This is my first day back from Sorrento and I can’t rave enough about how beautiful our wedding day in Villa Antiche Mura was. A real fairytale with fantastic views... A stunning, picturesque, exquisite, charming wedding; exactly how I had imagined it... All the guests were awed and had a wonderful romantic time.
Villa Antiche Mura belongs to Hotel Antiche Mura and is on top of a cliff with direct water views. The villa is very well groomed and has huge terraces on water, giving one the opportunity to use them for different functions during the reception.
The villa is managed by Michele Saverese, who also is the manager of the hotel. He has great taste and access to local vendors and coordinated all my wishes. I didn’t have any other wedding coordinator beside him.
As per my request, the whole reception decoration was in yellow and white as the wedding theme was “Lemon”. The bridesmaids dresses were matched with the ribbons used on the tables and the decoration with the view in the background was so stunning that almost all my guests made the comment that this was by far the nicest wedding they have ever seen. Even the staff of villa antiche mura commented that this is one of the nicest wedding they ever have had (they had 3 other weddings in the week before me) and requested to have our fotos for their next internet site.
After emailing back and forth with couple coordinator and questioning the reason why they were asking for so much extra money (and actually one of them got angry with the fact that I didn’t use her to the point that she started harassing me), I decided to not use a coordinator. Michele from Hotel Antiche Mura agreed to coordinate all my necessary details without any extra cost. He was great and the whole city knows him and respects him. Michele is a perfectionist. He has great taste and makes whatever you say happen. I am a perfectionist myself and the combination of the two of us working on this reception was good.
Michele organized my hairdresser, who was simply the best. On top of her normal training, she had completed a wedding hair course in Milan and could speak perfectly English. I showed her my wish picture and she made my hair exactly like the picture! She was such a nice lady too. She came to hotel 3 days before and did the hair trial and came back on the wedding day and did my hair in the hotel.
My bridesmaids did their hair at the “Beauty Salon Glamour” at this address: http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=sorrento,+italy&sll=53.800651,-4.064941&sspn=13.940309,25.356445&ie=UTF8&ll=40.626876,14.375063&spn=0.004365,0.006191&z=17&layer=c&cbll=40.626954,14.375023&panoid=5NOrKiCvIfXDzCiIZpDlrg&cbp=12,65.26,,0,6.88 and I did my nails there. They charged 20 Euro for the hair and 40 for French manicure and pedicure and their job was amazing!
Michele organized my bouquet, which was very nice for 90 Euro. I ordered the bridesmaids flowers from Super Flora at this address: (http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=sorrento,+italy&sll=53.800651,-4.064941&sspn=13.940309,25.356445&ie=UTF8&ll=40.629059,14.375063&spn=0,359.993809&z=17&layer=c&cbll=40.627428,14.374181&panoid=C-vZ3kHvNP99OOJAYqa4_A&cbp=12,189.38,,0,5). Their bouquets were really nicer than mine and only costed 20 Euros!!! If I could do it again, I would just take my picture to Super Flora and let them do it for me for much cheaper.
Michele offered our DJ. He was great and had a good sense of music, however, didn’t deliver an amazing job on wedding. I gave him a list of songs but in the beginning he played his own music, which people didn’t know and didn’t dance from. Whenever he played our music everyone was in dance floor but there were awkward moments with empty dance floor that should have been avoided. He played soft music during dinner and his choice there was awesome! He came at 6 PM and stayed till 12 AM. If I could do it again, I would use ipod.
Michele did magic in ceremony’s decoration and we had white and yellow balloons and the seat set up was nicely done. We had a magical ceremony.
Music during ceremony:
I ordered myself music from Musica Nozze, since they were cheaper than all other quotes I got and also I could listen to their music on youtube. We had a mandolin and guitar player and I can’t rave enough about Paolo from Musica Nozze, who organized it for me. He was so nice and invited us to the show in the Sorrento centre for free as they play there. We couldn’t find time to go unfortunately. Use them, they are the best and professionals!
Amazing, amazing, amazing. Awesome delicious finger food and a lot of them. Rossini, bellini, spumante, white wine and beer flowing. Our guests loved the aperitif selection. They had meat, cheese, small pizzas, small delicious bread with tomatoe, olive and other dressings. All beautifully done. In my career I go to these big functions a lot and looking at our aperitif food selection and how it was being served and I can assure you that it was a 5 star gala dinner quality.
