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BRIDES ABROAD Winter 2012/2013

230 best places to say ‘I do’ from the sparkling Caribbean and romantic Med to snowy Scandinavia

WEDDINGS & HONEYMOONS

18

-page

special

Island hideaway HONEYMOONS

White weddings

-page New York special n rustic Central Park n afloat on the Hudson n panoramic skyline n no-nonsense City Hall

Guest etiquette

Guide to keeping guests happy at destination weddings

Be a Super cool WINTER BRIDE!

Snug fur wraps, crystal bouquets, moon boots and ice diamonds

Hot & hip

Jamaica

SAVE £10,000 on honeymoons! Majorca, Tenerife, Grenada, Maldives, Sri Lanka and more www.BridesAbroad.tv

weddings £3.99

24

in the Alps


IT’S SHOWTIME... W

hen looking for your dream wedding dress, look no further than the Eternity Bride collection. This inspired collection of wedding dresses is the epitome of style. Held at Warren House, Kingston upon Thames, the Eternity Bride collection was unveiled to a select audience, who were wowed by the sheer choice of stunning gowns. When being interviewed for the magazine, design coordinator Giles Turner said he was creating a show which made people smile but had chic allure and a romantic feel.‘Eternity bride work with the industry’s best designers to ensure that we create stunning gowns for every bride, whether she is having a traditional wedding to getting married on a beach, Eternity Bride will have the dress for her. We pride ourselves on the fit and structure of our dresses, the bride will know she is wearing a quality garment. This season lace is still a major trend, but the bustle and back detail will also be a key feature.’

www.eternitybridal.co.uk

+44 (0)8707 707 670

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WWW.PRONOVIAS.CO.UK LONDON FLAGSHIP STORE. 94, NEW BOND STREET 路 LONDON W1. PERSONAL APPOINTMENTS 0207 518 8470. BOOK AN APPOINTMENT ON-LINE AT OUR PREMIUM DEALER STORES.


Welcome

Credits Published by

Joint Venture Media Ltd Kilndene Studios Kirk Deighton LS22 4EA Tel: 01937 58 48 92

Publisher

Martin Cody-Owen martin@jointventuremedia.tv

Editor-in-Chief

Terri Cody-Owen terri@spaworldmagazine.com

Editorial Assistant

Clarice Fleeman-Hardwick Congratulations

And Congratulations!

Assistant to Publisher

Patsy Owen

Contributors

‘It may be winter outside, but in my heart it’s spring,’ sang Love Unlimited, back in the 1960s. And it’s just as relevant today – there’s nothing like snuggling up on a crisp winter’s night with your loved one, planning your future together.

Colette Harris Lisa Burton Alan Benstock Janine Grantham

So start as you mean to go on – why settle for mediocre? And, if getting married abroad is your dream, here are some of the inspirational ideas we have packed into this issue.

Photography

How about crossing the Pond for a wedding oozing with urban chic and sophistication in New York? (p.20) Follow the experiences of our ‘Real Wedding’ couples who have chosen the Big Apple to tie the knot in our 22- page Manhattan Brides special, which features romantic Central Park (p.24) Manhattan Luxury Yacht (p.36), The View (p.38) and City Hall (p.40). Alternatively you can opt for a totally tropical event under the Jamaican sun and say ‘I do’ at sunset under a swaying palm with the sand between your toes. We have plenty of suggestions for a wow factor Jamaican wedding. (p,44) If you are looking for something seriously cool, don your Ugg boots and fur-lined mittens and head into the Alps or the Arctic Circle and discover the true meaning of a white wedding – and let it snow!! (P.62) We also travel closer to home to the perennial Mediterranean favourite, Malta. With warm springs and hot summers, fascinating history and breathtaking architecture, this Englishspeaking island is definitely worth serious consideration for hosting your Big Day. (P.84) As you can see, the world’s your oyster! We give you a glimpse of some of the many wonderful resorts for weddings and dream honeymoons including romantic island hideaways and iconic destinations for blissful, stress-free wedding and memorable honeymoons. (p.109). Then, of course, the choice is yours! If you are undecided, or you would like some advice or inspiration about where’s best for you and your wedding party, contact our Brides Abroad Travel Team and we will happily organize every aspect of your wedding and honeymoon travel arrangements. Call: Martin 01937 584892 or email enquiries@bridesabroad.tv

Best of Luck!

Dreamstime Istockphoto Javan Liam www.javanliam.co.uk Jacquie Cutler www.jcutlerphotography.co.uk Emotionlabstudio Photographers. www.emotionlabstudio.com Lina Jang photography www.jangphotographers.com Sandra Manas Boutique Photography www.sandramanas.com Mark Anthony Chen

Design

Chris Peach Centrical Solutions www.centricalsolutions.com Susie Lanni Design 01462 459532

Printer

Stones the Printers www.stonestheprinters.co.uk

Advertising Sales

Joint Venture Media Sylvia Oakley 0113 284 31 00 sylvia@spaworldmagazine.com

Cover

Terri Editor, Brides Abroad. enquiries@bridesabroad.tv To Subscribe to Brides Abroad for just £22 for 6 issues, email Cody@JointVentureMedia.tv

www.BridesAbroad.tv ©Joint Venture Media Ltd. All material in this publication is strictly copyright and all rights are reserved. Reproduction without permission is prohibited. The views expressed in Brides Abroad magazine do not necessarily represent the views of Joint Venture Media. Every care is taken in compiling the contents but the publisher of Brides Abroad magazine assume no responsibility for any damage, loss or injury arising from participation in any offer, competition or advertisement contained within Brides Abroad magazine.

Photograph: Courtesy of Pierre Carr, wedding planners. www.pierrecarr.com Stylist: Pierre Carr Photographer: Mark Anthony Chen Hair: Hair by Chellz Make up: Loni Jones Dress: Couture Gallery www.thecouturegallery.com Groom Attire: Room 10 www.roomten.co.uk Jewellery: Luella’s Boudoir Venue: Round Hill, Montego Bay, Jamaica www.roundhill.com For advertising and sponsorship call: Martin Cody-Owen on 01937 58 48 92 or email martin@jointventuremedia.tv


Contents 24

In this issue 8

Wedding & honeymoon news

The latest news and great ideas for weddings and honeymoons

REAL WEDDINGS

24

Love in Ladies’ Pavilion

30

Married in Manhattan

36

Land Ahoy in Manhattan

38

Vows with a View

40

From City to City Hall with love

50

Barefoot on the Beach

66

Chilly Ice

72

Love in magical Majorca

Lacie and Tyler’s romantic ceremony in New York’s Central Park

Julie and Warren meet the Naked Cowboy and dine on Chinese in NYC

Jennie and Peter wed on the Hudson River aboard the luxurious World Yacht

Tessa and Philip begin married life from the top of a New York skyscraper

Esther and Nick’s slick and stylish wedding

Sandeep and Andrew tie the knot on powderwhite Jamaican sands

Georgina and Andy’s stunning Alpine ceremony

78

Maxine and Nicholas’ romantic vow exchange in Port d’Andratx

Slow food served with passion

Cat and Max’s sustainable wedding in rustic Italy

66 SUBSCRIBE Six issues FOR ONLY £18.00 Worth £23.94 inc FREE P&P

www.BridesAbroad.tv/subrcibe 6 www.BridesAbroad.tv

72


20

WEDDING DESTINATIONS

20

A marriage made in Manhattan

Steal Carrie Bradshaw’s sensational movie-star style with a New York wedding.

42

Totally tropical Jamaica

62

Let it snow

84

Magical marriages in Malta

Colourful, vibrant and beautiful – why Jamaica is perfect for destination weddings.

Chilled ceremonies and frosty receptions in winter wonderland

Malta Special – everything you need to know about weddings and honeymoons on this enchanting island

PLANNING

96 Weather permitting 100 Wedding countdown

Your worldwide weather guide

Month-by-month planning for your wedding abroad

102

Pop the question

Your questions answered by expert wedding planners

104 Ask the experts

Photography by Javan Liam

Tips and advice from Lisa Burton of the Bridal Consultancy

42

106 Guest Etiquette

What should you expect from your guests when you marry abroad?

HONEYMOONS

112 7 Sensational Honeymoons 120 Honeymoon Islands

Sizzling hotspots for newlyweds

From exotic coral islands to Mediterranean gems

134

84

112

Vinotherapy

Immerse yourself in your favourite tipple for ultimate pampering

134

www.BridesAbroad.tv 7


Marry for free at Sandals

Great news for couples looking to keep down the cost of their wedding – brides and grooms booking a Sandals WeddingMoon® can stay for free and receive a complimentary room upgrade when booking a minimum of five rooms for their wedding guests. This fantastic offer includes spa treatments for both bride and groom in preparation for their big day. What’s more, when couples book a minimum of six nights’ stay, they will receive a complimentary wedding ceremony, or £315 credit towards a bespoke wedding – so they can stay and marry for free! These offers are available at Jamaica’s Sandals Whitehouse European Village & Spa and Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort. Couples booking WeddingMoons® can choose from six elegant wedding packages and tailor their package to make it more personal, or create something bespoke and entirely unique.

Book it!

For more information, call: 020 7590 0228, email groups@sandals.co.uk or visit www.sandals.co.uk/groups.

BRIDES ABROADNEWS Be inspired, informed and amazed by the latest news on overseas weddings & honeymoons

White wedding on the greens

Golf lovers can indulge their love of their game (even on their wedding day!) if they marry at La Finca Golf & Spa Resort, a member of Great Hotels of the World Premium Collection, which has recently introduced weddings to its event services. The hotel’s wedding and events team will handle all aspects of your wedding from the paperwork to the party – allowing bride and groom to focus on enjoying their special day. You can marry at a choice of locations within the resort including The Jardines La Finca Restaurant with a capacity for up to 130 guests; the Banquet Room, which is illuminated with sphere lighting and has views across the golf course; The Terrace serves as an exceptional outdoor banqueting space and benefits from views over the swimming pool and golf course. To ease the stress of planning a wedding, La Finca offers couples a free spa voucher.

Book it!

Special rates and discounts on spa treatments are available for groups of eight or more. www.ghotw.com

8 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


Bespoke Caribbean weddings

You don’t have to settle for an impersonal ‘off the shelf’ wedding when marrying on a Caribbean island – you can create a personalised wedding of your dreams with the help of Pierre Carr, a luxury, bespoke wedding design and coordination company based in Jamaica. Founded in 2009 by Michelle Pierre Carr, the wedding planning company now creates stylish and beautiful events in the Caribbean, one of the most breathtaking destinations in the world – providing couples with a bespoke service to reflect their individual style and taste and bring the meticulous details and coordination expected of a UK wedding to destination celebrations. Pierre Carr has established a number of partnerships with five-star and diamondrated island venues including Jamaica’s exclusive Ritz Carlton, Round Hill and Half Moon, and is also the exclusive wedding planner for award-winning tour operator, Elegant Resorts, ensuring a second-tonone service from travel arrangements to a couple’s honeymoon. Working with only the best wedding suppliers, from florists to photographers, guarantees that both the ceremony and celebration are memorable and cherished.

Book it!

Prices on application. www.pierrecarr.com.

The gift of travel

Couples planning the honeymoon of their dreams can now ask for a donation from their guests thanks to John Lewis’s new partnership with Kuoni that allows holders of a John Lewis Gift List to add their honeymoon onto their list, so guests can contribute towards this special holiday. Couples simply request Kuoni contributions as an option during their registration – it’s as straightforward as adding a vase to your list.

Book it!

Kuoni will also introduce John Lewis Travel Insurance to its customers. www.johnlewis.com

www.BridesAbroad.tv 9


Beyond Butler at Fusion Maia

One of the most indulgent ways to feel like a star on your honeymoon is having your own butler at your resort to offer a personalized service. Now Fusion Maia, a luxurious 5-star beachside resort in Vietnam, has taken the butler experience a step further by introducing Fusionistas – the ultimate in guest pampering. Fusionistas are warmer than butlers and more creative than a concierge. They channel their unique personalities into looking after your every whim and fancy to create individualised and totally unforgettable stays. “You know a Fusionista when you see one!” says general manager, Michelle Ford. “They’re approachable and overflow with enthusiasm. No question is too minor, no request too complicated, no notion too vague for Fusionistas to come up with helpful solutions and creative suggestions” They’re also yet one more of Fusion Maia’s creative complimentary extras taking five-star relaxation to a whole new level.

Book it!

Fusion Maia is Asia’s first resort with an allinclusive spa with all spa services already included in the room rate. www.fusionmaiadanang.com

Peace of Cake in Hua Hin

Hua Hin’s Hotel de la Paix (which translates as Hotel Of Peace) in Thailand is offering an amazing deal for couples. The wedding planners at the chic, contemporary style hotel in the charming seaside town of Cha Am, have put together the ‘Peace of Cake’ Dream Wedding package with a choice of Thai or Western wedding ceremonies. The Thai ‘Peace of Cake’ Ceremony includes a Buddhist blessing with prayers by nine monks, allowing a wonderful photo opportunity as the saffron-robed holy men ascend the hotel’s white marble staircase. The Western ‘Peace of Cake’ Ceremony includes a Master of Ceremonies to lead couples through their exchange of vows. Both packages include two nights’ complimentary B&B stay, a 60-minute couples Wedded Bliss spa treatment, wedding cake, flowers, Champagne for the cake-cutting ceremony, soft drinks and herbal drinks for up to 40 guests, traditional Thai or Western decorations, music and jasmine wedding bath.

Book it!

Peace of Cake Dream Weddings begin from £1,500 per couple. www.hoteldelapaixhh.com

10 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


Ras Nungwi

Beach brides in Zanzibar

Take the aisle less travelled with a wedding in exotic Zanzibar. Specialist tour operator Africa Odyssey is offering unique wedding packages at fantastic prices to this gorgeous East African island with turquoise blue seas, white powder sand, waving palm trees and romantic sunsets – it sets a picture-perfect scene for a wedding abroad. Africa Odyssey’s Zanzibar wedding packages include Breezes Beach Club – perfect for a celebration with family and friends in its idyllic setting on the untouched south east coast. The resort is offering the Classic Wedding package, priced from £1,155, which includes a dedicated co-ordinator, a beach ceremony under a palm and bougainvillea canopy, a drinks reception with sparkling wine & canapés, gala dinner, a private BBQ lunch for friends and family on a secluded beach the next day plus pre-wedding spa massage and traditional henna painting. For an intimate affair, opt for the beautiful Ras Nungwi hideaway beach resort, with its collection of semi-detached private villas, PADI dive centre and one of the best beaches in Zanzibar where ceremonies are carried out at the floral decorated beach wedding chapel on the beach from £1,030. Afterwards, enjoy a bottle of sparkling wine and a romantic meal on the beach.

Book it!

Seven nights at Breezes Beach Club or Ras Nungwi starts from £1,995 per person including international flights and internal transfers. www.africaodyssey.com. Breezes Beach Club

Dream dolphin weddings in Barbados

Diving enthusiasts can have a destination wedding with a difference at the Grand Lucayan Bahamas resort on Grand Bahama Island. In conjunction with UNEXSO (Underwater Explorers Society), the resort is offering couples the chance to exchange their wedding rings underwater, complete with dolphins in the congregation! The couple can then carry on celebrating on dry land at the Grand Lucayan, Bahamas resort with a seafood buffet in the ocean-front gazebo and dance the night away on the colonial Manor House lawn, overlooking the moonlit Atlantic. Dolphin Underwater Wedding package costs £1,500 and includes Dive boat for up to 10 guests, trainer boat and two dolphins. The package is offered to Certified SCUBA divers only, with a maximum of 10 persons in the water. The luxurious Grand Lucayan Bahamas is situated along an expansive beach and offers spacious accommodation, eight restaurants, three swimming pools, water sports and tennis, the Senses Spa & Fitness Centre and 18-hole championship golf course.

Book it!

www.grandlucayan.com

www.BridesAbroad.tv 11


Marriage pampering in Maldives If you dream of spending your wedding day on a beach, gentle waves lapping at your feet and blue skies overhead then say ‘I do’ at Coco Palm Bodu Hithi, with exotic beaches, turquoise sea, serene atmosphere, ultra hip villas, diverse selection of restaurants and bars, excellent land and water sport facilities and barefoot chic – it’s the perfect setting to get married or renew marriage vows or for a sublime honeymoon. With the For Ever Yours Wedding Package, couples begin their day being pampered in the Coco Spa. The traditional Maldivian wedding ceremonies are held on the resort’s sandy beach adorned

with glamorous wedding decorations. Traditional Bodu Beru drums are sounded to announce the arrival of the bride. After the ceremony, the newlyweds enjoy an hour-long Champagne sunset cruise followed by a private candlelit dinner at the resort. An in-villa breakfast will be served, followed by a spa treatment, topping off an unforgettable few days.

Book it!

www.cococollection.com.mv

Bonfire celebrations in Columbia

Dare to be different and head to Columbia to run barefoot on untouched sands into the warm Caribbean sea with the snow-capped Sierra Nevada mountain as a fabulous backdrop – Playa Koralia is located on virgin shoreline in Columbia and is an idyllic romantic wedding and honeymoon destination, offering a unique atmosphere and complete privacy. Wedding ceremonies start at dusk in the wedding chapel – a bamboo temple decorated with exotic local flowers, palms and white lace. Guests sit under white decorated tents lit with candles and torches, while the rattan aisle is covered with petals. After the ceremony, grand ceremonial bonfires are lit along the beach and guests gather at the beach bar to toast the happy couple. As night falls, the wedding party head along a torch-lit path to a marquee in the gardens for dinner. During dessert, the Tambora musicians play their magical flutes and drums signal time to move back to the beach bar. Local Colombian dancers then make their entrance, enticing the guests to join the dancing around the huge bonfires for a truly festive celebration

Book it!

Wedding package starts at £12,500 for 100 people. www.koralia.com

12 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


Honeymoon bliss in Portugal

For sublime honeymoon bliss, book into the Bacchus Suite at The Yeatman, a perfect hideaway for newlyweds set amid historic Port lodges in Northern Portugal. The luxurious suite features a deep-soaking copper tub (sprinkled with rose petals for the occasion) and a deluxe, rotating bed, with mood-enhancing lighting. Champagne and a selection of delicious appetizers by The Yeatman’s Michelin Star Chef, Ricardo Costa, will also be at hand and couples can snuggle up together by the glow of the glass-encased log burning fire. The suite’s private covered terrace offers panoramic views over the Douro River and historic UNESCO World Heritage city of Oporto, providing the perfect backdrop for a wedding night. Honeymooners have complimentary access to the Vinothérapie® Spa by Caudalie at The Yeatman. The Bacchus Suite has its own spacious sun terrace, perfect for relaxing whilst enjoying a special bottle from The Yeatman’s award-winning wine list.

Book it!

The Bacchus Suite Wedding Night package is approx. £866 per night, based on two-person occupancy: www.theyeatman.com

Stay before you fly

Early morning flights with lengthy check-ins can really set back the first few days of a trip abroad. Reserving a cabin or room at either the YOTEL London’s Gatwick South terminal or Heathrow Terminal 4 is a low-cost relaxing solution. Designed to combine the luxury of first class airline travel with the concept of a Japanese capsule hotels, YOTEL are small but comfortable places to rest before onward flights. Each room has a double bed, which transforms into a space-saving lounging position at the touch of a button, a Techno wall that houses a flat screen TV and storage components, a sleek modern bathroom wrapped in glass and relaxing mood lighting.

Book it!

www.yotel.com

14 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


Shop, spa & sightsee… If you are planning a hen weekend with the girls before your wedding, combine shopping, sightseeing, spa pampering and luxury with a stay at The London Marriott Hotel County Hall & Spa. The hotel is located in a prime position in the heart of London, next to the London Eye, overlooking the River Thames and the most iconic of the capital’s landmarks. The hotel’s sublime spa is open to both hotel guests and day visitors and offers a wide choice of luxurious treatments. The speciality is a Murad facial, which is designed to suit your skin type and is an excellent, revitalising choice for brides in preparation for their big day. For the height of luxury, follow your visit to the spa with Champagne and strawberries in the Library overlooking the River Thames – or alternatively, delight your hens and go for a ride on the London Eye and see the great city from high above!

Book it!

www.parkplazacountyhall.com

Bridal Escape to Florence

Don’t let the stress of planning your wedding get you down. Take your best girls off to beautiful Florence for a money-no-object hen weekend that will set you up in style for your big day. Your ‘Bridal Escape’ getaway to Italian villa IL Salviatino, an enchanting hotel in the Tuscan hills, includes personal shopping, fine Tuscan dining, spa time and a VIP night out! The stylish new package begins when the bride and her party are met at Florence airport by a chauffeur-driven car and whisked off to IL Salviatino for a Pink Champagne reception on arrival. Once settled into their luxe suites, the group will embark on a VIP personal shopping experience, followed by top-to-toe pampering at Il Salviationo’s spa. Of course, no hen weekend is complete without a night out on the town, and they will have a private chauffeur-driven escort to the best clubs, bars and restaurants in Florence. A late check out the following morning allows for a delicious three-course lunch at Il Salviatino’s restaurant on departure day for a very civilised wind down to the weekend.

Book it!

Package price £1535 in a deluxe room for a minimum of four. http://salviatino.com

16 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


Love jelly

Bathe together in your romantic honeymoon villa and surprise your loved one by sprinkling Love Jelly into the bath. This vanilla-scented potion will turn the bath into an aphrodisiac sensation, as within seconds, the magic powder turns the water red and into a luxurious smoothing jelly – leaving you sparkling clean, smelling sexy and scrumptious. Once you’ve finished your indulgent and softening bath, just add the second sachet to the jelly and it will turn back into water and drain easily away. Priced at only £9.95, Love Jelly provides a smooth and sensory honeymoon bathing experience that you will remember forever. www.prezzybox.com

Inspire my calls

Give your soul mate an inspired wedding gift – to remind them of your big day, everyday. InspireMyCase presents a one-of-a-kind wedding gift for couples – a personalized custom-printed, wedding-inspired phone case. The cases make original and thoughtful presents for the happy couple, and 20 per cent of profits go directly to AngelMule, a children’s charity. Alternatively, as a memory of their happy day, couples can create cases for each other, using either one of their professionally taken wedding photos, or a favourite snapshot from their honeymoon. To create a one-of-a-kind case, users simply choose a blank cover, and upload their chosen photo. All cases are suitable for iPhone, iPad, Samsung and Blackberry models, printed in high resolution and cost from £22. Online gift vouchers are also available. www.inspiremycase.com

Hidden Tattoos!

You are dressed and ready for your wedding – but oh no! What about your tattoo? Wherever it is, if it is visible it’s not going to fit with your beautiful wedding dress – and what will the mother-in-law say? Don’t worry, the new Tattoo Secret Camouflage Kit can conceal your tattoo throughout your special day, leaving skin flawless and tattoo hidden. This clever cosmetic camouflage kit has been developed with professional skin camouflage experts and comes with simple to follow step-bystep instructions to guide you or your wedding make-up artist on your big day. The make-up offers natural all day long coverage and contains water-resistant properties so dancing and perspiring won’t blow your cover. You can also keep using it on your honeymoon as each kit has enough for multiple applications and the layers of camouflage creams will hold tight through the elements – available in two skin tones, Light and Medium. Price £29.99. www.tattoosecret.co.uk

18 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


RealWEDDINGS

A marriage

made in Mahattan

Photograph by Javan Liam www.javanliam.co.uk

You’ve seen it in the movies, now you too can live the dream with a New York wedding fit for a star!

