Wedding Questions

How to mix cultures?

Posted in Cartagena, Bolivar, Colombia
Emptyprofileicon Jessica Friedman Cartagena, Bolivar, Colombia

I am starting to plan my wedding in Cartagena and am a little bit worried about how our families are going to get along. My family is American and speaks only English, and my fiance's family is Colombian and speaks only Spanish. My fiance and I are both bilingual, but we don't want to spend the entire day interpreting either!

I am wondering what others have done in this situation. I mean, a big part of the event for me is that our families get to meet one another. Should I hire a couple of interpreters?

There are other issues too, like what music to choose. I can just imagine my husband's family jumping up and dancing when a salsa comes on, while mine sits there not knowing what to do. And vice versa for more traditional American music. Or perhaps I am just worrying too much! ;)

8 Replies

Emptyprofileicon paula pareja

Hi Jessica!
I wouldn’t worry too much! Many guides and hotel staff speak a bit of English. I went to a wedding once and the grooms family was American and the bride’s Latin. When the salsa and meringue came on, the Americans and Europeans that attended the wedding were up and dancing just as much as the Latinos!
They will eventually mingle..especially after a few drinks! :)

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190253 Alejandra Rocha Cartagena, Bolivar, Colombia

Hi Jessica!! Great questions but I think you are worrying too much, try to have a good balance of music at the party,plenty of alcohol and everyone will figure it out on their own. I think maybe hiring an interpreter would come across as a little awkward and uncomfortable. Being in Cartagena automatically puts everyone in a relaxed fun mood and everyone will be happy to be there to celebrate with you. But at the end of the day you know your family best and have a much better idea of how everyone will mingle.

Good luck!

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208093 Eva Maria Campo

Hello Jessica! Congratulations for your wedding! We frequently have multicultural weddings in Cartagena and everything goes very smoothly concerning languages. At the hotel, front desk clerks speak english, and for sure some of the colombian family members will also speak english....so do not worry. Delirio Hotel is located on the heart of the Historical Center, we offer 17 rooms with rates from $165 to $230 for a double room. Please see our page www.deliriohotel.com and write us your comments and needs at [email protected]
It will be a pleasure to welcome you, your family and friends at Delirio Hotel!

All our best,

Eva Maria Campo
General Manager

Reply

161022 Nayibe Cortes Cartagena, Bolivar, Colombia

Jessica,
That should be the last of your worries. I just got married a month ago and, although both of our families are Colombian, we had over 20 american guest that loved it. I entered the weddingplanning stage with the mentality that our wedding was only ours, and we would decide what made us happy. Even though I always kept my guest in mind, I still had a tradicional Colombian wedding. The ceremony was in Spanish, we had 2 wedding songs (1 in spanish and 1 in English), and the food was very sophisticated but all with the Colombian flavor. Our guest danced to latin music as much as american music and they didn't stop.....we even had to pay the DJ for an extra hour. So, as you can see there is nothing to worry about, put all your fears and things that really deserve the attention. Cartagena is safe, beautiful, and welcoming, so your guest will love it. One recommendation....take your guest to eat at "La Casa de Socorro", the food is amazing and priced at about $11.00 a plate, and the place is beautiful.
Good luck!!

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Emptyprofileicon Jessica Friedman Cartagena, Bolivar, Colombia

Thank you all so much for your responses! I feel much better having read all the great advice and words of encouragement!

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Emptyprofileicon Diana Marino

HI Jessica, Im planning my weeding in Cartagena, Im colombian, and as you, my fiancé is american. What I have thought about it are 2 things: First, We are going to rent a beautiful house one week before for both families. We think this is a good way to integrate the families and do an exercise of traslation. Second, about the music: I have noticed american people can dance very well music like vallenato and merengue. Salsa is a little more complicated, so we are going to play less salsa than the others.
About american music don't worry, colombians love all kinds of music. My only issue is I dont know what kind of american music we should play because mi american guests are older than 40.

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Emptyprofileicon Diana Perez Cartagena, Bolivar, Colombia

Hi Ladies!
I am having a catholic ceremony and I'm concerned about having a long mass, all in Spanish, but there are no bilingual priests in Cartagena. Would love to hear what you guys are doing about this?

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210959 Denice Mancilla Cartagena, Bolivar, Colombia

I think we might take an bilingual priest from the States to Colombia. I have the same situation, my family is Venezuelan and his family is American. We are thinking about doing parts of the mass in English and some in Spanish, so everyone gets a little. :) At the end, your friends and family will not mind any of this, but to see you happy, and share the moment with you.

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