It’s been a month now since we returned from our honeymoon… and we finally finished the laundry! Hahaha, just kidding (but no judgement for those who take an extended amount of time to unpack after vacation)!
As I was thinking back about our time in Mexico, I am so thankful we took a honeymoon right away. Life doesn’t slow down after your wedding, as one might think. Having that special time with Tyler–making those memories and solidifying our bond– was so important!
I wanted to break down our honeymoon into a few categories to review and discuss with y’all, because there is SO MUCH to talk about! First, if you haven’t read how we chose our honeymoon at El Dorado Maroma, check that out. Off we go…
Food is super important to Tyler and me; not only as a way to stay alive (DUH) but it’s a way we connect, and both of us have a huge passion for cooking, entertaining, eating, and experiencing new foods. Being vegan, we sought out a resort that would not only accommodate, but embrace our special food requests.
El Dorado Maroma earned a B+ on my scale. First the downsides: there was one meal that was unplanned (the power went out at the resort and everything became pretty limited): a fiesta by the pool, which only had two options for us (one of those we had to wait next to a roasting suckling pig as our vegan tortillas were being cooked); the other downside is that the room service menu only had fries and a salad as their in-room vegan options for lunch or dinner.
And now for the positives: as you can see below, the chefs at El Dorado Maroma were not only accommodating, but inspired. They created some truly BEAUTIFUL dishes for us. A chilaquiles dish (below, the one with the sliced avocado on top) from the Peruvian restaurant was my breakfast go-to. We also had some killer vegan sushi, edamame, and miso soup at the Japanese restaurant.
On Tyler’s birthday (which coincidentally was on the Sunday of our honeymoon) we ate at the upscale Palifitos restaurant on (or rather, over) the ocean. The food was visually stunning (the first three images below). If food is important to you for a good experience, you’ll be in good hands at El Dorado Maroma.
I’m a big believer that you get out what you put in when it comes to experience. Let yourself be in the moment, volunteer to help, don’t be afraid to let loose! For goodness sake, don’t be shy.
I volunteered to be an assistant during the magic show (I’ve always been fascinated by magic tricks) and had a blast. It was probably my favorite entertainment of the week. I volunteered to be one of the guacamole makers (obvi I thought my guac was the best lol), and I always hopped on a beach volleyball team. Tyler and I took a salsa dancing class that we LOVED. Even if you are looking for a relaxing getaway, I recommend meeting a couple people and getting involved in an activity or two for a deeper connection to your trip.
Each night, El Dorado Maroma had dancing and a dj, and if you know me (especially if I photographed your wedding)… you’ll know that I’m always down to dance. I’m not that good, but I don’t care. I have so much fun movin’ and groovin’ to the music! We made some friends who shared our love of not-caring-what-you-look-like-on-a-dancefloor and had a party every night on their light up dance floor.
The Resort + Staff
I’ve clearly stayed at a LOT of places in Mexico (probably more than ten?) because I photograph Mexico weddings just about every year. I’ve stayed at all-inclusives, pay as you go, big resorts, small resorts, family resorts, adults only resorts, and have photographed weddings or honeymoons at pretty much all of them.
The grounds at El Dorado Maroma is probably the most easily photogenic resort I’ve stayed at.
1) they have great instagrammable spots… like the couples swings just a few feet out in the water.
2) they have a freaking private island! with hammocks!
3) the water is calm and soothing and completely clear.
Also, the size of the resort was not too big, not too small… it was jussssst right. It had a boutique feel but also the ability to wander off for some privacy. There was the bigger party/social pool, but then a couple other pools where you could easily be the only one there. We learned a lot of the names of staff and other couples there, but don’t feel like you were only seeing the same 5 people. It was a perfect blend of familiarity and newness.
Speaking of staff, it’s my opinion that THIS is what has the best chance of setting resorts apart. The staff here had a few standouts that elevated our experience by about a million percent. First, there were two chefs who learned our names and that we were vegan early on and made sure to seek us out and make sure we were happy with everything. Second, the entertainment team knew Tyler and me (she made an impression by winning trivia, and I made an impression by my quacamole) and always made an effort to make us feel involved and have a good time. Christina and Alex were the standout rockstars, but there were other great ones as well.
Like I said before, it was SO important for Tyler and me to go on a honeymoon. After wedding planning craziness, we needed it. And since we’ve been back, it’s been about the business month of our lives (so many things I hope to blog about soon). I’m very very thankful for that time we got to share and solidify our togetherness.
The resort was perfect for what we were looking for. A big part of that goes to our friends at BlueSun vacations who had been there and knew it would exceed all our expectations!
If you’re booking a honeymoon or other getaway, hit them up! They even gave us a code to give you for $100 off your trip! (you don’t even pay them… it’s off your actual resort stay!). Just call (800) 817-9791 with the code “Benfield100”
Talk to you soon,
P.S. I’d love to hear about your honeymoon – whether it already happened or is coming up! Leave me a comment below!