A Laid-Back Island Wedding at The Steeple House in Maui, Hawaii

Planned by Valley & Company Events

tropical maui wedding, bride and groom kissing

Photo by O'Malley Photographers 

Lisa and Drew first met in youth group in high school, where Drew recalls Lisa being “incredibly beautiful, a little goofy, and too cool for me.” The latter wasn’t the case, though: The two rekindled after college and started dating while both living in Seattle.

Nearly ten years after meeting as teens, Drew staged a day-long extravaganza to propose to Lisa—who is admittedly not one for surprises and "knew it was coming." His packed agenda involved manicures with her mom, sister, best friend, and future mother-in-law, followed by a dim sum lunch while Drew organized a scavenger hunt at Lisa’s parents’ home. The final clue led to a flower-filled dock in her backyard, which is where Drew popped the question.

When it came to their nuptials, the couple first considered a September wedding in the same location but eventually threw out the idea, deciding an at-home wedding would be too large of an undertaking. With Seattle out of the question, they began to explore venues where they could marry outdoors at a time that fit their schedule. More ideas and dates were thrown out—but one eventually stuck, and Lisa and Drew decided to host a destination wedding at The Steeple House in Maui, Hawaii on March 25, 2019.

All in all, Lisa and Drew's destination wedding was meant to feel like a relaxed get-together, which translated to a five-day event and an overall laid-back look with greens, whites, and tropical foliage throughout. Keep reading to see more of this island wedding celebration, as planned by Valley & Company and photographed by O'Malley Photographers.

tropical maui wedding, ocean waves
Photo by O'Malley Photographers 

In addition to finding a new location, Lisa and Drew had to plan their wedding around Lisa's graduate school calendar, Drew's new job, and a move to a new city—and that was just their schedule! "We also planned around immediate family members to ensure they could attend," Drew says. "There was a lot of back-and-forth on that but, in the end, we realized we had to do what was best for us and we couldn’t plan around everyone and make them all happy."

Ultimately, this meant marrying in Maui in March rather than Seattle in September. In Maui, their scenic venue had the indoor and outdoor space that they craved, as well as a unique and modern allure that still felt quintessentially Hawaiian. It also seamlessly married their own personal styles: he’s more traditional, while she favors minimalism. “It captured what we wanted most: a religious chapel and beautiful scenery," Drew says.

When planning a destination wedding, consider choosing a central location (with activities within walking distance!) and encourage guests to stay there.

tropical maui wedding, tropical printed tie pocket square
Photo by O'Malley Photographers 

Paying homage to the setting, Drew paired his charcoal gray suit with a printed bow tie and matching pocket square from Show Me Your Mumu. “It was a huge hit and fit my personality really well,” he says. 

tropical maui wedding, bride wedding dress tropical bouquet
Photo by O'Malley Photographers 
tropical maui wedding, bride holding tropical bouquet
Photo by O'Malley Photographers 

Lisa stunned in a V-neck BHLDN gown with blush undertones and floral appliqués. She completed her look with her sister’s veil and an island-inspired bouquet

For her dress, Lisa says she knew she wanted something nontraditional that was also light enough for comfortable wear in Hawaii. And, on top of it all, the gown needed a stamp of approval—from her mother! "It was really important to me that my mom also love the dress," she says.

tropical maui wedding, white ceremony seating tropical florals
Photo by O'Malley Photographers 
tropical maui wedding, white ceremony seating tropical flowers
Photo by O'Malley Photographers 

Inside the intimate ceremony chapel, local spring-centric blooms beautifully offset the white-washed chairs. Lush, colorful centerpieces lined the aisle, monstera leaf and protea arrangements adorned each row's seating, and the subtly striking altar focal point came to life with draped island smilax and voluminous flowers.

tropical maui wedding, bride and groom kissing ceremony
Photo by O'Malley Photographers 

Our pastor personalized every detail of the ceremony to us, our relationship, and our faith.

tropical maui wedding, bride groom recessional
Photo by O'Malley Photographers 

"The whole ceremony was super meaningful," the pair says of the vow exchange. "Most importantly, it felt like it embodied our faith." They largely wanted the event to feel religious, but not overbearing, and their female pastor (a must-have for the bride!) helped make this possible. "Our pastor personalized every detail of the ceremony to us, our relationship, and our faith," adds Lisa.

tropical maui wedding, cocktail hour signature cocktails
Photo by O'Malley Photography

Speaking of personalized, the next event—cocktail hour—showcased two customized beverages, named after Lisa and Drew's first date spot and the park where they initially said, "I love you." Guests also enjoyed a Hawaiian staple and huge favorite of the bride's parents...shaved ice!

tropical maui wedding, painted guest book
 Photo by O'Malley Photography

At the same time, the newlyweds put their hand-painted guest book by Momental Designs on display, which beautifully illustrated their wedding location and mirrored their invitation suite.

tropical maui wedding, long covered white dining table
Photo by O'Malley Photography 
tropical maui wedding, white reception seating
Photo by O'Malley Photogaphy 

A long dining table was set on the venue's lawn, which overlooks the ocean. Framed in billowing white fabric and chandeliers, the table was designed to "demonstrate we are all one family," explains the groom. "Everything was edited and clean and we let the surroundings speak for themselves," adds Lisa.

tropical maui wedding, tropical reception tablescape
Photo by O'Malley Photography 
tropical maui wedding, reception table fruit
Photo by O'Malley Photography 

Not only did the reception exude tasteful Hawaiian vibes with tropical centerpieces that mirrored the ceremony arrangements, but the menu also followed suit with a sampling of fresh Maui cuisine. The pair's nearest and dearest—who were invited to take home local fruit from the table place settings—dined on a fresh catch of the day, romanesco cauliflower with pan-seared gnocchi, herb-crusted filet mignon with mushroom whiskey sauce, and vegetable tofu strudel.

tropical maui wedding, bride and groom first dance
Photo by O'Malley Photography 

After their first dance to John Mayer's "New Light," Drew and Lisa put the music selections in the hands of their guests—a decision that proved to be surprisingly successful. "We weren’t sure if our guests would want to dance," admits the bride. "It was so fun to look out at all our friends and family having such a great time."

tropical maui wedding, bride and groom embracing sunset
Photo by O'Malley Photographers

When all was said and done, the newlyweds had a few lessons to share from their planning journey. Drew's number-one takeaway? Spread out the festivities! “We had five days together, which made it all that more special and made the wedding day feel like I could focus on Lisa instead of focusing on saying hi to everyone who showed up,” he says. For Lisa, maintaining authenticity was key. “I never wear heels and hate wearing my hair up so I wasn’t about to start changing up my look on the wedding day,” she says. “Also, Drew and I are usually pretty casual so decided not to have a black-tie event. Being authentic meant the day really ‘felt’ like us.”

Wedding Venue: The Steeple House | Wedding Planner & Floral Design: Valley & Company | Bride's Dress: BHLDN | Bride's Shoes: Bella Belle | Hair & Makeup: MeiLi Autumn Beauty Team | Groomsmen's Attire: J. Crew | Engagement Ring & Wedding Bands: Seattle Diamonds | Invitations & Guest Book: Momental Designs | Music: David Wolf, DJ Maui | Catering & Cake: Sugar Beach Catering | Rentals: Rio Event Design | Videography: Sunlit Films | Photography: O'Malley Photographers

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