Puerto Rico Feature
Weddings and Honeymoons in Puerto Rico
Many other Caribbean destinations make a big pitch as wedding destinations, and Puerto Rico often gets overlooked. But it has all the ingredients of a spectacular place to wed and/or honeymoon. Gorgeous beaches dissolving into warm turquoise waters and a sensual tropical climate induce romance, and many an enamored couple has tied the knot here on the spur of the moment.
Choosing the Perfect Place
You can be as stylish or as informal as you wish. Although Puerto Rico has fewer ritzy beach resorts than many others islands, there's no shortage of exquisite boutique hotels with just the right ambience to inspire "I do." In San Juan, Casa Herencia and the El Convento have just the right romantic style. In Rincón, the Horned Dorest Primavera exudes honeymoon chic, and the Hix House Hotel, on Vieques, will suit honeymooners seeking a reclusive escape. Also on Vieques, the new W Beach Resort & Spa promises all the hip sophistication perfectly suited to young newlyweds, including sexy rooms and a holistic spa for Him and Her treatments. Puerto Rico has no couples-only "all-inclusives," such as the well-known Caribbean Sandals and SuperClubs chains, but the "W" promises to deliver all the right stuff. Also consider Copamarina Beach Resort & Spa, which has a "romance package" that includes a bottle of champagne plus massage. Many larger hotels have their own wedding planners to take care of all arrangements—a distinct advantage over smaller hotels if you're seeking to wed on the island.
Getting Your Licenses
You must get an application from the Demographic Registry Office. There are no special residency requirements, but U.S. citizens must produce a driver's license, and non-U.S. citizens must produce a valid passport for identification purposes. Medical certificates, which can be done by your own doctor and approved by a Puerto Rican one, are required. If either the bride or groom was previously married, certified copies of a divorce decree or death certificate must be produced. The filing cost is $20. Blood tests are required and must be done within 10 days of the marriage ceremony. The results must be certified and signed by a doctor or hotel physician in Puerto Rico. The cost for the laboratory test in Puerto Rico is about $15 to $25. Both parties must appear at the City Court office to purchase a marriage license. Marriages may then be performed by a judge or any clergyman. The marriage fee is usually between $150 and $350. Most large hotels on the island have marriage coordinators who can explain the necessary paperwork and help you complete it on time for your marriage ceremony.
Demographic Registry Office (Plaza Las Américas, 525 Av. Roosevelt, Hato Rey, San Juan, 00918. 787/767-9120.)
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