20 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


D

Wedding Planning

o you fancy a film star send-off into married life like Carrie Bradshaw with a Sex and the City style glitzy ceremony? Or a romantic lakeside setting in Central Park, followed by a reception in one of New York’s exclusive skyscraper restaurants with panoramic city views? Perhaps you’d prefer a floating ceremony aboard the World Yacht as it sails around Manhattan taking in the city’s iconic landmarks – the possibilities for New York City weddings are endless!

For expert help, ideas and advice on planning your New York wedding contact The Bridal Consultant. www.thebridalconsultant.co.uk

Typical New York couples are fun yet sophisticated and, more importantly, they know what they want. They love the hustle and bustle of the city, its atmosphere and of course its glamour. It’s the excitement that has drawn them there. So, if you are a New York couple at heart, then the city that never sleeps is the perfect place for your destination wedding – and the amazing NYC skyline promises to make an awe-inspiring backdrop to your wedding photographs.

Sex and the City

Liz Burton, founder of The Bridal Consultant, who has planned more than 600 weddings in NYC says “No NYC wedding is the same. Some guests visit the ‘top of the Rock’ at the Rockerfeller building then head to the reception, others have a picnic in the park or even a traditional New York burger! One of our clients even hired a double decker red bus to take their friends and family on a tour of New York after the wedding.”

Walk through the city streets that have been the backdrop to many blockbuster films and popular TV series including Sex and the City, Friends, When Harry Met Sally and Maid in Manhattan – bump into a celebrity or two, shop in designer stores and Bloomingdales or simply enjoy a cupcake from Magnolia bakery, soaking up the atmosphere and feeling like Carrie Bradshaw for a minute or two! And when planning your New York City wedding, remember that anything goes here, with brides choosing from 50’s style vintage gowns to a tradition princess style dress and grooms opting for evening dress suit rather than the traditional wedding attire. The guests look wonderfully stylish, the air is filled with the sounds of Sinatra and the wedding also becomes a celebration of the surroundings ­– the most exciting city in the world! However, there is always an element of sparkle to a New York wedding – be it a luxury limousine, a vintage tram, taking drinks overlooking Central Park, sailing the Hudson enjoying a romantic dinner cruise – ensuring the couple and their guests always make the best of this wonderful city.   The reception is a big part of a New York wedding, with world-class venues to choose from including Mr Big’s (Sex and the City); The Cutting Room for eclectic American cuisine and the amazing Per Se by renowned chef Thomas Keller or, for Gordon Ramsay admirers, one of his three eateries in the city. All these amazing possibilities and it doesn’t have to cost the earth –­ with wedding packages from as little as £2,000, a dream New York wedding is certainly within your reach!

Bride Nicola Nash. Photo supplied by www.tropicalsky.co.uk

Film city

Legal requirements If you want to marry in New York, you must obtain a marriage licence. The bridal couple must apply for their licence by appearing together in person with valid identification, and complete their application at the Office of the City Clerk. It will be prepared while you wait, and you will take it with you when you leave. The application consists of an affidavit, listing personal details including the couple’s names, addresses, birthplaces, dates of birth, social security numbers (where applicable) and marital history and the couple need to make a sworn statement that there are no legal impediments to the marriage. Those who have been married before must list their prior marriages and supply their previous spouse’s full name, date the divorce was granted, place the divorce was filed and take along the final divorce decree. Widows and widowers must also provide the deceased spouse’s death certificate. www.BridesAbroad.tv 21


Central Park

1

The most popular destination is Central Park, perfect for year-round weddings! Besides being very purse-friendly, it really captures the essence of New York, being right in the heart of the excitement yet surrounded by acres of American Elm, flowering Dogwood, statuesque Oaks and pretty Cherry and Magnolia trees carefully planted to make the most of the intertwining walkways and lakes. Ladies Pavilion is the most popular location. It’s right beside the famous Hernshead rock formation and The Lake and is perfect for group photos with the Central Park west skyline behind.

Book it!

2

www.thebridalconsultant.co.uk

World Yacht at Pier 81

Fancy cruising along the Hudson River, taking in Manhattan’s iconic skyline and famous landmarks while you say ‘I do’? Then charter one of World Yacht’s luxury cruises for an unforgettable wedding ceremony and exquisite reception on the water. World Yacht (www. worldyacht.com) offers lavish or affordable wedding packages customized to intimate gatherings or grand wedding affairs. World Yacht’s wedding specialists will create culinary delights to satisfy both your palate and budget and will help you to source wedding flowers, photography, entertainment and transport. The yachts offer contemporary cocktail lounges and elegant dining rooms, plus dance floors and lounge decks, which are ideal for you and your guests to toast your wedding and dance under the daytime or evening sky as the city drifts by.

Book it! www.kuoni.co.uk

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Four fab venues City Hall The View

The View is New York’s only revolving rooftop restaurant and lounge, and makes a stunning wedding venue with an incredible vista. Express elevators whisk you 48 stories above New York City, where The View Restaurant offers an unparalleled dining experience – a joyous celebration of contemporary American cuisine paired with breathtaking skyscraper views of many of New York City’s iconic landmarks. The revolving floor makes a 360° turn every hour, ensuring an ever-changing view of this celebrated city. Wedding ceremonies take place in The View Lounge, which is on the floor above the restaurant and serves an array of cocktails and a dinner buffet until late evening. The View’s Special Events team specializes in planning wedding receptions and spectacular private parties and can help you to create a memorable, one-ofa-kind experience for your special day.

Book it! www.tropicalsky.co.uk 22 wwwBridesAbroad.tv

Couples looking to keep it simple, whilst still enjoying the glamorous NYC vibe, can have a no-frills wedding service at City Hall in heart of Manhattan, followed by an intimate meal at one of New York’s exclusive restaurants. The Manhattan Marriage Bureau got a recent multi-million dollar makeover and moved to the historical City Hall (www.cityclerk.nyc.gov) with its marble and bronze design details retained from its original 1920’s architecture. The new bureau offers old world charm mixed with 21st century technology and comfort. You can obtain your marriage licence quickly and efficiently with self-serve computer kiosks and get married for just $25. Civil marriage ceremonies are performed in the Manhattan office from 8:30 am to 3:45 pm, Monday through Friday. Couples must have at least one witness and your marriage certificate will be issued on the same day.

Book it! www.tropicalsky.co.uk

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The new ‘esprit’ label from Sassi Holford Designed and handmade in England

i ass S So India

www.sosassi.so


RealWEDDINGS

Love in Ladies Pavilion

Lacie and Tyler exchange vows in Central Park 24 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


L

acie Chase from Portsmouth first crossed paths with new husband Tyler Helm when they were both serving in The Royal Navy. However, it was only after leaving the Navy that love finally blossomed when Lacie had a chance meeting with Tyler, a Chief Petty Officer Marine Engineer on a night out with a friend. They chose a New York wedding to seal their new-found love.

Finding ‘the one’ We initially met in early 2004 and passed each other most days on base until I left the Navy in 2008 after having my second daughter. In September 2010, I went out with a friend, who worked with Tyler on the same ship, and when we went out later in the evening, Tyler turned up with his friends. Somehow I knew this night was going to change the rest of my life.

The proposal Tyler had been on deployment, in the Gulf with his ship for almost three months. He managed to get a week’s leave, so I collected him from the airport. When we arrived home, we were tired and decided to go straight to bed. I was in bed first, and then I heard music – Bruno Mars’ ‘Marry You’! Tyler walked into the bedroom with black pants on and a red dickie bow (quite the comedian) holding a silver tray with a bottle of Champagne, two Champagne flutes and a rose! He handed me the rose, got down on one knee and popped the question. When I looked closely at the rose, there was my ring inside! Of course, I instantly said “yes”, took a photo of my ring and posted it on Facebook -–- meanwhile Tyler was still shaking with nerves!

Location, location First we decided we would get married in a local church and have a reception in a small country house where we often spend afternoons in the summer with the children and our dog. Tyler sat and wrote notes on everything that had to be organized – guest lists, invitations, food, etc. I thought to myself that this is going to be a lot of organizing, and all I want to do is marry him! So I said, “Let’s just go away and get married!” I didn’t expect his enthusiastic reaction – he was almost already out the door! We looked at each other and smiled and I felt the weight lift from my shoulders. We originally thought of Sri Lanka, but I went on the Internet one evening when Tyler was away, and New York just stood out on the screen. I emailed him immediately and he thought it was a great idea – it was somewhere neither of us had been before, but somewhere we both wanted to go. We just needed to decide on a date. We thought Christmas in New York was an iconic time, and that was it. Decided! We then planned the wedding via emails as Tyler’s ship was away.

Romantic setting We decided if we were going to get married in New York there was no point being married indoors as we wanted to have our wedding set against the New York skyline, so it had to be outside. We originally wanted Bow Bridge to be the backdrop, but we decided on Ladies Pavillion, then Bow Bridge for some photographs. Ladies Pavillion was perfect, we had a permit, so we knew it was ours for the wedding – and it was undercover, near some water and had the skyline in the background. There were also quite a few people around who made it feel like we shared the day with more than just our family – they were all welcome, there was enough happiness to go around!

The planning We had a wedding coordiator, Orysia, who was part of our package with Tropical Sky. We planned what we could: the meal afterwards, the date and time and we took the bridal party’s clothes with us. We met Orysia when we arrived, and she helped us to make the final arrangements – flowers, location, pick-up times etc. Orysia was absolutely brilliant and made it great and stress-free.

The guests? We took five guests with us – our daughters – Brooke and Maisy – my Mum, Tyler’s sister and her husband. We all stayed in the same hotel – The Affinia Manhattan. We only wanted a small affair and we knew it was Christmas time and people would want to be with their families back home.

Getting the look I tried on well over 50 dresses and was beginning to get worried that I would never find the right one, then I visited The Bridal Lounge in Hull, and found my dress by Justin Alexander (style 8580). I didn’t particularly have a theme, I wanted to be quite plain and let the happiness on our faces do the talking. We were all in black and white, with pearls and baby pink flowers. I liked the vintage details of the lace and pearls mixed with a contemporary look of monochrome and bows. I wore a side tiara from Glitzy Secrets and a pearl bracelet from Ernest Jones. Simple but effective. I had a lady called Sissi Chan do our hair – she was fantastic and we got exactly what we asked for but 10 times more intricate. I could not have asked for more, or someone nicer to have around on the morning of my wedding day. I did my own make-up, having bought a whole new box from Lancôme weeks before. www.BridesAbroad.tv 25


26 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


Something old, something new… Something old was my engagement ring, something new was my wonderful dress. I borrowed some lipstick from my sister-inlaw and something blue was a small blue bow on my garter.

Groom & bridesmaids Tyler wore a kilt (he is from Hull, but my mum and I are Scottish), it was almost all black, with a pink dickie bow (like he did when we got engaged, it just seemed so right). And, no, there was nothing under his kilt, even two days before Christmas in a freezing cold New York City! He looked absolutely fantastic and people around New York took photos of us, and were asking for photos with Tyler in his kilt. We were like stars for the day. I

had one bridesmaid, Lisa, Tyler’s sister. She wore a long black Dessy gown with a bow over one shoulder with black riding boots underneath as we were expecting below zero temperatures. Our daughters – Brooke and Maisy – were the most beautiful flowergirls I have seen. They both wore puffy Ivory Dessy gowns with little ivory Victorian boots from Henry Kaye and pearl slides in their hair. Their fur coats were from very.co.uk.

The details Aha, the flowers! This was one of the favourite parts of my wedding morning – getting to walk through New York City to the flower markets and choosing fresh flowers for my bridal party. Lisa and I went together and knew what we wanted and the look we wanted to achieve – simple cream and

pink with black berries for the adults. We returned to the hotel with the flowers and made the bouquets and buttonholes for our guests. A florist did my bouquet and Tyler’s buttonhole – I wanted a wild look, not too tight and ‘put together’, in pastel pinks and creams. We didn’t actually have a cake until we returned home and had a small family party at Tyler’s sister’s house. It was a simple white cake with the New York skyline around the outside and a yellow taxi on top!

The ceremony The 25-minute ceremony took place at Ladies Pavilion, Central Park. Nobody actually ‘gave me away’ as we all arrived at the ceremony together.

The reception We didn’t have a reception, we went to Del Frisco’s, near the Rockefeller Centre for a nice meal in a great atmosphere with a menu which consisted of a lot of steak and seafood. It was laid back and a perfect end to a perfect day!

Photographic memories Our photographer was fantastic, she captured our day really well, and she went the extra mile to make sure we got what we wanted. Our favourite photo is a sepia coloured one where the sun is setting over the skyline in the background, we have this blown up on a huge canvass in our sitting room. It also makes us giggle that, in the right hand corner of the photo, there is a sign in the water saying, “Danger Thin Ice”.

www.BridesAbroad.tv 27


Magic moments The best part of the day was just after the ceremony, walking to Bow Bridge for photographs and holding Tyler’s hand. It was the hand I had always held, but it just seemed so perfect now, like all was complete and it seemed to fit even more than it did before. That feeling of being his wife was the best feeling that day, and one of the best feelings in my life. There were a few funny moments too including when Tyler flashed a bit of bum in the middle of Central Park to prove he was being true to the Scottish tradition!

On budget? We didn’t set ourselves a budget, but the wedding itself cost just £1,400, and that was including the flowers, the limo and our photographer. The holiday, our meal, clothing and everything else probably brought us to around £12,000.

The honeymoon We stayed in NYC for three days before the wedding, and three days after, which included Christmas Day. We all did our own thing whilst we were there, and got together on Christmas Day for a family dinner before returning to the UK. We will have a honeymoon at some point, and for that we plan to visit Italy, France and Greece. We are not in a rush though – we have the rest of our lives!

Further information Wedding Planning: Nicola Searle from Tropical Sky and Orysia from Tourism Marketing. www.tropicalsky.co.uk Venue: Ladies Pavilion, Central Park, NYC

28 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


w w w. c r y s t a l f r o s t . c o . u k


Married in

Manhattan Julie and Warren’s ceremony in Central Park

30 www.BridesAbroad.tv


RealWEDDINGS

J

ulie Hatton, a teaching assistant from Welling in Kent had just about given up on marrying long-time partner Warren Parish when he surprised her by booking a dream wedding in New York’s Central Park. The surprises continued throughout their zany big day with a photo shoot with The Naked Cowboy and a Chinese meal for their wedding feast!

Finding ‘the one’ We first met each other when I was 15 at Warren’s friend’s house but we never actually got together until a year later – for me it was definitely love at first sight.

The proposal We have been together nearly 24 years and engaged for over 15! I never thought a wedding was actually going to happen. I was at work when I received an email, which stated a holiday booking to New York, including my parents and our children. I knew instantly what this meant and was so excited that I ran around the school where I work telling my colleagues. I then got the

confirmation from Warren and he sealed it with a new official engagement ring.

Location location We have always said that if we did eventually marry, we would do it abroad and with just the immediate family. We have been to New York twice before and I always said I wanted to ice skate in Central Park – a major landmark of New York City. So when choosing the location for our ceremony I knew it just had to be Central Park!

The planning I had no idea how to go about planning a wedding abroad, so got advice from Karen Andrews at Tropical Sky. I could not have planned any of it without her advice, help, support and continual feedback. Nothing was too much trouble for her.

The guests We took six guests with us – my parents, our two girls and our two friends. We all stayed in the Holiday Inn, Murrey Hill, www.BridesAbroad.tv 31


32 www.BridesAbroad.tv


Manhattan as this was the same hotel we had stayed in on both previous occasions.

Getting the look My wedding dress was from Bellamore (www. bellamore.do.uk) and had a sweetheart beaded neckline, a crisscross pleated bodice and a lace-up back. I went for a beaded and Swarovski tiara to match the dress with pearl crisscross earrings and necklace. The shoes were satin, high heels with rhinestone detail. Our hair and make-up artist arrived nice and early to put us all at ease. She was a lovely lady, organised by Orisia, our wedding planner in New York. As we had our hair done, we had bagels, coffee and a little alcohol to toast! The morning was fun and relaxing.

Groom & bridesmaids The groom, my dad and best man all had matching suits, blue waistcoats and cravats from BHS. They had a very chilly morning walking and shopping around Manhattan. Our two daughters were bridesmaids and chose

strapless floor-length sapphire gowns with sweetheart necklines with hand-made flowers to decorate the waist.

The detail The flowers were left to our wedding coordinator with the request that I wanted white with a little blue – either flowers or ribbon. The men had matching buttonholes. They did an amazing job.

The ceremony The ceremony lasted around half and hour and took place at The Ladies Pavilion in Central Park, which had a view of a lake and New York in the background. My dad gave me away, which was very special to him as I am the youngest, and only girl of four children. It was amazing to walk through Central Park holding my dad’s arm. We were married by Douglas Grandgeorge, who was a very lovely, funny man and made us both feel relaxed as the nerves had just kicked in. The ceremony was followed by a photo session

which included pictures taken by onlookers in Central Park who made us feel very important and special!

The reception Our original venue for the reception was to be a restaurant with views of the Manhattan skyline, which I had pre-arranged in England – but we couldn’t get transport to take us to this venue. So we had to make alternative arrangements at short notice – we settled for a local Chinese restaurant near our hotel, which made us extremely welcome and the food was amazing. We finished off our day at ‘Top of the Rocks’ – Rockefeller Center where we stayed for the rest of the evening.

Photographic memories Our photographer was a lovely lady from Jang Photographers who asked us exactly what we wanted – and gave her input of ideas, using the Manhattan scenery to its full advantage. Warren likes the photo of the two of us in Times Square on the steps looking up because you can see the true

www.BridesAbroad.tv 33


image of New York including the yellow taxis. My favourite is the one at the Ladies Pavilion with us, my parents and our girls leaning in closely. We all look very happy!

Magic moments The whole day was full of wonderful memories, but our best was trying to redo the Abbey Road pose! Our funniest moment was being in Times Square and meeting Homer Simpson, The Naked Cowboy and the NYPD and them allowing us to have our photo taken with them!

The honeymoon We all stayed at the same hotel for the duration of our stay, which made it easier for us to plan the rest of the week and as it was also my 40th birthday two days later, we continued the party atmosphere together!

Further information Wedding planner: Karen Andrews at Tropical Sky Oryisa Germak (Tourisim Marketing Inc) Venue:Ladies Pavilion, New York Photographer: Jang photographers

34 www.BridesAbroad.tv


Crystal headband, £84 By Ivory & Co, style Coco www.crystalfrost.co.uk

Milan jewellery set, earrings £22, bracelet £50, and necklace £83 www.crystalfrost.co.uk

Silk rose bouquet, £50 www.sarahsflowers.co.uk

Shortie dress by Tobi Hannah Style: Dawson www.tobihannah.co.uk

Diamanté bracelet, £18 www.accessorize.com

Ruffle feather bolero, £145 www.crystalfrost.co.uk

Style

in the city

Crystal earrings, £14 www.accessorize.com

Hair accessory by Ivory & Co www.crystalfrost.co.uk

Follow Sarah Jessica Parker’s fabulous Sex and the City style with kitch shortie dresses or a glamorous gown – teamed up with accessories with city sophistication

Diamanté brooch, £15 www.accessorize.com Crystal encrusted clutch, £45 www.accessorize.com Bridal shoes, £340 Style: Jane www.freyarose.co.uk

Art Deco crystal headband, By Ivory & Co www.crystalfrost.co.uk 35 wwwBridesAbroad.tv

wwwBridesAbroad.tv 35


Land ahoy in Manhattan! Jennie and Peter float away to marital bliss!

W

hen Jennie Fearnside married Peter Cooper, the paramedic love birds from Glossop in Derbyshire decided that the bright lights of New York would float their boat, and exchanged their vows aboard New York’s famous World Yacht.

Finding ‘the one’ We met at work. Pete was already working for the ambulance service, and at the time I was a trainee paramedic. We gradually got to know each other over the next couple of years and became colleagues and friends. Without wanting to sound too unromantic, neither of us really believes in love at first sight! We both had other partners at the time we met, and romance wasn’t on the cards. But when we were both free and single, we found ourselves chatting and giggling at every opportunity at work, and the attraction grew pretty fast. Love followed quite quickly! 36 wwwBridesAbroad.tv

The proposal We were on holiday in Fort Myers in Florida with my sister and her friend, and the night he proposed we had been out for a meal and a few drinks. I would have hated anything showy or public, so thankfully he knew me well enough to propose when it was just the two of us. My sister and her friend were co-conspirators, so they made their excuses and left the bar so that we were alone. Pete suggested walking home along the beach, which was met with great protests as I was tired and didn’t fancy getting sand in my sandals! When he finally dragged me onto the beach, he got down on one knee with a beautiful ring and some sweet words. Of course I said yes and we stopped at a beach bar for a celebratory drink. To his great amusement, I ordered an orange juice to calm my nerves! Champagne was waiting back at our house with the girls. It was the perfect proposal for the two of us – simple, relaxed and not entirely to plan!

Location, location We didn’t want a fussy or traditional wedding, and we didn’t want to spend a year of our lives and lots of money planning every last detail of a big UK wedding. Getting married abroad just fitted us. We love the USA, and New York had been the first stop on a fantastic holiday we had a couple of years before. As soon as we discussed NYC as a possibility, we both got really excited, so we settled on that. Choosing the location was actually just a very simple web search for “weddings in New York”. We quickly came across the Tropical Sky website and the packages they were offering seemed perfect. The wedding on the World Yacht struck us straight away – it was unusual, and the description of the evening sail around Manhattan just sounded amazing.

The planning Tropical Sky organised the whole day really! We had the occasional question


to answer (e.g. what colour bouquet?) but that was about as difficult as it got! Kelly, our co-ordinator, kept in regular contact with us, and she replied to any queries immediately. As the ceremony and reception were all part of the wedding package, there wasn’t very much we needed to plan at all. When we arrived in New York, we had to go down to the City Clerk’s office to get our marriage licence, but that was actually quite an enjoyable morning, and all part of the experience!

The guests We had 17 guests who stayed in and around Manhattan. Everyone made their own travel arrangements so they were in a variety of hotels. When we decided on New York, we agreed that we would not do it if our parents and siblings could not be there. Thankfully, they were all happy to have a holiday abroad! We also had a party when we got back to the UK, so we did get to see everyone and celebrate together!

Getting the look I am known for being a touch thrifty – my dress was bought from the internet for £65! I spotted it whilst just looking for style ideas, so I decided to order it and if it wasn’t right then I hadn’t wasted too much money. To my surprise, I loved it, and it seemed perfect for the type of wedding we were planning – it meant I could get some killer heels to finish off the look! I wore a pair of earrings that I’d had for years, and a couple of bracelets that were very special – one was a gift from my parents from their travels around Europe, the second was a beautiful Tiffany bracelet given by Pete’s mum on the morning of the wedding. I didn’t want a veil or tiara and I did my hair and makeup myself, keeping it quite simple. Peter wore a navy

blue suit with a white shirt and brown shoes. He tried the suit with and without a tie, and we both agreed he looked better without. I didn’t have official bridesmaids, although my sister carried out bridesmaid duties and wore a gorgeous black dress with fabulous but very painful purple shoes! The wedding package included a rose bouquet and a buttonhole.

The ceremony The ceremony took place on the top deck of the World Yacht, on the Hudson River. It lasted 15 minutes. My dad gave me away and we were married by a lovely minister who had been arranged by the wedding co-ordinator.

The reception The reception was also aboard the World Yacht. That had been one of the appeals of this particular package – everything was in one location. The ceremony was private – just our party on the top deck. Then after the ceremony the other passengers began to board the boat, and we all took our seats on the dining deck. There were a number of choices for all courses – the salmon and steak were particularly popular with our guests. We also had a 2-tier wedding cake, which was included in the package. We didn’t have an official first dance – however there was a DJ and a lively dance floor with Japanese tourists cutting some strange shapes! Sadly Pete’s brother pointed out that the first time we on the dance floor together was whilst Cotton Eyed Joe was playing!!

