Lets rewind to last year, when all we had was an idea, a dream in mind. We had been engaged since March 2016 however we were yet to set a date. There wasn’t a particular reason for it, sometimes life and work just get in the way and time flies before your very eyes.
When it came down to the crunch, we had come up with ideas that I am now grateful we did not go through with. We had thought of a destination wedding in the Caribbean and even had a meeting with a Virgin Atlantic agent who “organize weddings”. We soon came to the realization that although it would be amazing and we were living by the moto “you only get married once”, we soon realized the majority of our loved ones wouldn’t be able to make it. Although a wedding is of course about you and the spouse, the beauty that surrounds it all is the people you love most coming together to celebrate you. Therefore we quickly erased the Caribbean idea and settled on a location somewhat closer to home, Santorini. I have always been in love with the picturesque island and seemed like a better option than a 10+ hour flight. Someone warned me about the price tags in Santorini, but I was not prepared for the figures my ears were hearing. After careful consideration, thoughtful research, we nipped it in the bud and started to entertain the idea of getting married here, in the UK.
We attended many wedding fairs and shows: The Wedding Fair, Conde Nast Brides, the list goes on. I would recommend visiting at least one of these to get a clear understanding of the possibilities, what you like and don’t like and as we were “planning in the UK” it was a great opportunity to meet with photographers, vendors and most importantly, find a suitable location we both loved.
This is when it started to become a drag. I felt as if I wasn’t planning the wedding of my dreams but someone else’s dreams, as if I was compromising everything I ever wished for and wanted for my special day. We had initially ran with the idea of a destination wedding as we both love to travel and most of all, love the beach. I had always wanted a beach wedding and with all the beautiful locations I viewed here in the UK, I could not see myself tying the knot anywhere else but a beach.
After months and months of uncertainty, sweat and a few tears, somehow, magically, everything started to add up. It was clear where we needed to get married. We both wanted a Summer wedding, on the beach, with amazing weather, with all our loved ones. We decided on the motherland, Italy. We hadn’t considered Italy at first as we wanted an intimate wedding and with both our huge families residing in Italy, we knew that the words small and intimate would not be used to describe our wedding. However, our moto presented itself again, “you only get married once” so why not go all out and do it properly, even if it involves a huge number of people. (which wasn’t the case in the end, but I will touch on that in the next blogs)
From then, everything fell into place. I knew exactly where I wanted to get married. With the choice of locations in Italy and believe me when i tell you, all of them are as beautiful as the other, for me it was certain where I would say I do. I had stumbled upon their Facebook page possibly two years prior and always kept it registered at the back of mind. We decided to get married at Kora in Pozzuoli, a 20 minute drive from the city of Naples. The views blew my mind, it was plucked from my personal fairy tale book. The venue offered a civil ceremony on the beach, an amazing menu, setting and everything we could possibly need. Match made in Heaven. Now that the venue was selected and booked, we could get down to business.
Sincerely Stephanie x
P.S My top tips when choosing your location:
Visit as many locations as you feel you need to and do your research. This comes with a lot of patience, time and energy. Make a list of your top 5 venues and make appointments, there is no point wasting time in visiting a venue if you are not absolutely sure about a location.
Ask too many questions. Don’t be afraid to ask the upfront questions. Make a list before hand and turn up prepared to ask away. What is the max capacity of people the venue will hold? Do they offer a wedding planner service? Do they offer special dietary menus? The list goes on. You are putting faith in these people so it’s better to get all the cards out on the table instead of receiving nasty surprises later on, which brings me to my next tip…
Get a clear understanding of what is included and what’s not. Be sure to understand what is included and what exactly you are paying for, the menu, beverages, if the venue will supply the table linens, centrepieces, decorations, flowers, etc. Or if you need to approach a rental company for the add ons. It’s also important to bare in mind to add gratuity in your calculations.
Don’t compromise your dreams – too much. It’s that one special day we dream about our entire lives. Go with what you’ve always dreamed of if your budget allows it.
Check the surroundings of the venue. This was very important for me as we had family and friends flying in from the wedding therefore I had to make sure there were hotels nearby, preferably within walking distance.
Location: Kora Eventi