Planning a romantic wedding in Italy

Planning a romantic wedding in Italy

Italy offers one of the most romantic wedding venues in the world and is fast becoming the favorite place to get married (the romance, the food, the weather) and is easily accessible to family and friends, especially those traveling from the United Kingdom.

Is it legit?

Before we focus on the romance of the day, this is the first question to answer, and the answer is Yes.

A wedding in Italy is perfectly legal, as long as you follow a few simple guidelines. Unless you speak Italian, it is very important that you find a good bilingual wedding planner. She will take care of everything for you, from the simple legal requirements to liaising with the supplier, florist, local council, photographer, musicians…everything you need to make your day complete.

For British citizens, all the bride and groom need to do in advance is make an appointment with their local UK Superintendent of Registration to obtain a Certificate of No Impediment. This, along with your birth certificates and photocopies of your passports, will be sent to your wedding planner, who will contact the British Consultato in Florence or Rome, and the local ‘comune’ (council) in Italy to process your permission to marry. She will explain the whole process to you, step by step. If you come from other parts of the world, including the US, the process is similar and not complicated at all.

There is a legal requirement in most of Italy for the marriage to take place at the local town hall. In many cases this will be a beautiful room, perfect for a larger wedding. The town halls are usually located in impressive squares and are an incredible backdrop for photographs.

And for romance…

If you are looking for something more personal and romantic for your wedding in Italy, as long as you complete the legal procedures at the town hall, you can celebrate your wedding in the place of your dreams.

Perhaps you prefer the splendor of Florence or a terrace in Sorrento, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. For some, a wedding in Italy might be about getting away from the tourist hubs of Tuscany and the Amalfi Coast and heading to one of the beautiful but lesser-known locations. Areas like Le Marche and Abruzzo border the Adriatic Sea and have some of the best beaches in Italy, but no tourists. Further inland, you’ll find quiet hilltop towns and villages, surrounded by ancient walls. Cobblestone streets and ancient arches inspire beautiful photography, and you’ll be assured of a warm welcome from the local people.

Many people choose a beautiful Italian villa, full of atmosphere and charm. And some of these villas even have their own little chapels, perfect for creating a dream wedding. They are usually deconsecrated, so they create a perfect setting for an impressive and original wedding day.

Italian love weddings. And their weddings are usually large events of three hundred or more guests. Couples manage to pay for this by following the custom of guests presenting the bride and groom with an envelope of money, rather than a gift (or sometimes both) to cover the cost of the lavish meal that follows the ceremony. . This love of weddings means that the Italian services you need to complete your perfect day are available, whether your wedding is large or small.

If you choose to get married in a villa, you will inevitably have the venue reserved just for your party. You will be able to use the house and grounds for your photographs, and guests can enjoy the relaxed atmosphere. There is no sense of urgency as time is not a critical factor if the entire venue is yours for the day, which removes a major area of ​​stress from some more traditional venue weddings.

Italians are by nature very romantic. Everything about a wedding in Italy is all about romance, and they take special care of the bride and groom throughout the day. The florist will be the first person to arrive on the ‘big day’, and will have already spent several hours with you, or with your wedding planner on your behalf, discussing the types of flowers you like, the colors, the theme. . There is no such thing as a ‘wedding package’ where you can choose from a pre-determined list of possible flower arrangements. You’ll come up with something that’s unique to you, whether it’s based on a simple green and cream theme, or an extravagant multi-color mix of vibrant flowers.

Hair and make-up artists are next to arrive, should you need them, and they usually spend two or three hours preparing the bride and other party members. They always do a proof before the day, just to make sure you’re clear on the style you want, and their planner will be on hand to make sure there are no translation hiccups.

Photographers now like to combine the more formal shots with a reportage style of photography, and Italian wedding albums are a work of art in themselves. Purely designed to convey the romance of the day, the albums are a photographic journal of the wedding, with montages showing everything from the preparation to the last dance. The bride and groom can determine the style they are going for, and the photographer will not only prepare the wonderful albums, but will usually provide the couple with a DVD of the images, so there is no hefty charge to any family member. who subsequently wants some pictures for his own wall or shelf.

When everything is ready, it is time for the bride to make her entrance. Music is a key part of any romantic wedding ceremony, and the couple will be able to choose not only the musical pieces, but also the style in which they will be played. They may choose a string quartet, an Italian soprano, a harpist, or even the honeyed notes of a saxophone.

The words of the Italian marriage ceremony are very moving, with great emphasis placed on family and the couple’s joint responsibility to care for each other and any children they may have. Although the mayor will no doubt conduct the ceremony in Italian, an interpreter will repeat his words and this alone creates a sense of occasion.