Photographic memories The wedding package included a photographer who was only with us for the ceremony and shortly after, but she captured some stunning shots. My dad

likes to do a bit of video photography, so he filmed quite a bit of the day and has made it into a DVD for us.

Magic moments Without wanting to sound too cheesy, my best memory was first seeing Pete as I walked along the deck of the boat. Although I had been fairly relaxed during the build-up, it was a nerve-wracking moment whilst waiting to start the ceremony. As soon as I stood next to Pete and we gave each other a little grin, it just put me at ease and the focus just became me and him and the promises we were making to each other. From then on I loved every second of the day.

On budget? The wedding day cost around £3,500, which included the ceremony, flowers, buttonhole, limos, photographer, and a four-course meal and open bar for Pete and I, and all 17 guests. On top of that, we also had to pay for flights and hotels. We were really happy with what we got for our money

The honeymoon We had five nights in New York (four nights before the wedding and one after), then we hired a car and visited New Jersey, Delaware, Washington DC and Pennsylvania.

Further information Wedding Planning: Kelly Palmer – Tropical Sky and Orysia Germak, Tourism Marketing Inc. Venue: World Yacht, New York City Photographer: Lina Jang Photography www.BridesAbroad.tv 37


Vows with a View Tessa and Philip’s ceremony with a spectacular vista

38 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


W

hen Tessa Knight and Philip Dearden decided to tie the knot, they whisked their family off to New York for a wow wedding with views across the New York skyline

The proposal We had talked about getting married and the type of ring I would like, then Phil went out on his own and bought the most gorgeous solitaire diamond ring and was going to propose on my birthday. However, he was so excited he couldn’t wait so he proposed eight days before!

Location, location It was the second time around for both of us so we had decided that we didn’t want a big do. My son had always wanted to go to New York so we had decided we would take the family for his 16th birthday. We starting talking about where we would get married and Phil suggested we look into getting married in New York. As it turned out, we got married on Jordan’s 16th birthday. We looked at a few venues and thought that The View would be a great place to get married.

The planning American Sky did all the travel, accommodation and wedding arrangements.They were extremely helpful with all the arrangements. All we planned before we left was our wedding clothes.

The guests Our wedding party included our four children and my sister Georgina and her boyfriend who came out the day before. We stayed with the children at The Best Western Hospitality House in Manhattan. We didn’t really invite anyone as we didn’t want to put them under any pressure to come.

The ceremony Our 20-minute ceremony took place at The View Lounge in Times Square. We were married by Douglas Grandgeorge.

Magic moments Being all together, smiling and happy!

On budget? Overall. with everything including spending money, our wedding cost around £10,000, which was around what we expected.

Further information Travel Arrangements: American Sky. www.americansky.co.uk Venue: The View Lounge, Times Square. www.theviewnyc.com www.BridesAbroad.tv 39


From City to City Hall with love Esther and NIck’s slick and stylish wedding

W

hen Esther Sookhdeo met Nick Stevens, CEO of a recruitment company, during a high-powered business meeting in the City of London, the agenda soon changed to love and after deciding to mix business with pleasure, they finally sealed the deal with a romantic wedding in Manhatten.

Finding ‘the one’ We met on my birthday in the offices of a Dutch investment bank in 2009. I was a Recruitment Manager with Barclays Capital and was Nick’s client and he came to meet me for a business meeting. He then sent me a bottle of Champagne in the afternoon to wish me a happy birthday! I am not sure about love at first sight, but it was definitely complete intrigue at first sight!

The proposal He proposed on Royal Albert Bridge in London on New Year’s Eve with the most spectacular diamond ring – it was totally unexpected! 40 wwwBridesAbroad.tv

Location, location We didn’t want a fussy, stressful wedding. We wanted something unique, stylish and fun! I moved to New York with my job for 14 months in March 2010, so we embarked on a long distance relationship during that period. We have such lovely memories of weekends together exploring the city, so felt it was the perfect place to get married.

The planning We used the planning services of Tropical Sky (www.tropicalsky.co.uk), who were very helpful with all the arrangements, and we had it all planned out before we went.

Getting the look My wedding dress was from a boutique in Clapham. I wanted something unique and stylish. As I have a traditional dress that I will be wearing for a big do for family and friends later in the year, I wanted something city chic for our New York

ceremony. My hair was styled by Frederic Fekkai and I used the make-up artist at Soho Trump.

Something old, something new… Old – my granny’s brooch, something new – my beautiful Jimmy Choo shoes, something borrowed – a girlfriend’s ring and something blue, an Agent Provocateur garter!

Groom & Bridesmaids Nick wore a Jeeves and Hawkes navy blue pin-stripe three-piece suit, Thomas Pink tie and shirt and Patrick Cox shoes. I didn’t have any bridesmaids or guests!

The details The theme of our day was City Chic. I had a bouquet of white roses and for my cake we had lots of different puddings at Eleven Madison Park!


The ceremony The ceremony took place at New York’s City Hall and lasted just four minutes. We were married by the City Hall Clerk.

The reception We had our reception at Eleven Madison Park for just the two of us, with an 11-course menu! It was amazing. It is a 3 Michelin-starred restaurant and they spoilt us rotten.

Photographic memories Tropical Sky organized our wedding photographer for us. She was wonderful. She arrived at our hotel, the Soho Trump and stayed with us throughout the day, going to various NY locations. It was a fabulously sunny day, which made it perfect! It was such a fun shoot!

Magic moments The most special moment of the day was when Nick wrote me a beautiful speech

and read it to me when we arrived at the restaurant over a glass of Champagne. The funniest memory was of the City Hall Clerk, who was very theatrical during the ceremony and had us both in hysterics

On budget? We budgeted £10k, and that’s what it cost us.

The honeymoon For our honeymoon we drove to Washington in a Bentley Continental!

Further information Wedding Planner: Tropical Sky. www.tropicalsky.co.uk Venue: City Hall, New York www.cityclerk.nyc.gov Hotel: Soho Trump, New York

Marriage Ceremony in the City Clerk’s Office • You may have a civil Marriage Ceremony in the City Clerk’s Office. • Marriage Ceremonies are held during regular business hours. • No reservations or appointments for a Marriage Ceremony are accepted. • You and your prospective spouse must arrive together with the same proper identification you brought when you obtained your Marriage Licence. • You and your prospective spouse must have at least one witness, who must be 18 years of age or over. • The witness or witnesses must bring proper identification. • You need to satisfy these requirements before the Marriage Ceremony can be held.

www.BridesAbroad.tv 41


Totally Tropical

Jamaica Marry in Jamaica – the Caribbean’s most colourful island – and swap traditional wedding bells for the sound of the reggae beat

E

ach island in the Caribbean has a character of its own –­ ­from simple and relaxed to exotic and sophisticated, with all offering many wonderful possibilities for an idyllic tropical wedding. However, no other Caribbean destination is as hip as Jamaica –­ the island is rhythminfused and totally chilled. And with a gorgeous year-round tropical climate and stunning scenery, Jamaica is a fantastic choice for destination weddings and funfilled honeymoons. When Christopher Columbus landed in Jamaica in 1494, his logbook recorded: ‘the fairest island that eyes have beheld; mountains and the land seem to touch the sky – all full of valleys and fields and plains’. The centuries have not dimmed the natural beauty of Jamaica and couples opting to say ‘I do” on the island will discover a gorgeous destination with breathtaking backdrops for their wedding photographs. Jamaica teems with culture, nightlife and

42 wwwBridesAbroad.tv

natural beauty; delicious and distinctive cuisine; soothing spas and has a host of activities and attractions waiting to be explored including historic houses and trails, botanical gardens and vibrant towns. It boasts lush vegetation, glittering waterfalls, swaying palms, white sand beaches and friendly locals. Be sure to visit Dunn’s River Falls on Ocho Rios to climb the world-famous waterfalls where Tom Cruise and Elizabeth Shue famously frolicked in the 1980s film Cocktail. Honeymoons on the island can be enjoyed at your own pace – indulge in a host of activities from watersports and scuba diving to golf and tennis – or simply chill in the sunshine and swim or snorkel in the warm crystal waters of the Caribbean. Take a sunset cruise on a catamaran or explore the popular bars and nightlife of Negril, enjoying cocktails to the rhythm of reggae music for which Jamaica is renowned – and if the music inspires you both, you can visit the Bob Marley museum at the reggae legend’s former residence and recording studios.


Further information Jamaica Tourist Board Tel: 020 7225 9090 www.visitjamaica.com

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7 Top Tips 1

Visit Lovers Leap and delight in the stunning views from the 1,600-ft cliff and hear the captivating story of how Lovers Leap got its name.

2

Hike to the top of YS Falls and take time to swing down the cascading waters ‘Tarzan and Jane’ style.

5

Frolic ‘Tom Cruise style’ in the exhilarating cascading waters of the world-famous Dunn’s River Falls.

6

Visit Mystic Mountain, accessible by the Rainforest Sky Lift Explorer. Soar above the treetops 700 feet to the top of Mystic Mountain and enjoy a ride through the rainforest on Bobsled Jamaica, the park’s signature attraction and a thrilling ride through tropical landscapes. www. rainforestbobsledjamaica.com

3 4 Dunns River Falls

Go for a romantic starry moonlit horseback ride

Marriage Requirements

Documents Required You need original or certified copies of birth certificate, which includes father’s name. Proof of citizenship; Written parental consent if under 18; Change of name by deed poll proven by an Affidavit; Proof of divorce if applicable; Certified death certificate for widow(er).

Jewel Dunn River Beach Resort

Getting married on the island is easy. You can exchange vows by the spray of a waterfall, at the altar of a church, on a tropical beach or in the lush gardens of your resort hotel. If you apply in advance for a marriage licence, you can get married 24 hours after arrival. Arrangements are made through your hotel, travel agent or directly through the Ministry of Justice. Residency requirements are that you are in Jamaica for 24 hours, which must include a working day. Two people are required as witnesses.

Fees The cost of a licence is around £25.

Jamaica’s luxury resorts offer beach weddings and ceremonies in their manicured tropical gardens or on their beachfronts, including Couples Swept Away (pictured), a romantic hideaway resort in Negril set on a stunning stretch of the seven-mile Negril beach (www.couplesresorts.co.uk). Most offer excellent deals on wedding packages – some even include free weddings and many include flowers, wedding cakes, champagne and sparkling wine, a romantic dinner and even room upgrade.

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Couples Swept Away Resort

Wedding Packages

Take a romantic river ride on a 30-ft bamboo raft on the Martha Brae and be captivated by the intriguing legend of Miss Martha’s Gold hidden away in a mysterious cave yet to be discovered.

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Or just find yourself a romantic secret bathing place around Treasure Beach.


Where to say ‘I do’

Coral Cove Sophisticated, stylish and sublime, this luxury hotel and spa in Montego Bay is captivating and carefree. Richly appointed and steeped in tradition, it is one of the most beautiful and elegant boutique resorts in the Caribbean. Round Hill offers impeccable guest service and warm Jamaican hospitality, with Ralph Laurendesigned oceanfront guest rooms and a luxurious private villa suite – perfect for intimate honeymoons.

Wedding Packages In addition to a complete destination wedding services, Round Hill also caters for renewal of vows ceremonies. Enjoy saying “I do” in the romantic setting of your choice with the help of the resort’s professional wedding team. The Round Hill Wedding Plan costs around £950 for between two and eight people and includes personal coordinator; Marriage Officer; marriage certificate; wedding flowers; floral decoration at ceremony location; wedding cake; bottle of Veuve Clicquot Champagne; wedding video and photographer; wedding gift. www.roundhill.com

Round Hill Hotel & Villas For a delightfully intimate wedding or honeymoon, Coral Cove Resort Bed and Breakfast Inn is idyllic for couples seeking the ‘real Jamaica’ cultural experience. Set in 5 acres of lush grounds on a private sandy cove in Little Bay, one of the oldest fishing villages on the island, the hotel is just 10 miles from Negril on the dramatically beautiful, unspoiled Southwestern Coast of Jamaica. Choose an All-Inclusive plan or a B&B option.

Wedding packages Coral Cove has been providing couples with memorable weddings for many years and its team of expert wedding planners will ensure that your ‘Tropical Wedding’ is unique and customized to your wishes. Once you have determined your dates, Coral Cove provide beautiful save the date cards so that your guests can book and pay for their stay directly. You can feel confident that the Coral Cove team will be there for every step of the way – from arranging transportation to organizing your entertainment. www.coralcovejamaica.com

The Jewel Dunn’s River Beach Resort & Spa Located just moments from the spectacular Dunn’s River Falls – one of Jamaica’s must-see attractions, the new, adults-only, all-inclusive resort boasts 250 beautifully appointed guest rooms and suites and multiple dining options from the formal Platinum to the most casual Aquamarina Beach Bar & Grill where even shoes are optional.

Wedding Packages The hotel offers a choice of wedding packages to suit your budget including Classic, Premium and Luxury Packages. Prices start from £380 for the Classic package which includes personal wedding consultant, flowers, Marriage Officer, document preparation, admin fees, marriage license, hors d’oeuvres and sparkling wine, cake, photographer, breakfast in bed, petal turn down and special wedding dinner for bride & groom. www.jewelresorts.com/dunnsriver


...the world’s most romantic holiday...

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Reservations 020 7749 9285 Information & brochures 01582 794 420 www.couplesresorts.co.uk


Sandals WeddingMoons

Advertising Feature

®

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Sandals Grande St. Lucian, Spa & Beach Resort

he Caribbean has long been associated with romance; the palm-shaded beaches, dream-like surroundings and the sultry nights create an ideal backdrop for love. Sandals, the Caribbean family owned resorts, pioneered the Caribbean wedding in order to offer the paradise settings of their island resorts for unforgettable destination weddings and heavenly honeymoons.

This is one of our most popular resorts for those wanting to marry near the clear Caribbean Sea. Stay in a Lagoon Swim-up Room or stay in a secluded Rondoval Suite with Asian-inspired décor, mosaic tiling and marble floors. These circular bungalow suites in lush gardens or on the water’s edge have private plunge pools, whirlpool, outdoor showers, a hammock area for the ultimate lovers’ retreat, plus a Personal Butler!

Scattered among the tropical islands of Jamaica, Saint Lucia, Antigua, the Bahamas and Grenada are the 14 Luxury Included® Sandals Resorts which have been created exclusively for two people in love. For over 30 years, Sandals has perfected the ultimate in sophisticated Caribbean holidays and led the way in all-inclusive luxury, being named the ‘World’s Leading All-Inclusive Resort’ for 16 years running. Yet Sandals Resorts are much more than just all-inclusive – they are Luxury Included® which means sumptuous suites, as many as 15 gourmet restaurants per resort, unlimited premium brand drinks, land sports including championship golf and water sports such as unlimited scuba diving. To really spoil yourselves, there’s also a Personal Butler Service in top suites, and state-of-the-art amenities, plus all taxes, transfers and tips are covered, making Sandals Luxury Included® resorts the perfect choice for wedding couples and honeymooners everywhere!

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Sandals Royal Plantation, Ocho Rios Jamaica Overlooking two private white sand coves in Ocho Rios, Sandals Royal Plantation offers complete privacy and relaxation and is the perfect sanctuary for a quiet wedding ceremony. Marry at the resort’s wedding gazebo located on the pier surrounded by the calm Caribbean waters. Be spoiled rotten by your Personal Butler and enjoy luxurious furnishings in the 74 suites that all feature breathtaking views of the Caribbean Sea.


Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island, Nassau Bahamas Add some glitz and glamour to your special day by having your dream wedding in the Bahamas. After a $17.5 million investment, a completely renovated Balmoral Tower, its Georgian-style suites with majestic names and its exotic Offshore Island, this award-winning resort oozes elegance. Arrive in style with Rolls Royce transfers exclusive for Butler Service guests, marry on the exotic offshore island where you and your loved one can relax with rejuvenating treatments at the island’s Zen Spa or on its white crescent beach, this is a perfect hideaway for romantics.

Sandals Grande Antigua Resort & Spa Justifiably voted ‘World’s Most Romantic Resort’ 14 years in a row, this resort is a Luxury Included® paradise perfect for dreamy weddings. Located on the island’s best beach, Dickenson’s Bay, wedding couples can bask in the beautiful surrounds and exchange their vows in a location of their choice; bare-footed on the long relaxing beach, in the all-suite Mediterranean Village or in the romantic Caribbean Grove, creating memories that will last forever.

To book your Sandals All-Inclusive wedding & honeymoon Call 0800 012 1878. See your local travel agent. Visit sandalsweddings.co.uk

Love is all you need. The rest is Luxury Included®

www.BridesAbroad.tv 49


Barefoot on the beach

Sandeep and Andrew’s romantic Jamaican ceremony 50 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


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hen Sandeep Sangera exchanged vows with Andrew Hallam in a pictureperfect beach ceremony in Jamaica last December, they both felt the warmth of the sun on their faces as well as soft white sand between their toes as they began married life together at Couples Swept Away resort – just the two of them.

The proposal We had taken a year out to work abroad in Canada during which Andrew proposed to me on Valentine’s Day in an Italian restaurant in Vancouver. He placed the ring box in my dessert and as I was looking at it in complete shock, he got down on one knee and proposed! We had previously spoken about marriage, but I didn’t think he would ask me at that moment.

Location location We were aware quite early on that the type of wedding we wanted in the UK would be prohibitively expensive. After researching weddings abroad, we realised that the process seemed quite simple and affordable, so after speaking to our families, and getting their blessings, we decided to go ahead and follow our hearts. We looked at reviews of many different hotels around the Caribbean and got in touch with different companies offering wedding packages. We came across Couples Swept Away, in Jamaica, Negril, and we

were impressed with the resort’s excellent reviews.

The planning Tropical Sky did our arrangements and were extremely helpful and efficient at all times. No query was too much trouble and they explained all the details clearly and made the whole process straightforward. We planned very little before we went. The Couples Swept Away resort took care of the ceremony details when we arrived there, so we really only needed to arrange our wedding attire and rings, and really that was it!

The guests We didn’t have any guests. We decided in June to get married in November, which meant that our families could not really come due to other commitments/financial restraints. We completely understood this and were very grateful to our family for being so understanding.

Getting the look We kept the look simple and romantic. I wore a floaty strapless dress, with embroidered detail, diamond drop earrings and diamond bracelet. I wore my hair up with a diamond hair comb. Andrew wore a plain white shirt and beige trousers and neither of us wore shoes.

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The details Our colour theme was purple and white – we had purple orchids for the bridal bouquet and buttonhole. We had a one-tiered wedding cake, which was also decorated with a purple orchid. Simple, but effective.

The ceremony We were married under a wedding gazebo in a gorgeous location on the resort’s sandy beach in the Jamaican sunshine. It was a truly romantic ceremony, just the two of us, 52 wwwBridesAbroad.tv

with the white curtains billowing in the warm breeze – I was a real barefoot bride! The ceremony lasted about 15 minutes and we were married by the minister from Couples Swept Away, who made us feel very much at ease.

The reception After cutting the cake, the Jamaican tradition is to pass the cake from one mouth to the other, using only your mouth – I wasn’t expecting to do that on my wedding day!

Magic moments When we were having photos taken on the beach, there was a small local band that was playing to guests along the beach. We spoke about having Elvis Presley ‘I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You’ on our wedding day, but we decided to go with Jamaican love songs instead. Well the band started playing ‘I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You’ and we hadn’t even requested it, which we thought was amazing! We danced, close to the sea along the beach, it was wonderful, romantic and something I will always remember!


Where two hearts become one love. Naturally.

Open and inviting, richly appointed and steeped in tradition, Round Hill takes you far beyond the ordinary wedding. Choose the location that suits your style, from the expansive oceanfront spa lawn as the ceremony backdrop to an open-air reception in our renovated event space. You’ll feel like you’re the one and only because at Round Hill, your wedding is the only one. A honeymoon at Round Hill is

reservations@roundhill.com

an unmatched experience in romance. Do what comes naturally. Visit Round Hill.

roundhill.com | 1.800.972.2159


On budget? We had our wedding and honeymoon all in one, but in total it cost about ÂŁ5,000, which was right on budget.

Further information Wedding Planner: Nicola Searle, Tropical Sky. www.tropicalsky.co.uk Venue: Couples Swept Away, Jamaica

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ADULTS-ONLY ALL-INCLUSIVE LUXURY IN OCHO RIOS!

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Romance sparkles brighter at Jewel Resorts. Whether you choose to say “I do’ for just you two or with close friends and family along for the adventure, Jewel Resorts is ready to deliver the wedding or honeymoon you’ve always dreamed of. We have professional wedding planners and fabulous packages including one that’s absolutely free! The luxury all-inclusive, adults-only, oceanfront Jewel Dunn’s River Beach Resort & Spa and the brilliant all-inclusive, oceanfront Jewel Runaway Bay Beach & Golf Resort for all ages, are perfect for couples, weddings, honeymoons and more.

FOR INFORMATION AND RESERVATIONS CALL: 01306-744305 OR VISIT WWW.KUONI.COM


Enchanting worldwide destinations for the wedding of your dreams. What could be more romantic than marrying the person you love on a beautiful tropical beach in a far flung location, or in vibrant New York City in an elegant venue, or perhaps on safari in Kenya? Tropical Sky are the UK’s leading wedding and honeymoon experts with a team of wedding coordinators ready to assist in planning and organising your wedding. We have arranged over 2,500 weddings to many beautiful romantic overseas locations and would love to help organise your special day.

Elegant & Simple

Just The Two Of Us

Romantic Retreats

Luxury Weddings

Unique Locations

Family & Friends

We have a collection of romantic wedding packages in beautiful locations with everything kept simple for price conscious brides.

Plan a truly romantic wedding for two, which you can enjoy together and savour alone including Barbados, St Lucia, Mauritius and Antigua.

We’ve handpicked a great selection of destinations and wedding locations throughout the world, and your dedicated wedding coordinator will help you decide on the perfect solution for your dream wedding or honeymoon.

Escape to a secluded, tranquil hideaway for two and relax, including Sri Lanka, Tobago, Thailand and the Seychelles.

Our collection of luxury hotels offer everything you would expect on an indulgent holiday including the very best service, food and facilities that are to be found around the world.

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Choose from a very exceptional and unique selection of destinations and venues from around the world.

Celebrate your special day in the company of your loved ones. There’s no need for your family and friends to miss out on your special day as we can accommodate most group sizes.

For more details visit www.tropicalsky.co.uk/weddings or call Tropical Sky on 0843 636 2022 Open 7 days a week Monday – Sunday 9am to 9pm BA/Dec12/V1/NM


Advertising Feature

TropicalWeddings at

Coral Cove Say “I do” in the romantic Caribbean

P

lanning your wedding is an exciting time, and chances are you have been exploring every option for a suitable venue to host your big day.

However, if you have been considering getting married in the UK, you may have been disappointed at the high prices – the average cost of a wedding in Britain is approximately £17,000 and that doesn’t include your honeymoon! Not surprisingly, an increasing number of savvy couples are choosing to say “I do” abroad, where the price of weddings is lower and warm sunshine is almost guaranteed. A tropical wedding at Jamaica’s beautiful Coral Cove is very affordable. For just a few thousand pounds, your dream wedding can become a reality. Coral Cove has been providing couples with memorable weddings for many years and the hotel’s team of expert wedding planners will ensure that your ‘Tropical Wedding’ is unique and customized to your wishes.

location as naturally beautiful as Coral Cove and be hosted by attentive staff dedicated to assisting you with every detail. They will ensure that you have the wedding you’ve always dreamed about, which will be treasured by you and your guests forever. Once you have determined your dates, Coral Cove can provide you with beautiful ‘save the date’ cards and your guests can contact the resort directly to book and pay for their stay. Knowing that you are in good hands is only one of the important factors to planning a perfect wedding. The Coral Cove wedding team understands that those additional elements, including wedding decorations, entertainment, and ceremony locations, are just as important as the wedding itself. You can feel confident that everything – from arranging transportation to the resort to finding the right entertainment – Coral Cove will be there for you every step of the way. Let your imagination be your guide!

