Maranda Jackson and Joseph Hansen will be married on May 19, 2017 in beautiful Montego Bay, Jamaica. They would love it if you could share in their day.
Maranda has lived in Milwaukee her entire life along with her parents and 2 younger siblings (Quincy & Kayla). Those of you who know Maranda know she loves the movies and has a severe popcorn addiction! Maranda graduated from Milwaukee Lutheran HS and now works at Children’s Hospital in Nutritional Services and has a passion for children. Maranda has always dreamed of a destination wedding where everyone can have a stress free, happy and relaxed time.
Joe grew up in Milwaukee with two brothers (Kevin & Steve) and one sister (Katie). Even as a child he always LOVED sports. After graduating from Spotted Eagle HS in 2001 he played semiprofessional football for 3 years in the Ironman Football League. He is also a two-time North Side Pool Champion. He is a huge Packer, Brewer, Badger and Admiral’s fan so Maranda, get ready for lots of sports in your life. Good news though, he also loves yard work – now that is a man everyone wants! His other hobbies include fishing, camping, walking the dog and just being outdoors.
Who says work is never fun? Maranda and Joe will tell you otherwise. You see, Maranda was a bartender at Park View Pub when Joe came to work there in March of 2012. He was inexperienced and Maranda knew how hard a first day on the job can be so she volunteered to stay after her shift and help train Joe. Okay well really, she thought he was cute so, why not! They hit it off immediately and talked all night long (so much for the training)! They exchanged numbers and went on their first date just a few days later. The rest of course is history…and proved good things can happen at work!
It was a lovely fall weekend – Joe and Maranda were headed for a little getaway to Chicago. The weekend plans were a birthday celebration for Maranda and included a little sightseeing and a Packer Game at Soldier field. They headed out for a tour of the Willis (Sears) Tower and Joe had a secret. You see he had snuck an engagement ring into his pocket! At the top of the tower they waited their turn to step out onto glass box overlook. Next up, Joe turned to the couple behind them and asked them to take their photo and as they stepped out onto the platform Joe pulled out the ring and dropped to one knee. He said, “Maranda you make me feel on top of the world every day since we met, will you marry me?” And of course she said yes!!
Maranda and Joe envision a wedding that is relaxing and carefree. They wish to create an experience for their family and friends that is that is filled with sun, fun and togetherness. Maranda and Joe have selected the Iberostar Rose Hall Beach Hotel in Montego Bay Jamaica as the location for their wedding and they look forward to sharing that very special day with you!
Jamaica, the third largest island of the Great Antilles island is 4243 square miles in size (about the size of Connecticut) and lies 90.1 miles south of Cuba. Jamaica is the fourth largest island country in the Caribbean Sea.
The island came under Spanish rule following the arrival of Christopher Columbus and remained in Spain’s possession until 1655. During that time is was known as Hispaniola. In 1655 England conquered the island and renamed it Jamaica. Until 1838, Jamaica was the leading sugar exporter in the world largely due to large plantations with African slaves and Chinese and Indian indentured laborers. All slaves were emancipated in 1838 and Jamaica became fully independent from Britain in 1962.
Jamaican people are culturally unique due to mixed marriages from many backgrounds. Their motto, “Out of Many, One People” underscores their friendly nature and lively spirit. You will find no other island as welcoming as that of Jamaica.
Jamaica is known as a tropical paradise with lush greenery, mountains and beautiful white sand beaches. Prehistoric Jamaica was volcanic, and the mountains that soar to 7402 feet are higher than any in the eastern half of North America. These mountains run all through the island’s center. Some 150 rivers, numerous waterfalls and an abundance of trees and flowering plants are found on the island, earning Jamaica the title “land of wood and water”.
Montego Bay is the capital of the St. James parish and second largest city in Jamaica. It is also the location of the international airport you will fly into when arriving for the wedding. Surrounding Montego Bay one can find many first class resorts. Here you can bask in the sun on your soft white sand beach while looking at the sparkling turquoise blue Caribbean Sea. In the distance pine trees in the mountains, overhead palm trees swaying in the breeze. What a marvelously beautiful island.
Doesn’t it sound like a wonderful place for a wedding!
Maranda and Joe have chosen the beautiful and very fun resort, Iberostar Rose Hall Beach, Montego Bay, Jamaica.
Iberostar Rose Hall Beach Hotel is located on a beautiful stretch of white sand beach about 20 minutes from the airport. It is part of the larger Iberostar Complex with 3 hotels total. Each hotel has its own public entertainment and dining areas.
