Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Yes, you can have a Registry Office Wedding in the Cayman Islands.

My credentials: I am one of two Civil Registrars of Marriage practicising in Grand Cayman. I am licensed by the Cayman Islands Government as a Marriage Officer. I am also a Justice of the Peace and a Notary Public. (I am not a Minister of Religion)

Residents of the Cayman Islands often ask me whether they can "come in and sign the paperwork" to get married, and have the wedding ceremony later. It actually doesn't work like that. Under the Cayman Islands Marriage Law you have to have a wedding ceremony, even if its a short civil ceremony. This is because there are certain things I have to ask you and your response has to be witnessed by at least two people over the age of 18 years. Once these formalities are over then we do the legal paperwork, which I file on the next working day with the Registrar of Marriages.

Many of the couples who are married at my office in a simple ceremony choose to have a "Wedding Blessing" or a wedding reception at a later date. When you have a Registry Office ceremony you can still make the day as simple or as elaborate as you wish. For example, you can wear a white wedding dress or something more casual. You can carry flowers, exchange rings, or not...exactly as you wish. Most people will have either an official photographer, or at least a friend with a good camera.

The only limit is to the number of people who can attend. If you have more than 10 people we will have to have the ceremony out of doors in the garden.

The biggest advantage to a Registry Office wedding is that it costs less. The biggest drawback is that it has to take place during office hours which are Monday - Friday, 9am - 3pm.

Our office is on North Church Street, George Town - I also provide Notarial Services by appointment. An appointment is important because I am not always in office.

Simply Weddings - Grand Cayman Wedding Celebrants and Planners

We are a full service wedding business operating in the Cayman Islands. Most of our clients are visitors, either cruise or stayover. We specialise in simple, elegant, personalised weddings.
We also officiate at resident weddings. See us for your Cayman Islands Wedding Vow Renewal or Cayman Wedding Blessing. Call today (345)9499933 or see the Simply Weddings website for our Cayman Islands Wedding Packages

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Chinese Wedding Traditions at this Cayman Islands Wedding

This couple from Indiana pose outside the Wharf Restaurant before their 5:30 pm wedding. Chinese customs dictate that the couple should marry on the half-hour rather than at the top hour of their wedding day. In this way, the hands of the clock are moving up instead of down. This is associated with the belief of Chinese wedding traditions that the couple could begin their lives on an upswing if that custom is followed.

The color red plays a vital role in the wedding festivities of the Chinese people. Red is considered by then as a bold and lucky color. In addition to this, the color signifies love, prosperity and happiness; therefore, everything is in red - wedding invitations, gift envelopes and the bride's wedding dress.

An unusual shot of the couple's hand-prints and rings in the sand

I liked this shot which shots the Wharf's beach bar, Ports of Call in the background, and also the set-up for terrace dining.

The newly-weds pose with their guests at Ports of Call

This little private beach is the beginning (George Town end) of Seven Mile Beach Beach
The buildings of George Town waterfront are seen on the horizon across the bay.

We recommend the Wharf Restaurant for dining, and as a beautiful setting for an intimate, beach wedding particularly spectacular at sunset. To book your Cayman Islands wedding at this or any beach in the Cayman Islands, contact Simply Weddings - Grand Cayman Wedding Celebrants and Planners. Call Joy or Peggy at (345) 9499933.

This ceremony by Joy for Simply Weddings, flowers by Trisha's Roses, photos by Mari Abe for Island Photo.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

NEWS FLASH: Cayman Earthquake Makes News Thanks to Jimmy Rollin's Cayman Beach Wedding

Many people in Cayman were scared this morning as an earthquake reading 5.8 on the Richter scale shook Grand Cayman. Windows rattled, and buildings swayed but it was all over in 20 secs or less. Afterwards, people who had been outside and those in their cars said they hadn't felt a thing. Those of us inside, did get a bit shook up and headed outside, phones in hand, to check on family and friends. Perhaps because of overload, phones did not work for several hours.