Wow! I sat there and looked around at my guests and the table set up right on water and thought to myself, this is heaven... The view, the food, the table set up, etc.... They listened to every detail I had asked for and believe me, I can be very picky and difficult. The yellow ribbons matching my bridesmaids dresses and the lemon centre pieces and beautifully wrapped wedding favours, silver expensive looking cutlery and beautiful plates... everything was perfect! Then the food came... We chose 3 course meal and Michele was wonderful as he gave our guests 5 choices for their main food (chicken, roast beef, Sea bass, Vegetarian and Vegan). The vegetarian people had different appetizer and main course and the Vegan dishes were delicious but strictly vegan! Our guests felt very special that all their food preferences were remembered. Michele had a list of names and food options and walked around all the time to make sure everyone is getting the right thing and is happy. Considering I had 75 guests, this was a complicated procedure... All food arrived together and hot. The lasagne (non vegetarian main course) was the winner with Sea bass coming second. The roast beef wasn’t very popular though as the meat is served cold with a hot sauce. If I had to do something differently I would:
1- Put a tab on wine consumption as 61 bottle was used for 75 guests and we couldn’t track if this number is correct. Our guests mostly disagreed with the number and said that their table had way fewer number than that but since we didn’t have a system we couldn’t check.
2- Not offer the tea as it is green tea with little water.
3- Put a tab on the number of tea/coffees offered as again the number was way higher than what we thought and we couldn’t track it
4- Not offer the roast beef.
But remember that I am very picky and the above comments don’t mean real flaws! The dinner was a hit. It was beautiful and the food was delicious! Wine was good and flowing. The servers were awesome and very attentive. Michele was a star and visited each guest personally.
We gave 3 drink coupons for each guest after dinner and I highly recommend that you do the same thing and put a coupon. I don’t think anyone counted the coupons and we were charged for the maximum number of coupons although we protested and said we still have 6 coupons in our own pockets!!! After we paid, our guests started giving back coupons to us, which confirmed that Michele didn’t count the coupons at all and just charged us for the maximum number. I am not happy about that, but to be fair everything else in the wedding was nice enough... I was so happy that we had the coupon system as otherwise the tap would be really sky high I am sure (like the wine bottle numbers!!) and we couldn’t check it in anyway. So coupons and other measurement to be able to check the actual drink consumption is highly recommended.
Umberto Daniello, the man with the vision and a real artist came all the way from Capri for our wedding and brought a video camera man! He was so sweet and put his heart and soul in picture taking! He took around 1000 pictures and 3-4 hours worth of video for us and was my shadow from 4 PM till 11 PM!!!! He promised to deliver the edited pictures and video in the next 3 weeks with all taken pictures and the copy right so that we can print as many as we want! He is a real artist and he showed us couple of pictures that he got and even if those are the only pictures of my wedding, I would be satisfied as they were a real artwork capturing a beauty that you couldn’t see with normal eye. I can’t wait to see the pictures and I loved working with him...
We got everyone 10ml Limoncellos in violinist and star shaped (violinist for the guys and stars for the girls). The shop where we bought our wedding favours was the best priced in the city and they were so nice... It was called La Botteguccia and it’s on Corsa Italia (http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&q=Corso+Italia,+80067+Sorrento+Naples,+Campania,+Italy&sll=53.800651,-4.064941&sspn=8.386971,36.5625&ie=UTF8&cd=1&geocode=FR_qawId6WzbAA&split=0&ll=40.625891,14.374301&spn=0.001002,0.008926&z=17&layer=c&cbll=40.625894,14.374299&panoid=UqKC3QTEQaZ_7MF2baVxFA&cbp=11,129.31,,1,-0.05) . they wrote our wedding date and Sorrento with a beautiful dark gold paint on the bottles. Then the bottles were put in saran wrap and they put a little card mentioning our name and the wedding date and location in the wrap. Then the favours were beautifully closed by lovely yellow ribbons. Our guests loved the idea and raved how cute the shapes of the bottles were. We paid less than 4 euro for bottle including the personalized writings and the bottles were 10 ml and not small.
All and all we had a memorable, stunning, picturesque, exquisite, charming wedding and I am really sad that it’s over!! I have so far only amateur pictures but would be happy to share if anyone interested. I will get the professional pictures in 2-3 weeks.