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Elisse & David’s Canggu Private Villa Wedding

by | Honeymoons, Inspired Destination Weddings, Inspired Weddings, Location Asia,


Polka Dot Bride

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Elisse & David

If you dream of celebrating your nuptials with just a handful of your favourite people, an amazing backdrop of Mother Nature’s shoreline and your own private villa then Elisse and David’s Canggu private villa wedding is sure to inspire you. The happy couple worked with Keelan Christopher Photography.

Elisse tells their story. “Just over two years ago, Dave and I met at our local beach weeks before he was about to get on a plane and work on a remote island off Perth for the next 2 years. Fast forward 2 years’ worth of teary goodbyes at the airport each month, some solid emotional meltdowns from me (total girl thing) and 2 x amazing holidays of our own to Bali when the going got tough and we needed to reconnect – and you find Dave working back here in Sydney settling into life together, spending time at our favourite beach at every moment we can AND most recently finding out we have our own little legend planning to arrive late January 2016!!!”

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“Growing up I was really really close to my Nan on my Mum’s side who passed away 2 years ago so I always knew that the lead-up and the day of our wedding was going to be an emotional time feeling that huge sense of loss from her not being there. Two days before the wedding, Dave and I went out for dinner to one of our favourite restaurants in Seminyak – Sardine, and there he surprised me with my Nan’s wedding band and one of her favourite brooches that he’d secretly conspired with my Mum to bring over and for me to wear on the day.

I just remember him showing me and bursting into happy tears at his thoughtfulness in acknowledging what she meant to me and how important it was for me to have a part of here there with us on our day. So in the end, I had ‘something old’ and something borrowed of my Nan’s and my ‘something blue’ was a sapphire ring of my Mum’s that I also wore, with my ‘new’ being my headpiece!”

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Elisse and David chose Villa Paloma for their destination wedding festivities. Elisse remarks, “When we chose to elope to Bali, Indonesia we knew that we wanted to be married and hold a beautiful, intimate dinner following our ceremony in the one location and so for us – a private villa was a perfect backdrop for our magical day. Our venue was Villa Paloma in Canggu which provided the most perfect backdrop for our sunset marriage ceremony and intimate dinner for 6.”

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The bride wore a gown from Zimmermann  with a Bo & Luca hairpiece, telling, “It was important for me to feel comfortable on the day, so I wore a simple, off the rack silk dress by Zimmerman with a deep V front and back – it was the only dress I tried on and as soon as I looked at myself in the mirror, I felt beautiful and knew that this is how I wanted Dave to see me when I was walking to meet him at the end of the aisle. My headpiece was from Bo & Luca where I was spoilt for choice in finding something that would add that perfect touch of “special” without making me feel like I wasn’t being true to my own style.”

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Wedding planner Libby Doherty Weddings planned and styled the wedding, the newlyweds telling,  “We didn’t really have a particular style or theme in mind for our day, we just wanted a really personal and romantic setting that reflected who we are as individuals and a couple and where we are in our life. The day was never going to be about it being a big event for either of us so we took a pretty relaxed approach to this from our first planning conversations. We handed over choices like table décor and flowers to our wedding planning team, trusting them completely and we were amazed at how beautiful everything turned out in reality from what Dave and I both talked about wanting for our day.”

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Heather Boylan Weddings officiated the wedding, the bride remembering, “It was important that whilst still holding a completely legal ceremony in Indonesia recognised by Australia law, that our ceremony was still personal and true to us. Our celebrant – Heather Boylan was amazing alongside the local Minister who officiated our marriage. Heather took the time to get to know Dave and me, hear our story of where we started to where we are now and was able to bring that personal touch that was so important to us. We spoke traditional vows and our sister in law gave a prayer reading that recognised all of our family, present or that have passed that weren’t able to be there in person for our marriage.”

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Of their photographer, the bride remembers, “We were recommended Keelan Parish and when we spoke to him for the first time, we both instantly connected with him. Keelan has a beautiful eye for location and shots and our photos on the day are a credit to his skill as a photographer and his ability to read people and situations with respect and understanding. Having a photographer that can bring your personality through into still shots that capture the day beautifully is so important and every photo Keelan took does that for us! ”

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“Our single dinner table was set up between frangipani trees with candles, fairy lights and lanterns providing the most beautiful lighting.”

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“One thing that meant a lot to Dave and I was to acknowledge and honour our parents and grandparents who weren’t able to be there on our day. In the week leading up to leaving, we took a photo of each of their own wedding days and hung this from the frangipani tree behind our reception dinner table. We kept looking over at them throughout the night at just how special each of these individual couples is to us and the roles they’ve played and continue to play in shaping our characters and being the examples that Dave and I now base our own marriage on. I think personally, it’s potentially my favourite thing about my whole wedding.”