Iberostar Rose Hall Beach hotel has 366 rooms in a variety of room categories. All rooms have 1 king or 2 double beds and designed with an exterior door, an entryway and a second doorway to ensure privacy and quietness. All rooms have a private balcony or terrace and include air conditioning, minibar stocked daily with beer, soft drinks and water, a flat screen TV, safe, coffee maker and iron/ironing board. Room service is available from 11am to 11 pm daily. Bathrooms have a shower/tub combo and hairdryer.
Guests choosing the Ocean view standard or Superior Ocean view will have complimentary access to Spa Sensations wet areas, the Iberostars signature adults only wellness area.
From the sparkling infinity pool to the warm white sand beach, sun and water lovers will have a hard time deciding where to park for the day! Either way, don’t forget your sun screen and a good hat.
The hotel offers a variety of activities throughout the day including aerobics, dance lessons, water polo, beach volley ball, ping pong, billiards and table soccer as well as many more organized activities around the pool and beach. There is also a game room with slots/ casino machines, fitness center, library and internet café. There is a movie theatre, and nightly shows/entertainment events as well as a discotheque for those 18 and older. A formal kids club with pool and playground is available for kids 4-12.
Of course one of the most important things about any resort is the food. After all that sun and fun you will get hungry! Worry no more, the Iberostar Rose Hall Beach hotel has 3 specialty restaurants and one buffet.
• Uncle Tony’s is your place for grilled meats, open 1130am – 4pm for lunch, 4-6pm for snack and 7-9pm for dinner.
• Jambalaya serves dishes of the bayou, cuisine with a French and African flare. Open for dinner only, 4 seating’s beginning at 630am.
• Samurai brings you flavor of Japan including sushi, sashimi and other Asian inspired dishes. Open for dinner only with 4 seating’s beginning at 630pm.
• Little Rive Buffet has all kinds of international dishes as well as continental breakfast. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
In addition, you will also find 6 bars/lounges including a swim up pool bar.
• Deep blue is a snack bar located pool side, open 9am to 6pm to starve off the hunger and quench your thirst without straying far from your beach chair!
• Sun and Fun, located at the beach.
• Lobby Bar, quiet, cool and relaxed.
• Calypso Bar is located near the entertainment stage and is perfect before the curtain goes up and after it has gone down.
• Jammin, open 7pm to 1am in the lower lobby.
With so much to offer, Maranda and Joe know that you will enjoy your stay at Iberostar Rose Hall Beach hotel. But let’s face it, the most important thing is being together with family, creating all kinds of wonderful memories and celebrating a marriage!
As mentioned above, Maranda and Joe have secured group space at the resort. Room categories being held are Superior Standard, Standard Ocean view and Superior Ocean view rooms. Stays may be 3 nights or longer and you may arrive/depart on whatever days’ work best for you between May 16th and May 23rd. Should you require something other than what is available in the group space, Sue and Paul can assist, just let them know soon.
There are a limited number of rooms available in the block so reserving your room early is encouraged. Booking early also has the benefit of allowing you longer time to make payments on your total trip cost.
The group space has a limited booking window at which time pricing is subject to change and will be based upon hotel availability.
Your Package will include:
All alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks
All provided land and non-motorized water sports,
All hotel taxes, gratuities and airport transfers
Guests may choose to purchase their own air if they wish or Sue and Paul can arrange for you. Either way they will need complete flight information to arrange your transfers to/from the hotel and airport.
Optional but Strongly Recommended
Travel insurance is strongly recommended and multiple options exist. Please be sure to discuss this with Destination Wedding Specialists Sue or Paul Adams @ GetAway Travel LLC.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Can I drink the water?
All major hotels have their own system to re-purify the water. Many hotels and restaurants use an additional method of sterilizing the water by adding a solution called Microdin. However, due to the salts and chemicals used, many tourists and locals prefer to drink bottled water. Bottled water will be available at the hotel and is stocked in your mini fridge in your room.
2. What foods should I avoid so I don’t get sick?
Fruits and vegetables may come direct to a store from local farms and are not washed well. Avoid eating fruits or raw vegetables from market stands or direct from a grocery store without washing first. Hotels and restaurants catering to tourists will purify their fruits and vegetables before serving. While it is not necessary to avoid coconuts, keep in mind that large amounts (like drinking pina-colada’s all day) may cause intestinal upset.
