One can hardly imagine a more romantic location for a wedding than Saba. The island offers an unusual variety of venues for a unique ceremony. Couples will find that the island has a full selection of professional caterers for all aspects of the event including reception, flowers, favors for the guests, and outstanding accommodations.

The simplest location for an efficient civil ceremony is the Court Room in the Administrative Building. For the more romantically inclined, Saba’s registrar Julieta Woods is very flexible and works with the couple to make their wishes come true. She encourages the bride and groom to customize the ceremony with their own statements.

Recent tourist weddings have taken place on board a yacht moored in the Saba National Marine Park, on the spacious meadow at the Johnson Museum in Windwardside, in the graceful wrought iron gazebo at Queen’s Garden, around the pool side at Juliana’s, at sunset in private villas with wonderful sea views and of course, for a more traditional ceremony, Saba’s churches are available.

Saba is able to accommodate large or small parties with equalease. One recent wedding was complex, with the large wedding party occupying the entire hotel. A Saba taxi driver was on dedicated service all weekend, and special events were organized for the wedding party, such as a private tour of the museum and a guided trail hike.

Other ceremonies have been more intimate gatherings of bride, groom, and a few family members and friends. The same care and attention to detail went into to fabricating a wedding arch of tropical plants, coordinating the bride’s bouquet and grooms, boutonnihres, and reception decorations. A serving of famous Saba lobster was requested and graciously served.

Tourist wedding parties find it easy and convenient to make all arrangements over the phone or by email. When they arrive, they find every detail coordinated and orchestrated: the perfect solution to their desire to have a unique, tropical wedding.

Many of Saba’s hotels and guests houses offer special wedding packages, explained on their web sites. The tourist bureau (sabatourism.com) also has a full explanation of the procedures needed to fulfill marriage requirements in the Dutch Caribbean.

Rainforest Weddings on Saba

Taking marriage vows in an enchanted bower is the romantic dream of every bride.

This very special type of wedding is now available on Saba. The owners of Scout’s Place, Barbara and Wolfgang Tooten, are taking advantage of the island’s best asset, its ethereal, magical natural environment to provide a “Rainforest Wedding Ceremony” for their guests.

Barbara Tooten located a promising spot just off the Crispeen Track, about a 10-minute walk from the Mountain Road parking lot. After receiving permission from the landowner, the couple rolled up their sleeves and cleared out an overgrown area under some mature breadfruit trees, transforming the new clearing into a wedding bower. The afternoon light filters through the swaying trees, dappling the intimate gathering with moving shadows and adding to the mystical experience.

With some real potential at hand, Wolfgang bought a chain saw and cut some fallen logs in half lengthwise to make natural guest benches for both sides of the clearing. He also set to work to make a heart-shaped table to hold the heart-shaped tiered wedding cake made and decorated in the Scout’s Place kitchen.

The tall Breadfruit trees arc over a small gazebo, which was purchased in St. Maarten and is garlanded with flowering Bougainvillea and ferns. The table and three chairs in the gazebo are for the bride and groom and official Nellie Peterson, who marries the couple and sanctions the six witness signatures. On the other side of the clearing, a tent has been erected over a table with the obligatory champagne glasses and drinks in coolers.

Just before Christmas an American couple from Charlotte, North Carolina, who had been diving on Saba in August, came to Saba with family to be married in the special ceremony. The bride, Michelle Smethurst, chose a white organza layered, full-length wedding gown, which she donned in a nearby cottage, after trekking along the trail, carefully carrying her the dress. Michelle’s small daughter Morgan, who served as flower girl, also changed into her long, white dress once on location. Groom Steve Rines chose his son Jason as best man and both wore loose linen long-sleeved tunic shirts as their wedding costume.

On the arm of her father, Michelle walked down an entry path lined with lighted torches on bamboo poles. Her large wedding bouquet was a masterpiece of local flowers fashioned by Rudolph Hassell. Hassell found all he needed in Saba’s abundant gardens. Saba Ladies’ Lash orchids, which are in profusion at this time of year, ferns, baby palm leaves, Pink ginger, and bright red Anthurium for colour punctuation.

The couple chose their own music, which was played on a portable player. Head of Census Bureau Nellie Peterson, donned in her official black robes, performed the flawless ceremony, uniting the couple in a very personalized, poetic ritual. After the six witness came forward to sign the wedding book, Scout’s Place staff served the champagne, the bride and groom cut the cake, and guests made the most of the magnificent photo opportunities. The wedding celebratory dinner was held at Scout’s lookout, with an eternity view over Windwardside and the Caribbean Sea.