It has been the vision and goal at Coral Cove to dedicate their staff, resources, and expertise in providing the perfect Jamaican ‘Tropical Wedding’ experience.

www.coralcovejamaica.com.

Now you can combine the celebration of your wedding with family and friends in a

Photography by Roan Robinson, www.candidexpressionsjamaica.com

Further Information

www.BridesAbroad.tv

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Let it snow! Be the coolest couple around when you say ‘I do’ by wowing our guests with the ultimate white wedding Northern Lights, Iceland Wow your guests by treating them to a spectacular colour light display, courtesy of Mother Nature with the Aurora Borealis as a breathtaking backdrop at your wedding. However, if you are not lucky enough to witness the incredible spectacle of Iceland’s magnificent Northern Lights, you can still have an unforgettable wedding at Hotel Ranga, a 4-star luxury country hotel in South Iceland, on the banks of the River Ranga. It’s the idyllic place to hold your wedding ceremony and is just an hour from Reykjavik, in the middle of spectacular panoramic scenery surrounded by stunning landmarks including the famous volcano, Mt Hekla, and several glaciers. The hotel offers a choice of locations for your big day, including the pretty church, Oddi, close by, and two stunning waterfalls –­Seljalandsfoss and Skogarfoss, which are popular places to hold your ceremony; or you could opt to say ‘I do’ at Hotel Ranga, either at an indoor venue or outside on the banks of the River Ranga. The hotel’s wedding coordinator will help with all arrangements and endeavour to make your stay as special as possible. The wedding party can choose from a variety of accommodation in 51 bedrooms and enjoy special discounted rates. www.hotelranga.is

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Mountain High, Austria Say hello to married life with a sleigh ride straight after your wedding ceremony, in the pretty Austrian village of Kaprun. Austria’s winter landscape is incredibly romantic, with snowtopped mountains, deep forests, alpine meadows and fairy-tale castles, so if you are planning to say ‘I do’ in this winter wonderland, then look no further than The SportKristall, a cosy 4-star family run hotel, which is offering exclusive wedding packages to couples. The hotel nestles in beautiful natural surroundings just a short stoll from the ski lifts and the village centre. You and your guests will enjoy true Austrian hospitality and excellent facilities, as well as easy access to the ski slopes. The hotel has an indoor swimming pool, superb spa and an outdoor rock whirlpool where you can soak up the pure mountain air together for pre- and post-wedding pampering. The 7-night Wedding Package includes half board in the Romantic Suite or Austrian Wedding suite with a personal wedding planner; hair and make-up for the bride; full massage for the groom; bouquet and buttonhole; wedding photographer; a romantic horse-drawn sleigh ride through wintery Kaprun after the wedding ceremony; Champagne and strawberries in your room; legal paperwork and organization in the Kaprun registry and an English wedding ceremony in the local wedding hall of Kaprun. www.sport-kristall.at

Snow Sensation, Sweden Be a truly cool couple and marry in an ice palace in Sweden’s incredibly stylish ICE HOTEL in Kiruna, where TV’s Loose Women presenter Andrea McLean was one of 19 guests at her sister Linda’s wedding. Linda and her husband Rory exchanged their vows in temperatures of -30 degrees C at the ICE HOTEL, which they booked through Discover the World. After the couple had declared “I do” in the magnificent Ice Church, the wedding party toasted them with brightly coloured vodka cocktails in the ICE BAR, served in glasses carved from ice, before the couple retired to the spectacular Ice Room to spend their wedding night covered in reindeer skin. Discover the World has put together a range of tailor-made packages for weddings and blessings at the ICE HOTEL, which start at around £1,390. www.discover-the-world.co.uk


Ice Queen, Quebec Between early January and the end of March, you can enter a magical world where snow and ice are transformed into fabulous décor at Canada’s only Ice Hotel, where warm hospitality contrasts with the cold surroundings. With snow archways towering over fivemetre tall crystal ice sculptures, it provides the most stunning backdrop to your Ice Wedding. Couples marry in the Hotel de Glace chapel, where the décor changes every winter b ­ ut the beauty and breathtaking splendour remains the same from year to year. Imagine pulling up to the chapel in a horse-drawn sleigh and walking down a red carpet set against the sparkling white snow. What an entrance! Or you can even renew your marriage vows under a hail of fireworks. www.hotelglace-canada.com

Amazing Igloos, France Head to Val D’Isere in France, and you can get married – or have a blessing – during an Igloo evening, an original way to start your new life as a married couple, in style! Surrounded by a blanket of sparking white snow, you can toast each other with a glass of Champagne in front of the Mont Blanc, before settling down to a cheese fondue in the warmth your yurt; dessert awaits you in the igloo! After having explored the surroundings on a skidoo, you can ski back down to the resort in a sea of dancing lights to your first night as man and wife. If you want to invite a party of family and friends, the town is known for its bars and nightclubs, and up-market English crowd, as well as spectacular scenery, also makes a great destination for a long weekend, especially if you love skiing. *Prices for igloo weddings on application from Jean-Michel Bertrand on val.alaska@ wanadoo.fr or +33(0)6 09 36 02 66.

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Austrian White Fairytale Wedding

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here is nothing more romantic than the land of snow topped mountains, deep forests, alpine meadows & fairy-tale castles.

Experience an unforgettable wedding in the Austrian Alps – the perfect winter and summer wedding location – choose from a wedding in a fairytale castle – 18th century farmhouse or a mountain top blessing. For individual packaged offer please visit:

www.austrian-wedding.com getmarried@austrian-wedding.com

Verwöhnhotel Vötters Sportkristall GmbH Schloßstraße 32 5710 Kaprun Tel: 0043/6547/71340 Fax: 0043/6547/7134-50 www.sport-kristall.at


RealWEDDINGS

Chilly Ice!

Georgina and Andy’s winter wedding in the Alps

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ool and fun was Georgina Hambly and Andy Hubble from Longfield, Kent’s idea of the perfect wedding, so they headed off with their guests for snow and celebrations to their favourite ski chalet, Chilly Powder, in the French Alps.

Finding ‘the one’e’ We met at the Black Lion Pub in Hartley and the rest, as they say, is history!

The proposal Andy proposed to me at the Detling Show Ground, it was one of their best parties ever for Christmas. He proposed to me while we were on the dance floor, which was totally unexpected!

it’s like a home from home. We wanted all of our friends and family to experience the charms of the chalet as well, so this was the perfect opportunity!

The planning We took charge of all of our own arrangements and had lots of help from Paul and Francesca, the owners of Chilly Powder and we drove out to France, rather than fly and traveled via the Channel tunnel. We planned mostly everything but somethings we couldn’t plan for – soon after Andy proposed, we were delighted to find out that I was pregnant! So we planned as much as we could in view of the fact that our daughter Lola was only 5-weeks-old at the wedding.

The guests Location, location The cost was a big factor in our decision to marry abroad, but also the fact that we both love skiing. We’d been countless times to Chilly Powder, a family owned ski chalet in the French Alps. We stay at Chilly Powder every year when we go skiing and

We had 52 adult guests and six children. Most of them stayed with us in the main Chilly Powder chalet, but others stayed in the company’s other chalet called Le Plan des Rochers. Mostly everyone was really excited about going abroad to our wedding and lots of people tried skiing for the first time.

Getting the look My dress was from Pantiles Brides in Royal Tunbridge Wells, designed by Alan Hannah. It was a very classic dress as I wanted to have more detail on the tiara and jewellery. Pantiles Brides was brillant; they made and altered my dress in ten days because I couldn’t have a normal fitting before because I was pregnant. I had a beautiful white cape to wear over the top of my dress so I wouldn’t get cold during the cermony and wore a Swarovski necklace, drop earrings and bracelet. My mum and dad bought all my jewellery for me. I will be able to wear it time and time again and pass it down to Lola, my daughter. I did my own make-up because, as a beauty therapist, I do wedding make-up and knew I would be really fussy! My hair was done by my good friend Natalie who was one of our guests and she did a fantastic job.

Something old, something new? Blue was my garter, something borrowed was my friend’s tiara, something new was my dress and old was a little Cornish piskie. www.BridesAbroad.tv 67


Groom & bridesmaids Andy wore a dark chocolate brown suit with a waistcoat and cravat that matched my dress. The bridesmaids also wore dark chocolate brown. They had long dresses with tie-up backs. I also got them long brown gloves and faux fur capes to keep them warm.

The details As we were getting married in the snow, our theme involved a few snowflakes but mainly it was a cream and brown colour scheme. I had a friend who makes beautiful bouquets and button holes from ribbon, buttons and feathers. Rather than try and source fresh flowers in winter in Morzine, we thought that this would make a nice quirky touch! http:// www.thepatchworkbride.folksy.com/. We had a traditional French wedding cake called a Croque en bouche.

The ceremony The ceremony itself took place in the snowcovered grounds at Chilly Powder; it was absolutely beautiful. We had a huge umberella erected, under which we were married under. My dad gave me away and the ceremony lasted roughly 45mins as we decided to have Lola named at the end of the wedding ceremony, but we didn’t tell any of our guests as we wanted to keep it a surprise! It was our first job as Mr and Mrs Hubble! After the ceremony, instead of confetti, the guests threw rice!

The reception The wedding reception was held in the Chilly Powder chalet. We had a Hog Roast. Paul and Francesca, the owners of the chalet, did a brilliant job and the room was beautifully decorated with church candles, feathers and dark brown table runners. The wedding favors were Jessica nail polishes (as I’m a beauty therapist), a wedding day yankee candle and each couple received a set of snowflake corkscrew and bottle stop sets. Our First Dance was ‘All My Life’ KC and Jojo. We had a DJ and we didn’t stop dancing till 2am!

Photographic memories We just had a photographer – her name was Jacquie: www.jcutlerphotography.co.uk/ The photo of Andy, Lola and I just sums up what a brilliant day we had. The fact she was involved at such a young age means so much to me and I look forward to telling her about the day when she’s older. 68 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


Magic moments Everyone got on so well and a few people tried skiing when I never thought they would. It was just a really good week even though I couldn’t ski as I’d just had a C-section! One of the best moments was our best man, Jamie’s, speech. It was funny to hear the last nine years we’ve been together put into a speech and seen through his eyes, even down to how we met and got together!

On budget? The whole wedding cost £12,000, which was over budget but well worth it.

The honeymoon We arrived a week and a half before and stayed a day after. We still haven’t had a proper honeymoon as Lola was too young,0 but we’re going back to Chilly Powder in January to celebrate our first wedding anniversary.

Further information Venue: www.chillypowder.com Photographer: Paul Toeman from Jacquie Cutler www.jcutlerphotography.co.uk

www.BridesAbroad.tv 69


Crystal crown tiara designed by John Frost Style: Cressida, £200 www.crystalfrost.co.uk

Snowdrop earrings, £14.95 www.whatsabout town.com

Snow-kissed gold invitations www.ivyellen.com

Mongolian goat snow boots, £349.95 www.olang.co.uk Wedding coat dress by Eternity Bridal Style D5047 www.eternitybridal.co.uk Bespoke crystal bouquet by Debbie Carlisle Style: Winter teardrop, £975 www.dcbouquets.co.uk

Arabella Tiara designed by John Frost, £175 www.crystalfrost.co.uk

‘Just Married’ sheepskin boots www.lovefrom australia.com

Be a

cool bride Snowflake wedding cake www.couture-cakes.co.uk

Look chilled and gorgeous, like a beautiful ice maiden on your wedding day in these super-cool gowns and accessories especially for The Alps and The Arctic Circle ­–­and melt his heart away!

Sparkling scatter crystals www.scattercrystals.co.uk

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Smooth feather bolero by Joan Lee www.crystalfrost.co.uk


Aurora

· Adventure ·

Events ·

Tours ·

Romance

· Gourmet

· Luxury

A four-star luxury resort in South Iceland perfectly located to witness the Northern Lights and experience everything Iceland has to offer. Hotel Rangá makes a wonderful romantic getaway and offers relaxed atmosphere and ambience for spending quality time with your loved ones. Enter promotion code “BA12” to save extra 15% off our best available rates for your honeymoon.

www.hotelranga.is

Hotel Rangá 851 Hella Tel. +354 487 5700 Fax +354 487 5701 hotelranga@hotelranga.is www.hotelranga.is


RealWEDDINGS

Love in Magical Majorca

Maxine and Nicholas’ romantic nuptials in Port D’Andratx 72

wwwBridesAbroad.tv


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ocial networking turned out to be the route to true love for primary school teacher Maxine Ashton from South Yorkshire when she linked up with Nicholas Saul, director of a web design company through mutual friends. Despite their online introduction and cyber courtship, their wedding at Villa Italia in Majorca was good old fashioned romance from start to finish.

Finding ‘the one’ I met Nick on a social networking site where we had mutual friends. I plucked up courage to email one evening saying “Hi!”and Nick responded the next day! There was a lot of attraction with lots of texting, calling and emailing before the first date was organised. When we finally arranged our first date, it was for a meal at a super Meditteranean restaurant in Sheffield. Nick looked very handsome and well groomed. I bought a new outfit, make-up and perfume to impress!

The proposal He proposed at our cottage on Christmas morning 2011 and filmed the whole thing! Nick said that he was filming so that we would have some memories of Christmases to look back on in years to come and we took turns to open our gifts, which all had little cryptic clues on the tags to intrigue each other! My final gift seemed to be a pair of Jimmy Choo’s. However, when I opened the box, it didn’t contain any shoes, but another box and inside yet another box which contained a silver box with engraving on it saying ‘Maxine, will you marry me?’ It was so romantic and emotional! I

burst into tears of joy – obviously saying yes! I had no idea that he was going to propose!

Location location We decided to get married overseas for the weather mostly. Last year we had an amazing holiday with Nick’s family in Mallorca and visited Hotel Villa Italia in Port D’Andratx for dinner with his mum, Christine. We all fell in love with the place, especially Christine who sadly passed away soon after we returned from holiday. As we had all enjoyed such a wonderful night together at Villa Italia, which is both romantic and intimate, we thought it would be a perfect tribute to Christine to have our wedding there. We had the ceremony at the beautiful local church in Port D’Andratx and, rather than having cars, we walked from the church along the sea front to Villa Italia for the wedding reception.

The planning We went on the Internet and found Julie Bussell, a wedding planner at My Majorca Wedding. Julie is English, but has lived in Mallorca for a long time organising weddings and events. She has a fantastic reputation and knows exactly who to contact for every last detail, plus there wouldn’t be any language barriers! We organised our own travel arrangements rather than going through an agency and Julie took care of practically everything! She was in touch via email and phone calls and had everything organised before we flew out for our wedding. We did, however, have a long weekend in Mallorca prior to the actual wedding to taste the

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food, meet the contractors and finalise the arrangements.

The guests We had 51 guests in total who stayed at various hotels around the island – some had holiday homes on the island, others had made a full holiday of it by going out before the wedding. We were amazed that so many people wanted to come with us as we organised the wedding in just six months – we didn’t give our guests much warning or time to start saving! We thought we’d end up with just our immediate family, but were so happy when more people said they could come out to share our day!

Getting the look My dress was just so perfect – if a thousand dresses were hanging on a rail, it’s the one everyone would just know was for me! It was style Helena by Hollywood Dreams from Blissful Daze. My dress had a lot of crystal embroidery on the bodice so I didn’t want to overdo it with other accessories. I had a white veil with crystal droplets by Richard Designs. My earrings were a circular droplet by Carat. I had my garter custom made with ‘Mrs Saul’ on one side and ‘04.06.2012’ (the date) on the

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other. Our hairdresser, Julie from Tall Poppy in Sheffield, came over to Mallorca to do our hair and Julie and her husband were also guests at the wedding.

Something old, something new? My Something Old – engagement ring, I know it’s not really old but it was practically the only thing that wasn’t new! New – obviously my dress. Borrowed – Nick’s cousin Sam did my make-up perfectly and let me borrow her collection. Something Blue – the stitching and bow on my garter.

Groom & bridesmaids

The details Our theme was our colour scheme - pink and white and my bouquet was Phalaenopsis Orchids, which had white petals and pink centres. Our cake was a two-tier Victoria sponge cake with icing orchids tumbling down the sides. On the cake was iced writing saying ‘Maxine and Nick’ on the top tier and ‘to have and to hold from this day forward’ on the bottom tier. There was no point in having a huge cake as we couldn’t bring it back on the plane!

The ceremony

Nick wore a black tuxedo with black bow tie – he looked a million dollars. The groomsmen also wore tuxedos but their jackets were ivory in colour.

Our 40-minute marriage ceremony took place at the church at Port D’Andratx. I was given away by my dad, Kevin, and married by Roger Wikeley, our priest. The ceremony was similar to one in the UK but a bit more relaxed.

I had five bridesmaids – my sister Colleen, cousin Jo, Nick’s cousin Sam and best friends, Helen and Ruth, wore floor-length Grecian style lux-chiffon dresses by Dessy in the colour Tuttifrutti, which is a lovely bright pink! I had one little flower girl, Lexi, who had a beautiful white dress to match me. She looked so adorable’

We chose our own readings, and the guests arrived to a pianist playing love songs. The ceremony began with ‘Have I Told You Lately That I Love You?’ being played, followed by ‘I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You’ as I walked up the aisle with my dad and bridesmaids.


RealWEDDINGS

The reception We held our wedding reception at Hotel Villa Italia. After much deliberation and tasting, we gave our guests a choice of menu. Starter: home-made tomato soup or Chicken Ceasar salad. Main course: chicken breast in a cheese crust or fillet steak with a port wine sauce. Dessert: trio of hot raspberries, crème brûlée and vanilla ice-cream. The children had chicken and chips and ice-cream. Our table decorations included pink and white Phalaenopsis Orchids in square vases on crisp white table cloths and our white chair covers had a pink satin bow on them. Nick designed the seating plan and place cards which were placed in heart-shaped holders and the groom’s place holder was a black tuxedo and the bride’s was a white wedding dress. Our First Dance was to Al Green, ‘Let’s Stay Together’ while our guests stood holding sparklers – it looked beautiful and the sparklers lasted the whole song. We had an amazing singer called Bobby Alexander who sang throughout the Champagne reception and got everyone dancing after the meal! We also had a magician doing table magic and we continued our celebrations in Caesar’s Nightclub at Villa

Italia with a DJ to keep the party going! It meant so much that so many of our family and friends made the effort to share our day – we couldn’t possibly have done it alone.

Photograpic memories Sandra Manas and her crew worked every second of the day and took fantastic photos and a wedding video. It’s lovely to sit looking through them and reliving the day!

Magic moments The most special memory was walking up the aisle and exchanging our vows. The funniest was one of my bridesmaids, who was hillarious by the time the disco started – let’s say she‘reinvented’ her dress with some tucking and folding! There was lots of crazy dancing and funny parts to the speeches too!

On budget? The wedding cost approximately £30,000 all in all, which was more than we initially planned on but worth every penny- it was amazing!

The honeymoon We had our ‘mini-moon’ in Mallorca the week after the wedding – after Villa Italia we moved to the Melia Del Mar at Illetas, Mallorca. Our families stayed in Mallorca for a few days after the wedding, which was lovely. For our main honeymoon we flew to the USA in August and stayed first at the Argonaut Hotel in San Francisco for two nights, then travelled down the Pacific Coast Highway, which is breath-taking. We stayed overnight at The Pine Inn at Carmelby-the-sea, two nights at Casa Del Mar at Santa Monica, four nights at the Luxe on Rodeo Drive in Los Angeles and finally four nights at the Encore in Las Vegas. WOW, what an amazing trip!

Further information Wedding Planner: Julie Bussell @ My Majorca Wedding www.mymajorcawedding.co.uk Ceremony Venue: Church at Port D’Andratx, Mallorca Reception: Villa Italia, Port D’Andratx. Photographer: Sandra Manas Boutique Photography www.sandramanas.com www.BridesAbroad.tv 75


Gold hair comb, £35 By Ivory & Co www.crystalfrost.co.uk

Shell decorated clutch, £45 www.accessorize.com

Beaded sandals, £35 www.accessorize.com

Flower hair accessories in various colours www.accessorize.com

Be bellle of the

beach Look exotic on the beach in floaty gowns, and accessories to add a splash of colour and tropical influence to your look Bridal dress Style: 63008 www.trudylee.co.uk

Tropical silk flower bouquet, £50 www.sarahsflowers.co.uk Crystal and pearl floral headband Style Chantelle, £120 by Ivory & Co www.crystalfrost.co.uk

Freshwater pearl earrings £20 and bracelet £55 By Ivory & Co. Style: Prague, £125 www.crystalfrost.co.uk

Starfish sandals, £69 www.aspiga.com

Hair grips in floral pearl www.accessorize.com 76 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


RealWEDDINGS

Slow Food Served With

Passion

Cat and Max’s sustainable Italian wedding 78 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


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When guests received their invitations to Cat Gazzoli and her fiancé Max’s wedding weekend in Italy, they knew it was going to be a special and unique event – Cat is CEO of Slow Food UK, based in Covent Garden and her wedding was to be a celebration of her passion for local sustainable food production and would be highlighting dishes unique to the Friuli Venezia Giulia region of Italy where Max was born.

Finding ‘the one’ We met at a small jazz venue in a funky cool area of Rome near the Vatican. It was love at first sight – or very close to it!

The proposal Max proposed on a yacht when we were sailing around the amazing Pontine islands – a set of small islands between Rome and Naples. He kept insisting we sail to a particularly stunning spot by sunset – Cala del Porto on the uninhabited island of Palmarola. He asked me to change because I was in sweatpants and had been working on iPhone all day, so he wanted to shake me out of that. I thought he just wanted a romantic toast as it was close to our one year anniversary. He popped Champagne, and gave me a ring, which was stunning! I immediately realised that my best friend, who is a jeweller, had made it for me –

she and Max had worked together to make this moment happen with a bespoke engagement ring that was exactly my taste. That was so special!

Location location We both have Italian heritage and Italy is close to both of our hearts. We live in the UK at the moment, but there was more linking us to the beautiful town of Udine, in the Friuli Venezia Giulia region where Max was born. I also wanted the wedding to last longer than one day so we could relax with our guests and make the most of the event. When Max first told he was from Fruili, my heart leapt as it is an area of Italy I wanted to learn more about. I spent a wonderful year with his family getting to know the region and its food producers as my passion is celebrating terroir and local foods. I wanted to incorporate the fabulous Fruilian ingredients into our wedding and, as head of Slow Food UK, it was vital for me to utilise the Slow Food ethos around small-scale producers into our big day.

The planning With both of us having very demanding jobs, and with the wedding in Italy, we asked our friend, Silvia Barbatello, who had helped other couples to marry in Friuli, to help organise our wedding. Silvia is a horticulture expert too so not only did she help us with the day-to-day www.BridesAbroad.tv 79


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RealWEDDINGS

logistics of the event, but she also helped me to source sustainable flowers and herbs in the church and on the dining tables. I think most brides want to stay on top of things and, with the help of my mother-in-law, my main duty was menu planning and sourcing of produce. We prepared a website with travel information, selected small intimate hotels which reflected the spirit of our wedding, and prepared a guest itinerary for the whole weekend. We organised an aperativo and dinner the evening before the wedding and a picnic/barbecue for the day after.

