Nikki and Jeff Gaither
30th March 2017
Nikki and Jeff were seeking an extremely private beach wedding which was off the beaten track; somewhere tropical and far away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Hailing from Portland, Oregon, they had already asked several friends about various places in Thailand, and Koh Tao kept on popping up time and time again as the ‘must see’ island. They were originally looking to marry on Koh Samui, but after doing further research, they discovered that Koh Tao is that just that bit more remote, offering them the rustic charm, white sandy beaches, crystal blue waters and that real ‘tropical feel’ that they were looking for. Not only that, but as avid adventurers, hikers and scuba divers, Koh Tao offered everything they could possibly want in a destination wedding.
The day started with an early morning hike to one of the island’s most beautiful beaches, Hin Wong Bay. Together with their photographer, Aidan Dockery, they took some amazing pre-wedding photos on the rocky boulders that hug the coastline.
Later that afternoon, Nikki started to get ready with hair styler Gemma, who not only did a great job on the hair do, but also acted as big sister, best friend, dress assistant, and makeup artist! Gemma is a true asset to the Forever Lovestruck team and was fantastic in making Nikki feel totally relaxed in anticipation for her big moment!
Nikki’s dress is from Brides for a Cause, a Portland based bridal store and non-profit organisation which raises funds for charity by collecting and reselling wedding dresses. Funds raised go towards supporting women with health issues, promoting positive self-image and providing relief for abused women. Both Nikki and Jeff regularly give back to their local community, so this was just one small way they could tie their philosophies into their wedding day.
Nikki and Jeff had a very specific idea of their vision for their wedding day. They wanted to celebrate their love in the simplest of ways with no fuss, and nobody else to concern themselves with but each other. They chose the beautiful bays at Sai Nuan beach for their private wedding and married under a palm tree with their toes in the sand and the waves lapping the shore just a few metres away. Our celebrant Rachael wrote a highly personal and heartfelt wedding address which reflected the couple perfectly.
In order to commemorate and continue a longstanding family tradition, Nikki brought with her a family heirloom in the form of a German wedding cup – the same cup from which her parents had drunk on their wedding day. It’s designed so couples must stand close together and face each other so that they can toast at the same time.
Nikki and Jeff had already registered the relevant legal paperwork at their embassy in Bangkok prior to arrival on Koh Tao. But in order to ‘seal the deal’, we invited the local Amphur from the civil registry office to make the union binding under Thai Law. The couple got legally married, right there, on the beach and under a palm tree, just as they'd always imagined.
Being seafaring folk, Nikki and Jeff wanted to cruise on a traditional Thai longtail boat back to the port town of Mae Haad…they left just as the sun was beginning to set and they revelled in the most magnificent sunset across the bay.
The day rounded off with a romantic meal at The Whitening restaurant. Their table, set in the sand, overlooking the port and lit by tiny fairy lights was the perfect ending to a perfect day.
The Wedding Team