Posts of our 2014 weddings, and before coming soon!
Greek Island Wedding Destination: PAROS | Couple from: USA & Cuba | Living in: USA | Wedding Date: Wed, 31 July & Sat, 2 August 2014 | Guests: 24
Photographed by: Michael Salis
When Eleni first told me – in her fab NYC accent – that strange things always seem to happen to them, and that this would be our most adventurous wedding planning experience yet, I didn’t quite believe her. Brides-to-be are often overwhelmed at the start of the wedding planning journey, and we simply stay by their side and sooth them into having the peace of mind to be able to make the many decision along the way. But Eleni was not wrong… And so we share with you a longer story than usual…
The couple met at Eleni’s place of work, where as a hair stylist, she used to cut Andrew’s hair. And a true romantic, Andrew’s proposal to her is one of the sweetest (literally!). Eleni says of the night:
“Well Andrew took me out for my birthday at a Japanese restaurant. In advance he spoke with the owner and planned this whole thing. He made up a “new dessert menu” and asked the owner if he can set it up only in my menu. Since dessert is my favourite course he knew I would read it thoroughly. To my surprise I read the menu and he had written his proposal as a last choice. I was so stunned! It was a great moment. The owner let us take the whole menu home as a keepsake.”
Eleni had to decide where they would be married, and she recalls, “Growing up as a child my parents would take my brother, sister and I to Greece for the summer months. I have twin boys from a previous marriage and I always wanted to take them to Greece just once to see where their roots are from and learn more about their heritage. I wanted my children to experience what I experienced when I was a child but finances would always get in the way. Three years prior our wedding my whole family (11 of us) the boys, Andrew and I vacationed in Greece and we all went to Paros. We had a wonderful time being all together so when it came time to plan a wedding it was an easy decision to take our vows in Paros.”
And with that settled, the planning begun. No sooner did we have all the arrangements for their Orthodox ceremony in place, when a conflict with dates for the church threw us our first curve ball. To change the date, to arranged a second ceremony? What to do? Eleni recalls of this time, “Having Mimmika be in constant contact with us was invaluable. She was wonderful. She was a tremendous help. Being I live in the States she made it easier to know she was taking care of things for me. Any doubts or uncertainty she would give me her input and help me with my decisions.”
The date for their Orthodox ceremony was shifted, and we arranged a second ceremony – on a beautiful wooden boat – to ensure guests arriving at a later date could share in Eleni & Andrew’s joy. A glitch with the paperwork was sorted out in the nick of time and almost on the same day they arrived to finally enter into wedding bliss while on Paros. But Mother of the Bride, Aristea, was almost left behind passport-less, and the bridal gown and all the essential accessories for the ceremony somehow managed to escape at New York’s JFK. So with frayed nerves, it was understandably hard for them to surrender to the beauty of Paros around them.
Waiting with baited breath, Eleni’s gown, the best men’s outfits, the stefana, lambades and ceremony tray arrived just 2 hours before their Orthodox wedding. And with this adventure behind us, the moment finally arrived for Eleni: “When the boys walked me into the church grounds and seeing Andrew waiting for me at the entrance of the church, I thought at that moment of all the preparations for this day and its happening right now. It was surreal.”
Sticking to Greek tradition – Andrew held the bride’s bouquet, and presented it to Eleni as a gift of love before entering the church together. The ceremony with so much beauty and power tugged on all our heart, and plenty of happy tears where wiped away.
After spending a close family day together, it was time to receive the newly arriving wedding guests for more wedding celebrations. But fate was not done with us yet…
Due to high winds, the captain felt it would not be pleasant or safe to take the boat out – and we quickly came up with an alternative option for the symbolic ceremony. And it’s at this point that it suddenly all made sense to me… Standing between St Nicholas Chapel and the restaurant Barbarossa where the wedding dinner was to take place – I realized the Eleni’s dad, Nicholas – whom she had lost – and Barbara, Andrew’s mom that he had lost, had their own plan for their children’s union. While they couldn’t be there in body, they made sure they were there in spirit – and for all to witness.
And so to Eleni and Andrew, we can’t control what happens in our lives, but by loving to the fullest with the beautiful hearts and sweet intentions you both have, amazing miracles will always be in store for you. We wish you a wonderful life together – and we can’t wait to see you when you next visit Paros!
Greek Island Destination: PAROS | Couple from: Canada & Sweden | Living in: Sweden | Wedding Date: Sat, 29 June 2014 | Number of Guests: 25
Photographed by: Bernard Pretorius
Sara & Magnus met at work and, not long after, they realized that it was inevitable that they where meant to be together. A short 3 months before their wedding on Paros, on a spa break together, Magnus woke Sara up and officially proposed to her …with a pair of diamond earrings. She already had the ring, but the wedding details were still being discussed.
They had both been married before, and dreamed of an island wedding that was without hassle, simple, classic & elegant – casual but gorgeous.
Not wanting any decorations, it was key that the location and venue for the ceremony had just the right balance of luxury and simplicity to create this atmosphere.