Get your Saba rainforest wedding information by contacting the wedding planner: barbara@scoutsplace.com

Gay Weddings on Saba

Another aspect of Saba’s beauty is its charming and embracing people. The island is the most gay friendly in the Caribbean, the scene is mostly couple oriented and relaxed. Same sex unions are now the norm as Saba is a Special Municipality of The Netherlands with the authority to perform legal gay marriage.

The island is already a wedding and honeymoon destination with well-establishes venues to accommodate small and large weddings. There are four charming villages on Saba with hotels, guesthouses, small low-key “resorts”, rental villas and cottages to accommodate both the ceremony and your guests in both an upscale and casual atmosphere.

The hotels can help make your arrangement or the staff at the tourist office will be happy to assist you.

Island chefs can accommodate any food style from French gourmet to great Saban feasts centered on the island’s famous lobster. Most wines and champagnes available locally special orders can be made on nearby St. Maarten or St. Bart’s.

In the photo are Vincent Stroom originally from Suriname and Ginno Romero from Curacao who made history when they became the 2nd gay couple to wed on Saba. They fell in love with the island and have since relocated here. Besides their regular jobs, Ginno is a great maker and decorator of cakes, his specialty; Wedding cakes of course… The tourist office can make arrangements for you.

Photographer Cassandra Holm: C.H. Photography

My name is Cassandra, originally born and raised in Florida for 20+ years, I am a completely self taught photographer. I have been shooting for a few years now and enjoy expressing myself through the lens. I enjoy new challenges and different types of photography, thus why I can’t just stick with one.

For more information please feel free to visit my website: chphotographysaba.weebly.com

You can make bookings through my website or my contacting me directly. My contact information is provided below.

Cassandra Holm
Saba, Dutch Caribbean
Telephone: (721) 522-2637

Marriage Requirements

In order to be married on Saba the following requirements have to be met, according to our civil code:

1. Registration & Notification of Marriage
This must be done in advance and can be done via e-mail to censusmail@sabagov.nl, along with a letter requesting permission to be married on the island addressed to the Lt. Governor of Saba. It should be sent in advance in order to secure a date and obtain all of the necessary information. The request to wed should be addressed to:
The Lt. Governor of Saba
Government Offices
The Bottom Saba
Dutch Caribbean

The documents should be presented 3 weeks before notification of marriage.

2. For the “Notification of marriage” both parties must submit:
A. A. An original birth certificate mentioning the names of the parents, also whether the parents are living or deceased. Maiden names of “mothers” also necessary Birth certificates should be no older than 1 year, and must come with an “Apostille” or legalization by the Dutch Embassy and Minister of Foreign Affairs, depending on which country you were born in
B. An original proof of “Single” state, no older than 6 months, with an “Apostille” or legalization by the Dutch Embassy and Minister of Foreign Affairs, depending on which country you were born in.
C. If previously married an original entry of dissolution of marriage is required (Divorce decree). Complete with “Apostille” or legalization by the Dutch Embassy and Minister of Foreign Affairs, depending on which country you were born in.
D. Copy of passport.
E. Request to be married written to the Census Office
F. Written request to be married somewhere other than the Government Building (if so desire), to the Lt. Governor.


3. Marriage can be performed in the Court Room at the Government Building or outside the Government Building. If the desire is to be Married somewhere other than the Court Room, a written request has to be made to:
The Lt. Governor of Saba
The Bottom

4. You may bring along your own witnesses if you so desire, however a copy of their passports must be submitted in advance. If the desire is to be married inside the Court room at the Government Building, two witnesses are needed. If the desire is to be married outside of the Government Building six witnesses are needed, copies of all witness passports must be submitted in advance.

5. Notification of marriage of residents must take place in person during office hours at the Census Office; Monday through Friday 8:30 – 11:00 and 13:00 – 15:00 hours. Non-residents not living on Saba can submit a written notification to:
Census Office
The Bottom, Saba
e-mail: censusmail@sabagov.nl
Requesting to be married on Saba on desired date.

6. Rates of solemnization of marriage:
Monday through Friday(During Office hours and inside the Government Building)Monday through Friday (After working hours and on weekends, outside the Government building)

Marriage Book
Marriage Certificate

7. In the space of time between the date of notification of marriage and Solemnization of marriage, a wait of two (2) weeks has to be observed.

8. All documents, requests and information listed has to be sent a month before marriage date to the Census Office.
Inform if Birth Certificate, Proof of “Single” state or “Divorce Decree” has to have legalization. For marriage dates, please don’t make wedding plans unless you have first contacted the Census Office. If any additional information is needed please contact:
Census Office
The Bottom, Saba
Dutch Caribbean
Tel: +599-416-3497/3311/3312
Fax: +599-416-3582
e-mail: censusmail@sabagov.nl