Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A bride and groom exchange vows at a modern white gazebo in Mexico.

One Venue, Three Ways: Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit

The Puerto Vallarta Destination, Transformed
Photo by Ave Sol Photography

When it comes to creating a design plan for your wedding venue (or one you have your eye on), looking at examples of weddings that took place there can help you envision what your big day could look like—even if you don’t have the most vivid (or visual) imagination. That’s why we’ve launched One Venue, Three Ways, a series that highlights all the different ways that couples have utilized each space at some of our favorite wedding venues.

For couples planning unforgettable Mexico destination weddings, there are two things that matter most: choosing the right venue and coming up with a thoughtful design plan. The Pacific city of Puerto Vallarta offers breathtaking beachside views, and for those looking for a coastal escape in a tropical destination, Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit is a true getaway for visitors and locals alike. With its modern architecture and proximity to Bahía de Banderas, the resort stands out among the Nuevo Vallarta hotels. Just north of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, this waterfront wedding venue is a one-stop shop for the dreamiest wedding. 

What we really love is that one Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit wedding is not like the others. There are so many choices couples can make to design the most inspired Puerto Vallarta wedding. From elaborate aisle decor to customized reception areas (light-up dance floor, anyone?), it’s amazing to see how different couples have made this all-inclusive resort uniquely their own for their ultimate wedding weekend. 

Read on for some of the best photos from weddings at Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit, and compare how these couples transformed the beachside locale. From the color palettes to the ceremony flowers to the tablescape, this three-for-one guide highlights a variety of ideas you can make for your own special event—no matter where it’s taking place. 

Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: White floral arrangements scattered throughout a modern gazebo.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: Pink and green floral arrangements accent a modern gazebo.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A circle-shaped floral arch at the end of an aisle, with wooden chairs and white floral arrangements on either side.

Ceremonies at the Gazebo

While Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit offers a variety of spots to exchange vows, perhaps the most striking is this modern gazebo structure. Overlooking the bay, the location’s sprawling views will bring guests together in an intimate,  yet stunning setting. Saarah and Sunil added contrast with a full-circle arch and wooden chairs, while other couples opted for symmetrical bouquets and acrylic chairs to lead everyone’s eyes to the guests of honor.

The 1,826-square-foot area, which accommodates up to 50 people, is just one venue for couples who have chosen this Puerta Vallarta wedding venue, while a toes-in-the-sand beach ceremony is another popular choice.

Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A bride and groom standing on a tall white staircase.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A bride with her back turned at the foot of a tall white staircase.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A couple sharing a kiss in the middle of a tall white staircase.

Staircase Portraits

Of all the “first look” spots at Puerto Vallarta wedding venues out there, it’s tough to beat the staircase at Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit. Before or after the ceremony, it’s the perfect place for the big reveal, or to take solo portraits of brides and grooms alike. These iconic white steps create architectural dimension while making the couple the focal point of the shot. It’s an opportunity for them to spend some private time with their photographer⁠—without rogue beachgoers wandering in and out of the shot!

Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A series of tightly-packed white rose floral arrangements at the end of every other row in a wedding aisle.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: Long-stemmed floral arrangements next to rows of wooden chairs.

Custom Aisle Decor

Many of our favorite Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit weddings have featured white floral arrangements that complement the white architectural structure of the gazebo—but there are so many ways to make that happen. From tightly-packed round bouquets of white roses to more whimsical additions (think sprigs of eucalyptus and baby’s breath), there are near-countless options to make a Puerto Vallarta wedding totally unique.

Whether you decide to match the florals to the wow-worthy white structures or throw in pops of color, you can’t go wrong with this stunning setup.

Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A bride and groom exiting a modern gazebo after their wedding ceremony.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A bride and groom exiting a modern gazebo decorated with wooden chairs and white floral arrangements.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A bride and groom being showered with confetti after exchanging vows at their wedding.

Grand Exits

What could be more exciting than the high of saying I-Do? A memorable recessional through your guests as newlyweds! For a burst of color (and sweet surprise for friends and family), Charina and Brian were showered with confetti as they headed back up the aisle together. But the gazebo is so grand that a pretty epic departure is inevitable. That’s why many couples also choose to simply walk away, hand-in-hand, with massive smiles on their faces.

Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: An outdoor wedding reception with a rectangular and circular shaped table and string lights above.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A grassy reception area with string lights and a dance floor with the bride and groom's initials on it.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A waterfront reception area featuring a sweetheart table overlooking the dance floor and ocean.

Receptions on the Lawn

And just like that, it’s time to  toast to the happy couple. After a sun-kissed afternoon or evening reception in the Gazebo Garden, just a few steps from the ceremony location, we love the idea of watching the sun go down while dancing the night away under twinkling string lights, or making a statement with hanging floral decor in vibrant reds and pinks.

While the lawn can accommodate up to 40 guests, the Ocean Garden has a similar look that holds up to 360 people. Whichever space couples choose, there is no limit when it comes to layout options:  Long rectangular or intimate circular tables are all possible, and they can go in front of or around the dance floor. We love how Stephani and Aidan’s sweetheart table gave them the best seats in the house: directly facing the waves.

Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A tablescape with two white chairs, several acrylic chairs, and a large white floral arrangement.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: Elaborate pampas grass arrangements on reception tables at a wedding.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: Suspended red and pink flowers hanging over an elaborate tablescape at a wedding reception.

Tablescape Inspo

Tablescapes reflect and complement the overall wedding style, and can connect to the feel of the ceremony. For Saarah and Sunil, extra-tall, crown-like pampas grass centerpieces were placed along their long reception tables—a nod to the bride’s bouquet—and the on-trend style added warmth and drama to the reception.

While we always love the look of classic string lights, having guests dance and dine by candlelight certainly ups the romantic ante. With long-stemmed candles and hanging floral arrangements, it’s easy to elevate the space (literally!) and make it feel like something you’ve never seen before.

Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A bride and groom dance under string lights on a light-up dance floor in the early evening.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A bride and groom dance on top of a dance floor lit up with every color of the rainbow.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit: A wedding reception featuring a dance floor with the bride and groom's initials.

Outdoor Dance Floors

There are so many options when it comes to couples twirling and grooving into the late hours of the evening on all kinds of dance floors. A custom monogrammed option, like Thannia and Joseph’s that included their first initials, is always a good idea, while the garlands of three-dimensional, star-shaped lights over Katie and Jeff’s dance floor created an original and romantic accent.

And when the lights went down and music cranked up, some couples gave their guests even more reasons to hit the dance floor. As these couples showed us, there are so many options with a light-up dance floor: One pair went for an all-white look, another matched it to their decor, and a third duo went all out with every color of the rainbow.