The guests We had 130 guests. Most of the guests stayed with us at Villa Gallici Deciani and at small boutique hotels and agri-turismos that we prearranged. Most people accepted the invitation because we organised a whole weekend of activity from Friday afternoon to Sunday. When

you get married abroad, I think you have to accept that not everyone will be able to come. However, due to our international background, whatever country we held the wedding in, we would always have had a proportion of our guests travelling overseas – we had people from over 40 different countries from Singapore to Brazil, so we knew we had to organise a full, rewarding experience for everyone.

Getting the look My wedding dress was one of the easiest details to sort out. I am addicted to Wild Rose products from Neal’s Yard Remedies and wanted to find a dress that reflected this. I saw the dress in a shop whilst walking through Udine and knew it was the one! Further more, the dress in the window was my size. The shop was closed unfortunately, so I had to ask my mother-in-law to go in a couple of days later and buy it for me - without even trying it on. Funnily enough, the

shop only had one dress like it and it was in my size! The dress had so much embroidiery that I felt that anything more than little pearl earrings would have been too much. We kept it all natural and our bridemaids choose their own dresses, which worked nicely.

The details Just as we ensured that all the wedding food was sourced from local and sustainable producers, I also wanted to adopt a similar process with the flowers. I hated the thought that hundreds of beautiful blooms would be discarded after just one day and so, instead, chose a selection of potted herbs for each table, which were taken by the guests to plant back at home. I chose wild flowers to carry down the aisle. For my cake, I found an old historic bakery where the baker has been doing yummy but www.BridesAbroad.tv 81


RealWEDDINGS

stunning cakes for over 40 years. I tasted a host of cakes with my husband-to-be and choose one, then worked with the baker to tweak it slightly to my taste. Lemon, strawberrry, cream and meringue Food was of critical importance for me for our wedding and I was insistant that I would use ‘Slow Food’ principles throughout the event. We secured a talented local chef, Claudio de Stefano, who is co-founder of Il Platina, an appointment-only restaurant that serves specialist dishes of Fruili. Claudio is renowned for his sensitivity to small producers. During the weekend, Claudio and I gave a cooking class to guests too.

The ceremony We married in a little chapel in the grounds of Villa Gallici Deciani. My mother-in-law found a wonderful priest who understood our passions for tradition in Friuli. My dad was in tears as he gave me away. The ceremony included Friuliano customs like linking the couple with a wooden yolk that we put in our hands. This was a symbolic tradition in weddings of farmers as Friuli was a very agriculture-focused economy.

The reception The reception was held in the courtyard of the Villa Gallici Deciani. Of course, the menu was a vitally important aspect of day and included: Aperitiv and starters buffet; Cheese corner; Friulian finger food; Veggie corner; Desserts buffet; Wedding cake; Fresh fruit; Coffee and spirits and an open bar. Our chef gave cooking demonstrations which wowed the crowds, whilst we had a local band called Mocambo Swing which is a jazz band from Friuli. We went around to jazz places listening till we found them and then asked them to do our wedding!

Photograpic memories I think photography is an incredibly important part of a wedding. Photos sustain the memories you are left with. We spent time choosing a company we were happy with, finally choosing Emotionlabstudio Photographers, and we were thrilled with the results (www.emotionlabstudio. com).

Further information Wedding Planner: Villa Gallici Deciani Photographer: Emotionlabstudio Photographers. (www.emotionlabstudio.com) www.slowfood.org.uk

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Advertising Feature

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ruly unique, this recently completed luxury private complex is located in the pretty village of Xaghra and is the perfect retreat for those seeking privacy but within easy reach of the cultural delights the island has to offer. With beautiful Mediterranean architecture, the project offers a high standard of luxury complete with private pools. Il Vigneto Court is made up of 4 beautiful houses and a duplex — ­ Girgentina, Gellewza, Inzolia, Serkuzan and Vermentino. Adjoining Il Vigneto Court are two impressive 300-year-old farmhouses, Ta’ Peppa and Ta’ Filomena, recently restored and furnished with modern amenities, yet retaining all original features for a warm and cosy feeling. Our rental villas also come with the option

of staff; they can be fully serviced with your own chef to cook a range of gastronomic delights for you. From locally sourced to full international cuisine, the range is as wide as your taste and desire. There is also no need to bother with the local taxi service when you can have your own chauffeur to drive you. Located in the village of Xaghra, home to various historical sites, amongst which are the famous Ggantija temples — erected during the Neolithic Age (c.3600-2500 BC) — and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The world-famous Ramla Bay is only a 5 min drive away. Its particularly goldenreddish sand makes this beach unique. Roman remains lie beneath the sand and the famous Calypso Cave overlooks the western side of the beach. According to tradition, this is the cave referred to by Homer in The Odyssey. The nymph,

Calypso lived in this cave and it is where she entertained Ulysses for seven years before he resumed his journey. Xaghra also overlooks the village of Marsalforn, the most popular tourist resort on the island. It is well served with restaurants, bars and beaches. The village has also become the première diving centre on Gozo, with several scuba diving schools located on the sea front. For the perfect accommodation in Gozo, you cannot beat Il Vigneto Court. Relax and unwind by booking one of our lovely honeymoon and wedding accommodations today. Our accommodation offers you the perfect island retreat. For more details visit www.abrahamgozofarmhouses.com

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Magical marriages in

Malta

If you want so much more than simply sun, sea and sand then Malta, with its glorious heritage, offers an incredible choice of wedding venues and an abundance of historical buildings, picturesque piazzas and dramatic landscapes to keep honeymooners enthralled, says Alan Benstock 84 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


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he beautiful islands of Malta and its neighbouring Gozo and Comino, form a tiny archipelago nestling at the heart of the Mediterranean, which have a rich blend of cultures – from Moorish to Italian, and British too – as a consequence of frequent past invasions by those nations who have tried to make Malta their own. With sunshine throughout the year, ease of communication (because everyone speaks English as their second language) and a wealth of historical architecture that will make glorious backdrops to your photographs, a wedding or honeymoon – or both – in Malta could be the perfect choice. There is plenty for you and your guests to see and do - film fans can visit the locations where Gladiator and Troy were filmed, foodies will be impressed with local wines and seafood and sun worshippers will love to simply stretch out on a beach with a good book or swim in the inky blue Mediterranean sea. Valletta, the island’s capital, is a glorious city of golden stone, flanked on either side by magnificent natural harbours. Within this fortress, the Renaissance streets unfold in an elegant grid, lined with princely palaces and dominated by the spectacular CoCathedral of St John. It is a place to learn about the fascinating history of the island and the Knights of the Order of St John, followed by quiet reflection over a coffee or lazy lunches while people-watching. It’s also a good place to browse the shops and markets – you can find amazing bargains here, such as stylish and fashionable jeans for just £5! With such a history, Malta offers a wide choice of venues and settings for weddings from grand palazzo and villas to quiet beaches and gardens.

Hire a guide

Consider hiring a guide for yourselves, or if you marry on the island, for your wedding guests the day before and after the wedding, so they can see the islands while you prepare or recover from your big day. Ask for recommendations from www. visitmalta.com. Foodies will love a trip to the neighbouring island of Gozo by seaplane to buy local delicacies such as pomegranate jam and peppered goats cheese at the Ta Meena vineyard (www.tamena-gozo. com), then eat delicious Gozitan antipasti at Il Kartell, a restaurant with a romantic setting overlooking the sea at Marsalform bay. Culture vultures will love the Hagar Qim and Mnandra temples, built on the coast of the Mediterranean over a thousand years before Stonehenge and the amazing historical architecture in Valetta, where you can visit the Co-Cathedral and wander through pretty streets and stop for coffee in the sunny squares (www.heritagemalta.org).

Older family members could be intrigued by the wealth of Second World War history on the island, which was an incredibly important strategic port. Vera Lynn songs are still played at the pretty Upper Barrakka Gardens, looking out across the stunning harbour. Or visit the pretty fishing village of Marsaxlokk, about 35 minutes from Valetta on the south-east corner of Malta and see the pretty painted boats bobbing about in the bay. Don’t forget to take your camera!

Getting There

Pick your moment For mild, warm weather, when the island is green, go from mid February to mid-May. For sunshine and a more North African desert feel to the countryside, go mid-May, June, September or October. July and August, when it’s 40 degrees and humid, it can get crowded with families, students and cruise ships.

Scheduled flights are available from many UK airports Air Malta www.airmalta.com Easyjet www.easyjet.com Ryanair www.ryanair.com Further information: www.visitmalta.com

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Wedding Planning

Couples looking for great weather, stunning scenery and culture for their wedding should look no further than Malta. This beautiful island offers a perfect backdrop to a wedding or honeymoon. In the Maltese culture, marriages are lavish affairs, but whether you are planning an intimate wedding for close family and friends, or an extravaganza for 150 guests, you can have the wedding of your dreams on the beautiful Maltese islands. You can choose from a range of wedding formats – from beachside ceremonies to church weddings and traditional receptions and have a tailor-made wedding package to suite your individual taste and style. Despite being a small island, Malta is the home to many talented chefs. Whilst there is a traditional Maltese fare, a full range of international cuisine is available for couples to offer their guests to enjoy in celebration of their marriage. For any couple considering Malta as a possible location for their special day, it must be remembered that the Maltese love weddings. Whether it’s their own, or for someone just visiting the island, everyone involved ensures it is a day not to be forgotten.

Courtesy of Sarah Young at Wedding Planner Malta

Plan your own wedding Holding your wedding on Malta does not mean you have to leave all the arrangements to someone else and just turn up on the day if you do not want to. As the island is just three-hours flying time from most UK airports and with low cost fares regularly available, pre-wedding planning trips are easy. Amie Swift and Gary Wallace have chosen Malta for their wedding ceremony in June 2014. Visiting the island for five days, they have been able to visit venues, sample menus and check guest accommodation. “We picked Malta as we wanted somewhere we could guarantee the weather and have a venue which was just that little bit different” said Amie, whilst tasting possible deserts at the Villa Arrigo – their final choice of venue.

“ We are using a wedding planner, but with Malta being so accessible, we have been able to visit and contribute our own ideas and check everything is how we want it,” she says. Whilst some venues offer a full wedding planning service, there are a number of freelance expert planners on the island, many with experience of arranging weddings for overseas visitors to Malta. Amie and Gary are using Mark Burton of Dream Days Weddings (www.dream-days.com) to coordinate their special day. Others are also highly recommended, including Sarah Young of Wedding Planner Malta (www. weddingplannermalta.com), who can help with all aspects of holding a wedding on the island.

Alamango Bridal And why not take the opportunity of buying your wedding dress during a pre-wedding trip to the island? You can take your bridesmaids along and choose a gorgeous wedding gown as well as bridesmaid dresses from Alamango Bridal – Malta’s leading bridal wear company. Alamango Bridal represents over 25 brands of dresses, veils and beautiful accessories. www.alamangobridal.com

Wedding Planners Amie Swift and Gary Wallace in Malta tasting 86 wwwBridesAbroad.tv

www.dream-days.com www.weddingplannermalta.com


Religious Ceremonies Should you like a religious ceremony, there are over 365 churches dotted around the three islands from grand basilicas to small parish churches to choose from. The elegance and splendor of one of Malta’s baroque churches will provide a setting for your special day, or if you prefer an intimate occasion, the many charming countryside chapels are ideal. Although the religion in Malta is Roman Catholic, couples from other denominations or preferring a civil ceremony will be able to find plenty of venues to suit their tastes and beliefs. A number of the local priests and clergy are happy to conduct services in English so that everyone attending will be able to follow the service.

Roman Catholic Church If you are planning a Roman Catholic wedding, each case has to be made individually – you can request information about the requirements for marriage in the church for foreign nationals by contacting The Curia on +356 2124 5350.

Anglican marriages There are two Anglican churches on Malta. To get married there, one partner must be a baptized Anglican, and there should be a good reason for the wedding to take place in Malta. You should also expect to agree to some marriage preparation. Marriage blessings can be arranged in some circumstances where one of the partners has been divorced. Anyone interested should contact the chaplaincy well in advance, before any arrangements have been made. Assistant Chaplain Revd Jeffrey Williams, Chaplaincy Office +356 2122 5714, Anglican@onvol.net www. anglicanmalta.org.

Civil wedding service at Palazzo Pariso

The Legal Essentials

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Jewish Marriages

Religious Blessing Not legally binding, but an option after a civil ceremony in the UK, especially if one of you has been divorced. Ask your wedding planner or venue about this.

Alternative Venues There are a number of interesting venues to choose from in Malta – you are in no way limited to hotels and churches. You can marry in one of the baroque palaces and stunning gardens, or a beautiful farmhouse in Gozo, or on one of Malta’s beautiful sandy beaches. Or you could marry at one of the luxury resort hotels on the island – there are many choices to suit all tastes and budgets. 88 wwwBridesAbroad.tv

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Contact Mr Ohayon for further details via the synagogue on Enrico Mazzi Street or call: +356 2123 7309.

Travel in Style If you need to travel to the wedding venue, the bride can use one of the many historical vehicles that can be found on the island, including the open-topped Austin Healy used by HM The Queen when, as Princess Elizabeth, she and Prince Phillip lived on the island as newly-weds in the 1940’s. Alternatively bride and groom can travel on a karozzin – a traditional Maltese horse-drawn carriage. For the wedding party a trip in a vintage Maltese Bus is a wonderful experience for everyone.

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Marriages in Malta are subject to the provisions of the Marriage Act 1975. For UK and other European citizens, it is legally binding under their own legal jurisdictions. There is no minimum residency requirement for getting married in Malta. The application to marry must be made no less than six weeks and no more than three months before your proposed marriage. You will have to allow for a visit to the Marriage Registry in either Valletta or Gozo on arrival on Malta and prior to your wedding day. At this visit, you will have to produce your passports. As English is one of the two official languages in Malta, all paper work and the ceremony will be in English with no translation costs on the day or when using your marriage certificate during your life together.


Stunning Venues Xara Palace Situated deep in the heart of Mdina, the medieval fortified city and old capital of Malta, is the Xara Palace. Built in the 17th century and designed to provide the noble Xara family with a place of safety, it has been meticulously restored as a 5-star boutique hotel delivering luxurious accommodation and award-winning haute cuisine. Perched high on the centuries-old bastions and surrounded by stunning baroque architecture, its roof terrace and dining room offer a stunning backdrop for any wedding with views of the island’s capital Valetta and the sea beyond. Each of the Xara Palace’s 17 bedrooms has been lovingly restored and decorated by the hotel’s owner, Susan Zammit Tabona. Whilst any room would provide the perfect start to married life, the former Herald’s Lodge, with its views both of the island and the city’s public square, is particularly romantic. In days gone by, its balcony was used by the town criers of Mdina for proclamations. Now it provides a discrete venue for breakfast in the morning sun. www.xarapalace.com.mt

Palazzo Parisio Palazzo Parisio in Naxxar is said to be one of the most opulent of Malta’s aristocratic homes. Acquired by the Marquis Giuseppe Scicluna in the late 19th Century, it is filled with exquisite furnishings and works of art. The ballroom with its vast chandeliers reflecting in enormous gilt mirrors is ideal for indoor weddings. However, it is the palace’s glorious Baroque gardens, with both an Orangerie and 17thcentury grotto, that provide a bride and groom with an ideal setting for a garden wedding. In spring, a bride entering from the palace’s terraces would be greeted with the fragrance of orange and lemon blossom from the many citrus fruit trees in the grounds. www.palazzoparisio.com

Villa Arrigo Located at San Pawl tat Targa north of Naxxar is the impressive 19th century palazzo Villa Arrigo, which was formerly the smaller Villino Agius. Beautifully restored and furnished with carefully selected antique furniture, the villa is surrounded by secluded gardens. As a former summer residence, it is cool and peaceful with a magnificent water feature as one of its exclusive settings for wedding ceremonies. The friendly and experienced staff can provide a full wedding planning service coordinating all aspects of the special day. Whilst not offering accommodation for guests at the Villa, there are many hotels nearby offering luxury facilities for family and friends. johnvellagalea@onvol. net. 90 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


Say I Do in Malta On the most important day of your life everything must be simply perfect. Osborne Caterers will make it happen for you at Villa Arrigo. Its majestic interiors, spacious marquee and manicured Mediterranean gardens offer a number of options for all seasons, and to suit the number of guests. Osborne Caterers have a sterling reputation in planning and catering for some of the most spectacular Wedding Receptions on the Island. For us it’s a question of pride – every wedding is like a family wedding. Our team of dedicated professionals will make your wedding memorable and unique. We will plan every last detail of your wedding and make you feel like royalty.

Exclusively Yours

Open daily for viewing & booking till 4pm Also 5pm till 7.30pm on Wednesday Tel: +356 2142 3214 | info@osbornecaterers.com villaarrigo@onvol.net | www.osbornecaterers.com


Westin Dragonara Hotel Whilst the Plazzo Parisio was the winter home of the Scicluna family, Dragonara Point over looking Spinola Bay was their summer home, Many of the family’s properties are now part of the lavish Westin Dragonara Hotel and offer a variety of venues of various size and character, all with sea views. Particular suitable for intimate weddings are the old boat houses. Their old jetties mean couples can arrive by dghajsa – the brightly coloured gondola-like fishing boats often seen in the island’s harbours – serenely passing through the narrow waterways to their wedding ceremony. The hotel staff are well experienced in arranging weddings and they can be creative both with decoration of the venue and food. As the hotel faces east, a speciality is the sunrise ceremony on the water’s edge followed by a true wedding breakfast as the early morning rays of the sun start to warm the day up. This is then followed by a boat trip around the island of Malta with a barbecue for the happy couple and their guests. www.westindragonaramalta.com

Palace Malta In nearby Sliema, is the Palace Malta; a stylish boutique hotel with distinctive elegance. On its roof is a large terrace with a large infinity pool at its centre. With its views of the sea, it provides a setting for couples who want a wedding with a more modern twist. www.thepalacemalta.com

GOZO

Away from Malta is the small island of Gozo. Accessed by ferry, it is smaller and greener than its big sister. At the western tip are wild and wave-battered cliffs with dramatic rock formations known as Dwejra. Some of the island’s natural landmarks can be found there including the stunning Azure Window and the Blue Hole – romantic locations for memorable wedding photographs

Kempinski St Lawrenz Resort & Spa On the island can be found the Kempinski St Lawrenz Resort and Spa, a stylish retreat built of creamy coloured stone and set in subtropical gardens. With one of Europe’s finest spas specialising in Ayurvedic treatments, the hotel staff can devise a day of extravagance for any couple. www.kempinski.com 92 wwwBridesAbroad.tv

Ta Cenc Hotel To the edge of Sannat is Ta’ Cenc Hotel, a romantic village style, venue which includes circular ‘trullos’ amongst its rooms. Overlooking majestic cliffs and with magnificent views over Malta and the third island of Comino, it affords couples a wedding venue of tranquillity. www.tacenc.com


Gorgeous Maltese Brides Buy a beautiful bridal gown in Malta and enjoy a FREE tour of the island in a Classic Car

Planning to marry in Malta? Take your bridesmaids for a pre-wedding weekend to choose the wedding gown of your dreams from Alamango Bridal – Malta’s leading bridal wear company. Alamango Bridal offers an amazing choice of 25 brands of dresses, veils and beautiful accessories – and as an added bonus, the company is offering a FREE guided tour of Malta for bride or groom in an elegant classic E-type Jaguar car either before or after your wedding day.

At Alamango showrooms you will immediately notice the relaxed yet professional atmosphere to help you choose a gorgeous gown for you and your bridesmaids. With a huge range to suit all tastes, styles and preferences, you will be free to try on dresses in one of the beautiful mirrored fitting rooms. Alamango offers a made to measure service for mother and bridesmaids, with final fitting within four days, and a one day wedding dress alteration service, so you can be sure that your dresses will be a perfect fit. After choosing your dress, you can enjoy a fun stay on the sunshine island knowing that your fabulous dress will be made to measure and ready to wear by the time you return home.

Manoel De Vilhena Street, Gzira, Malta Email: info@alamangobridal.com Tel: 21 314331

www.alamangobridal.com


Be it a wedding for 20 or 500, we can definitely make it a day to remember as our catering and banquet facilities are second to none. Plus our professional and capable staff will assume responsibility for the details large and small to ensure that your dream wedding comes to fruition. Venues for the wedding reception include the Il-Merill Restaurant which offers an unobstructed view of the clear blue Mediterranean Sea and can accommodate up to 1,000 people (standing). Alternatively why not have your wedding in a Bedouin Tent on our private sandy beach? Also there is our extensive terrace space surrounding our outdoor pools overlooking the picturesque Paradise Bay, which can also accommodate small or large parties. Have your main reception on our extensive pool decks and follow it up with an after wedding party on our sandy beach. The choice of venues is endless!

Paradise Bay, Cirkewwa, MLH 9068, Malta (+356) 21 521166, 21521153 events@paradise-bay.com

www.paradise-bay.com


Planning

Guide

96

Weather Permitting

Don’t let your wedding day be a wash out – check the worldwide weather guide for the sunniest beaches, snowiest peaks and perfect temperatures.

100 Wedding Countdown

Our 12-month wedding checklist to the big day.

102 Pop The Question

Our expert wedding planners answer your most frequently asked questions.

104 Ask The Planner

Lisa Burton of The Bridal Consultant professional wedding planning service shares her wisdom and experience with brides-to-be.