News finally began coming through over Facebook, and Rooster 101.9 's CrossTalk with live hosts Gilbert and Austin who stayed on the air to take calls and give reassurance. Luckily for us, there were no reported injuries or damage to homes a that we have heard of so far. A large sink hole opened up at Pirates Lair condos and the residents there were evacuated until a structural assessment of the damage could be done.

News of the quake was picked up by CNN, and by this evening there will be more coverage since the Phillies short-top Jimmy Rollins is in town, with many of his teammates expected to arrive over the next few days.

Rollins weekend wedding on world-famous Seven Mile Beach gives the Cayman Islands wedding industry a good shot in the arm. Grand Cayman's great wedding locations and services, have long been a well -kept secret for the rich and famous. These days it is becoming a wedding hot-spot for the simple, elegant wedding done with impeccable taste and flair. Call Simply Weddings- Grand Cayman Wedding Celebrants and Planners to start planning your Cayman wedding today (345) 949-9933

Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Owl and the Pussycat Went to See a Beautiful Cayman Islands Wedding

This wedding easily made the Top 10 of my favourite weddings of all time, because it was simple, elegant, personalised, and above all!

My Secret Cove was ideal for the intimate wedding of this Vancouver bride and her long-time

It was quite cool, and windy and the sea was rough but this little cove was warm and protected

We talked about the fact that the coin in the champagne cork is a very English tradition, and the date is day, month, year for this English groom.

This picture with the iguana is for the couple's grand-daughter, Lucy

Thanks for allowing us to share your special day, and come back soon!

Ceremony by Joy for Simply Weddings, these gorgeous pictures by Mari Abe for Island Photo.

Let us help you create a very special memory of your wedding day in the Cayman Islands, call Joy or Peggy to simplify all your Cayman wedding arrangements, all legal requirements and all wedding services. Customised packages available. call (345) 9499933

FAQ About Your Cayman Islands Wedding Certificate

Here are the answers to some of your questions about the documents you will get after your Cayman Islands wedding.

To be legally married in the Cayman Islands, you must be free in law to marry, the wedding must be performed by a licensed Civil Registrar of Marriages/Marriage Officer between the hours of 6am and 8pm, before at least two witnesses. Your wedding must be open to the public, for example you can't get married behind closed doors in secret.

All marriages in the Cayman Islands are governed by the Cayman Islands Marriage Law, and must be registered at the office of the Registrar of Marriages, which is part of the General Registry (or public records office) located at the Citrus Grove Building, on Goring Ave. in George Town.

Before your ceremony we will ask for certain information which we will need in order to prepare your Marriage Register and your certified copy of the Marriage Register. The Marriage Register is filled out in duplicate. The law requires me to keep the top copy in my Marriage Book, to file the duplicate copy with the Registrar of Marriages, and to give you a copy which is the certified copy. It is my responsibility to ensure that these forms are properly completed, and signed. In effect, it is my job to see that due diligence is done and that your wedding is conducted according to law and your marriage is legal.

Number: Each Marriage Register has a unique number in the top left hand corner, and the initials of your marriage officer. This number is helpful if you ever need to replace your Registered Marriage Certificate.

When Married: This is the day, month and year. Sometimes if I am doing several weddings that day I will also put the time of the wedding ceremony.

Name and Surname: This is completed exactly as it is in your passport. If you had your name changed by deed poll or restored to you after a divorce, this proof of name change must be provided.

Condition: This means, "never married", "divorced" or "widowed". The word "single" is not acceptable under the law. The words "bachelor" and "spinster" are acceptable, but since I find them antiquated I never use them.

Calling: This means your occupation. If you are self-employed you need to be more specific, eg self employed - construction trades. If you do not work outside the home, you may put "homemaker". Most people just use their job title, eg administrative assistant.

Age: This is your age at your last birthday, and again we have to verify it from your passport.

District and residence at time of marriage: This is the only difference between the Certified Copy you receive from me the day of your wedding, and the Registered Marriage Certificate we mail you once your marriage has been recorded at the public records office.