“If you’re considering a wedding on Paros – just do it, it’s the best decision you’ll ever make!” says Sara.
Joyful, happy and easygoing through the planning process, they stayed true to what they wanted their day to be about… they were simply meant to be together and that is what they wanted to celebrate.
After a legal civil ceremony in Sweden, their children and closest friends and family joined them on a trip to Paros where the couple shared their vows at an intimate boutique hotel near Naoussa. Sara remembers, “Arriving poolside, before the ceremony, with the kids and friends arriving one after the other, and the hotel guests looking on… I felt like royalty!!!” And with her short crochet wedding dress, and Magnus’ casual blue shirt, the couple where definitely the epitome of island chic!
The girls participated in the ceremony, and each took a turn at binding the sash during the handfasting ritual of the ceremony – symbolizing the joining of not only the couple, but of two families.
We treated the couple, family and guests to traditional sugared almonds for good luck and prosperity, as the afternoon ended in high spirits.
After a champagne reception, the newlyweds and their loved ones celebrated with a special dinner at a local restaurant they chose on arrival to the island.
Never before has a couple that told us they want to ‘keep it simple’ actually managed to stick to this goal. With an industry bombarding brides and couples with inspiration, do’s and don’t, it’s too easy get lost in the frenzy, and we’re always on standby to remind couples what is really important – their personal reason for wanting to take this next step.
We applaud you Sara & Magnus! May you breeze through the rest of your lives together with the same ease and joy that you approached your wedding.
Greek Island Wedding Destination: Mykonos | Couple from: Russia | Wedding Date: Wed, 23 June 2010 | Guests: 9
Marriage Ceremony: Symbolic | Wedding Reception: Villa | Planning Time: 4 months
Photographed by: Vangelis Beltzenitis
Katia & Andrei, together with 7 of their closest friends celebrated their wedding by sailing the Greek islands on a private sailboat. They chose Mykonos as the island that would host their very romantic and intimate wedding.
Here is their story in their own words (scroll down for Russian):
We remember our wedding as a magical, beautiful fairy tale.
We were sitting in the winter 2010 in the cold in Russia and dreamed to celebrate our Day on the beautiful Cyclades. At first it was just a dream, which seemed to us next to impossible. But then we found Mimmika on the Web and she made the dream come true. Of course, it was a risk to organize everything remotely living in Moscow, because we’ve never seen this girl before and could not see anything what we have planned ourselves or any of the preparations for the wedding. But all the concerns went away as Mimmika surrounded us with so much care and attention – calls on Skype, detailed mails with pictures – we trusted her completely. In addition, it is so nice to trust all the care to a professional and focus only on the pre-wedding romantic emotions.
Our honeymoon began in Athens, where taking the yacht we have sailed with a small group of close people to Mykonos. There we were met by welcoming Mimmika, and we realized that they we are all in good hands! In our day everything was magical: a professional team of beauty stylists, sophisticated logistics, place for the ceremony with a fantastic view of the sea, adorned with even more beautiful than we imagined, our favorite music and of course the sea of romantic emotions. Everything we have dreamed about! Mimmika was always there, preventing any potential minor incidents. Now, looking at the beautiful wedding pictures by Vangelis Beltzenitis, we realize how lucky we are, what we found Mimmika!
Descending from heaven to earth, we note that the budget for our wedding was more than acceptable. If we would arrange the wedding in Moscow, it would be few times more expensive, and not even close to the beautiful one we had!
Наша свадьба запомнилась нам как волшебная, прекрасная сказка.
Мы сидели в холодной России и мечтали, чтобы главный день в нашей жизни прошел на прекрасных Кикладах. Сначала это была только мечта, которая казалась нам неосуществимой. Но потом мы познакомились с Мимикой, которая сделала мечту реальностью. Конечно, это был определенный риск, потому что мы никогда не видели эту девушку раньше и не могли видеть своими глазами подготовку к нашей свадьбе. Но Мимика окружила нас таким вниманием – звонки по скайпу, подробные мэйлы с иллюстрациями, что мы ей полностью доверились. Кроме того, это так приятно, доверить все заботы профессионалу и сосредоточиться только на романтических предсвадебных эмоциях. Наше свадебное путешествие началось в Афинах, где взяв яхту мы отправились небольшой компанией близких людей в плаванье до Миконоса. Там нас встретила радушная Мимика и мы поняли, что попали в надежные руки! В наш день все было волшебно: профессиональная бьюти-команда, продуманная логистика, место церемонии с фантастическим видом на море, украшенное даже красивее, чем мы представляли, наша любимая музыка и конечно море романтических эмоций. Все как мы мечтали! Мимика всегда была рядом, предупреждая все возможные накладки. Теперь, просматривая прекрасные свадебные фотографии, мы понимаем, как нам повезло, что мы нашли Мимику!
Опускаясь с неба на землю, хочется отметить, что бюджет нашей свадьбы был более, чем приемлемым. Если бы мы устраивали свадьбу в Москве, то заплатили бы в разы больше, но она не стала бы такой же красивой!