the knowledge of the staff, impact on the local environment, insurance and so many other elements when considering a tour.  

With Sandals at the helm, you can be confident that any tour they offer will be a superior experience, they will have the best insurance coverage and operator training, the safest vehicles and of course everything they do is environmentally-friendly and socially responsible.  I know this is going to change the way I travel!

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Your WPIC Certified Sandals Specialist can help you choose the best tours for you and can book your tour at the same time they book your Sandals, Royal Plantation, Grand Pineapple or Beaches Wedding and/or Honeymoon.

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Your WPIC Sandals Certified Representative can provide you with more details and brochures.

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WPIC- 2009 Year in Review

Tracey Manailescu and Danielle Andrews Sunkel WPIC

A note from WPIC Founders, Tracey Manailescu and Danielle Andrews Sunkel:

Wow, what a year we have
had!

The Wedding Planners
Institute of Canada and its Association WPICAlumni is over 500 people stronger
this year.  Alumni have travelled
from Mexico, Jamaica, Barbados, Japan, China and Hong Kong to take our course in
2009.

Over 130 of our Alumni
have had the opportunity to experience Wedding Destinations such as Jamaica,
Bahamas, Turks & Caicos and the Philippines this year.  Some were even treated to Private Plane
transportation!

WPIC certified all the Jamaican
Sandals, Beaches and Grand Pineapple staff.

We established and grew
our partnerships with our fantastic travel partners: 
Sandals and the
lovely, Gina Tsirmpas;
SuperClubs
and the wonderful, Steve Koth;
Air
Canada Vacations
and the darling, Debbie Cotton-Burinski; and The Bahamas Tourism Board and the
fantastic, Vinincia Strachan, WPICC. 
We owe so much to our amazing contacts at each of these companies!

WPIC on Canada AM  

(Click image to watch)

The media has referred to
us on many occasions, we have been interviewed on Canada AM twice this year, On
the Line twice, Entertainment Tonight Canada and in Today’s Bride, Chatelaine, The National
Post (multiple times), The Globe & Mail (multiple), and every single city
newspaper in the Sun Media Group (multiple times) as well as many other publications
in print and on-line.

Our President and Vice
President spoke at the
Wedding MBA in Las Vegas in September and Instructor,
Tara Murney, spoke to
AfWPI members in California.

We’ve “Trashed the Dress”
in Jamaica, The Bahamas, Turks & Caicos, the Philippines and of course,
Toronto.

Trash the Dress Turks Wedding Conference We just got back from our
best conference to date, the 5
th Annual Wedding Professionals
Conference
held at the fabulous Beaches Turks & Caicos.  We had Sasha Souza, Joanne Brown, Andy
Ebon and Simon & Ciara Daykin speak to us there.

Our Alumni have grown
their businesses leaps and bounds, have received several top Industry Awards,
been appointed the executive of Industry Associations and interviewed, quoted
and featured in many Wedding and mass media publications.  We couldn’t be prouder of all our
“Wedding Superstars”!

Year-end is a time to
re-evaluate and set newer and bigger goals and we definitely have. 

Some the things on WPIC’s
2010 Agenda include trips to Ireland, The Bahamas, Jamaica, Mexico and Barbados.  We will
continue to offer the Annual Wedding Professionals Conference in a sunny
locale.  We have started a new
partnership with a very large travel company and will be certifying over 400 of
their agents as Destination Wedding Specialists.  Most importantly, we will continue to produce the best
educated, informed and ethical Certified Professional Wedding Coordinators.

Thank you for our best
year to date and we look forward to the exciting years ahead!

Sincerely,

Danielle Andrews Sunkel and Tracey Manailescu
Founders of The Wedding Planners Institute of Canada Inc.

5th Annual Wedding Conference in Turks & Caicos

Huge Trash the Dress WPIC in Turks

by Danielle Andrews Sunkel and Tracey Manailescu, Producers  www.weddingconf.com

Wow!  What an amazing conference, even if we do say so ourselves!  This was indeed the best conference we've held to date.  

Conference Sign Turks 

Photo courtesy of Rhonda Lam, Devoted to You

Attendees were met at the airport and whisked off to our host resort, the 6-star, Beaches Turks & Caicos, where they were greeted by the Conference Producers, Danielle Andrews Sunkel and Tracey Manailescu, and Sandals Promotions Manager, Gina Tsirmpas, a chilled towel and a rum cocktail. 

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Later that evening Beaches held a Welcome Cocktail Party, complete with a live performer, cocktails and hot and cold canapes.  Attendees got to hobnob with the Speakers and were encouraged to visit the Wedding Office where the new Martha Stewart Sandals Wedding Collection was being previewed on the Plasma screens.  Cakes and accessories from the collection were also on display.

Andy Ebon Ciara DaykinJo-Anne Brown Celebration LTD 

The next day seminars began at 8:30am.  The speakers were amazing and spoke to both our beginner attendees as well as our seasoned pros, everyone was able to take away valuable info and tips from each seminar. Andy Ebon reminded everyone why they got in to the business and brought everyone to tears with his letter to Wedding Coordinators, Ciara Daykin taught everyone to find their "flavour" of client, speak directly to them when marketing and realize their full potential as RockStar Wedding Planners.  Jo-Anne Brown delighted everyone with her experience and tips from over 2000 weddings in the Caribbean.  She included tips and directives about working with local sources, importing, transport and international Customs and Tariffs. Attendees were able to enjoy everything the resort and island had to offer after 1:30pm, and enjoy they did!

