WEDDING COUPLE IN ITALY - Paul and Amo
1. How did the idea come to mind to have your wedding in Italy?
We researched Wedding Planners in Tuscany and Umbria on the internet, emailed about 6 different providers, received replies back from 4 and chose two of those 4. We then travelled to Italy and met the Planners in Tuscany & Umbria who then showed us 5 or 6 different venues.
2. Why did you choose Italy and not another destination?We have both travelled expensively and both feel that Italy and the Italian people offer the warmest welcome, the most fantastic food and the most beautiful old settings to be found anywhere in the world.
3. What where your major initial doubts in deciding to have your wedding in Italy?The language-barrier was an initial concern as we do not speak italian but Fabrizio Mengasini put us at ease very quickly as he speaks excellent english. We were also worried about sourcing the various elements of the wedding, a venue, food, music and so on, but again, Fabrizio could not have been more helpful.
4. Once arrived in Italy for the venue inspection, did you find what you were looking for, more or less?Yes. Neither of us had any fixed ideas on what we were looking for and we were open to the idea of a castle or villa in the countryside and also a small town. In the end, as soon as we saw Orvieto, we realised that it was perfect in many ways - small enough for all guests to feel comfortable and for older guests to be able to walk around in comfort, and large enough to keep guests interested and entertained, and also to allow guests to have private time away from the other guests attending the wedding. Orvieto was prefect - not too small, not too big, and with plenty of history, restaurants, and entertainment to keep everyone happy.
5. What were the points that you mostly analyzed in the choice of your venues?As with 4 above, it was a matter of balancing the romance of the setting with the practicalities of keeping all guests happy. Orvieto ticked more boxes than any other venue and looking back, we are very happy that we made the correct choice.
6. How many venues did you see before making your choice?5 or 6.
7. How did your friends, family and relatives react to your choice of having a destination wedding and in what percentage did this effect, more or less in the confirmation of the wedding invites?It was in most of their experiences a unique weekend with a great holiday atmosphere. When guests go away to a wedding, it forces all to be there well before the wedding day and also encourages them to stay well after the wedding day so it leads to a sense that all guests are on a long-anticipated holiday. Sometimes when weddings are at home, guests arrive at the las minute and leave straight after the wedding. A destination wedding turned, for us, into an extended holiday for all of us.
At the time, in 2008/09, the recession had not really begun to affect most people. We deliberately issued the invitations in November 2008 for our wedding in July 2009 with an RSVP date at the end of January 2009 so that guests could take time over the Christmas period to discuss the possibility of making it part of their annual holiday.
Many guests used the wedding as a starting or finishing point for their holiday and others came for 3 to 5 days, spending all that time in Orvieto. The general feedback that we received was uniformly positive, with all guests really loving the town, the history, the food and the people. We had around 137 guests and might have lost 10-20 if we were to do it again in 2011 due to the recession but most of our guests tell us that they would go again tomorrow if there was a wedding there.
8. Would you repeat it?Absolutely! It was a great experience.
9. Please write three lines of the most beautiful memories you have of your wedding day.Our wedding day was dramatic - we were supposed to eat outdoors on a terrace but unfortunately, thunder and lightning stuck during our ceremony and when we left the church, within 5 minutes, heavy rain started to fall. This was a very rare occurance and was initially disappointing as we had planned to have our reception on an outdoor terrace.
However, despite the weather being against us, although the sun did come out after about an hour and it stayed dry after that, Fabrizio dealt with the stress of the unusual storm with a calm and confident manner.Once it became clear earlier that day that a short but heavy shower of rain was a strong possibility later that afternoon and evening, Fabrizio and our own Plan B swung into action then and Fabrizio and the restaurant proprietor quickly arranged for all table settings to be moved indoors before the storm.
The venue was absolutely beautiful, both outdoors and indoors and the guests were oblivious to the fact that we were supposed to eat outdoors as we had kept that a secret! Many guests fondly recall the drama of the weather that day but all had the opportunity to enjoy eating outdoors both before the wedding day and for the remainder of their stay.About music, we chose to have 6 musicians, a spanish guitarist, a flautist, a trumpet player, a cellist, a violinist and an pianist, which added immeasurably to the wedding ceremony itself and to the reception - they played at both. The final memory is of the warmth of the local people, our florist, our photographer, the restaurant owner. They all, together with our wonderful wedding planner, Fabrizio, worked together in a co-operative way, and always in a good-humoured way to ensure that the day was a very, very happy and memorable one.