Vow renewals

A surprise ceremony

SAM_3268It’s a wonderful honor to be part of a couple’s vows renewal, where they are looking both back at the past and at the future. These renewals turn out to be very romantic affairs – all the more so as the couple have a history together, and have shared many ups and downs. The ceremonies are very poignant and filled with meaning.


Greg wanted to hold a vow renewal for Jennifer, his wife of fifteen years. The two had been childhood sweethearts who had married in a very formal setting. Greg now wanted something very different: a simple, yet very touching and intimate ceremony just for the two of them. An added challenge: it was to be a surprise for Jennifer: she mustn’t know anything about it until she saw the flowers on the beach.


Accordingly, the two flew in to Koh Samui, where they stayed at The Six Senses. On the day of the renewal, Greg suggested some casual attire, something suitable for the early evening, and, oh, why not go down to the beach first?


Jennifer was surprised when they got to the beach that there was a boat waiting for them. Greg asked her to step in, and soon they were crossing the bay to a bijou hotel on the other side… and heading straight towards a bamboo gazebo decked out in flowers. Everything had been arranged by Jacqui Ashley, who runs a wedding planning business on the island.


Once landed, Thai dancers in traditional costumes escorted the couple to the podium, where I took them through a short but powerful ceremony. The wording had been agreed on with Greg, and now the couple celebrated the fifteen years they had been married and promised to continue together. They both said some personal things to each other, before I asked them to place their hands together and asked them to repeat a simple ring affirmation. It was very moving to be part of this and to witness this couple’s continuing love for each other.


Jennifer was clearly wowed by her husband’s actions in arranging such a surprise for her. “I had no idea at all it was to happen,” she said excitedly, as the couple opened a bottle of champagne together.


Usually vow renewals are jointly planned by husband and wife, but when just one is involved, it’s hard to keep the event a secret, but well worth doing so: the other party will be absolutely amazed and thrilled.







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