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The Cloister is Expanding

We are adding 63 rooms, a pool and a junior ballroom on the outer edges of the Cloister property.

        

  • Camilla & Sam
    Wedding Date: September 6, 2014
    Ceremony Location: The Cloister Chapel
    Reception Location: The Cloister Clubroom
    Bride: Camilla Walker
    Groom: Sam Heischuber
    Wedding Manager: Maren White
    Hair Stylist: Ashley Edenfield at Kimberly's Back Porch
    Makeup Artist: Kimtasha Armstrong at Kimtasha Pro Make-up Artist
    Gown Designer: Vera Wang at Vera Wang Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, CA
    Tux Designer: Tom Ford and Gucci
    Bridesmaid Dress Designer: Teri Jon
    Bridal Shoes Designer: Manolo Blahnik

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    Rehearsal Dinner: The Cloister Wine Cellar Welcome Party Location: The Cloister Spanish Lounge
    Band: Emerald Empire Band
    Photographer: 6 of Four

    What was your favorite memory from your Sea Island Wedding?
    Our "first look" was one of our favorite memories. It had been overcast for most of the weekend and, as if it were orchestrated, the sun came out just in time for us to share a special, private moment in the Cloister Garden before the excitement of greeting friends and family. Equally as unforgettable was our sendoff, complete with loving cheers from guests, sparklers galore, and even a few sprinkles of rain (which had managed to hold off all day) for good luck.

    How did you hear about Sea Island?
    I had the privilege of visiting Sea Island in my childhood. However, my perspective of The Cloister broadened as not only a vacation destination but also a potential wedding venue after attending a close high school friend's nuptials. Sam and I were able to receive a wedding guest experience firsthand and a glimpse of the possibilities that Sea Island had to offer.

    If you grew up coming here, what is your favorite past Sea Island memory?
    Rather than a specific moment, I have a compilation of memories from trips to Sea Island with my extended family. Some of the best times were spent on the beach, building sandcastles, and participating in water activities with my sister and cousins.

    What was the inspiration for your décor/theme of your wedding?
    The Cloister Wine Cellar, Chapel, Black Banks Terrace, and Clubroom are each absolutely breathtaking in their own right. We wanted classic décor with a few modern touches that enhanced the setting but did not distract from or compete with the venue's natural beauty. As such, we selected shades of whites and ivories for florals and papers, but used a variety of metallics and materials (silver, gold, mercury glass, glass, etc.) to balance the overall simplicity. In addition to understated elegance, we also hoped to evoke romance through an abundance of candlelight. The theme was carried throughout the weekend, from the candelabras in the wine cellar during Friday's rehearsal dinner to the lanterns aligning the chapel's exterior and the collection of candles as ballroom tablescape during Saturday's events.

    After the wedding was over, were you pleased with the details?
    We couldn't be more satisfied with the execution of our special day. We envisioned an elegant and intimate celebration surrounded by our closest friends and family. No amount of planning or dreaming could surpass what Maren and Sea Island delivered. It was truly beyond our imagination. The recreation of our "go-to" cocktail, the floral placed on each and every guest's menu, the replication of a cupcake flavor from our favorite NYC bakery for the wedding cake, and the unique sparkler exit are only a few examples of the exceptional touches and unparalleled level of detail.

    How would you describe your experience at Sea Island?
    In one word, our experience could be described as "magical" (to directly quote a guest). We cannot speak highly enough of Sea Island, Maren, and her supporting team. We sought a location that would serve as more than just a wedding weekend for our friends and family but a luxurious vacation. The five-star accommodations, the multitude of activities, and the exquisite cuisine exceeded expectations. From purely a wedding planning perspective, Maren is beyond a pleasure to work with, even making the complicated logistics of coordinating events from LA entirely seamless. When considering venues, one of the biggest appeals (for us at least) was having accommodations and all events in a single location, from rehearsal dinner to reception, without guests being burdened with travel between each. Just as important was not having to sacrifice the level of quality or service for this convenience. We highly recommend Sea Island for all of the above.

  • Mary & Read
    Wedding Date: September 14, 2013
    Ceremony Location: Chapel at Sea Island
    Reception Location: Spanish Lounge
    Bride: Mary Rubino
    Groom: Read Wall
    Wedding Manager: Maren White
    Hair Stylist: Amy Jenkins, Bienvenue
    Makeup Artist: Kimtasha
    Gown Designer: Marisa
    Tux Designer: Read Wall
    Bridesmaid Dress Designer: Teri Jon


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    Rehearsal Dinner/Welcome Party Location: Rainbow Island
    Band: Motown Junkies
    Photographer: Olivia Rae James

    What was your favorite memory from your Sea Island Wedding?
    Lots of little things stick out in my mind, but I think my favorite memory is my dad walking me down the aisle under the oaks outside the chapel.

