Real Wedding: Jessica & Edray

Side by side photos of bride and groom kissing in the resort lobby Photo: John Lyons Photography
Where it all started

Dental hygienist, Jessica and Edray, a computer technician, first met at a family function in 2008. Edray’s friend was married to Jessica’s cousin, so they would see each other occasionally at family gatherings over the years. The two had talked briefly a couple times, but it wasn’t until a joint bachelor and bachelorette party in Las Vegas that the couple’s own love story began. As the only two single people in their group of friends, Jessica and Edray ended up sitting next to each other on the plane to Las Vegas. They spent the entire flight talking and getting to know each other and when they stepped off the plane they were inseparable. As it turns out what happens in Vegas, doesn’t always stay in Vegas, as they’ve been together ever since!

After dating for three years, Edray knew that he wanted to propose. He decided to use their friend’s birthday as a disguise for his proposal at Caesar’s Windsor. Jessica thought that Edray was going to propose at a family event in several months, so it was a complete surprise when Edray got on stage at her friend’s ‘surprise party’ and sang Marry You by Bruno Mars. Before he could even finish saying the words “Will you marry me?” she had pulled the ring out of the box and put it on!

Bride standing on a balcony overlooking the pool and the ocean Photo: John Lyons Photography
Planning the wedding

Jessica and Edray knew from the beginning that they wanted a destination wedding – it was just a matter of where they would have it. They decided to visit Aruba as a potential wedding destination and ten minutes into the drive to their resort, they knew it was the perfect place for them to exchange their vows. It felt extra special to them because Edray’s dad was born in Aruba.

While visiting Aruba, the couple stayed at Riu Palace Aruba and fell in love with the resort. It was their dream wedding venue! The beach was spectacular; the price was right for all their guests; and they had seen first-hand how incredible the resort was – from the setting to the service.

Wedding ceremony on the beach at sunset Photo: John Lyons Photography
Day details

On May 16th, Jessica and Edray said ‘I do’ as the sun set over the sparkling shores of Palm Beach at Riu Palace Aruba. The entire day felt like a fairy tale, from the moment the beautiful bride walked down the aisle to when the officiant officially pronounced them as husband and wife. Surrounded by 43 of their closest family and friends, they couldn’t have dreamed of a more perfect way in which to celebrate their union.

Jessica’s favourite part of the day was walking down the aisle towards Edray, who had tears of joy in his eyes; Edray remembers thinking, ‘Come on, say I can kiss my bride already!’ After their beach ceremony, the couple enjoyed a delicious dinner at the poolside steakhouse Nautilus. They plan to return to Aruba for their honeymoon.

Side-by-side photos of the bride and groom standing on the beach at sunset Photo: John Lyons Photography
Wedding day wear

Jessica’s dress: Strapless lace gown with sheer tulle overskirt

Jessica’s shoes: Gold peep-toe pumps

Jessica’s accessories: Coordinating necklace, earrings and bracelet

Edray’s suit: Shirt and suit from Zara

Edray’s shoes: Brown shoes from Hudson’s Bay

Edray’s accessories: Bow tie from Zara

The bridesmaids wore: Variety of blue dresses

The groomsmen wore: White shirt and blue pants

Bride's father walking her down the aisle on the beach Photo: John Lyons Photography
Small details

Flowers: Calla lilies, Birds of Paradise corsages and bouquets by the bride’s aunt

Photographer: John Lyons Photography

Hair: Salon at Riu Palace Aruba

Makeup: Groom’s daughter, who is a makeup artist

Stationary and invitations: Handmade passport-style invitations

First dance: Say You Won’t Let Go – James Arthur

Welcome gifts: Out of Town bags designed and assembled by the couple

Bride and groom posing in a lush garden Photo: John Lyons Photography
Tips for future couples

"Plan as much as you can ahead of time so that when you get to the resort, it’s time to relax!"

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