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“I’m sure everyone says this about their own weddings; but for us, the intimate atmosphere that they created for us with having the 6 of us share dinner around the one table really was just completely romantic and magical – I’ll never forget how relaxed everyone was and how throughout dinner, without any structures or formal speeches, everyone just chose their own moment to say a few words when it came to them, it was truly beautiful.”

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“We actually didn’t have any dancing at our wedding, but music played such an important part for us on the day and every song carried its own special meaning. We chose songs for our ceremony and throughout the day that hold special meanings to us, like Vance Joy’s Rip Tide that we belted out at high volume driving down the coast on one of the first weekends away we ever did.”

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Congratulations on your marriage Elisse and David! Thank you for sharing the stories of your day with us. Thank you also to Keelan Christopher Photography for sharing today’s celebrations.

Photographer: Keelan Christopher / Wedding Planner: Libby Doherty Weddings / Bride’s Dress: Zimmermann / Bride’s Shoes: Zimmermann / Bride’s Jewellery: Bo & Luca / Groom’s Attire: M J Bale / Groom’s Shoes: Aquila / Hairstylist: Renee Pettit / Makeup Artist: Renee Pettit / Flowers: Libby Doherty Weddings / Venue: Villa Paloma, Canguu / Ceremony Hire Items: Bali Event Hire / Ceremony Officiant: Heather Boylan Weddings / Catering: Libby Doherty Weddings / Wedding Rings: Cerrone
Polka Dot Honeymoons Directory Mid Banner

The Polka Dot Travel Lounge – Lisa From The Wandering Lens

by | Destinations, Honeymoons, Polka Dot Travel Lounge


Bec Lawrence

The Wandering Lens Lisa

Let your wanderlust go wild Polka Dot honeymooners. Today we’re chatting with Lisa Michele Burns from the Wandering Lens, a travel and underwater photographer who uses her talents to showcase beautiful destinations all around the world. If your stuck on how to capture your experiences take a look on the Wandering Lens where Lisa shares her tips on creating the perfect image. But it wasn’t her tips on photography that she shared today – instead she told us about some exciting places to visit for your honeymoon!  She has given us a serious yearn to jet off with our number one and bask in romance around the world.

All aboard! Destination: Honeymoon

What is your favourite region?

There’s no way I can choose just one part of the world so I’ll divide my answer into warm and cold regions – as a weather geek this is how I separate them.

Warm & Summery: The Cook Islands and Maldives are both tropical island dream destinations, each with glittering water and coral gardens. I can’t decide which is better, the Cook Islands has a relaxed and more cultural feel with locals happily inviting you into their tiny island villages. Aitutaki Lagoon is for me the definition of paradise, exactly like that Microsoft screensaver image.

Cook IslandsThe Cook Islands

The Maldives on the other hand is dripping in luxurious resorts, each with overwater bungalows and fancy offerings. You can opt to sit on a deck chair by the pool or venture on a traditional Dhoni boat to uninhabited private islands where palm trees fringe the fish filled sea.

Cold & Wintry: Iceland and Swedish Lapland were on my schedule this year and I had such an amazing experience in temperatures that were -26 degrees! Swedish Lapland in the middle of winter is one of those once in a lifetime trips. Temperatures are so unbearably cold that your eyelashes freeze solid but activities like dog sledding, meeting reindeers and watching the aurora are simply magical.


Iceland is a photographer’s dream of endless cascading waterfalls, rugged volcanic beaches and even a beach where icebergs sit in the waves. It’s the perfect place for an adventurous road trip and camping under the stars.

Top resort recommendation

The island resorts of the Maldives are out of this world. I thought maybe it was one of those overrated honeymoon destinations but after visiting solo for a photography job, I couldn’t believe that such a place existed. Try One&Only Reethi Rah for luxury and romance or W Retreat & Spa Fesdhoo Island for water sports and a chilled out vibe.

Maldives One&OnlyOne&Only Resort – Maldives

Suggestions for great honeymoon activities

I think a honeymoon is a great opportunity to experience something and somewhere new together. Go on an adventure and take part in activities like hiking, scuba diving or kayaking…nothing solidifies a relationship like trying to steer a kayak in the right direction!

The Provence region of France where I’m living at the moment is ideal for outdoor honeymoon activities. A day could include kayaking in the Gorges du Verdon or snorkelling in the Calanques of Cassis followed by a sunset stroll through lavender fields and a dinner in a medieval village.