    How did you hear about Sea Island?
    As the youngest of five children in a big and ever-expanding family, Sea Island has a very special place in my heart. My family has been spending summers there since before I was born, so when Read and I got engaged, I couldn't imagine a more perfect place to celebrate with our family and friends (his parents even honeymooned there as fate would have it).

    If you grew up coming here, what is your favorite past Sea Island memory?
    Hot summer days where the hardest decision you have to make is whether to go to the beach or the pool.

    What was the inspiration for your décor/theme of your wedding?
    We chose a palate of ivory, soft blush pinks, neutrals, and fresh greens to create an elegant but relaxed feel for our wedding. We wanted something simple that quietly accentuated the old-world feel of the Cloister's live oaks and traditional Spanish architecture.

    After the wedding was over, were you pleased with the details? How would you describe your experience at Sea Island?
    We could not have been happier - with the flowers, the ceremony, the event team, everything. You all went out of your way to make this process easy for us and did an absolutely wonderful job. We're a big group to wrangle, so thank you again!

  • Katherine & Jon
    Wedding Date: May 31, 2014
    Ceremony Location: The Cloister Garden
    Reception Location: The Beach Club at Sea Island
    Bride: Katherine Rose
    Groom: Jon Monna
    Wedding Manager: Elizabeth Killgallon and Kacee Popa
    Hair Stylist: Ashley Nunn Edenfield at Kimberly's Back Porch
    Makeup Artist: Kimtasha
    Gown Designer: Vera Wang
    Tux Designer: Burberry
    Bridesmaid Dress Designer: Jenny Yoo
    Bridal Shoes Designer: Jimmy Choo

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    Rehearsal Dinner/Welcome Party Location: Rainbow Island
    Band: Simply Irresistible
    Photographer: 6 of Four

    What was your favorite memory from your Sea Island Wedding?
    It is impossible to choose just one! I loved driving up to the Avenue of the Oaks for our first look. I was so excited to see Jon and finally show him my wedding dress. I loved the moments of anticipation while walking up to him and seeing his facial expression when he turned around to see me for the first time. We both loved our yihud - the private time between the husband and wife after a Jewish ceremony. We went for a walk along Black Banks River and played Bocce ball (we even put a little wager on it). As for my husband, his favorite memory was our first dance. We were both so nervous for the first dance; but, when we stepped on the dance floor, it was like the rest of the wedding disappeared. It was just us dancing underneath the twinkling lights and night sky next to the beach.

    How did you hear about Sea Island?
    Sea Island has always been a very special place to my family. My parents honeymooned on Sea Island 33 years ago. Fast forward a few years and my parents started taking us down for yearly summer vacations to enjoy the beach and fun activities. When Jon and I were dating, he started coming to Sea Island with us every summer and became part of the family tradition. We loved walking along the beach together, taking pictures, and looking at houses. Knowing what a special place it was to me, Jon arranged a trip to Sea Island over a long weekend. While on one of our walks along the beach, he dropped to one knee and squeaked out a nervous "will you marry me?" Obviously, I said yes! We spent the rest of the weekend enjoying our favorite spots and activities, celebrating our engagement. When it came time to choose a venue for our wedding, Sea Island was always our first choice. I was never a girl that pictured my wedding day, but somehow I always knew that it was going to be at Sea Island. My grandma even remembers walking through the Cloister with me when I was a little girl and me saying "I am going to get married here." Getting married on my parents' anniversary where they honeymooned just made Sea Island an even more perfect place for our wedding.

    If you grew up coming here, what is your favorite past Sea Island memory?
    So many of my favorite memories took place in Sea Island! Growing up, I would go on "Digger Walks" where I would walk down the beach and collect those little clams that dig into the sand after the wave recedes. My brothers and I would collect them in a clear cup to watch them dig to the bottom and scare away the sandpipers trying to eat them. I always loved spending time with my grandparents on Sea Island. My grandpa and I would compose songs about our everyday Sea Island activities - "The Laundromat Jive" was an instant classic in the family. Then there was Sunday brunch at the Lodge, which was always a family favorite. We would stake out the fried chicken station until a fresh batch came out and then would race to get all the legs before anyone else. There are so many more family memories that I could devote an entire page to them!

    What was the inspiration for your décor/theme of your wedding?
    As Sea Island is so rooted in our family tradition, we really wanted to bring that out at our wedding. We wanted every guest to feel like a part of the tradition and to get a sense of why we loved Sea Island. Each guest received a monogramed Sea Island welcome tote filled with information about our favorite activities and restaurants on the island, Byrd's Georgia Peach Cooler Cookies, Georgia peanuts, M&Ms, and Sea Island tumblers. There were golfing events to include everyone in my dad and Jon's favorite Sea Island past time. We had our welcome dinner on Rainbow Island and made sure to have our favorite Sea Island foods - corn muffins, fried chicken, oysters, and peach and blueberry cobbler - for all our guests to enjoy. The wedding was filled with family details - we signed our ketubah in the Spanish Lounge where my brother and I used to play the piano for my family, used family heirlooms during the ceremony, and displayed family wedding photographs at the reception. For the reception, we moved all of our guests to my favorite place on Sea Island- the beach! We loved having our wedding ceremony at the hotel and the dinner and reception at the Beach Club so that our guests could get a glimpse of the whole resort.