The Certified Copy will have the name of your hotel, condo or cruise ship and the RMC will have your home address in your country of residence.

Father's Name and Surname: This is a requirement of our Marriage Law. Since our law was written in 1963 before we had a lot of visitors coming to the island to be married, I can only assume it was intended to ensure that people who were closely related did not marry each other.

If you chose not to have your father's name on your Marriage Register you may ask that we put "not stated". If your mother and father were not married to each other at the time of your birth, we can put your mother's name only, followed by the designation (mother). It is less usual but not illegal, for us to put the designation "unknown" under father's name and surname.

Signatures: Both the bride and the groom must sign all three documents. The bride cannot sign her married name at this point. She must sign her maiden name if she has not been married before, or her legal name if she has been divorced.

Each Cayman Islands wedding, must be witnessed by two adults, over 18 years of age. Your wedding may by family members, by your attendants, by two men or by two women. If you do not have witnesses, Simply Weddings can provide these (there is a small charge if we have to get witnesses to come out specially.)

The fifth and last signature on your Marriage Register is that of your Civil Registrar of Marriages/Marriage Officer.

This is the way it reads on my Marriage Register:

"I, V. Joy Basdeo, MBE, JP, a Marriage Officer for the Cayman Islands, do hereby certify that this is a true copy of the Entry No. VJB *** in the Register Book of Marriages solemnised by me in the said Cayman Islands.

Witness by my hand this ... day of ....................... 200..

______________________ (MY SEAL)
Civil Registrar of Marriages

All Simply Weddings -Grand Cayman Wedding Celebrants and Planners destination wedding packages for visitors include the required Special Marriage License (US$250 value) and Registered Marriage Certificate + cost of mailing (US $20 value). Visitor packages start at US$700 (basic package) and includes all the legal requirements for your Cayman Islands wedding. Call Joy or Peggy at (345) 9499933

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Warm Up at your Sunny Cayman Islands Wedding

Different things are important from different couples, this couple really wanted to be picked up at their hotel by limousine and taken to My Secret Cove for their morning wedding.

Many of my couples are intrigued by the feathery visitors at this site

The ceremony was performed by my associate, Rev. Godfrey Meghoo

Sometimes when I perform weddings at hotels or restaurants, the wait staff open and pour the champagne in anticipation of the toasts. This is a big no-no, the groom must open the bottle and pour the first toast for his bride and himself.

Toasting their new life together as husband and wife.

Hey, this "Special Marriage License" is all used up now

Whether you come as a cruise visitor for the day, or as a stayover visitor in one of our world-class hotels and condos, Simply Weddings is your choice for a beautiful Caribbean Destination Wedding. One call to Joy or Peggy does it all (345) 9499933. Call today without obligation to ask about our services. Now booking weddings through 2010. Let us design your simple, personalised beach wedding, making memories to last a lifetime.

Ceremony by Godfrey Meghoo for Simply Weddings, flowers by Trisha's Roses, photos by Mari for Island Photos, limousine by Grand Limousines. Email or visit Simply Weddings - Grand Cayman Wedding Celebrants and Planners on Facebook

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Frequently Asked Questions on Weddings to be performed in the Cayman Islands.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Getting Married in the Cayman Islands

Q. Do we have to email the documents to you before we arrive?

A. Yes, an application form will be sent to you by email, and you have to return this by email before we can begin planning your wedding. We will then ask you to photocopy and mail, or scan and email, certain required documents so we can apply for your Special Marriage License.

Q. Do you need a copy of our Birth Certicates?

A. If you are traveling to the Cayman Islands by air, you will be traveling on a passport. We will need a colour photocopy of your passport, and you should bring the original with you when you come in to our office after you have arrived in the Cayman Islands.

Only a few people these days use their driver's license and birth-certificate when they are tra veling by cruise ship. Again we need colour copies of these mailed, or scanned in advance and the originals brought in to our office for comparison.

We do NOT need both passports and birth certificates.

If the name on your passport does not match the name you currently use, you will have to bring a legal document which shows that you name has been changed.