106 Guest Etiquette

What can you expect from your guests? The essential guide to wedding etiquette.

www.BridesAbroad.tv 95


Weather permitting

Do you want to sizzle at the hottest wedding of the year or are you a cool bride looking for a seriously chilled location? Check out our weather guide to help you choose the perfect destination throughout the year

At a glance

Best for May-October

Best for November-April

• Tahiti, Fiji and other Pacific Islands • Mauritius & Seychelles • North America • Hawaii • Canada • Kenya • Tanzania & Zanzibar • Europe • Queensland & Barrier Reef

• Caribbean • Mexico • Thailand • Australia & New Zealand • Maldives • South Africa • Dubai • European ski destinations

96 www.BridesAbroad.tv


January

February

Hot Spots

Hot Spots

Australia, Brazil, Caribbean, Cuba, Dubai, Hawaii Malaysia, Maldives, Mexico, Thailand

Australia, Brazil, Caribbean, Cuba, Dubai, Hawaii Malaysia, Maldives, Mexico, Thailand

Cool & Chilled

Cool & Chilled

Canada, European Alps Iceland, Scandinavia, USA

Canada, European Alps, Iceland, Scandinavia, USA

Something Different

Something Different

Argentina, Egypt, Hong Kong, India, Morocco New Zealand, Sri Lanka

Argentina, Egypt, Hong Kong, India, Morocco New Zealand, Sri Lanka

Jungle Safari

Jungle Safari

Belize, Costa Rica, Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania

Belize, Costa Rica, Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania

Avoid

Avoid

Alaska, Borneo

Alaska,

March

April

Hot Spots

Hot Spots

Australia, Brazil, Caribbean, Cuba, Dubai, French Polynesia Hawaii, Malaysia, Maldives, Mexico, Thailand

Australia, Brazil, Caribbean, Cuba, Dubai, French Polynesia Greece, Hawaii, Indonesia, Mauritius, Seychelles, Malaysia. Maldives, Mexico

Cool & Chilled Canada, USA, European Alps, Scandinavia, Iceland

Something Different Argentina, Egypt, India, Morocco, New Zealand, Hong Kong

Jungle Safari

Cool & Chilled European Alps, Scandinavia

Something Different Argentina, Egypt, Hong Kong, India

Jungle Safari

Belize, Borneo, Botswana, Costa Rica, Kenya, South Africa Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Belize, Zambia

Belize, Borneo, Botswana, Costa Rica, South Africa, Zambia

Avoid

Avoid

Alaska

Alaska, Kenya, Tanzania www.BridesAbroad.tv 97


May

June

Hot Spots

Hot Spots

Brazil, Cyprus, Dubai, Fiji, French Polynesia, Greece, Hawaii Indonesia, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mexico, Seychelles, Spain, Thailand

Cyprus, Fiji, French Polynesia, Greece, Hawaii, Indonesia, Italy, Malaysia, Mauritius, Seychelles, Spain, USA

Cool & Chilled

Cool & Chilled

Alaska, Iceland

Canada, European Alps, Iceland, Scandinavia, USA

Something Different

Something Different

Cook Islands, Egypt, Hong Kong, France, Ireland, Italy, Morocco, Scandinavia

Alaska, New Zealand

Jungle Safari Belize, Borneo, Botswana, South Africa, Zambia

Avoid Caribbean, Cuba, Kenya, Maldives, Tanzania

Jungle Safari Borneo, Botswana, Tanzania, Zambia

Avoid Caribbean, Cuba, Dubai, Egypt, Maldives

July

August

Hot Spots

Hot Spots

Canada, Cyprus, Fiji, French Polynesia, Greece, Hawaii Indonesia, Malaysia, Mauritius, Seychelles, Spain, USA

Canada, Cyprus, Fiji, French Polynesia, Hawaii, Indonesia, Malaysia, Seychelles, Spain, USA

Cool & Chilled

Cool & Chilled

Alaska, Iceland

Alaska, Iceland

Something Different

Something Different

France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Peru, Scandinavia, Scotland, Spain

France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Peru, Scandinavia, Scotland

Jungle Safari

Jungle Safari

Borneo, Botswana, Kenya,

Borneo, Botswana, Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia

Tanzania, Zambia

Avoid Caribbean, Cuba, Dubai, Egypt 98 www.BridesAbroad.tv

Avoid

Belize, Caribbean, Costa Rica Cuba, Dubai, Egypt


September

October

Hot Spots

Hot Spots

Australia, Brazil, Cyprus, Fiji, French Polynesia, Greece, Hawaii Indonesia, Malaysia, Mauritius, Seychelles, Spain, USA

Australia, Brazil, Cyprus, Dubai, Fiji, French Polynesia, Greece, Hawaii, Malaysia, Mauritius, Seychelles, Spain

Cool & Chilled

Cool & Chilled

Alaska, New Zealand

Canada, USA

Something Different

Something Different

Egypt, France, Hong Kong, Italy, Peru, Sri Lanka, USA

Egypt, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Morocco, Sri Lanka, USA

Jungle Safari

Jungle Safari

Borneo, Botswana, Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia

Belize, Borneo, Botswana, Kenya, Tanzania Zambia, South Africa

Avoid

Avoid

Belize, Caribbean, Cuba, Costa Rica

Alaska, Belize, Caribbean, Costa Rica, Cuba

November

December

Hot Spots

Hot Spots

Australia, Brazil, Dubai, French Polynesia, Hawaii, Mauritius, Maldives, Mexico, Thailand

Australia, Brazil, Caribbean, Cuba, Dubai, French Polynesia, Hawaii, Malaysia, Maldives, Mexico, Thailand

Cool & Chilled

Cool & Chilled

Canada, Scandinavia, USA

Canada, European Alps, Scandinavia, USA

Something Different

Something Different

Argentina, Egypt, Hong Kong, India, Morocco, New Zealand, Sri Lamka, USA

Argentina, Egypt, Hong Kong, India, Morocco, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, USA

Jungle Safari

Jungle Safari

Belize, Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania

Belize, Costa Rica, Kenya, South Africa,Tanzania

Avoid Alaska, Borneo

Avoid

Alaska, Borneo www.BridesAbroad.tv 99


W edding Countdown

Pic courtesy of Sandals

Don’t be caught out! Set your diary for our month-by-month wedding checklist

12 MONTHS

• Decide on a budget • Fix a date and time • Decide on guest numbers • Research to find your perfect venue! • Check world weather

11 MONTHS

• Send out save the day cards • Take out wedding insurance and include your wedding dress • Make appointments to try out wedding dresses • Start downloading music if planning a CD for reception • Check availability at resorts and get prices

10 MONTHS

• Book your hotel and wedding package • Order invitations and envelopes as well as place cards • Inform guests of travel plans and give them your tour operator details so they can work out their own arrangements • Set up a honeymoon gift list

100 www.BridesAbroad.tv

• Pick your bridesmaids, ushers and best man • Decide on your dress – allow at least four months for a made-to-measure gown to be delivered

9 MONTHS

• Start thinking about a theme for your wedding • Choose and order your bridesmaids outfits • Discuss with your wedding planners what documents you need • Check your passport is up to date • Arrange your travel insurance

8 MONTHS • If you are having a religious ceremony, discuss readings and choose music for your service • Check whether readings and music are permitted for a civil ceremony

7 MONTHS

• Choose and order favours • Shop for table decorations, confetti and trimmings

• Choose shoes and accessories for you and your bridesmaids

6 MONTHS

• Remind your fiancé to get his and the ushers’ outfits • Choose gifts for your attendants, best man, mum and helpers • Chase up any guests who haven’t responded

5 MONTHS

• Book a consultation with your hairstylist • Start your course of Restylane fillers, permanent hair removal, cosmetic tweaks and slimming treatments

4 MONTHS

• Go shopping for honeymoon clothes • Check whether you need visas or inoculations • Start arrangements for your stag and hen party • Start your diet and fitness campaign

3 MONTHS

• Check that you have received all the


Honeymoon checklist 6 MONTHS • Do your research • Health and safety – check for travel advice and updates at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (fco.gov.org) • Set the honeymoon budget

5 MONTHS • Make your choice early as airline prices can soar for late bookings • Check on visas • Check your passport is up to date

4 MONTHS • Have your jabs • Start health and fitness plan

3 MONTHS correct documentation, including travel tickets. Check the details carefully for correct names, dates and times of flights • Inform the tour operator of guests who are staying at different hotels – day passes need to be arranged for them • Book a make-up session at a department store and choose your wedding make-up. Make sure it is heat -and-water-resistant if you are going to hot climes • Choose your ‘special wedding perfume’ • Book your pre-wedding hair appointment for cut and colour • Choose a company for a gift list and make your selection

2 MONTHS

• Check that your fiancé has the rings and his wedding clothes • Collect your wedding dress • Book your beauty treatments, including nails, facial, fake tan, waxing, eyebrow shape, false lashes

1 MONTH

• Double check that you have all the original documentation for your wedding • Make sure you have a suitable luggage carrier for your wedding dress for transportation in the hold of the plane • Buy your sun protection, travel-sized products etc • Boost and fine tune your diet and fitness plan • Work out the seating plan for your reception • Discuss final checklist with your wedding planner • Check that your passport, visas, inoculations and insurance are in place

TWO WEEKS • Have your final hair appointment and ask for tips and products. Take photographs to show hairdressers at your destination

• Two days prior to departure have beauty treatments including nails, facial, fake tan, waxing, eyebrow shape, false lashes etc • Order your travel cheques and currency • Have your stag and hen party

• Choose your honeymoon wardrobe • Book appointments for fillers, permanent hair removal etc.

On arrival at your resort

1 MONTH

• Meet the resort’s wedding co-ordinator to check all documentation and set a day, time and location for the ceremony • Choose your flowers, cake and witnesses • Order add-ons such as larger cake, more wine, extra buttonholes, photographer, music and transport to the ceremony • Check that day passes and special permissions for children have been arranged for guests staying at other hotels • Arrange hairstylist, beauty appointments and spa treatments

2 WEEKS

The day before your wedding • You will have a wedding rehearsal with your wedding co-ordinator • Have a spa massage to relax you for your big day • Have a top-up spray tan if needed

The big day • Have your hair and make-up done at the hotel • Your wedding co-ordinator will check everything else is in place • Once the Marriage Officer arrives you will receive a call to let you know it’s time to say ‘I Do’

2 MONTHS • Buy your luggage • Confirm bookings • Choose your perfume and water and heatproof holiday make-up • Order travellers cheques and currency • Check your holiday insurance carefully

1 WEEK • Book a pedicure, have a spray tan and leg and bikini wax. • Check in online • Check airport transfers

Check your documents!

You will need originals – or copies certified by a notary or solicitor of the following. But do check with your wedding tour operator and/or wedding planner. • 10 year passport, valid for at least six months • Birth certificates • If you are divorced, a decree absolute • If widowed, a death certificate and previous marriage certificate • An affidavit signed by a solicitor stating no legal objection to the marriage • If you have changed your name by deed poll, ensure it is proof stamped and signed by a solicitor. Visit fco.gov.uk for further details, and do check with your tour operator and wedding planner before you leave for your destination.

www.BridesAbroad.tv 101


POP the

Question

The facts...

Where can I get married abroad? Where do you fancy? You name it, and you can probably get married there. Weddings can be arranged in more than 30 countries around the world, and in many different settings.

How much will it cost? Tour operator Kuoni is a destination wedding specialist. It says the average price of its destination weddings, including honeymoon, is less than £3,000 – a small cost compared to the average UK wedding! Prices vary considerably for a wedding or vow renewal package; this is paid as a supplement to your holiday package price. Some resorts offer free wedding packages, so bargain hunters should check their options with tour operators.

The legals...

Will our marriage be legally recognised in the UK? Yes. Your wedding will be registered in the country it takes place in and is completely legal under British law, so you don’t need to register your marriage again when you get home.

We asked dedicated wedding planners to give us a selection of their most frequently asked questions...

What are the legal requirements?

They vary from country to country, but in general you must be over 20 years of age and need your British passports, original copies of your birth certificates and documentation regarding any previous marriages, or if you are widowed or divorced. Some countries have additional costs for legalisation and translation of documents. If you book through a tour operator, such as Kuoni, Thomas Cook or Turquoise and Sandals, your dedicated wedding team will give you full details at the time of your booking.

Are there residency restrictions in some countries?

Yes, so you need to check residency restrictions with your tour operator or wedding planner. The most difficult countries are Spain (40 days residency), France (40 days) and Australia (one month and one day); however, there are no restrictions in Antigua, Jamaica or Las Vegas.

What name should I travel under? If you are getting hitched abroad you can’t change the name on your passport until you return home. You must travel in your maiden name and your return airline tickets need to be in the same name as your passport or they will not be valid. Of course you can change your passport to your married name once you are back home in the UK and are in possession of your marriage certificate.

102 www.BridesAbroad.tv


When will I receive my marriage certificate? It will either be handed to you at the resort or sent via registered post to your home address. Don’t panic if it takes a while to arrive – this is normal, especially if you marry in Jamaica where it can take up to 12 months! If you get married in certain countries, like Mexico and the Dominican Republic it will need to be translated, which will cause extra delay. For more information visit direct.gov.uk and search under passports.

The ceremony... Can we invite guests to our wedding?

Of course! Some hotels even offer reduced rate weddings for more than four guests. Remember to order extras for your guests, such as more wine, a larger wedding cake or extra buttonholes. If the wedding couple is staying at an all inclusive resort, they will need to buy one-day passes for guests staying at other hotels, and in adultsonly resorts you will need to ask special permission for children to attend the wedding on a day pass. All this can be organised at the resort by your wedding planner.

When do I meet the resort’s wedding planner? One to three days after your arrival at your resort. Your wedding planner will sort out the fine details of your wedding, from champagne to the icing on your cake, and check your documentation so that you can relax as the arrangements are done on your behalf. Once the local registrar is happy your paperwork is in order, your wedding planner will give you a date and time for the ceremony and send out invitations to your guests.

Where will our ceremony take place? The hotel wedding planner will show you the locations to choose from – usually in the gardens of your hotel, or in a decorated wedding pavilion. If you are marrying in Europe you may choose to exchange vows in the local church or town hall, or in Las Vegas, a wedding chapel. The hotel wedding co-ordinator will show you the locations to choose from. It’s unusual to have a ceremony on the beach, but many couples take beach photographs after the ceremony.

Who will be at the ceremony? Most overseas weddings are civil ceremonies, in the style of registry office services, unless a religious ceremony has been pre-arranged. The ceremony will be conducted by a judge, celebrant, minister or registrar. You will need two to four witnesses, who could be anyone from your wedding guests to people you have met on the beach the previous day. Your wedding planner will be there too, to ensure your day goes without a hitch.

The important bits... How should I transport my wedding dress?

We recommend wedding outfits should be packed in a hard suitcase or strong box, as they will be placed in the hold of the plane. It might be an idea to contact your airline for more information. Generally, there is no extra baggage allowance for wedding outfits. You can also take out extra insurance to cover the transportation of your dress.

Can I choose my flowers? Absolutely! At the resort, your wedding planner will show you photos of bouquets for you to make a selection. Your wedding bouquet and his buttonhole are included in your wedding package, but extra flowers and buttonholes can be ordered for guests and bridesmaids.

What about the music? You can request whatever music you prefer and it will be arranged for you – from a DJ playing your favourite songs to calypso bands. If you prefer you can pack a CD with your chosen musical selection, which can be played at your wedding.

Will I have a cake? A wedding cake is included in wedding packages; this is usually a sponge cake with white icing. You can add your own decorations, and even arrange for an upgraded cake. Sandals Resorts offer a choice of themed weddings from the Martha Stewart collection, which feature colour co-ordinated cakes to match the chosen wedding palette.

Who will take care of my hair and make-up? Every bride wants to look her best and fortunately many hotels have hair and beauty services with make-up artists on-hand. Even if they don’t, your wedding planner can arrange for experts to come to the hotel.

Can I arrange for a good wedding photographer? Your wedding planner will show you examples of local photographers’ work at the resort so that you can choose the style that suits you best. Photographer and DVD are usually at extra cost; they are rarely included in your wedding package.

What about the wedding dinner? If you have a group of guests at your wedding, a gala dinner is usually arranged as part of your wedding package. If it’s just the two of you, your wedding planner will arrange a candlelit dinner for two in a romantic location.

Can we leave our guests behind for a honeymoon on our own? Absolutely. Simply ask your guests to stay at a different hotel close by, or transfer to another hotel after the ceremony.

And finally...

How can I find out more? Speak to Brides Abroad Travel Team on: 0870 774 8480

www.BridesAbroad.tv 103


Ask the planners! We asked Lisa Burton of The Bridal Consultant wedding planning service to answer your burning questions on planning a wedding abroad. Bespoke ceremony required I’d like to get married abroad but the ceremony is very important to me and I don’t want it to be overlooked, I’ve seen friends’ wedding videos and the ceremony is over in 10 minutes. Can you recommend any destinations where the ceremony can be personalised to us as a couple? Katie, Pontypool

Don’t be late!

Hair raising!

I’ve been researching having a wedding abroad and I’m finding that ceremonies take place much later in the day than I anticipated. I was thinking of getting married around lunchtime but I’m seeing ceremonies as late at 6pm. Is this the norm? Can you tell me why?

I’m planning my wedding in Cuba for 2014 and my hair and make-up is very important to me. I’ve heard some horror stories and I want to be more prepared before the day, can you give me any tips?

Bethan, Stoke on Trent

Hi Rebecca

Hi Katie

Hi Bethan

No matter where you get married, you should be able to personalise your wedding ceremony, there will however be varying degrees of how much. In the US, the minister plays a large part in the ceremony and can contact you directly to ask about your history, how you met, your desires for the future, and if you want to mention anyone who can’t be present. You can also introduce your own readings or have a singer. The result is a very personal, intimate ceremony. In the Mediterranean, the ceremony is more of a formality and the emphasis is on the celebration afterwards. In the US, the ceremony takes up to 25 minutes, however, in Greece it can take just 10! You can still add your own vows, have guests do readings or light a candle for anyone who can’t be with you on the day. If your faith is important, you could have a religious wedding very similar to a UK religious ceremony, or for something less formal you could have a minister perform a blessing after the civil wedding. Try and embrace the local customs to personalise your wedding and it will be more special and unique to you.

A wedding abroad often takes place later in the day, sometimes as late as sunset and usually no earlier than 3pm – the main reason is the heat, Most weddings abroad are outside and the midday heat can top 40°C, so the temperature would be unbearable, especially if the wedding party is dressed in formal attire. There are lots of other advantages to a late ceremony, the sun will be lower and less intense so won’t bleach your photos, you’ll have a lovely soft glow instead; your guests won’t be squinting or wearing sunglasses and, budgetwise, you will only have to provide one meal! So a huge cost saving. If you get married at lunchtime, you would need to fill your afternoon for approximately four hours before dinner time - you could take guests on a cruise or go to a venue for a drinks and canapé reception but this would add considerably to the cost. Weddings abroad are usually a late afternoon or evening affair with the ceremony leading onto an evening meal – the UK is one of the only countries where early weddings are more the norm.

Contact Lisa: Do you have any questions for Lisa Burton of The Bridal Consultant? Email your questions to: lisaburton@thebridalconsultant.co.uk 104 www.BridesAbroad.tv

Rebecca in Cardiff

I’d recommend that you have a trial first with your hairdresser in the UK after you have your final hair cut/colour before the wedding, so your hair is the same as it will be on the big day. Take a photo of your dress along to the salon and any make-up and hair accessories you wish to use. If you’re wanting fresh flowers, then get a couple of samples from a local florist to use for the trial. Then take lots of photos from every angle in natural daylight to show your stylist in Cuba. Ask your wedding planner or venue to arrange a trial with your Cuban stylist shortly after you arrive, so you can try the style and make sure you are happy with the results. The climate can wreak havoc with hair, so you may need to tweak the style to suit the conditions. Don’t forget to use a good sun block too – there is nothing worse than having sun burn or strap lines on your wedding day! With these tips you’re set to look amazing on the day!

The Bridal Consultant is a full wedding planning service that specialises in exclusive destination weddings in New York, Costa Blanca (Spain), Cyprus, Santorini and Zakynthos (Greece). www.thebridalconsultant.co.uk Call 01925 419 555 and quote the Bridal Consultant for fantastic deals on your travel arrangements.


Guest etiquette

If you’re getting hitched abroad, do the same rules about gifts, hospitality and children apply? We asked top UK experts to find out...

T

here are certain issues that loom large when you’re hosting a wedding. Yes, it’s your special day, but you want your guests to remember having a great time, too. So if they’re travelling a long way to attend your wedding celebration, should you be paying for everything once they get there? And should you still expect them to buy you a gift as well? And how can you make them feel welcomed, while reducing the pressure on their finances? ‘When we are arranging destination weddings, we try to encourage couples to think about how they would want to be treated and welcomed if they had made the effort to travel a long distance and at some expense,’ says expert wedding planner Sarah Haywood ((www.sarahhaywood.com), author of The Wedding Bible (£35, The Wedding Bible Company Limited). ‘Choose somewhere accessible. Offer a range of accommodation for all budgets. Perhaps arrange excursions and sightseeing the days either side of the wedding and if you need guests to contribute, inform them at the point of sending the invitation – and tell them how to sign up for the additional events. And tell people several months in advance what you are planning so they can book flights and accommodation at reasonable rates.’ 106 wwwBridesAbroad.tv

Against this backdrop of being considerate and generally helpful, these are the other issues you’ll need to think about...

Should you expect gifts? ‘If you are concerned at the expense for your guests, you might want to tell them that travelling to your destination wedding is gift enough,’ says Sarah Haywood. ‘But be prepared for some guests to want to still buy you a gift and perhaps consider arranging a Gift List somewhere to refer guests who ask.’ ‘Only you will know what is appropriate for your guests,’ says Geraldine Sweetland from wedding abroad experts Love & Lord. ‘Obviously travelling abroad can be asking more from guests than if holding the wedding in the UK, but we often find that guests will use the wedding as an opportunity to take a holiday at the same time, so make sure you send out invitations in plenty of time. If you don’t want a traditional gift list, you could ask for contributions towards your honeymoon, so guests are able to donate any amount of their choice.’ ‘I think the couple should leave it to people’s discretion and budget and make it clear that having their friends and family means more than gifts,’ says psychotherapist Jules McClean (www.julesmccleancounselling.co.uk).

The financial constraints now, in terms of the economic climate, means no-one should feel obliged, but a small, thoughtful gift says so much. A wedding list is always useful in case people ask you for it, but gifts should not be an obligation, which blocks a good relationship with feelings of resentment.’

Is it acceptable to ask guests to pay for drinks? ‘If you do not have the budget to cover the bar costs then ensure that the drinks are not over-priced by agreeing the bar charges in advance with your venue, and negotiating if you think they are too high,’ says Sarah Haywood. ‘If you have a small budget available, perhaps restrict what is on offer gratis to wine, beers and soft drinks. In my experience, a limited choice of free drinks is never sneered upon: indeed it is always appreciated by guests who have travelled a long distance and sometimes at considerable expense, not to have to put their hands in their pockets for any part of the wedding celebration itself. I would always advise that, if at all possible, provide everything for free and reduce costs elsewhere to do so.’ Geraldine Sweetland agrees: ‘‘In an ideal world, the wedding day should be fully catered for,’ she says, ‘but if your wedding is spread across two or three days, it’s


more acceptable to ask guests to contribute towards drinks on the days outside the actual wedding day itself,’ she says. ‘Some weddings are done entirely on a budget, and a wedding abroad can often cost less, which can be a motivating factor,’ says Jules McClean. ‘The key here is communication – be explicit when you invite guests, letting them know there’s a pay bar, so there’s no room for resentment or a nasty surprise which may spoil the event for the guest.’

Is it fair to expect friends to pay for your hen night, or attend a big hen weekend as well as the wedding? ‘Never expect people to be happy to pay large sums of money to celebrate your engagement and/or wedding, because you can never really know the ins and outs of everyone’s financial circumstances,’ says Sarah Haywood. ‘Remember that we all have different priorities as far as money and budgeting is concerned, so if you’re planning something lavish, some friends simply will not be able to afford to attend – you need to make sure they know it is OK to decline an invitation, and that you genuinely won’t hold it against them.’ ‘The trend for larger hen events has grown in recent years,’ says Geraldine Sweetland. ‘The organisers of the hen party really should consider the financial limitations of the attendees and ask them for input into the plans so that nothing is unexpected.’ ‘You need to be very careful not to create a sense of pressure, which could trigger financial anxiety, and resentment from someone who feels they are being made to feel like they’re not a good enough friend if they don’t have the money to take part,’ says Jules McClean. ‘Guests should be told the itinerary and budget, and given a clear message that there will be no hard feelings if someone can’t join in.’

Is it OK to ask guests to give up holiday days from work to attend? ‘If it is not OK then they will not attend!’ says Sarah Haywood. ‘When you’re setting the date perhaps consider how best to timetable the main events so that people can limit how much time they need to take off from work. Also consider flight and transfer times and make it as easy as possible for the majority of guests to attend. Perhaps encourage guests to travel on a particular flight together and lay on a coach transfer to get them to the venue at the other end, saving taxi costs. Do as much of the groundwork as you can so guests know all they need to do is get there – arranging hotel accommodation and securing discounts for block bookings, giving a lot of information about the destination, car hire, transfer information, and so forth.’ ‘We find Saturday remains the most popular

day for a wedding, and obviously bank holiday weekends are highly sought after,’ says Geraldine Sweetland. ‘With a weekend wedding, most couples try to have events arranged over Friday, Saturday and Sunday in order for guests to only take one day of their holiday time. One or two days is acceptable.’

