Destination Wedding Photograpy and Hotel Review in Varadero, Cuba

A recipe for a successful wedding:

Take a bride and groom, a beautiful sunny destination, an outstanding hotel, about 50 guests

(yes, 50!...the hotel informed us that this was the largest reception they have ever hosted),

among those two photographers and what you get is

the best and most memorable wedding imaginable;

one that ends in the hotel's pool.

Any professional wedding photographer would relish the opportunity to photograph a destination wedding, even more so if the wedding takes place in a warm and tropical destination, such as Varadero, Cuba.  Varadero is foremost a tourist resort town, boasting with more than 20 km of white sandy beaches.  Varadero is located in the northwest part of Cuba. and our final destination was on the northern west part of Varadero.  Below you will find a moredetailed map of Varadero

(click on map to get a full size version):

Here are a few breathtaking aerial images of Varadero we took from the plane as it began to descend:

When we were asked by the couple to photograph their destination wedding, which was to take place the last week of October 2010, we jumped at the opportunity WOW!: a wedding and a vacation all-in-one.  We were very excited. We have previously vacationed in Cuba several times in places such as Manzanillo, Cayo Coco and Camaguay, we have never experienced Varadero.  From our resources we heard that Varadero is loud, packed and quite a party place. We were assured by the couple that a pleasant and suprisingly peaceful time was awaiting us.

To our amazement, the destination was beautiful, the resort superb (5-star Iberostar Varadero), service impeccable and atmosphere tranquil.  The Iberostar Varadero is just one of the hotels amongst a strip of others along the western shore of Varadero.  Although the hotel is surrounded by other similar beautiful resorts, such as Melia las Antillas, Blau Varadero and Paradisus Varadero, it is still quite private.  The rooms at the Iberostar Varadero are very well maintained by the maids; they are clean and pleasant to come back to at the end of the day.  Below are some photos of the hotel and grounds:

The bride and groom truly got treated like royalty with quick and outstanding service.  The hotel staff and wedding planner aimed to please in order for the happy couple to get the wedding of their dreams.  There were many, many perks offered by the hotel to the bride and groom including special services such as spa and couple massage, champagne and drinks, t-shirts, flowers plus many more and not to mention that these were only the services provided before the Big Day.

During the wedding day everything ran very smoothly.  With the help and organization of the wedding coordinator, there was no confusion, no pressure or stress.  The day went swimmingly. The hotel provided the couple and their guests with a beautiful cabana-type restaurant to eat the celebration dinner and to dance the night away under the stars. The DJ was outstanding and played Cuban music as well as many of the couples requests. After celebrating into the wee hours of the night the couple was lastly pleasantly surprised when they arrived back at their room at the end of the night to find rose petals scattered on the floor and the bed.  Below you will find some sample images of the wedding we photographed at the Iberostar Varadero:

This was a low key wedding with photo opportunities everywhere.  Everyone was relaxed and super happy and it shows on the final images.  Yes, it was hot, but so what, better being there and having the bride and groom soaking up the rays instead of shivering in cold and windy Toronto.  In other words it was fantastic!  Here are some more of our Varadero wedding photos:

The entire week we were there the weather was cooperative, we only had a gentle rain once for about 15 was very romantic. In October it is summertime in Cuba.  We walked, used the scooter and drove around to get a better sense and understanding of this magnificent town.  We took a walk along the beach to check out the closest resort to the Iberostar; Paradisus Varadero.  This hotel was also lovely with a beautiful and much deeper set beach.  This particular hotel was nestled just a little further from the shore than the Iberostar. The cabanas and umbrellas were spaced further apart than at the Iberostar (the guests received a little more persoanl space to enjoy the beach and activities).   We also went the other way to scope out the Blau Varadero, the beach there was much narrower and the hotel was located a distance back.  These were both lovely hotels as well. We would seriously consider booking at the Paradisus Varadero next time we vacation in Cuba. And in regards to the nightlife in Varadero, yes, it's there and you can either quite easily avoid it (if you are travelling with children or are looking for a little peace) or just as easily join in.  Having taken a few photos of various aspects of Varadero (buildings, people and life), we would like to share them with you:

We hope that this review provided you with a fuller understanding of the hotel and surrounding grounds, a destination wedding in Varadero, Cuba, the town of Varadero and better guided you toward choosing your next holiday or wedding destination getaway.

For more information about our destination wedding photography rates please contact us at or 416.554.EPIC(3742).

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