Q. What if one of us has been widowed or divorced?

A. You will need to mail or scan a certified copy of your spouse's Death certificate, or your Divorce decree with the authorising officer's stamp and signature. Our marriage bureau now required EVERY page of your divorce decree. If you prefer to bring it with you rather than mailing out these personal details, that is fine, just remember that if you forget to bring the entire thing you will not get your Special Marriage License.

Q. How many days do I need to be in the Cayman Islands before I can get married?

A. You can be married the same day you arrive, this is why getting married in the Cayman Islands is so popular with cruise ship visitors, there are NO residency requirements if you are being married by Special Marriage License (NB Residents cannot be married by Special Marriage License, they must be married by Banns of Marriage)

Q. How long will it take to know if a date and time is available?

A. Our wedding coordinator will get in touch with you within 48 hours. Because we are a full service company with our own Marriage Officers, we can respond to you very quickly. When you book you need to give us a deposit of US$250 to book your date and time. All but $50 of this is refundable if you cancel your wedding up to one week in advance.

Your wedding date can be confirmed 12 months in advance. Please note there is an additional charge for Sunday and Public Holiday weddings when special arrangements have to be made.
Weddings during the period 25th December - 2nd January when our office is closed, can only be done by special arrangement with our wedding coordinator).

Q. Can we have our wedding in another language?

A. All our wedding scripts are in English. You may say your wedding vows in your own language, and you may choose readings or songs in another language if you wish. Since we give you a script of your Wedding Ceremony after the wedding is over, we suggest you give us a copy of these so we can include them in the script.

Q. Are the weddings performed in the Cayman Islands legal in all other countries?

A. Yes, they are. The United States, Canada and the UK readily accept the Registered Marriage Certificate issued by the Cayman Islands Government once we have filed your marriage. Other countries who are not signatories to the 1961 Hague Convention (abolishing the requirement of legalization for foreign public documents - Article 12) MAY require an "Apostille". If you are in doubt, ask our wedding coordinator whether your country is on the list of countries which do NOT require an Apostille. If you need an Apostille we can facilitate this for you, NB there is an additional fee set by the Cayman Islands Government for this service.

There are TWO things which are your responsibility when you choose to be married in the Cayman Islands.

a) Ensure that your Civil Registrar/Marriage Officer gives or mails you the Registered Marriage Certificate once your marriage has been filed with the appropriate authorities. (all Simply Weddings packages include this)

b) Check with your local courthouse (once you have received the Registered Marriage Certificate on how to register your marriage certificate in your country or state.

Q. What happens if I do not have a witness for the ceremony?

A. The Cayman Islands marriage law requires two witnesses over 18 years of age. If you do not have witnesses we can provide them at a cost of $25 US per witness. Simply Weddings All-Inclusive cruise wedding package includes the cost of witnesses.
Q. Which days of the week and time of day can I get married?

A. You can be married 7 days a week, between the hours of 6am and 8pm. There is an additional charge for weddings on Sundays and Public Holidays.

Q. What are some wedding locations I can choose?

A. Our most popular wedding locations are our beautiful beaches. Other garden and gazebo locations are available. Church locations are by special arrangement, and there is usually a charge. Most hotels charge to use their beach, so we use free public beaches such as Smith's Cove, and Governor's Beach. See our wedding coordinator for other suggestions, especially for groups over 6 people.

Q. Is there a charge for groups?

A. There is no charge for your friends and relatives to attend the ceremony. If however, you have a package which includes champagne (for toasting) and cake, there is a service charge for use of the glasses, plates etc.

Q. Does the Cayman Islands require a blood test to get the Special Marriage License?

A. No

Q. Can I bring my own music?

A. Some of our packages include, and we can arrange, steelpan, harp and/or violin music for an additional charge. You can bring an Ipod if you wish. Since only a few of the beaches we use have electricity provided, we do not usually provide music. However if you bring a CD we will try to accommodate you.