    As for the décor, we aimed for a classic chic feel overall. The wedding décor was purposely simple to allow the beauty of the garden to stand on its own. The décor at dinner had a more glamorous feel with sequined table runners, thick runners of flowers, mercury glass, and flickering light from candles. The architecture of the ocean room is very elegant and we wanted to complement the feel. We then transitioned to a more casual feel with brighter colored flowers for the reception in the tent. The clear top tent with string lighting was perfect against the night sky and we used wooden accents in the furniture. Everything turned out perfectly!

    After the wedding was over, were you pleased with the details? How would you describe your experience at Sea Island?
    We could not have been happier with how the wedding turned out! Everywhere we looked there was something beautiful and elegant to see. The dinner tables and the tent took everyone's breath away. The team at Sea Island was wonderful to work with and they did an amazing job making our vision come alive. Elizabeth and Kacee made sure that we had a perfect day from finding a matching groomsmen tie when one went missing before the ceremony, tracking down a missing babysitter, and even helping with dinner service. Melissa and Kathryn's vision, creativity, and attention to detail were apparent at both Rainbow Island and the Beach Club. We couldn't be happier about how our special day turned out!

  • Elizabeth & Christopher
    Wedding Date: June 29th, 2013
    Ceremony Location: Spanish Lounge
    Reception Location: Black Bank Terrace & Cloister Ballroom
    Bride: Elizabeth Haddad
    Groom: Christopher Schwartz
    Wedding Manager: Maren White
    Hair Stylist: Kimberly's Back Porch
    Makeup Artist: Kimtasha from Jacksonville, FL
    Gown Designer: Elie Saab
    Tux Designer: Martin Greenfield
    Bridesmaid Dress Designer: Joanna August Ceremony

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    Rehearsal Dinner/Welcome Party Location: Rainbow Island
    Bridesmaids Luncheon Location: Spanish Lounge Terrace
    Band: Powerhouse Band
    Photographer: Shawn Connell for Christian Oth Studios

    What was your favorite memory from your Sea Island Wedding?
    We had so many incredible memories! We loved the rehearsal dinner. Rainbow Island was magical at night. The sun was setting, the marshes were peaceful, and the winding boardwalk leading to the festivities was a beautiful journey for everyone to take together; that really set the tone for the entire weekend. After the morning ceremony and luncheon, taking a ride through the marshes on the Cloister Belle with my bridal party was a great moment! We got to have this dramatic send off, with everyone overlooking the water as we sailed away, and then we enjoyed a peaceful ride with champagne and our closest friends. But our absolute favorite moment had to be the dance party! It was electric! The Cloister Sparklers were so breathtaking that my husband and I look nothing short of shocked in all of our photographs, since we assumed sparklers were those handheld things we played with every 4th of July during our youth.

    How did you hear about Sea Island?
    My mother had been here before. We were in the area and another location in Florida had kind of fallen through. We only planned on taking a quick detour through Sea Island, but once I toured all the venues, I knew it was "the one!"

    What was the inspiration for your décor/theme of your wedding?
    We wanted a southern, but natural feel for our wedding. For our ceremony, we created an altar using two Crepe Myrtle trees brought into the Spanish Lounge. We created an English Garden for our luncheon on the Black Banks Terrace. We used a lot of white, laced with greenery like Magnolia and Boxwood. For the evening party, we wanted to create a 1920s Old Hollywood-feel in the ballroom, with lots of greenery and trees set amongst the dark wood and hanging lanterns that the room already provided.

    After the wedding was over, were you pleased with the details? How would you describe your experience at Sea Island?
    The design team and wedding coordinators were beyond wonderful! I couldn't have picked a better place to be married, and my husband and I can't wait to have future events at Sea Island. They understood our vision, were so organized and attentive, and just all around lovely.