Simon Daykin speaking at Wedding Conference TraceyManailescu, Sasha Souza and Danielle Andrews Sunkel 

Photo courtesy of Sheila Baragianis, Pink Ribbon Weddings

Day 2 started with a RockStar Design seminar from award-winner, Simon Daykin, followed by an educational seminar on planning Destination Weddings from the Producers, Danielle Andrews Sunkel and Tracey Manailescu.  Our special guest and Keynote Speaker, Sasha Souza, wound up Day 2 with a fantastic seminar.  She included tips about business, the right client for you, working with Colour and Inspiration Boards.  She also gave us previews from her new book, "Signature Sasha Souza", due out January 2010.

WPIC Trash the Dress Turks and Caicos

That afternoon, delegates donned Wedding Dresses and took part in the largest known Trash the Dress Photo Shoot.  We had 12 professional photographers and about 50 amateurs on the beach snapping away like a wall of paparazzi.  What a great time we all had jumping off piers, racing down waterslides, floating in a lazy river, swimming in the ocean and splashing through fountains all while wearing our wedding dresses!

WPIC Trash the Dress Turks and Caicos

Day 3 was Sandals/Beaches Day where every attendee got the chance to become Sandals Certified.  Our training was interupted by some furry monsters, Cookie Monster, The Count and Elmo to name names. All of the attendees had a great time getting their photos with the characters and we've already seen a bunch of Facebook Profiles updated with the pictures.

Sesame Street characters at wpic conference

Photo courtesy of Stephanie Thompson Events

That evening Beaches treated our group like royalty!  The delegates and speakers went on a Catamaran Cruise for cocktails and hors d'eourves, then met their travel companions and were treated to a gorgeous Gala set up beside the French Village Pool.  The night included tons of food stations, beautiful floral and feather centrepieces, live entertainment, awards to Top Sandals Sellers, raffles from over 22 sponsors with a Grand Prize of 5days/4nights at any Sandals or Beaches Resort!  Lucky Lady, Sandra Aaron, was the winner.

Wedding Conference Gala at Beaches Turks
Many new friends were created and several relationships were made stronger.  Each Conference delegate and Speaker got to see how much can be accomplished, shared and learned when people put aside their egos and help improve eachother.  We are all better Wedding Professionals for it.

A HUGE thank you to our host resort Beaches Turks & Caicos and especially Sandals Poromotion Manager, Gina Tsirmpas.  This was by far the easiest Conference we have ever put together and considering this conference was 1,600 miles from our hometown, that says A LOT!

Steppin’ Out: A Guide to the Perfect Wedding Shoes for Outdoor Weddings

by Danielle Andrews Sunkel

When planning an outdoor wedding you have unique challenges and need to consider a lot of details, including shoes.  High heels and grass or sand, just don't mix.  Below we will have a look at some appropriate footwear for your big day.

Beach Wedding

If you are planning to get married on the beach, why not go barefoot and decorate your tootsies instead? Pedicure is a must! ;)

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Find Bridal Foot Jewelry at www.ladybead.com or one of our WPIC Certified Custom Jewellers would be able to design something for you: www.manydesigns-manycolours.com , www.jenniferborghevents.com

Bridal Flips Flops are another great item for your Beach Wedding. 

Bridal flip flops 

These ones are from www.weddingfactorydirect.com

Outdoor Wedding

Heels tend to sink in to the grass, so unless you want your bridesmaids to look like the Tower of Pisa, incorporate Wedges or Espadrilles.

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Or get SoleMates.  These little do-dads slip on to the heel and increase the circumference of the stiletto heel, so there is no sinking!

Solemates multiple pic

Our Wedding Professionals Conference, Beaches Turks & Caicos Nov 14-18/09

The 5th Annual Wedding Professionals Conference is being held at the glorious, 6-star Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort and Spa!
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The theme of this confernce is "Destination Weddings", the Wedding Industry's biggest trend.  Over 20% of all weddings each year are Destination Weddings.

Yumi and lee wedding in thailand

There will also be a healthy dose of Wedding Marketing at the Conference.  This conference is open to anyone in the Wedding Industry.

Speakers include:  Master of Caribbean Weddings, JoAnne Brown; Rockstar Wedding Planner, Ciara Daykin; Wedding Marketing Guru, Andy Ebon; Gutsy Groom Stylist & Rockstar Decorator, Simon Daykin, to name a few.
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Cost of the Conference is $330 USD.

We have secured the unheard of rate of $400 USD for 5 days/4 nights of Luxury Included Accommodations at the 6-start Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort and Spa (based on double occupancy). Luxury Included means, luxury accommodations, all food, all premium alcohol, watersports, entertainment, etc, etc and best of all NO TIPPING!

For more details and to register visit the website: www.weddingconf.com
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