When Catrina Cosculluela and Daniel “Danny” Ramos met in high school in 2006, it was all due to proximity. At the time, Catrina’s two best friends were dating Danny’s two best friends, so they often found each other in the same circle—but their encounters were strictly platonic. After high school, the two went their separate ways for college, and then Catrina started her post-graduate life in California. It wasn’t until Catrina moved back to Miami that a budding romance began between them. Soon after, they started dating.
On July 18, 2020, Danny was getting ready to take their relationship a step further. He initially intended to pop the question on the beach outside of the Acqualina Resort in Miami, but the weather had other plans. With a torrential downpour, Danny and the hotel team quickly moved the setup inside of the hotel’s library. Surrounded by candles and rose petals in the shape of a heart, Danny got down on one knee. Although it wasn’t what he expected, Catrina gave Danny the answer he was hoping for. “We laughed as it was not what he planned (because if you know us, we are not very romantic, and this room was the definition of romantic) and had the best day and evening,” Catrina reflects.
A month after the proposal, the couple hired Elle Becerra of Events by Elle to execute their vision. Since Catrina works as a project manager at a creative agency, she was excited to start planning her dream day right away and thoroughly enjoyed having another creative outlet. “I loved the process of sourcing vendors, designing the floor plan and mood board, and picking out color schemes and furniture,” she details. “It was a natural process for me.”
One easy decision for Catrina was hosting her big day at the place she grew up. “I have built amazing memories there, and my dad’s dream was always for his daughter to get married at the house he built,” the bride shares. However, she wanted the setting to transport her guests to a tropical getaway. “My goal was to transform my backyard and make our guests feel as if they were somewhere in Tulum with cabanas and tropical flowers but still maintain the amazing garden and trees my family home has,” she says.
Although the planning process was seamless for Catrina, she faced a setback closer to the wedding day. Just like Danny’s proposal experienced unforeseen weather, so did their wedding. “Unfortunately, the Monday before my wedding, the weather went from clear blue skies to 80 percent rain Thursday to Saturday,” she reveals.
Since the couple didn’t have a backup plan to accommodate the unpredictable forecast, they had to rush to find an available tent. “Thanks to my amazing wedding planning team and vendors, we all worked together to game plan how we can adjust our floor plan and wedding vision to work rain or shine, and it came out better than I could have imagined,” she concludes.
On the weekend of November 18, 2021, Catrina and Danny said “I do” in front of 330 guests. Read on to see how their vision came to life, planned by Events by Elle and photographed by Karla Garcia Costa.
The couple kicked off their wedding weekend on Thursday with a church ceremony. Black lanterns with brass handles and greenery dotted the aisle, leading to an altar flanked with elaborate floral arrangements.
For the first ceremony, Catrina wore an A-line dress with puff sleeves and a ruffled skirt, and she accessorized with diamond earrings and gold bangles. The bride had her hair tied back in an effortless ponytail, affixed with baby’s breath.
Danny sported a white tuxedo jacket from Brooks Brothers, a white tuxedo shirt from Eton, and black tuxedo pants from Suitsupply for the occasion. He paired his getup with a black bow tie from Eton and black loafers from Del Toro.
After swapping vows the first time around, Catrina and Danny hosted an elegant reception. Paper lanterns with gold polka dots and tassels were suspended above a banquet table, which featured white linens, a gold runner, vintage candle holders, and greenery.
Ahead of Saturday’s ceremony, the bride spent the morning getting ready with her bridesmaids, which included sipping champagne while wrapped in the same robe her mother wore on her wedding day.
For her beauty look, the bride opted for something natural and classic, so her wedding dress would be the main focus. To show off her getup, she also selected an elegant updo. A simple white manicure and Viktor and Rolf’s Flowerbomb Eau de Parfum completed her glam.