Lavender Provence

The ideal location for a proposal

I photographed a wedding on top of ‘The Peak’ which is a cliff on Cecil Peak accessible by helicopter in Queenstown, New Zealand. This location was one of the most romantic I’ve ever seen. Dramatic scenery and a sunset would probably win me over!

Best kept secret honeymoon location

Iceland. It’s not exactly a secret in the travel world but for a honeymoon you can road trip to waterfalls, glacier lagoons and at night watch the green waves of aurora dance above in the sky.

Iceland Waterfall

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There are plenty of luxury accommodation options if you still wanted to keep it romantic. Hotel Ranga is located just outside of Reykjavik and has themed rooms, then the ION Luxury Adventure Hotel is an incredibly designed hotel where you can watch the northern lights.

All images via Lisa Michele Burns at The Wandering Lens.

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Ms Chinoiserie Says: Oh, I’m so inspired to go on a romantic getaway now; Iceland looks so unique and just spectacular!

Honeymoons A – Z: Ibiza

by | Honeymoons, Honeymoons A-Z, Location Europe


Naomi Neilson

Beauty of Ibiza

Image via Can Pere Country Hotel

Ibiza, Spain’s stunningly beautiful island, is known mostly for the all-night-party atmosphere that transforms the island after sunset. Although the island is famous for its parties, its incredibly peaceful and gorgeous sites are a surprising, and heavenly way to lavish in the sun and have some fun on your honeymoon. During the day explore the pine-forested island, walk along the beach, and spend a relaxing afternoon in any number of Ibiza’s mellow cafes. By night, either join the night owls that stretch their wings to the beat of the music, or spend a lovely evening dining by candlelight and watch the island light up with its after dark vibe!


Image via Hotel Hacienda Na Xamena

5 Places to Stay

Across the island is a range of incredibly beautiful and incredibly luxurious hotels to spend your time in when you’re not out exploring the lovely countryside. Ibiza’s hotels are plentiful; from the country to the water’s edge, all are fabulous options.

Hotel Hacienda Na Xamena

This gorgeously luxurious hotel has the most spectacular views of Ibiza – you’ll feel as if you’re part of the beauty. Enjoy lounging by the pool or relax in a private spa, and then step out onto a balcony that overlooks the coast. The hotel is an absolute favourite destination for newlyweds, and perfect for a honeymoon.

Hotel Hacienda Na Xamena

Image via Hotel Hacienda Na Xamena

Torre del Mar Hotel

If you’re seeking comfort and leisure in the midst of luxury, the Torre del Mar Hotel is the perfect choice. The hotel offers panoramic views of the picture-perfect island, and its facilities, including the heated pool, tennis courts, gym, and spa make it incredibly hard to leave.

Torre del Mar Hotel

Image via Torre del Mar Hotel

Can Pere Country Hotel

This incredibly charming hotel offers its guests a relaxing atmosphere to spend their time in, overlooking the valleys, forests, and overall beauty of the island. The hotel is conveniently close to the beaches and the cities, and close enough to transport services to whisk you to the best places around Ibiza.

Can Pere Country Hotel

Image via Can Pere Country Hotel

Can Maries Country Hotel

In this adorably rural hotel, you and your new significant other can enjoy being on the outskirts of Ibiza in one of the most peaceful and quiet hotel destinations. Order a bottle of wine and request some glasses and then sit out on the deck underneath the shade of an umbrella, overlooking the fields of Ibiza.

Can Maries Country Hotel

Image via Can Maries Country Hotel

Aguas de Ibiza Lifestyle & Spa Hotel

This luxury five star hotel is a welcome escape, and the perfect place to spend time after a day of adventures. Enjoy panoramic views all the way around, and dine in the elegant, Mediterranean inspired restaurant. Discover the spa and relaxation areas, and then retreat to your decadent suite.

Aguas de Ibiza Lifestyle and Spa Hotel

Image via Aguas de Ibiza Lifestyle & Spa Hotel

5 Places to Visit

It was incredibly hard narrowing down only five places across Ibiza to visit. The places listed here are highly recommended but be sure to go on your own explorations as well to get the best out of your honeymoon on the Spanish island.


The island of Ibiza allows you and your newlywed partner to relax underneath the sun, sipping on cocktails and admiring the turquoise-blue of the water that laps gently against the white sand of the beach. It’s an incredibly peaceful way to spend your honeymoon with the constant warmth of the sun. It’s also just as stunning after nightfall when candlelight and torches wash the beach in a warm glow. Search the island for the best beaches such as the Cala Dodolar and the Cala Salada beaches amongst many, many others.