  • Samantha & Aryeh
    Wedding Date: May 12, 2013
    Ceremony Location: Cloister Garden
    Reception Location: Club Room
    Bride: Samantha Ferguson
    Groom: Aryeh Kaplan
    Wedding Manager: Maren White
    Hair Stylist: Amy Jenkins
    Makeup Artist: Kimtasha
    Gown Designer: Mark Zunino
    Tux Designer: Ermenegildo Zegna
    Bridesmaid Dress Designer: variety of designers

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    Bridal Shoes Designer: Jimmy Choo
    Rehearsal Dinner/Welcome Party Location: Spanish Lounge
    Bridesmaids Luncheon Location: We had a girls’ brunch at the cottage that we were staying at.
    Band: DJ Lethal Rhythm
    Photographer: Scott Hopkins Photography
    Videographer: IMint Media

    What was your favorite memory from your Sea Island Wedding?
    My favorite memory was our first look. Our wedding manager, Maren, spent the day trying to make sure that Aryeh and I didn’t see each other. She tried her best which was a challenge given Aryeh’s “curious” nature. I remember covertly walking through the hallways, as Maren orchestrated my route to ensure that the Aryeh and I would not cross paths too soon. All this made our first look extra special.

    How did you hear about Sea Island? Aryeh, my husband, and his family vacationed at Sea Island several times before.
    What was the inspiration for your décor/theme of your wedding? We didn’t have a specific theme but just wanted a classic, classy, and organic feel.

    After the wedding was over, were you pleased with the details? How would you describe your experience at Sea Island?
    Our experience at Sea Island was wonderful and we were pleased how the whole weekend turned out. The staff could not be friendlier. Our wedding manager could not have been more accommodating and organized. The location and weather could not have been more beautiful. After our wedding, Aryeh asked if we could do all again next weekend.

  • Meredith & Brian
    Wedding Date: April 13, 2013
    Ceremony Location: Cloister Garden
    Reception Location: Ocean Room and Patio
    Bride: Meredith Dulaney
    Groom: Brian Escobedo
    Wedding Manager: Maren White
    Hair Stylist: Ashley Edenfield from Kimberly’s Back Porch on St. Simons
    Makeup Artist: Kimtasha from Jacksonville, FL
    Gown Designer: Vera Wang
    Tux Designer: Brooks Brothers
    Bridesmaid Dress Designer: Amsale

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    Bridal Shoes Designer: Jimmy Choo
    Rehearsal Dinner/Welcome Party Location: Thursday Night Welcome Party - Black Banks Terrace / Rehearsal Dinner (Friday night) - Rainbow Island
    Bridesmaids Luncheon Location: I did not have a traditional Bridesmaids Luncheon. Instead, I did Bikinis & Billinis for my bridesmaids and girlfriends at a cabana at the Beach Club pool.
    Band: Simply Irresistible
    Photographer: Scott & Melissa Hopkins
    Videographer: None

    What was your favorite memory from your Sea Island Wedding?
    It’s so hard to pick just one! However, we would have to say the walk with the bagpiper, our wedding party, family and wedding guests from the ceremony over to the reception. I remember people pulling over in their cars at the roundabout to stop and watch us. We felt like celebrities! :) Then walking into the reception!!! Brian and I both were blown away by how incredibly stunning everything looked. There wasn’t a detail overlooked. It was so much more beautiful and chic than we could have ever imagined. Perfection!

    How did you hear about Sea Island?
    Having been raised in the south, I had always heard incredible things about Sea Island.

    If you grew up coming here, what is your favorite past Sea Island memory?
    I did not grow up coming to Sea Island; however, as a child I always wanted to go there because I wanted to ride horses in the ocean! ;)

    What was the inspiration for your décor/theme of your wedding?
    It was important to both of us that all of our guests felt like they were a part of the entire wedding weekend from the moment they arrived on Thursday to the moment they departed on Sunday. We wanted the weekend to be a unique and memorable experience for everyone. My inspiration for the reception décor was centered around making people feel like they were walking into a beautiful Southern home for a grand party. I wanted to stay in tune with the Sea Island decor and for it to feel chic, regal and traditional with a hint of rustic flare. I kept my color palette very neutral so nothing was super over powering.

    After the wedding was over, were you pleased with the details? How would you describe your experience at Sea Island?
    We could not have been more pleased with how everything went from the moment we arrived in Sea Island the Monday before the wedding to the day we left after the wedding. Maren was a lifesaver and made everything so easy. The week before a wedding can be very stressful and Maren was always there to assist in taking care of last minute things for my family and me or to just calm my nerves. I cannot thank her enough for all her hard work, advice, counseling and guidance.

    Also, we loved working with Melissa and her team on the event design of the reception. I really do not know how to describe in words how stunning the reception décor turned out. It was beyond my wildest dreams. Melissa and her team are incredibly talented and creative and I also owe them a huge thank you! Our family and friends who attended the wedding are still talking about our wedding reception to this day.

    The entire weekend from the Welcome Cocktails on the Black Banks Terrace on Thursday night, to the Rehearsal Dinner at Rainbow Island on Friday night, to the Wedding Ceremony and Reception on Saturday were absolute PERFECTION! We cannot thank you enough for making our wedding weekend truly one of the best, most fun, most memorable and special experiences of our life. We are forever indebted to you.

    Thank you!