An Elopement in Rio De Janeiro

We brought back marriage as a souvenir

Christopher & Angel 

One sentence sum-up of the wedding vibe: Our Brasilian elopement was as intimate as intimate gets, focusing on our love and commitment to one another, life, and adventure.

Soundtrack for reading: “Rock ’N’ Roll Suicide” by Seu Jorge

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As our wedding planning began, we knew exactly what we’d like to have. The focus had always been to have an extremely intimate ceremony focusing on uniting our families as we create our own addition and to celebrate with our friends and family in reception, remaining true to ourselves incorporating our love for music, good drinks, and dancing. The difficult part was finding a way to keep it within a budget that wouldn’t interfere with our love to travel. Along the way of our wedding planning, we decided to book a trip to Brasil. We were still gathering numbers in planning our wedding and mutually agreed we weren’t too fond of one big costly party to celebrate our lifelong commitment to one another. Remaining true to ourselves, we immediately realized this trip to Brasil would be the perfect way to begin our lifetime journey together. We would elope. Our commitment is most important, first to ourselves, our families, and a promise to experience each adventure life will take us together. Our final decisions were to elope in Brasil (just us two), and on our return home, have an intimate family ceremony, and an awesome celebration of love with friends and family.

As we began our journey to Brasil, we didn’t have any formal plans in mind. We transferred vows from iPhone and tons of scratch paper into our “special love journal” along our flights, and continued to keep an open, optimistic mind that things would fall into place: location, day, time, and weather. The only definite plan was that we knew we would be husband and wife when we returned back home in California. That was the most incredible, forever souvenir we could ever come home with. We wanted to bring back memories to share with our family, so we hired Candice Benjamin Photography to photograph our adventures together. On our first day in Rio de Janeiro, we visited the Botanical Garden and immediately knew this was the perfect location to exchange our vows to one another. On our third day out, the weather was perfect and our hearts were ready. We played with the idea of a “first look” but reconsidered after reminding ourselves our marriage is completely about supporting each other, putting each other first, which in this tradition meant helping each other get ready for our life together. Once we headed out to the Botanical Garden, we let our feet follow our hearts in the direction of all the pretty light and natural beauty Rio de Janeiro has to offer. We exchanged our vows hand in hand and continued with portraits inside the garden as well as embracing our love for international street art. The night ended with an amazing Copacabana beachside dinner and stroll on the beach.

Favorite Thing About The Wedding

Our elopement felt as though we were running through scenes of A Secret Garden with each new discovery heightening the bliss. It was the most peaceful place on earth. It felt as if it were just us two in the garden and it was only ours to explore. Following our vow exchange, we enjoyed successfully ordering a beachside dinner in Portuguese.


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