Ocho Rios, Jamaica: Michelle Reid, Groups and Weddings Manager for Riu Resorts in Jamaica, says Riu Ocho Rios conducts 350 weddings on the property annually, with most of the couples coming from their major markets of USA, Canada, and the United Kingdom.
The hotel is now seeking to attract more Jamaican weddings but faces a challenge to break the tradition of church weddings which is quite prevalent in Jamaica. Traditionally, Jamaicans choose the church as their number one place to get married, even though the past few decades have seen a shift of sorts to other venues, especially outdoors, with beach and garden settings the preferred choice.
“We are pushing for a larger share of the local market and we are working with our local travel agents on that,” Reid says.
“The advantage of having your wedding here is that everything is basically under one roof, the ceremony, the reception, plus we take care of all the paperwork, including applying for the marriage license on behalf of the client.”
Riu Ocho Rios reopened recently after a multi-million US dollar upgrade. The hotel offers several wedding packages that clients may choose from. For more information, you may visit www.weddingsbyriu.com