Real Weddings: Chantal & Laren

“Laren and I met through friends in 2008 when I moved to British Columbia. We had gone to a few mutual events, and ended up really hitting it off during a night at the Armstrong Fair. We were inseparable not long after that.” The rest, as they say, is history!

Chantal was first attracted to Laren by his appearance, “[But] then I got to know him, he was always making me laugh, we had so much fun together,” she reminisces. “Even when we were apart, he was all I could think about. He was like no one I had ever met.” For Laren, Chantal was simply a breath of fresh air, “She was very down to earth, very real. What you see is what you get with her, and I love that about her the most.”

Chantal and Laren talked about getting engaged, but a move to a new city and the hustle and bustle of getting settled kept them from finding the “right moment.” One Thanksgiving weekend while Chantal’s sister was visiting, the threesome were about to set out to walk the dog. Claiming that he had forgotten the doggy bags, Laren went back into the house.

“After five minutes I was getting restless and impatient so I walked back [inside]…and there I found Laren bent down on his knee,” Chantal recounts. She was confused, extremely surprised, and speechless, to say the least. Laren proceeded to stutter through so many heartfelt words, and all she heard was, “will you marry me?” Chantal’s sister was in the corner the entire time (crying so much that she wasn’t able to take any photos).

“She was beyond grateful to be able to witness her big sis get engaged.”

Seaside celebrations

In November 2014, Chantal, Laren and 33 of their closest friends and family came together for a tropical union at the Riu Santa Fe in Los Cabos, Mexico. Donning a cotton-candy coloured pink gown, the bride walked down the aisle to her beau to the tune of Sam Smith’s Stay With Me.

“My most memorable moment was walking down the aisle towards Laren…I was on the verge of an ugly cry; the amount of emotion that came over me was inexplicable,” Chantal remembers. Likewise, Laren piped in agreeing in that seeing Chantal walking towards him was a moment he’ll never forget, “Seeing how beautiful she looked – it finally hit me that she was going to be my wife.”

Post-nuptial celebrations took the group to the resort’s steakhouse overlooking the beach, where the bubbly flowed and Chantal and Laren took to the dance floor to John Legend’s All of Me. While the two shared a playful and fun kiss after cutting the cake, the night also had some funny and unexpected moments. Chantal laughs, “It took my two best friends and two women that I had never met to help [me go to the washroom] without having to take the dress off!” Other than the brief dress debacle, the party continued late into the night at the Riu’s on-site disco.

For their honeymoon, Chantal and Laren snuck off to Secrets Pueblo Los Cabos Golf and Beach Resort for some post-wedding R&R.

Get their look

Chantal’s gown: Marianne gown by Maggie Sottero.

Chantal’s shoes: Glitter ankle strap dress sandal by Caparros.

Laren’s outfit:  A linen vested light coloured suit from Le Château.

Bridesmaids dresses: Light Tiffany-blue dresses from Guess.

Groomsmen attire:  Khaki pants from Banana Republic and their choice of white shirts.

Photographer: Riu Santa Fe photographer.

Old | New | Borrowed | Blue

Old: Oops! The bride didn’t have anything old.

New: Tennis bracelet.

Borrowed: Sister-in-law’s promise ring.

Blue: Laren’s mom passed away unexpectedly a few months before the wedding. They used her favourite blue scarf and pinned a piece of it to the inside of the crinoline in Chantal’s dress.

Tips for brides and grooms
  • Take the time to enjoy the day. You work so hard for what seems like something that takes forever to plan, this perfect day. Honestly, it just FLIES by!
  • Make sure to allow yourself to enjoy the small things, and remember to smile, no matter what, all eyes will be on you.
  • Take the moments with your new spouse and make them last, this is about the two of you and the next chapter of your lives.

See your wedding photos splashed on! Submit your destination wedding photos to the Wedding Vacations Photo Contest on our Facebook page for your chance to win a romantic trip for two o Hyatt Zilara Rose Hall in sunny Montego Bay, Jamaica! You could also be featured in an upcoming issue of Wedding Vacations magazine