Q. How can I find out what other options are available for my wedding?

A. We customise many weddings, and can provide a list of items such as floral arch, chuppah, chairs, one and two tier wedding cakes etc. Let our wedding coordinator assist you by emailing

Q. Can I visit the marriage bureau and get the Special Marriage License on my own?

A. Yes, you can. However since the application form must list inter alia the marriage officer, date, place and time for the ceremony and since we do NOT CHARGE for making the application on your behalf, there is nothing to be gained by doing this on your own.

Q. If I choose to be married at a hotel or resort, can I still get you to do the ceremony?

A. Yes. We are an independent family-owned and operated business, but we work with any and all the hotels, and condos in the Cayman Islands. Please note we do not work on commission, and we do not work for any of cruise lines who operate to and from the Cayman Islands.

Simply Weddings - Grand Cayman Wedding Celebrants and Planners is a full service wedding company located in George Town, Grand Cayman. We specialise in simple, elegant and personalised weddings for discerning overseas clients. Our clients come from all over the world, but most of them are from the USA, Canada, and the United Kingdom. If you have a question on getting married in the Cayman Islands, call or email Joy or Peggy (345) 9499933 or without obligation, today.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Happy New Year, hope to see you in warm and sunny Cayman Islands this year

My husband and I have just come back from the New York area and got our share of ice and snow. We also got the flu' and are gradually recovering. We are happy to be back in the Cayman "winter" where the weather was 73 degrees today.

Our Department of Tourism is running a programme this month so if you come in on a cruise ship and plan to return as a stayover tourist you can register and get all kinds of specials and discounts.

This is a great picture of Loch Morlich and the Cairngorms uploaded by freeskiing on 31/12/09 taken from Flickr

The photo below was taken by one of our great photographers, David Wolfe. It is a view from sea of part of George town Harbour. The little boat in the foreground is called a "tender" it is like a water taxi, and takes you from the cruise ship to the cruise landing. The red roofed building is our National Museum, well worth a visit. See their gift-shop for authentic Caymanian souvenirs.
The shopping mall where I meet our couples is two buildings to the right of the Museum. It also has a red-roof and a fountain in the courtyard.

Most of our beach weddings take place near Smith's Cove or on Seven Mile Beach. We are very proud of our beautiful clean beaches, the perfect place for a memorable Cayman Beach Wedding.

Morning view of Smith's Cove, the most popular wedding spot in George Town

Sunset over Seven Mile Beach

Seven Mile Beach Cruise Wedding

Start planning now for your Cayman Islands Cruise Wedding, see our Simply Weddings website for wedding packages, and check out my blog to meet our professional wedding services vendors.
Call Peggy or Joy to get your Cayman Islands wedding booked today (345)9499933

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Chicago Couple Celebrates New Year Cayman Islands Wedding

Happy New Year to all our couples, past, present and future and all our vendors, family and friends. We are off to a flying start for 2010 with January bookings looking very solid. As always I am grateful to my wedding co-ordinator and soon to be daughter-in-law, Peggy for her hard work. We are a small, independent, family owned and operated wedding services company which delivers a very personalised service to our clients.

This couple from Chicago celebrated their wedding this morning at My Secret Cove. It was unusual for us to have a Saturday Cayman Cruise Wedding, but then there were also four cruise ships in the harbour today.

The Bride and Groom chose a towncar from Grand Limosines to take them from the harbour to our office to dress, then back to the harbour.

Setting up My Secret Cove for this early morning wedding.

Our first bride for 2010. I loved her pearl gray wedding outfit.

You will see lots more of my silver starfish, which often hold the wedding rings

My son, pictured here, who is also Peggy's fiance, sometimes get roped in as a witness

Since we live on a tropical island I like to get the bride and groom in some foliage shots.

The beach shots are de rigeur of course. Isn't it great the white in the background is warm sand, and not snow?

We did it!...Here's to our Cayman Islands Wedding in 2010

Ceremony by Joy for Simply Weddings, flowers by Trisha's Roses, town-car from Grand Limousines. It's just the right time to plan your Destination Wedding in the Cayman Islands, call Joy or Peggy (345) 9499933 or email us at