BeachesImage via Spain Info

Ses Salines National Park

Ibiza has two major National Parks, and Ses Salines is just as beautiful as its counterpart – however, with its beautiful natural features, it’s the preferred place to be. The nature reserve is a protected area made up of small islands, a marine environment, beaches and extraordinary views. Take a day to explore!

Sant Antoni de Portmany

The beautiful town of Sant Antoni de Portmany, framed by crystal-clear waters, is basked in history and beauty. The lovely little village is a popular location for tourists, but it’s quite easy to lose yourself in the peacefulness of the island during a stroll through the pinewoods or on a boat out in the water.

Sant Antoni de Portmany

Image via Spain Info


The beautifully spiritual core of Ibiza is almost completely hidden due to the out-of-the-way track, so don’t be surprised to find you have it all to yourself. If you do, then perfect! Pack something to swim in and spend the day in the water, and then dry off on the rock formation underneath the sun.

Eivissa Dalt Vila

The cobblestoned streets of Ibiza’s ‘Old Town’ wind around dramatic drawbridges, Roman statuettes and ancient cobblestoned yards. Take your time exploring the ancient city and all it has to offer, like the Gothic buildings that line the street. Everywhere you turn there’s something to admire – and it’s very romantic!

Ibiza Old Town

Image via Ibiza Spotlight

5 Things to Do

There are so many things to do in Ibiza to really experience the magic of the island. Start by venturing out into the water and explore below the surface, and then seek out the more relaxing and extravagant places to dine in.

Charter a Boat

As pretty as the island is from the beach, it’s nothing like it is from the water. Charter a boat (services like Boats Ibiza and Spotlight Boat Charters are the best way to go) and take to the water to truly witness the beauty of Ibiza. Look back on the white sand of the beaches, the greenery of the island, and the peaceful colours of the villages and feel yourself getting lost in the magic of the island. Out here, consider a diving service, like Punta Dive, and witness the beauty (and the magnificent array of colours) below the surface.

Charter a Boat

Image via Boats Ibiza

Water Activities

Snorkelling, diving, water-skiing, canoeing, jet-skiing, kayaking, kite-boarding, kite-surfing, knee boarding – you name it, Ibiza has it. Almost all of the most beautiful inhabited islands are overflowing with water activities for their guests, but as a favourite destination for water activities, you can’t go past Ibiza. Not only is the water picture-perfect, it is also home to an abundance  of native marine life, and when you take a dive to discover it, a whole new world of colour comes to life around you. If you prefer the adrenaline rush of activities on the surface, consider any number of Ibiza’s water activities. Services, such as Take Off Ibiza and Ibiza Watersports, offer lessons and rent out equipment at your leisure.


It’s worth your time if you can tear yourself from the beach or the poolside to go exploring. Ibiza has so much to explore, starting with the places to visit mentioned above. Go at your own pace and feel free to take the hidden paths – the beauty of Ibiza will surprise you at every turn! Stop when you can for a bite to eat at one of their lovely cafes, or pack a picnic and wine and dine with your beloved on a spot overlooking the island. If you prefer, book a tour with Tours By Locals.


Image via Tours By Locals


The markets of Ibiza are an absolute pleasure. The leisurely searching for the perfect knick-knacks to take home with you is only part of the fun – the rest of it is in the culture of Ibiza. Everywhere there’s something to experience, from the clothing and the food stores, to the handmade souvenirs which stall owners have fashioned in their time. Find history here and bring some of it back with you.


It’s easy to be swept up in the beat of the music of Ibiza. If you’d prefer to spend it partying with your significant other, the nightlife is electric! But Ibiza is also a place to enjoy a romantic dinner under the stars. There are plenty of peaceful, off-the-beaten-track restaurants, cafes, and diners where you can enjoy a glass of wine and the glow of candlelight. We would recommend spending a night at both the Sa Punta Ibiza and the Las Dos Luna.

Sa Punta Ibiza

Image via Sa Punta Ibiza

The absolutely splendid Spanish island is home to a magnificent array of colours – from the turquoise-crystal-blue of the water and the shades of greens of the pine to the various shades of the houses and villages. The hotels are all spectacular, and each offer exquisite restaurants. When you can tear yourself away from the beach or the poolside, Ibiza offers so many things to do, from water activities to exploring the history of the island. Ibiza is incredibly romantic – and a beautiful choice for your honeymoon.


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Ms Chinoiserie Says: With its stunning beaches, five star hotels, dreamy sunsets and hip nightlife, Ibiza is the place for a luxuriously fun honeymoon!

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