3. What else can I do to avoid illness?
Always wash your hands before eating. If you decide to eat from an open air food stand, use discretion. Drink plenty of nonalcoholic fluids and do not become dehydrated. Drink bottled water.
4. What documents will I need to enter Jamaica and return to the US?
The US passport is the only acceptable proof of citizenship for travel via airplane to Jamaica. If you do not have a passport, please visit http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/english.html Currently passports are taking approximately 6 – 8 weeks to obtain so do not put off applying until the last-minute. Be sure the name you list on your passport is the one you give Maranda and Joe’s destination wedding specialist (Sue or Paul Adams) when making your reservation?
– If you already have a passport, make sure it will be valid for 6 months beyond your travel date, if not renew it now.
-Make sure there is at least 1 empty page available for stamping (not including the very last page).
– And finally make sure the passport is in good repair (i.e. the page with your photo is not soiled, wrinkled, been through the wash or otherwise damaged – there is a chip in there that must scan).
5. Are any other documents required?
No, there are no other documents required, however, if you have any special concerns, please feel free to discuss them with Sue or Paul when making your reservations.
6. What do I wear to a destination wedding?
Maranda and Joe are planning a casually elegant ceremony. Men will want to wear, nice shorts or lightweight slacks and collared shirts. No ties or jackets are necessary. Ladies might want to choose a sun dress or dressy Capri pant outfit. For footwear, we recommend sandals. The couple requests no tank tops or beachwear please.
7. Will my cell phone work in Jamaica?
Many cell providers have plans which cover Jamaic. Contact your cell provider to get your options. Remember, if you have a smart phone, you’ll need to ask about their international data and texting options as well. Or just leave the cell phone at home and relax!
8. What if I have other questions?
If you have questions that are not answered here, do not hesitate to contact Sue or Paul. They will be glad to answer any question you might have; they are here to help make your trip a great experience. Remember the only dumb question is the one you decide not to ask!
Just the Facts
Electricity: Most Jamaican resorts use 110 volts (like the US), however some may also have 220 volts so taking an adaptor for hair dryers and/or curling irons is wise. Of note, all rooms have hair dryers so you do not need to bring your own.
Language: The official language is English but Jamaican patois, a combination of several languages, is spoken throughout the island. At the resort, you will have English speaking staff so no communication barriers should exist.
Time Zone Eastern Standard Time , Jamaica does not observe daylight savings time.
Money: The official currency is the Jamaican Dollar. You can exchange money at the airport using an ATM. Remember you are traveling to an all-inclusive resort where tipping is not necessary. The only thing you’ll need cash for is if you plan to go shopping or do an off resort excursion. Any charges at the resort may be placed on your room and paid by credit card upon departure such as spa treatments.
The exchange rate varies daily but typically $1 US is equal to about 124.95 Jamaican dollars. When staying at an all-inclusive resort it is not necessary to exchange money as you have prepaid for almost everything. For expenses at the resort like spa treatments, your credit or debit card is fine. For shopping outside the resort, major credit cards are widely accepted. If you need to obtain cash while there, we recommend going to the nearest ATM and withdrawing only the amount you think you’ll need, otherwise you’ll have to pay to exchange again when you leave the country.
Safety: No matter where you travel, you should always exercise safe travel behaviors.
• Always utilize your room safe to protect your valuables (passports, watches/jewelry, wallets, cameras) while you are out of the room.
• Always lock doors and patios when leaving the room.
• We recommend making a photo copy of your passport and carrying it in a place separate within your luggage in the event yours is lost or stolen. We also suggest you give a copy of your passport to someone back home as this will expedite replacement if needed.
• Do not participate in risky behaviors i.e. do not attempt to buy drugs
• Avoid taking or wearing expensive jewelry
• Do not take large amounts of cash, take what you need from an ATM
• Register your trip with the embassy before you travel. That way your country is aware of your whereabouts in case of an emergency.
Taxis: For off property excursions, we recommend participating in an organized tour.
Telephones/Internet: To dial Jamaica from the US, dial 1, 876 and then the 7-digit phone number. Check with your cellular provider to determine if your cell phone will work in Jamaica.
Tipping: At most all-inclusive resorts tips are not expected or required. However, if there is someone who has shown you extra special service a small token of your appreciation is always welcome. We suggest taking a small supply of singles to give a special thanks to the person who cleans your room or that friendly bartender who has been making your drinks just the way you like them!