A long-sleeve custom lace gown with a deep V-neck and an oversized bow on the back by Naeem Khan stole the show. Although the final product was everything Catrina had dreamed about, the original design didn’t quite fit the bill. “I never had that ‘it’ moment when I tried on the dress, but I knew I loved it, and it felt the most ‘me,’ but I felt something was missing,” she admits. So, the bride decided to work with Renato Armijo from Chernaya Bridal House to create her dream dress. After removing the tulle overlay, sheer back, and shoulder pads and adding a bow, Catrina had the one.
Instead of following a separate dress code, Catrina’s bridesmaids dressed in the black-tie Guayabera attire. “We wanted to tie in our Cuban heritage and decided we wanted our guests to wear a traditional Cuban formal Guayabera,” Catrina explains. Her squad wore long gowns in various hues and styles.
Since Catrina wanted her lace getup to make a statement, she kept her accessories to a minimum. She paired the gown with white heels by Alexandre Birman, diamond studs from her family jeweler, and a custom-made veil.
Danny suited up while toasting to the festivities with his groomsmen. For his look, the groom wore a custom-made Cuban Guayabera by Pepi Bertini with his initials engraved on the cuff, black tuxedo pants from Zanella, velvet slippers from Del Toro, and a black bow tie by Tom Ford.
Since the couple was eager to spend some time together and ease their pre-wedding jitters, they opted to do a first look. “Danny and I wanted to have our special moment, just us two without anyone watching or around us,” Catrina notes. “We wanted this moment to be intimate and to be able to talk before walking down the aisle to say our ‘I do’s.’”
Catrina carried a tropical bouquet, which featured a light pink king protea and palm leaves.
For the altar, Catrina wanted something unexpected that also matched the natural touches used throughout the reception. “My florist came up with the idea of using a circular dining table as the altar and having different-sized pots and wicker lanterns placed around and on top of the table, surrounded by tropical flowers we chose for the wedding reception,” she describes.
A tan aisle runner, lined with monstera leaves and white pillar candles in glass jars, led to the earthy altar. The same paper lanterns that made an appearance at Thursday’s reception towered above the whole setup.
The bride walked down the aisle with her dad, while a live harpist played “Our Song” by Elton John.
The duo recited traditional vows and selected two biblical readings for their second ceremony.
After they were pronounced husband and wife, Catrina and Danny recessed to “Dancing in the Moonlight” by King Harvest.
To execute their “Tulum-chic” aesthetic, the couple had four lounge cabanas scattered across the lawn. “I wanted all the décor to be white and wood, but to have a casual lounge feel,” the bride explains. Rattan lanterns hung from the wooden frame, which was draped with gauzy white curtains and adorned with tropical greenery. White couches and wooden furniture offered guests a place to relax and socialize.
Since the forecast called for rain, the entire reception took place beneath a black tent engulfed in twinkle lights to replicate a sky full of stars.
Striking arrangements of greenery, king proteas, white blooms, and tropical fruit, surrounded by candles, sat at the center of each table. While half of the tables were covered in white linens, the other half maintained their natural wood finish. Since the menu was an open buffet, the tables didn’t have full place settings.
The bride’s favorite part of the décor? A bar made of bamboo. “This really tapped my vision of making you feel as if you were in Tulum with those tiki-style bars seen throughout,” she notes. They served a passion fruit mojito as their signature drink.
For their first dance, the newlyweds swung around the dance floor while “To Love Somebody” by The Bee Gees filled the room.
After noshing on a Cuban-inspired dinner, the bride and groom cut into a three-tier white cake, garnished with a cascade of greenery and flowers.
For the couple’s after-party, they had one requirement: get everyone out on the dance floor. “We passed around sequin jackets and oversized glasses to get our guests in the disco mood,” Catrina says. The “disco hour,” complete with a confetti shower, concluded their magical evening.
Although not everything went according to plan, the newlyweds couldn’t have imagined a better celebration of their love. “Don’t sweat the small stuff because everything works out as it should,” the bride recommends. “The day of the wedding, treasure every second because it goes by so fast.”