Is it too much to expect people with children not to bring them and to have to find childcare? ‘As with any wedding, if children are being excluded then there can be no exceptions other than close family and nursing mothers,’ says Sarah Haywood. ‘Give parents as much time as possible to arrange cover so they can attend. Also accept that some people will simply not want to come and others will not be able to. And remember to be tactful when approaching the subject.’ ‘Always a delicate topic, with travelling abroad for a wedding,’ says Geraldine Sweetland. ‘It can be more appropriate to suggest the children are left behind, but we tend to suggest offering babysitting services to parents in the wedding venue and ultimately let them make the choice. You will find some will enjoy having time away from the children and, in addition, it is always wise to indicate how child-friendly the environment will be and to allow parents to use their own initiative about what is appropriate. ‘This is more of a personal view, but I don’t think weddings are suitable for small children as unconsciously the day becomes about them simply due to their pressing needs, and therefore can detract from the couple who, quite rightly, want to be selfish for once!’ says Jules McClean. ‘Teenagers are great, as they are able to look after themselves!’

Should you expect everyone to leave after the wedding so you can enjoy your honeymoon? ‘If people have travelled overseas then it’s reasonable to expect that some of them may want to make the most of it and extend their stay,’ says Sarah Haywood. ‘ If you don’t want to be hosting guests after the wedding, perhaps arrange for your honeymoon to be somewhere else.’ ‘Most people don’t expect to join the couple on their honeymoon!’ says Geraldine Sweetland. ‘We find couples usually travel elsewhere in the country to enjoy their honeymoon, but occasionally some make the choice to spend time with their family in the area and then take their private honeymoon later on. Guests will generally expect to leave once the celebrations are over.’ ‘If guests have taken the time, effort and money to attend then consideration ought to prevail,’ says Jules McClean. ‘You should think about spending some time with your guests either before, or after the wedding, with a low key lunch, or a sight-seeing activity to show off the local area, for example. It can be hard on the day itself to spend time with everyone.’

A sample invitation to tackle these issues... ...suggested by Sarah Haywood. Caroline and Jack invite you to celebrate their wedding on June 4th, 2011  Ascoli Piceno, Italy We would love you to share our special wedding celebration but understand the long distance may prohibit. If you are able to attend, your presence will be gift enough. Then a more detailed enclosure covering the following: ■ ■

Exact location of celebration Accommodation details and how to book (including prices and booking references if rooms gave been secured at discounted rates)

Nearest airport

Transfer and/or car hire details

■ ■

Details of all parties and wedding-related gatherings Dress codes for all events Some information about the area and what there is to do Departure information (let them know when it will be over so they can arrange onward travel or return journey home) You can either let people know within your invitation where you have registered your gift list, or let people know they can contact you if they want this information.

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Honeymoons

112 7 Sensational Honeymoons

Don’t go with the flow in the usual honeymoon hotspots: dare to be different and indulge in a holiday with the wow factor.

120 Honeymoon Islands

From exotic desert islands to European gems, we discover a world of island bliss for honeymooners.

134 Vinotherapy

Take the ultimate pampering honeymoon immersed in your favourite tipple!

138 Honeymoon Offers

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Advertising Feature

Ritz Carlton Sharm El Sheikh Picture-perfect weddings in the Red Sea Riviera

Sharm El Sheikh is known for its glamorous lifestyle, gorgeous setting and sunny weather. It is the ultimate destination for a picture-perfect wedding and unforgettable honeymoon, whatever time of year you are planning to tie the knot.

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ituated on the southern tip of Egypt’s Sinai Peninsular, Sharm El Sheikh is an exceptional city set between a remote desert mountain range and the Red Sea in what is considered to be one of the earth’s most fascinating natural seascape environments, created three million years ago by the movements of tectonic plates on the earth’s surface.

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While many people are lured to Sharm El Sheikh to experience diving in the wondrous Red Sea, a stay at The Ritz-Carlton, Sharm El Sheikh will top off that experience with the best service and amenities that a resort can offer.

rooms including 35 suites, plus a new world of dining experiences where guests can enjoy worldclass international cuisine – from gourmet delights to Japanese and traditional Middle Eastern fare in truly romantic settings.

Set in an oasis of bougainvillea, rugged cactus, palm trees and lush tropical foliage, the RitzCarlton, Sharm El Sheikh offers 321 luxurious

Sublime spa For total relaxation or pre-wedding beautifying


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and pampering, The Ritz-Carlton offers extensive spa facilities plus a hair and beauty salon with a comprehensive choice of therapies and treatments drawing upon the resort’s unique seaside location. Spa treatments blend Asian therapies with traditional Egyptian rituals – including the signature Cleopatra Bath and The Egyptian Coffee Scrub – authentic treatments used in the days of the ancient Pharaohs and Queens of Egypt. Couples can also indulge in treatments in the romantic couples’ massage tent with breathtaking views of the Tiran Island and the Red Sea. The relaxing, cosy ambience of the Spa reflects an Asian influence with dark wood, ivory tiles and lit candles.

Wedding celebrations

In addition to the Spa facilities, the resort offers 500 metres of beach coves and beautiful landscape, two floodlit tennis courts, 24-hour fitness centre, Jacuzzi, sauna, steam room and the only chill room in Sharm El Sheikh, seven swimming pools, a diving centre and nearby 18-hole golf course.

The Ritz-Carlton, Sharm El Sheikh is an extraordinary destination for couples seeking the ultimate dream honeymoon. They can book into one of 38 Club Level Rooms and five Suites that are specially designed for those seeking a higher

The resort’s expert wedding team can assist brides and grooms with flowers, linens, menu selection and seating arrangements to create a bespoke wedding of their dreams, taking care of every aspect of their wedding – from the first meeting with the wedding planners, to the first breakfast as husband and wife. The resort offers couples a choice of bespoke weddings to suit their individual tastes and requirements – from elegant ballroom events to a tasteful and breezy beach wedding.

Honeymoon Luxury

level of luxury, privacy, elegance and facilities. The Club Rooms and Suites are located on the ground floor facing the main swimming pool and offer a personalized upgraded service and amenities with access to the private Club Lounge. Various honeymoon packages are available that can be tailored to couples’ personal requirements.

Further information www.ritzcarlton.com/sharmelsheikh or contact reservations department at +202 366 1919 Email: rc.sshrz.reservations@ritzcarlton.com.

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Sensational

Honeymoons Looking for inspiration for an unforgettable honeymoon? We have combed the planet to bring you seven unusual honeymoons in sensational settings to start married life together

Salsa and Rumba in Cuba

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Fans of TV’s Strictly Come Dancing can put some Latin passion into their honeymoon by heading to Cuba, the birthplace of the Salsa, Cha-Cha and Rumba. Although Cuba is a communist country, you won’t find a drab, concrete dystopia here – instead glorious white sand beaches; wild, exuberant cities; sultry nights drinking rum and the strains of Afro-Cuban street music floating on warm evening air await. Salsa is the nation’s signature dance, with literally hundreds of Salsa clubs dotted around the country. Developed in the 1920s with a musical style that combines Spanish and African influences, Salsa is passionate, relaxed and expressive. Cuba can also lay claim to the Cha-Cha, which evolved out of the popular slowtempo Triple Mambo, while the Rumba is considered the most sensual of Latin dances with the woman dominating the man with her feminine charms. Now you can dance till dawn together in sultry Latino style and keep the passions burning at the start of married life together – if you can take the heat! Book it! A sensational sevennight honeymoon in Cuba costs from £816 per person staying at the four-star Hotel Sirenis Playa Turquesa on an all-inclusive basis. www.directline-holidays.co.uk

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Mini-moon in Cape Town For busy working couples who can’t spare more than a few days away for their honeymoons, here’s an ideal solution – a mini-moon in South Africa! If wine tours and amazing views sound like your idea of a perfect long weekend, then head to Cape Town with Virgin Holidays for a whistle-stop tour of this awesome region. Take an overnight flight direct to Cape Town and emerge ready to explore. Buy a two-day Red open top bus sightseeing card, which is the perfect way to see the whole of Cape Town and surrounding area, and is great value. Day one is the local Cape Town route including Table Mountain with commentary throughout. Day two travels further afield and includes wine-tasting in Constantia, the botanical gardens in Kirstenbosch and Camps Bay – perfect at the end of the tour when you can stop and enjoy a drink and light bite as the sun sets before returning to Cape Town! Be sure to take an award-winning bottle of South African wine and head up Table Mountain after 6pm to raise a toast to the spectacular sunset. Book it! A Virgin Holidays package includes 10 per cent discount restaurant vouchers to use at the excellent restaurants in Cape Town’s waterfront area. Prices start from £829, including Virgin Atlantic flights and a stay at the Hollow on the Square for five nights. www.virginholidays.co.uk

Creative writing in Morocco Don’t get bored on the beach if you are the kind of couple who would prefer to spend their honeymoon indulging in a love of the arts. Instead, start married life in creative bliss with a writing holiday in Morocco. Creative Escapes, a boutique holiday company specialising in small tailor-made writing and photographic retreats, is offering creative writing holidays in Tigmi, a luxury hideaway on the outskirts of Marrakech, with expert tuition, luxury accommodation and all the extras you would expect on a honeymoon. Creative Escapes retreats are set in underthe-radar locations with beautiful hotels, top-notch food and unforgettable nights out. The writing workshop is led by awardwinning novelist Carol Birch and Angela Robertson of Canongate Books, and is designed to benefit writers of all standards, from complete beginners to those with a finished manuscripts – covering everything from getting started to finding an agent and getting published. You can also relax and enjoy the hotel’s pool, spa, charming gardens and Moroccan-themed rooms.  By night, the nearby market of Jemma El-Fina comes alive with the smell of food and the babble of snake charmers and storytellers. It’s a magical place and a real treat for the senses. Book it! The 5-day Moroccan Writing retreat, including all accommodation, most meals, all tours, transfers and tuition is £900.  www.creative-escapes.co.uk.

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Showtime in the African Bush

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The African bush may not be the first place that comes to mind when thinking of romantic world hotspots, but try telling that to the bountiful wildlife in the wilderness of Southern Tanzania, for whom it is Mating Season and romance is definitely blossoming. Many of Africa’s creatures show plenty of flamboyant, flirty behaviour during the mating season – which generally begins in December. Join the romantic activity, and add some romance of your own by choosing the Selous Game Reserve for your honeymoon, staying at the camp of Siwandu, on the shores of Lake Nzerakera, which offers an idyllic environment for Africa’s loved-up creatures, including a myriad of birdlife and the largest crocodile and hippo population in Africa. Located in the vast Ruaha National Park, Siwandu’s sister camp Jongomero, is also one of Africa’s great birding paradises. Newly-weds can observe these other blossoming relationships from their private verandah, or while on a walking safari or game drive. Book it! For ‘lovebirds’ wanting to experience the wild romance of Africa, Rainbow Tours is offering a 10-night trip to Tanzania from £3,870 per person. Valid for selected departures from December 2012 until March 2013, price includes three nights on safari at Jongomero, three nights at Siwandu, plus a further four nights at Ras Kutani on a full-board basis, including flights and transfers. www.rainbowtours.co.uk

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Star struck in Australia What can be more romantic than gazing at a beautiful starry night together on your honeymoon? Couples wanting to visit Australia can enjoy the ultimate starry sky experience at the luxurious 5-star Thala Beach Lodge, a gorgeous beachside hotel that has added a unique on-site observatory to inspire its guests. Located between Cairns and Port Douglas in Far North Queensland, Thala Beach Lodge is idyllically situated on a secluded forest headland beneath vast, open skies. The awe-inspiring observatory, with two weighty telescopes, allows guests to scan the night skies, which are free of light pollution, thus allowing exceptional views of the southern constellations. And if you need help to identify Orion, Cassiopeia and the galaxy of Andromeda then the resort’s resident astronomer, Rose Wyatte, is on hand to guide novice stargazers through the constellations. On November 14th, guests were treated to an extra phenomenon with a total solar eclipse. The private beach at Thala Beach Lodge was under the line of totality, making it the prime spot to view this spectacular phenomenon. Book it! www.thelabeach.com


Room with a view of Moscow

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easyJet has announced that its first ever scheduled Manchester-Moscow flights will be launched in spring, which will make this fascinating Russian city easily accessible for honeymooners wishing to marvel at the architecture, historic sights, rich culture and nightlife. And where better to stay than The Ritz-Carlton? The city centre hotel has taken luxury to the next level in its stylish O2 lounge – a rooftop lounge and terrace far above the streets of Moscow, with breathtaking panoramic views across the city – taking in Red Square and the Kremlin. You can even hold your wedding here and impress your guess with the awesome views – and the RitzCarlton’s wedding professionals will organize all aspects of your wedding ceremony for you. The Ritz-Carlton, Moscow enjoys a prime location in the cultural epicentre of Moscow, where the 11-story, 5-star hotel is an iconic landmark with polished wood décor and plush accommodation in 334 rooms. It also has a superb ESPA spa for indulgent pampering and couples’ treatments. Book it! Superior rooms start from £392 per night. For further information or to book: www.ritzcarlton.com/en/ properties/moscow/reservations.

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Japanese Arts in Tokyo Art-loving honeymooners can immerse themselves in fascinating Japanese culture, whilst staying in the luxurious Gate Hotel Kaminarimon, a member of Design Hotels™ in central Tokyo. The hotel, which opened in August, is situated in the newly revitalized, bustling neighbourhood of Asakusa, and is a haven of stylish design and creativity. The Gate Hotel is poised between one of the city’s oldest districts and luminous, modern-day Tokyo and is home to numerous markets, temples and Shinto festivals. The distinctive hotel has been transformed by Shigeru Uchida, one of Japan’s most famous architects, from a former office building into a crisp, clean, contemporary sanctuary from which to explore the city – each of the guestrooms features floor-length windows with amazing views of the Tokyo Skytree – the highest free-standing broadcasting tower in the world. Just across from the hotel is the historic Kaminarimon (Thunder) Gate, housing historic sculptures of Shinto deities and a four-metre tall lantern. Also nearby are the Sensoji Temple, Tokyo’s oldest, and Asakusa Shrine, so the hotel is perfectly positioned to explore this exciting and vibrant part of the city and drink in the atmosphere of the Orient. Book it! Rooms start from £125 per night. www.designhotels.com/the_gate_hotel_ kaminarimon

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Romance by the sea

Advertising Feature

Make your wedding a “Pimalai” occasion with the fabulous Kan Tiang bay providing a wonderfully picturesque and romantic back-drop.

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he gorgeous Pimalai Resort & Spa sits in an idyllic setting in 100 acres of lush, tropical vegetation with direct access to a 900-metre pristine sandy beach – a perfect location for a romantic wedding, honeymoon destination or renewal of vows. The resort’s expert wedding team can arrange for you and your partner to have a very charming and unforgettable Wedding Ceremony.

Pimalai Resort & Spa 99 Moo 5, Ba Kan Tiang Beach, Koh Lanta, Krabi, Thailand Tel. +66 2 320 5500 Fax. +66 2 320 5503 Email: reservation@pimalai.com www.pimalai.com

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This luxurious resort has been selected by The Independent to be one of the 50 best wedding destinations in the world, as well as being a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World. It also boasts numerous accolades, including CondeNast Spa 2012, TripAdvisor 2012, World Luxury Hotel Awards 2012 and International Hotel Awards 2012-2013.


Your Wedding Beyond Paradise... Sparkling sandy beach, tropical palms and the crystal clear turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean... We know what your special day or honeymoon means to you and we know that everything has to be perfect, just as you have imagined it to be. The luxurious 5 star hotel is renowned for romantic views, personal service and award-winning cuisine, nestled gently within a picturesque private estate, the Maritim truly is beyond paradise...

From

£ 1329* per person

Save £ 425 per person

Book now: 0843 636 7539

• 7 nights All Inclusive in a ‘Privilege’ room • Includes Air Mauritius return flights & transfers • Free Wedding Package: decoration of the venue, witnesses, gift, 1 bottle of sparkling wine and a candlelit dinner at Château Mon Désir fine dining restaurant

*Conditions apply • Booking code: ‘Brides 1212’ • Valid selected stays in May and June 2013 Maritim Hotel Mauritius • Balaclava • Terre Rouge • www.maritim.com

www.tropicalsky.co.uk


Value Redefined ... The First Premium All-Inclusive Resor t in Maldives‌

Lily Beach Resor t & Spa at Huvahendhoo South Ari Atoll, The Maldives Tel: +960 668 00 13 | Fax: +960 668 06 46 | sales@lilybeachmaldives.com | www.lilybeachmaldives.com


Your Luxury Private Island ...

Island Hideaway, Spa Resor t & Marina at Dhonakulhi, Maldives Tel: +960 650 1515 | Fax: +960 650 1616 | Email: sales@island-hideaway.com | www.island-hideaway.com


Honeymoon Islands From far-flung exotic coral islands to European hot spots nearer home, embracing the romance of island life is the perfect way to spend your honeymoon

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f you are looking for tropical paradise, you’ll fall head over heels in love with Mauritius, a stunning island in the southern Indian Ocean, with lush vegetation and long stretches of palm-fringed white sandy beaches lapped by crystal clear waters, which is almost entirely surrounded by a coral reef. The island, with its central plateau and impressive jagged mountains, is spectacular and above all, relaxing with unlimited year-round warm sunshine. It’s the ideal place for swimming, snorkelling and watersports, while on land there is plenty to do and explore on this unspoiled island – from shopping and sightseeing excursions to the capital, Port Louis – be sure to shop for real pearls, 120 wwwBridesAbroad.tv

freshly harvested from the sea bed — playing golf and tennis; top-to-toe pampering in one of the luxurious hotel spas, for which the island is renowned; or simply relax under a shady palm tree with a good novel. Sunsets in Mauritrius are sensational; as the sun dips below the Indian Ocean, the evening entertainment ­begins – you can start with fruit cocktails before indulging in delicious local and international cuisine, including Creole, Indian, European and fresh seafood, then dance the night away to music from local bands – the sexy local dance is called Sega, join in if you dare!


Mauritius Maritim Hotel Mauritius Ideally situated on the north-west coast of Mauritius, between the capital Port Louis and the lively village of Grand Bay, this luxurious award-winning 5-star beach and spa resort, situated along the protected marine park of Turtle Bay within a historical estate, offers a unique array of experiences and culinary delights combined with the highest international standards and genuine Mauritian hospitality. The Maritim Hotel Mauritius offers an unrivalled choice of exceptional wedding venues, ranging from the beach to the historical ruins, as well as a luxurious haven for newlyweds to indulge in honeymoon bliss. Couples can be pampered at the award-winning Maritim Tropical Flower Spa, offering stunning facilities including two dedicated ‘Bridal Sanctuaries’ and a hair salon. The Maritim Estate offers fine dining in Château Mon Désir restaurant, along with an equestrian centre and horse carriage, a beautiful wedding gazebo on the beach, and an idyllic setting for truly ‘magic moments’ together! www.maritim.co.uk

Mövenpick Resort & Spa Located on the south-west coast of Mauritius at the heart of the preserved nature reserve of Bel Ombre, the Mövenpick Resort & Spa Mauritius is an authentic paradise, perfectly integrated into large sugar cane fields and lush vegetation, offering the unique atmosphere of a traditional 17th century sugar cane plantation. The resort combines first-class service; luxury accommodation in 160 spacious rooms, 20 suites and 1 villa, all facing the Indian Ocean; excellent cuisine and exceptional Zen-inspired spa facilities dedicated to peace and serenity. The resort comprises three restaurants: Le Moulin ­– the main buffet restaurant; Le Camaron beach restaurant serving light dishes and seafood and La Grand Caze, a fine dining á la Carte restaurant, offering innovative fine food incorporating the flavours of Mauritius. You can relax with cocktails, drinks and snacks at Le Flangourin bar. www.moevenpick-mauritius.com

Heritage Le Telfair Golf & Spa Resort You’ll fall in love all over again at the 5-star Heritage Le Telfair, which enjoys an idyllic setting on the southwest coast of Mauritius in Domaine de Bel Ombre. This gorgeous resort is bordered by a 1km white sand beach, lagoons and a lush nature reserve, where the ultimate in romance is guaranteed. The hotel offers a range of exceptional settings for couples to tie the knot, renew their marriage vows or have a blissful honeymoon. The resort — a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World — boasts three gourmet restaurants, including awardwining Annabella’s and has beautifully designed sea view suites with French windows leading to private balconies and personal butlers to accommodate your every whim. If that’s not enough, you can indulge in couples ritual pampering at the Seven Colours spa or relax down at the hotel’s Beach Club. Or, if feeling energetic, you can play a round of golf on the 18-hole golf course. Accommodation is offered either on a half-board basis — or the Gourmet Bliss all-inclusive package. Honeymooners also receive a 50 per cent discount for the bride, with honeymoon gifts for the wedding couple. www.heritageresorts.mu www.BridesAbroad.tv 121


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Maldives

hat’s not to love about the magnificent Maldives? It’s a place where Mother Nature has created perfection, and is the ultimate playground for loved-up newly-weds. From your luxurious water villa, you can spot couples snorkelling together in the dazzling lagoons over coral reefs teeming with marine life; down on the powder-white beach, lovers snuggle in rope hammocks under coco palms. And, as the sun sets, the beach is transformed into a candle-lit restaurant as couples dine al fresco under the clear moonlit skies. The island’s lush vegetation has been preserved, marine life protected and beaches groomed to create paradise on earth. The Maldives is a tiny nation of around 1,190 Robinson Crusoe islands, grouped into 26 natural atolls scattered across the middle of the Indian Ocean, around 250 miles south west of India. Here, resort hotels are built to blend into the lush vegetation with private villas built on stilts over the ocean. They offer incredible fresh cuisine, luxury accommodation and world-class spas, so expect to be indulged and pampered to an ultimate state of bliss.

Baros Pure, hassle-free luxury in lush, natural surroundings, that’s the essence of Baros Maldives, an award-winning resort on a small coral island just 25 minutes by speedboat from Male Airport. Baros is ringed by a reef vibrant with marine life and encircled by a sandy beach, with 45 thatched villas nestled among swaying palms and 30 water villas poised over the lagoon. All have enviable seclusion, enabling guests to indulge in sheer relaxation. Guests at this child-free resort feel free to indulge in relaxed chic and intimate moments, whilst enjoying the lush, unspoiled environment, and superb wining and dining at three gourmet restaurants, a palm grove bar and an intimate cocktail lounge, with discreet staff who are always on hand. There’s plenty to keep couples occupied with romantic sandbank dinners, a lagoon cruise by local dhoni or an eco-friendly diving or snorkelling safari. The Spa offers sublime treatments and yoga to rejuvenate the spirit as well as the body. www.baros.com

Lily Beach For affordable luxury, the Lily Beach Resort & Spa at Huvahendhoo is a great choice. The pretty little island in Ari Atoll is a luxury all-inclusive Platinum Plan Resort offering a fantastic array of quality services including wines and spirits, sumptuous dining, excursions, sports activities and the tranquil over-water Tamara Spa. Lily Beach is fun, relaxed and thriving, yet couples can still find their own intimate seclusion if they prefer. Plush accommodation is in Beach Villas and Over Water Villas with amazing glass floors from which to view the marine life. Lily Maa, the resort’s main restaurant, has sand floors and showcases international cuisine. For a more romantic meal, Tamarind offers distinctive fine dining. Enjoy active rest in the gym or floodlit tennis, or head down to the beach to discover a multitude of watersports and a PADI Dive Centre. www.lilybeachmaldives.com


DIVE ~ FISH ~ RELAX

Barefoot Elegance

Email: info@southerncrossclub.com |

www.SouthernCrossClub.com | Tel: 001-619-563-0017


Cayman Islands

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he Cayman Islands are a group of three absolutely gorgeous Caribbean islands, which are perfect for destination weddings, blessings and dream honeymoons. Who couldn’t be enthralled by the azure sky, aquamarine sea and powder-white sand? Grand Cayman is the largest of this group of islands; Cayman Brac, the second island, is rugged and charming and Little Cayman, just ten miles long and a mile wide, is the smallest, least developed and most tranquil of the three, and epitomizes the concept of ‘barefoot luxury’. If seclusion and striking scenery are your thing, this is perfect. It’s a truly romantic honeymoon hideaway. Little Cayman is practically uninhabited, with a population of less than 170 and offers a rare combination of sun-drenched solitude, glistening beach and miles of untouched tropical wilderness where you can bask on empty beaches or rent a bike or scooter and explore the island, go for a private swim in the remote South Hole Lagoon where the water is coloured every shade of blue, or row out to tiny deserted Owen Island to enjoy nature at its most pristine. Bloody Bay Wall Marine Park is one of the most popular dive sites in the Caribbean, In places, it starts off as a shallow snorkelling area before descending into the sheer expanse of pristine wall, encrusted with coral gardens and exotic sponges. On Little Cayman, you can ease the body and soul in the timeless beauty of the island’s unspoiled natural surroundings.

