People have their own vision of what a perfect wedding ceremony would look like. Some want to do the unconventional way of tying the the knot on a garden, beach resort, clubhouse, museum, events venue or even under water on scuba outfits – but nothing would beat the traditional way of getting hitched on a beautiful and serene church. Weddings should definitely center on the matrimonal ceremony itself and not on the other secondary preparations. For Filipino Catholics like us, this would mean having your dream wedding ceremony on one of the hundreds of stunning, gorgeous and absolutely instragram-worthy Churches built all over the Philippine archipelago.
As a child I have always set my heart on getting married on two churches only both in Intramuros, either Manila Cathedral because of its enormous architectural design and San Agustin because of its vintage 3D paintings and lovely chandeliers. These churches both have this feeling of being transported back to colonial Spanish era. But when I went to College, I fell in love with our newly renovated church at home where my parents got married and this cute church in Caleruega that offers a serene view of the mountains.
When we got engaged, finding the perfect church for our wedding was not difficult because we shortlisted the areas where we would be married. My hometown, Caleruega, his hometown and Manila. In the end we ended up in Manila and of course I quickly showed him San Agustin when he was still eyeing another Catholic Masterpiece. My fiance fell in love with San Agustin at first sight and we knew it would be the one..and the rest is history.
While searching for our wedding ceremony options in Manila, we shortlisted some of the best looking Catholic Churches in the City and here’s what we found.
** Tip! ** Wedding Fee Range will depend on the inclusion such as flower decorations, flower decorations upgrades, choir, opening doors, etc. Church requirements and regulations also varies. Click the name of the Church to be directed to its official website.
HMUA or Hair and Makeup Artist is mostly important for the Bride, since her HMUA will have to make sure that she’s THE most gorgeous on her wedding day. Though in some cases Grooms also have their own grooming preferences which should also be considered. In Manila, there are tons of known HMUAs in the wedding industry and like any other type of supplier, they are categorized not only through their popularity, portfolio, work of magic but as well as according to their package rates.
Below are some HMUA that we have inquired with. Rates are as of 2015-2016 and is subject to change. Additional makeup for entourage and Out of Town fees should be considered and rates will depend on the number of heads and location of wedding and/or prenup. Grooming for the Groom as they call it would automatically be included if they are in the same hotel/wedding prep area.
Fiance and I both know that when we did our initial wedding checklist, it wouldn’t stop with that. Although we wanted to just focus on the most important details, but as we go on with our wedding planning, a LOT of other things started popping ouf of nowhere. These are things that we thought we don’t need to consider but then we actually do. I’ll just continue with the list from where I stopped with Number #10.
The bride’s gown has been (and always will be) the centerpiece of a wedding event. Whether the ceremony is well decorated, the reception has the best food being served, the groom looked dashing or the flowers are just magical. Nothing still beats the attention that the bride will receive on her wedding day. And yes, all eyes will be on what she’ wearing. Cliche as it may seem, all girls have their dream wedding gown made by their dream wedding designer or Couturier. Unfortunately, not all couturiers are affordable. Unless the couple wanted to go all out and is willing to spend Php 500k +++ for a one-day-gown then it’s no big deal! It’s not difficult to choose THE dream designers since names like Vera Wang, Michael Cinco, Elie Saab, Krikor Jabotian, Monique Lhuillier, Ezra, Berta, Zuhair Murad etc were all over the place.
But for budget weddings like us, practicality would always be top priority. Practicality doesn’t mean we can’t afford them, but we just decided to keep things within our range.. besides there are other great wedding couturiers in the Philippines who can produce the same great quality but on a lower price scale. Personally, I don’t want my dress to only look gorgeous but I want it to be remembered as the most important gown that I will be wearing for the rest of my life!
Below is a list of awesome Philippine-based designers that we have researched so far and their starting price range only. Prices are as of October 2015 and will definitely change without prior notice. Bridal Gown rates normally include the veil, cord, pillows etc. Prices also vary depending on the following: the reputation of the designer, the fabric to be used, gown style if 1 way or 2-way, pegs, embellishments (pearls, Swarovski etc), accessories, and the degree of difficulty to be done. These designers can be researched easily since the majority have websites and FB pages with their portfolios (past and recent designs). One thing we noticed though, once a designer features a celebrity, automatically their price range would increase by 10%++ aside from that fact that they do increase on a quarterly or semi-annual basis! So if you find what you think would fit your budget, better book an appointment with them now! Happy preps 🙂
Since we became officially engaged and has started to do our wedding checklist, fiance and I both decided to hire a professional coordinator who would help us in our wedding planning. Because we have already booked the date, church, reception venue and catering service for our wedding – which is considered under the category of major suppliers, we already looked past the Full Planning Services and instead focused on Turn-Over/Semi/Partial and On-the-Day (OTD) Coordination services. Using the Wedding Coordinator post that I have created as our guide, we shortlisted 6 coordinator services that fits in our budget.
Setting an initial online meeting with possible suppliers is a great help for Overseas couples like us since its difficult to just rely on online reviews, hearsays from friends and even through chat/email messages. Talking to a person face-to-face even through the help of online communication is a great tool to help us get a better impression of the person who will be our best friend during our wedding preps.
For wedding receptions or even for non-traditional ceremonies, Events Venues have been quite popular lately. It’s probably because of the growing trend of themed-styling which has definitely become an it thing. From classical to garden to seasons to rustic to even Games of Thrones, name it you can have it now. Seriously. That’s how fun wedding receptions has become. It’s yummy food combined with awesome decorations — it’s definitely a feast for the eyes! But it doesn’t stop there since this all comes down to making sure you and your fiance have all the monetary means to pay for what you what. Trust me — I am still overwhelmed at how fast their rates have increased in just a span of a few years!
Since we both decided to have our ceremony in a church in Manila, fiance and I searched the whole area of Quezon City and Metro Manila that offered great Events Venues.
Rates posted below are for VENUES ONLY since they have packages (with cater), in both AM and PM use is for 2015 to 2016 and is subject to change without notice. (Yes they differ in that and sometimes prices also differ if its a Weekday or Weekend.) They’re listed in a random order and in Philippine pesos denomination (Php).
UPDATED JANUARY 2018
PLEASE CHECK WITH THE VENUES DIRECTLY TO GET THE UPDATED RATES.