An Ultimate Throwback of Our Wedding

October 01, 2015

This shot looked like we had a "destination wedding" because of the rustic feel given by the towering trees inside the UST campus.  Who would have thought that this photo was actually taken in the middle of the hustle and bustle of the city of Manila?

I realized that I have been blogging for almost a year already but I still haven't actually featured our wedding in a blog post.  I can't miss to write something about one of the most important milestones in my life!  So for this entry, I will be giving you a major throwback of OUR WEDDING -- in the hope of helping brides-to-be prepare for their wedding and just because I believe it deserves a special place in this little space I own in the cyber world.

Ronnie and I got married on October 27, 2012.  We chose to wed on that day not because the date is significant to us, but because we were left with no other choice -- our church and reception venues can only accommodate a weekend wedding on that date (all weekend from October to December were already fully booked and Ronnie didn't want to have the wedding moved the following year).  That's actually the problem with having a limited time for wedding preparations, you can't choose a date you prefer because most likely, it's already reserved for other couples.  So if in case you wish to have a weekend wedding, especially during the month of December, make sure to reserve your chosen date at least ONE YEAR in advance.

Apart from the date, the next most important thing that we had agreed upon in planning our wedding is the budget.  We opted to have a simple and decent wedding, nothing fancy or extravagant.  Wedding suppliers are unbelievably expensive nowadays that's why it is very critical to set a budget and STICK with it!  Luckily, we were able to get "sulit" deals (one that met our standards without robbing our bank accounts) from our suppliers which not only allowed us to have a hassle-free wedding, but also enabled us to spend even less than our set budget.  That's a great achievement for 'kuripot' couples like us!  Lol!

Our wedding ceremony was held in SANTISIMO ROSARIO PARISH CHURCH, otherwise known as the UST church.  We chose it because:

(1) It's air-conditioned - this criteria is non-negotiable because the guests' comfort is our utmost priority (we don't want them to be bathed in sweat because of the hot weather);
(2) It's located inside the UST campus, which gives a more private and solemn ceremony, far from the noise of city traffic;
(3) It offers a hassle-free wedding package which includes fresh flowers, red carpet, pianist and soloist, marriage rite souvenir booklet, lunch and snacks during the marriage dialogue, stipend for the solemnizing priest, registration of the marriage contract, and even a church coordinator; and
(4) The most important of all, it's affordable -- perhaps, one of the most (if not the MOST) affordable air-conditioned churches in Metro Manila!

This events place has an outdoor venue perfect for cocktails and a fully air-conditioned indoor venue which can accommodate up to 200 guests.

A lunch reception followed at VILLA IMMACULADA of Tamayo's Catering Services located in Intramuros, Manila (about 15 minutes drive from UST).  We especially love this supplier because of their reasonably priced stress-free wedding package.  And when I say stress-free, it's really a no sweat and worry-free celebration because they literally took care of everything we needed on our special day -- event styling, mood lights, sound system, bridal car, flowers for the entourage, souvenirs, party host, entertainment, on-the-day coordinators, make-up artist, and most importantly, DELISH FOOD!  We certainly had a great time on our first day as husband and wife, and we owe it all to the efficient and professional staff of Tamayo's!  They're highly recommended!

Prior to making a reservation, Ronnie and I had an ocular visit to this hotel where we were warmly accommodated by their front desk officers and they even assigned one of their staffs to give us a tour of the hotel.  A four star hotel with a five star service is indeed a great find! 
(Image courtesy of

Just a few steps away from our reception venue is THE BAYLEAF INTRAMUROS where Ronnie and I had our wedding preparation.  We chose this hotel because of its proximity to our church and reception venues, excellent reviews in TripAdvisor, and affordable rates.   As per my experience, I can say that this hotel is super clean and very mabango, the staffs are warm and professional, and the restaurants are superb in terms of ambiance, food and service.  I was really glad for having found this gem in the walled city of Intramuros! This place will definitely give you your money's worth!

Ronnie wore a 5-piece suit by MERGER in classic black. Though ready-to-wear , the shop still made a few adjustments to the suit just to make sure that it would perfectly fit my husband like a tailor-made piece.

During my second fitting, I asked Miss Concha to make a last minute alteration in the design of my gown's neckline (from scoop to high neck) simply because I changed my mind and thought it will be more comfortable (not having to worry about my cleavage being exposed -- feelingera!)  and would require less accessories.  Good thing Miss Concha was very easy to work with and accommodated my special request without extra charge.  Ain't the final result lovely and worthy of all the hassle?

I am not the type of bride who would splurge on a dress that I would only wear once, so I decided to choose a simple design for my wedding gown and emailed a long list of designers for their rates.  It was CONCHA ESPANA COUTURE that gave me the most affordable price, so without thinking twice, I had them work on my gown.  I was very happy with my dress!  It fitted me perfectly and the details spelled nothing but class and sophistication!  A very big thanks to Miss Concha for making me feel like a real princess on my wedding!

Wedding rings by P ZUNIGA JEWELLERY

If there's one thing which I think would be worth the splurge in a wedding, perhaps, that would be the rings.  I believe that spending extra for a fine jewelry is not really an added expense, but a great investment because a ring of good quality can actually appreciate in value over time.  I would suggest, however, to look for quality suppliers in wedding expos because they actually give generous discounts if you book them on the spot.

Photo and video services are notoriously known to be the second most expensive supplier you'll have to get for a wedding (first would be catering service) that's why it is very important to choose one that will do justice to your wedding and give value for your money.  Fortunately, a good friend of ours got to introduce us to the owners of VIGNETTE PHOTOGRAPHY who had been very kind and generous enough to give us a special package, one that is especially designed to meet our needs, at a fair price.  Working with them had been such a pleasant experience -- their photographers and videographers were professional, talented, friendly, and fun to work with.  And the output? Just let our photos and same-day-edit do the talking!
LABOR OF LOVE.  Our wedding invites were personally designed and printed by my brother, Noel.

Ronnie and I were very grateful for having been blessed with a family who helped make our DIY projects (wedding invitations, missalettes, thank you notes, and church paraphernalia) and entourage members who had been very generous enough to provide for their own gowns and barongs.  Those little acts of kindness really meant a lot to us because we knew they did it out of love.  Not to mention, it also allowed us to save a few bucks and work within our budget.  Indeed, having supportive family and friends is as equally important as choosing good suppliers!

Overall, I can say that preparing for a budget wedding is really a challenging task, but it's doable!  The key is to plan ahead, identify and prioritize needs, and work with the right people.  Of course, we would have not done all these things ourselves.  So let me take this opportunity to acknowledge once again the hard work of our suppliers, the support of our friends and relatives, and the love of our families -- THEY are the real heroes who made this event a successful one!  And THEY are one of the best reasons why this special day in our lives will always be WORTH THE THROWBACK!

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