Southern Cross Club If you dream of escaping to a tropical paradise surrounded by azure blue water, that offers world class scuba diving and fishing, then the Southern Cross Club on Little Cayman, is for you. The lure of Little Cayman is in its fantastic diving — crystal clear water, pristine reefs, dramatic walls and rich marine life. The Southern Cross Club’s beach-based location also provides flats fisherman with access to Bonefish and Permit just minutes away. The casually sophisticated Southern Cross Club Fish & Dive Resort is Little Cayman’s original resort, founded in 1958 when this tiny island had only 12 permanent residents. Few places in the world can compare with the charm, comfort and hospitality of this 12-beachbungalow resort; situated on pristine white sand complete with a professional in-house diving and fishing operation. The resort has maintained its welcoming, rustic charm and elegance, offering ‘barefoot luxury’, delicious food, rooms with breathtaking views and one of the highest staff-to-guest ratios in the Caribbean. The resort has recently been awarded a Certificate of Excellence by TripAdvisor®. This prestigious award is given only to establishments that consistently achieve outstanding reviews on this widely read travel site. www.southerncrossclub.com

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Zanzibar

anzibar is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful islands in the Indian Ocean and remains one of the world’s best-kept travel secrets. This magical East African spice island, just off the coast of Tanzania, is steeped in romance, beauty and mystery that has inspired generations of settlers from around the world. Bask in the sparkling turquoise Indian Ocean, framed by pristine beaches and swaying palms. Mouth-watering island cuisine blends with warm and open hospitality where life is good and nothing is too much trouble. The pace of life slows to the extent that time becomes irrelevant – allowing stress to melt away before the sun splashes a stunning

display of colours across the horizon as evening settles in. Spend hours walking along the tropical beaches, your feet sinking in the powdery white coral sand, or find rare species of butterfly and Colobus monkeys in the island’s National Park and Forest. Snorkel or dive in the crystal-clear waters to discover the vast array of marine life. Make your way through winding alleyways decorated by famous carved coconut wood doors as the call to prayer fills the Arabic streets of Stone Town, home of many historical and architectural fascinations. It’s a truly magical honeymoon island.

Breezes Beach Club The picturesque five-star resort is set in tropical landscaped gardens on a fantastic pristine beach on the East Coast of Zanzibar. Honeymooners can luxuriate in spacious accommodation in the 70 en suite guest rooms, all with terrace or balcony and decorated throughout in beautiful Zanzibar style, with stunning carvings, glistening brass and rich purple fabrics to create a truly elegant and unique atmosphere. The resort has four excellent restaurants all serving top-notch cuisine ­– however, its Tides restaurant is definitely worth a mention as it has to be one of the most romantic restaurants in the world. There are plenty of activities to keep couples occupied, from spa treatments and luxurious couples rituals at the Fraangipani Spa to watersports – the see-through base kayaks are brilliant for watching the colourful marine life — and PADI scuba diving. You can also keep in shape in the fitness centre and floodlit tennis court. In the evening, the hotel’s cinema shows the latest movies and entertainment is laid on with colourful local dancers and musicians. www.purezanzibar.com 126 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


Bali B

ali, the famed Island of the Gods, may be small in size, but its offering for loved-up honeymooners is huge. You can drive around the entire coast in a day, but the memories of this delightful spiritual island will last forever. With its varied landscape of hills and mountains, jungle, rugged coastlines with pulse-pounding surf and sandy beaches, lush rice terraces, barren volcanic hillsides, enchanting temple ceremonies and colourful culture give the island a serious claim to be paradise on earth. With world-class surfing and diving and an abundance of archeological, cultural and historic attractions, you can be sure of an amazing honeymoon experience. This is, after all, one of the world’s most popular honeymoon island destinations and has something to offer all tastes – from young back-packers to the super rich. Bali offers a large choice of accommodation in different locations to suit all pockets –­ ­ choose a luxury 5-star beach resort or a Balinese-style jungle spa retreat high in the mountains.

Jimbaran Puri Bali The romantic Jimbaran Puri Bali resort overlooks one of Bali’s most beautiful soft, sandy beaches and offers a tropical escape with massages on the beach and a laid-back waterside restaurant where the scent of grilling fish attracts you to your table where you can watch in awe as the evening sun slips beneath the horizon in this totally romantic setting. The beach has perfect white sand and the resort’s spa is actually on the beach, so you receive your pampering Balinese massages in luxurious but discreet open-air thatched wooden buildings with the sea breeze wafting over you and the sound of the waves helping you drift off to sleep. www.jimbaranpuribali.com

Ubud Hanging Gardens Set among smoky volcanoes and emerald rice terraces at Ubud, the artistic and cultural heart of Bali. Ubud Hanging Gardens, a luxury Orient Express resort, is a tropical haven of peace and tranquillity in the cultural centre of Ubud. The hotel perches on a gorge with an exquisite temple on the opposite cliff and is built with luxury pool villas in traditional style, as if in a Balinese village surrounded by jungle-covered mountains and exotic flowers. You can have the ultimate romantic candlelit dinner actually inside the temple, while at the bottom of the resort, the Ayung Spa awaits, offering sublime Balinese massages and couples rituals to the sound of soft Balinese music and the quiet birdsong. The spa is reached by an ingenious funicular, to save guests from an exhausting climb. It’s the perfect place to awaken the senses. www.ubudhanginggardens.com 128 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


Tenerife

T

he beautiful island of Tenerife is proof that you don’t need to go to the other side of the world to find an idyllic honeymoon island with year-round warm sunshine. The Spanish island of Tenerife is the largest of the seven Canary Islands, attracting many holidaymakers each year for family vacations, as well as romantic escapes and dream honeymoons. The island has been strongly influenced by the tribal culture of Guanches ­– the original inhabitants before Tenerife was conquered by the Spanish 500 years ago. Each day spent in Tenerife brings a new experience, whether it’s discovering the incredible variety of landscapes in a land scored through with ravines, spectacular cliffs, extensive wooded areas of the canary pine, remarkable rock formations, hidden bays and lively beaches or going shopping in the capital, visiting a museum, playing golf or partying until dawn with the vibrant nightlife. Set sail on a whale-watching excursion, participate in water sports or simply relax on the beach or by the pool. All this is on offer against a backdrop dominated by a majestic volcano, the highest peak in Spain.

Sheraton La Caleta Situated in Costa Adeje, in southwestern Tenerife, Sheraton La Caleta Resort & Spa enjoys a prime position on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean and is the perfect place to enjoy a fabulous honeymoon at any time of year – as Tenerife enjoys an average annual temperature of 23 degrees C. The resort’s 284 stylishly decorated rooms offer all the comforts expected of a Sheraton, and are ideal for relaxation. Take pampering to a new level at the Eutonos Spa, a wellness centre that includes state-of-the-art facilities and a large range of treatments. Facing the Atlantic Ocean, Sheraton La Caleta features three outdoor pools, four restaurants and the spa. The combination of its unique natural habitat, the eternal springtime weather, exquisite dining and an exceptional location in the most southern point of Europe, makes Sheraton La Caleta an easily accessible place to enjoy a honeymoon in paradise. www.sheratonlacaleta.com


Be Special Be DeStineD for BaroS

For nearly 40 years, we have been dedicated to one single goal: making you happy! You are special to us; we know you by name, not villa number. We are delighted to have you staying with us so we can attend to your desires and make your holiday special too. Come to Baros to celebrate the best there is; discover the Essence of the Maldives, and the holiday of your dreams!

info@baros.com . www.baros.com Baros Maldives is a small exclusive coral island in the Indian Ocean ringed by a sun-kissed beach and a vibrant house-reef. The awardwinning boutique luxury resort is proud of a long and outstanding history of service excellence. Awards include the Traveller‘s Choice by TripAdvisor in 2012 and 2011 as one of the Top Ten Hotels in Asia, and in 2010 as the Best Luxury Resort in Asia.


A Mauritian paradise

Advertising Feature

for a dream wedding

Fall in love all over again at Heritage Resorts, 5* luxury on the idyllic Indian Ocean island of Mauritius. Imagine… A destination bordered by a 1km white-sand beach, crystal lagoons and a lush nature reserve where ultimate romance is guaranteed. Offering beauty in abundance, the Domaine de Bel Ombre is a stunning destination in south-west Mauritius, which features a range of exceptional settings for couples to tie the knot, or renew their marriage vows. From intimate nuptials to larger ceremonies, couples can choose to wed their loved one with their toes in the sand and an awe-inspiring backdrop of the sun setting over the ocean, or within the romantic tropical garden setting of an 1800’s French colonial mansion known as the Chateau de Bel Ombre.

Crafted to perfection… Newlyweds will begin their married life in style with the help of a dedicated wedding coordinator who will be there to plan a truly bespoke ceremony. Simply wish and it shall come true! From a fairytale horse and carriage arrival to a scenic helicopter flight over the lagoon, or champagne breakfast to a relaxing couple’s massage – the only thing that will be left to do is decide on the perfect place to stay!

Refined and romantic 5* accommodation… Heritage Le Telfair Golf & Spa Resort – a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World – has beautifully designed sea view suites in a colonial Gin’ja Restaurant

theme that is completed with French windows, private balconies and personal butlers. The five* resort offers accommodation on a half board basis – or the optional Gourmet Bliss all inclusive package, with three gourmet restaurants including the award-winning Annabella’s.

Private villas for the wedding party… Couples seeking to share their special moment with family and friends will be treated to an intimate retreat at Heritage The Villas; a collection of luxury 2, 3 and 4 bedroom villas which come complete with contemporary décor, spacious patios, infinity pools and golf buggies for the convenience of getting around. Set within a wonderful natural environment bordering the Frederica Nature Reserve, these villas offer spacious accommodation with all the luxuries of a full service resort for the wedding party to enjoy. This includes unlimited access to the C Beach Club, golf, a choice of 11 restaurants and all other facilities of the adjacent Heritage hotels, making this the perfect choice for couples eloping with their loved ones.

Contact our wedding experts: To make a booking, call + 230 266 97 68 or consult our weddings and honeymoons page via www.heritageresorts.mu For more information about our luxury accommodation, visit www.heritageletelfair. mu or www.heritagethevillas.mu

Heritage the Villas pool

Heritage Le Telfair suite

Heritage Resorts, an offer unlike any other • 2 luxury hotels • Luxurious villas • Two Seven Colours spas • 11 restaurants • An 18-hole championship golf course • A nature reserve • A Beach Club

Special offers, especially for you… • • • •

Honeymoons at Heritage Le Telfair: 50% discount for the bride Choice of wedding packages: basic package is free Wedding anniversary: 35% discount for the spouse Group wedding discount and numerous added values at Heritage The Villas • Honeymoon gifts for wedding couple • An additional 10% discount for all bookings made 30 days before the date of arrival Contact your preferred travel agent for further details. 132 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


prestburyworldwideresorts

Creating a world of luxury

WEDDINGS & HONEYMOONS TROU AUX BICHES MAURITIUS

COMPLIMENTARY WEDDING* & 40% SAVING 7nts from £2975 per couple

Half Board

SAVE £1520 per couple

SHANDRANI RESORT & SPA MAURITIUS

40% SAVING 7nts from £3025 per couple

All Inclusive

SAVE £1180 per couple

PARADIS HOTEL & GOLF CLUB MAURITIUS

COMPLIMENTARY WEDDING* & 40% SAVING 7nts from £2970 per couple

Half Board

SAVE £1515 per couple

All prices are inclusive of flights & transfers. Terms & conditions apply, subject to availability. *Complimentary Wedding based on stays from 01 Jun – 31 Jul 13 and excludes legal fees.

Call one of our specialist Wedding & Honeymoon advisers or visit

www.prestburyworldwideresorts.co.uk Tel: 01625 858158 | Email: discover@prestburyworldwide.co.uk

prestburyworldwideresorts A division of the Prestbury Travel Group


Grape Escapes If your idea of total pampering on your honeymoon is indulging in a glass of wine to lift the spirits, just imagine the benefits of being completely immersed in your favourite tipple! Cheers for Vinotherapy spas!


D

o something a little different from the norm on your honeymoon and indulge in your love of wine. But if you don’t want to pile on the pounds from excess gourmet wining and dining, then treat yourselves to a luxurious stay in a hotel with a spa that offers Vinotherapy on the menu for a blissful honeymoon which will leave you feeling fit and looking fabulous! If you think Vinotherapy involves stretching out on a couch and revealing your troubles to a compassionate spa therapist who listens then pours you a glass of full-bodied Barolo, then think again. Vinotherapy is a gourmet spa experience that works its magic by indulging your love of wine with the therapeutic and beautifying properties of grapes – it’s the ultimate spa treatment for wine connoisseurs! Wine spa hotels have added an extra level of luxury and decadence to the whole spa-going experience. What can be better than having a grape-seed scrub at a spa on a wine estate, and then getting to taste the wine derived from the vineyards outside? Perfect! However, if you are worried that being covered from head to toe in your favourite tipple means you will stagger out of the treatment room in a drunken blur, don’t fret. Vinotherapy uses non-alcoholic products and treatments derived from grapes harvested from the world’s finest vineyards to leave your mind, body and soul in a state of supreme well-being. Wine can be good for you and that’s official. When drunk in moderation (i.e. not exceeding the recommended units per day) wine not only lifts the spirits but also offers a number of health benefits, particularly red wine, which can help prevent heart disease and strokes.

Sowing the seeds The French are renowned for their love of wine with meals and the low incidence of heart attacks in France, despite a diet high in rich foods, seems to support the research, so it is hardly surprising that the seeds of Vinotherapy were first sown in Bordeaux. It all began when Professor

Joseph Vercauteren of the University of Bordeaux noticed that the most nutritious part of the grape, the seeds, were discarded during the winemaking process. He scientifically proved that the polyphenols, which are particularly concentrated in grape seeds, are powerful antioxidants, which protect against free radical damage from pollution, cigarette smoke and so on, which can damage the immune system and interfere with the DNA structure of cells, potentially leading to cancer. They are also responsible for 80 per cent of skin ageing. An important ingredient in grapes is resveratrol ­–­the plant’s natural defense against fungal attack. This sediment is deposited by the fermenting of wines and can be mixed with clay and used in body wraps to help repair the skin’s elastin and collagen. Another valuable bi-product of winemaking is the pomace ­– the pips, stalks and dry skin. When mixed into creams, this ingredient has powerful antioxidant qualities. Vineyard owners soon realized that the seeds discarded at the end of the grape harvest were worth their weight in gold and they now sell them, along with sediment, stalks and skin for use in Vinotherapy products.

Key benefits ■

Nourishes the skin

■ Moisturises

the skin

■ Anti-ageing ■ Exfoliating ■ Detoxes ■ Rich

and rebalances the skin

in anti oxidants

■ Stimulates

lymphatic drainage to combat cellulite

■ Soothes

and revitalizes to promote a sense of well-being www.BridesAbroad.tv 135


Vinotherapy Spas Le Sources de Caudalie – Bordeaux, France The superb Les Sources de Caudalie boutique hotel nestles amid vines and woods in the heart of the Bordeaux wine-growing region. The hotel was opened in 1999 by Mathilde Cathiard Thomas and her husband Bertrand, who are credited with creating both the world’s first wine spa as well as the official term Vinotherapie®. Their hotel is a wine lover’s heaven where guests can enjoy fine vintages in the restaurants and be pampered in grape products in the Vinotherapy spa. The hotel has 49 luxury rooms and suites, swimming pool, gym, three-hole golf course and tennis courts. The hotel’s Caudalie Spa was created after a chance meeting between Professor Vercauteren and Mathilde, and the discovery of a hot spring in the grounds. This proved to be the inspiration to develop a successful line of grape-based skincare products ­­– the Caudalie range – which are now used in the spa’s revitalizing treatments, along with the therapeutic waters of the natural spring. Vinotherapy treatments include: Wine Barrel Bath, Merlot Wrap, Sauvignon Massage and Crushed Cabernet Scrub. Book it! For special Brides Abroad offers, call: 01937 584892

Santé Winelands Estate & Wellness Centre – South Africa

Set in a lush valley in Stellenbosch, which is dominated by manicured vines and magnificent mountains, the Santé Winelands Hotel and Wellness Centre reflects the beauty and tranquility of its setting in the Cape Winelands region. The hotel is known for its luxurious accommodation, gourmet cuisine and exclusive Wellness Centre where guests are pampered with Vinotherapy treatments, including a Shiraz Scrub, a Chardonnay Cocoon Wrap and a Cabernet Sauvignon Wine Bath. As you would expect, to enhance the Vinotherapy programme, the wine cellar at the hotel boasts some of the finest Cape and international vintages. If you want to take your Grape Escape into the Cape wine region further, you can enjoy wine-tasting excursions to historical wine estates. www.santesa.co.za. Book it! For special Brides Abroad offers, call: 01937 584892 136 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


Peralada Resort & Wine Spa – Girona, Spain Peralada Resort and Wine Spa in Girona, Spain ensures that guests are pampered with three of the most luxurious activities on earth: golf, spa and wine. This gem of a resort is set close to vineyards and cellars, and many local wine products are used at the spa. The Hotel Peralada enjoys a superb setting, surrounded by an 18-hole golf course and a nature reserve. It offers 55 comfortable rooms and suites with outstanding views to the golf course, the Albera mountain range and the medieval town of Peralada. Indulge yourself with a perfect pampering programme of sunbathing on the pool terrace, toasting the sunset with a delicious cocktail in the Wine Bar or being totally pampered in the Wine Spa with the hotel’s own range of cosmetic products made from grapes from its own vineyards. Vinotherapy treatments include body peeling with grape seeds; body wraps; wine baths and grape massages. Book it! For special Brides Abroad offers, call: 01937 584892

Hotel Marques De Riscal – Rioja wine region, Spain

The new landmark Hotel Marques De Riscal is a stunning contemporary hotel designed by renowned architect, Frank O Gehry. Located in the heart of the Rioja wine region, the 43-suite hotel oozes 5* luxury and is the perfect place for a relaxing break and some serious wine therapy. Guests can drink in gorgeous views of the vineyards and the town of Elciego and enjoy fine gastronomy in the Michelin star Echaurren Restaurant, which is set to become one of Spain’s leading restaurants. The hotel’s Caudalie Vinotherapy Spa is the backbone of the leisure facilities on offer, with an outdoor swimming pool, hammam, fitness gymnasium and a wide variety of therapeutic Vinotherapy treatments using spa products from the best that grapes have to offer, including the Crushed Cabernet Scrub, the Pulp Fiction Massage, the Honey and Wine Wrap and the Barrel Bath. www.hotel-marquesderiscal.com Book it! For special Brides Abroad offers, call: 01937 584892 www.BridesAbroad.tv 137


Conrad Bali, Indonesia The Conrad Bali hotel offers a new kind of luxury on the southern coast of Bali, Indonesia. Nestled in 6.8 acres of secluded tropical gardens and lagoons, with cascading waterfalls and a pristine 350 metre beach, the Conrad Bali exhilarates your soul. 10 nights in Deluxe Double

£849pp

Honeymoon

offers

Book your Destination Wedding or Honeymoon with Brides Abroad’s experienced travel team. Aegialis Resort and Spa, Amorgos, Cyclades, Greek Islands

Villa Italia, Puerto Andraxt

Villa Italia, Puerto Andraxt

A superbly restored luxury boutique hotel and spa overlooking the stunning Bay of Puerto Andraxdt - originally a large private mansion from the 1920’s, this is one of Mallorca’s most stylish resorts. Stunning views and delicious cuisine perfect for a seriously chic honeymoon or idyllic wedding reception. One week B&B for two sharing a superior deluxe room.

£1270pp

May 2012

Pigeon Island Resort, Sri Lanka.

Luxury boutique hotel in stunning oceanfront location. Divers’ paradise on reefs and wrecks world class deserted beaches. Absolutely chilled, romantic and blissful honeymoon location. 14 nights B&B for 2 people plus wedding package. Incredible Brides Abroad deal Just

£459pp

A unique hotel and spa set high above the bay of Aegiali, with breathtaking views into the deep blue of the Aegean, and surrounding islands. A stunning location for your weddding and honeymoon. Recently opened Thalasso Spa. 10 Days half board for two in a deluxe double room. RRP £2543 Brides Abroad deal £845pp.

Save £848.00

Ocean Paradise. Zanzibar

Ocean Paradise. Zanzibar

Ocean Paradise is a luxury resort situated on Zanzibar’s picturesque north east coast, overlooking the turquoise Indian Ocean, it is, as the name suggests, a little piece of paradise. Azure skies, coconut palms swinging in the breeze, white sandy beach, beautiful landscaped gardens with a stunning waterfall feature and the largest swimming pool in Zanzibar. 7 nights in a superior double half board from

£399pp

Venus Beach, Cyprus The romantic beach front location of this popular luxury hotel makes The Venus Beach Hotel an ideal venue for weddings in Cyprus. The hotel provides dedicated function staff, and tailor-made wedding packages, to guarantee you an unforgettable, dream wedding. Civil wedding ceremonies can now take place within the grounds of the Hotel. 7 nights B&B from

£349pp

in May 2013

Save £1200

Hundreds of wonderful resorts worldwide – just drop us a line to enquiries@bridesabroad.tv Or Phone us on 01937 584892. 138 wwwBridesAbroad.tv


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SAINT LUCIA

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YOUR WEDDING. YOUR STYLE.

1

3 easy steps to create your dream wedding SELECT YOUR DESTINATION

Jamaica, Saint Lucia, Antigua, Bahamas or Grenada

2

CHOOSE YOUR STYLE

or

3

Be inspired by colour or choose a pre-designed wedding theme

PERSONALISE YOUR DAY

Bouquets, cakes, décor, cupcakes & more

The new Sandals online “Destination Wedding Designer” tool allows couples to completely customise their dream Caribbean wedding. Choose from a myriad of colour options, wedding accessories and unique experiences for a memorable WeddingMoon®. Once you’ve said ‘I do’ let your Luxury Included® honeymoon begin.

To book your Sandals All-Inclusive wedding & honeymoon Call 0800 012 1878 | See your local travel agent | Visit sandalsweddings.co.uk Scan me to start creating your dream wedding now

*Stay 6 nights or longer and the Beautiful Beginnings wedding or $500 wedding credit is free. Visit sandals.co.uk for full terms and conditions. ABTA & ATOL protected.

WORLD’S LEADING ALL-INCLUSIVE RESORTS WORLD’S MOST ROMANTIC RESORT Sandals Grande Antigua

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Brides Abroad Winter 2012-13  

Brides Abroad Winter 2012-13

Brides Abroad Winter 2012-13  

Brides Abroad Winter 2012-13

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