Whichever location is chosen, the weather in Italy certainly helps. Most weddings take place in the summer months, anytime from mid-May to late September, and the wedding reception is often held outdoors, under an open gazebo, to protect both the sunshine as well as the unlikely event of rain. As your wedding will be the only wedding on site, time is not as strict and you will be able to enjoy the first moments after the ceremony, greeting your guests and enjoying a glass or two of Prosecco while the pictures are taken. Guests can mingle, choosing from the many trays of delicious canapés on offer: stuffed olives, marinated salmon, crispy fried cheese, small vegetable tarts, the list goes on.

Everyone knows that Italians love their food and once again when it comes to choosing the menu of the day, you will be able to select from a wide range of options or have a meal tailored precisely to your own requirements. Remember that the Slow Food Movement was created by an Italian to counter the growth of fast food, and outside of tourist areas, fast food simply cannot be found, with the notable exception of course being pizza! But this obsession with food ensures that every dish served is a delight to the senses, from how it looks to how it smells and, most of all, how it tastes. And not only that, they like to serve each part of the meal in a different place within the premises. This creates a sense of movement and anticipation, wondering what new treats will be on offer.

After the canapés, guests can be invited to wander to the next venue, the antipasti buffet, which may be served near the pool with an informal arrangement of chairs and tables shaded from the sun by large umbrellas, or placed in the shade of a tree. Antipasti tables are laden with meat, fish, cheese and vegetable platters, perhaps an individual cup of Italian gazpacho with a skewer of roasted vegetables, or smoked turkey with pepper and melon salad, or cheese-stuffed battered zucchini blossoms ricotta. Depending on the number of guests, there may be ten or more different selections on the antipasti table. This is an opportunity for the bride and groom to get together with their friends and family, and perhaps move from table to table before the more formal part of the night. .

And then… dinner! Until now, the food has simply been an introduction to what is to come. Imagine an open-sided gazebo, countless candles, and beautiful vases of flowers that form the centerpiece of every table. Each course is presented almost like a treat in itself, with elegantly designed plates of food and copious amounts of fine Italian wine. At least one pasta course will be offered, perhaps a pasta packet filled with delicately flavored sea bass in lemon sauce, and then perhaps a risotto course as well. There may be a choice of main course, or ‘second’, perhaps guinea fowl, or fillet steak in a herb crust, or monkfish in a scented lime juice, and with the gazebo located on a terrace, guests can wander freely between courses and soak up the atmosphere, perhaps with lanterns casting a soft glow around the gardens. Then the speeches return, and the desserts! In Italy, desserts are usually served as a buffet, with so many delicious options: semifreddos, ice cream cake, mousses, tiramisu, fruit. Italian ice cream – or ‘gelato’ is the best in the world and the most adventurous chefs are constantly developing new flavors – and new ways of eating ice cream and sorbets – such as frying them in kataifi batter, or mixing them at the table with liquid nitrogen ‘smoke’ .

The relaxed and leisurely pace of the food provides an amazing atmosphere. Is something special. And finally, the bride and groom can invite their guests to join them in dancing the night away under the stars.

So what do you need to do to create your perfect day?

  • Decide which region of Italy you want to get married in, be it in a city like Florence or Rome, a famous town like San Gimignano, on the beach at Positano, or in a villa in the glorious region of Le Marche.
  • Choose the type of place: a village, a town hall, a castle or a beach.
  • Search specifically for these terms on the web, using both region and location in the search terms.
  • Meet anyone the venue you’d like (which will almost always have a wedding planning service) gold Find a wedding planner who may be able to suggest a variety of venues.
  • Check the wedding planner’s credentials: You need evidence of other successful weddings, and preferably the contact name of someone whose wedding they’ve organized.
  • Make sure that in your package you have the option to visit the venue before the big day.
  • You should also be able to have a tasting with the vendors and meet the florist.
  • Ask as many questions as you want and be sure to talk to the planner in person, not just via email. This is your big day and you must be sure that everything will be perfect.
  • Do all of this at least six months in advance.
  • Relax and enjoy knowing that your wedding is in good hands.

Planning and anticipating your big day should be exciting, and your planner should encourage you to participate every step of the way. You should have regular, documented updates on all meetings the planner has had, decisions made, and decisions still needed. Where necessary, these should be supported by photographs (of flowers, table layouts, etc.). And there should be no budget surprises, with quotes given before you make your decisions.

If all of this is arranged for you, all you have to do is sit back, have a wonderful day and soak up the atmosphere and your memories for the future. This is what a romantic wedding in Italy is all about.

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