Dana and Anthony flew from the UK last September for their destination wedding on the Croatian island of Hvar. Their vibrant, lively yet intimate wedding day began with an exchange of vows in a beautiful and ancient villa courtyard, followed by a reception dinner on a seaside terrace overlooking the city. Obviously madly in love with each other, Dana and Anthony’s smiles throughout the wedding gallery are infectious, and we can’t figure out whether we love their ceremony space or reception area more! More from bride Dana below with details from the day, but first these images from OneDayStudio
 
 

THE ENGAGEMENT

“Our love story began when we met eight years ago at a friend’s barbeque on a sunny bank holiday weekend in England. After realising we had quite a few mutual friends and lots in common we began chatting, dated for six months and then soon moved in together. Unknown to me, in 2014, Anthony decided that he wanted to propose to me. After searching for the right ring for a while, he found a jewellers in Brighton who were able to help design and make the perfect ring, Anthony decided that the perfect time to ask me would be later that year, on our holiday in Sardinia. And so, one evening, whilst enjoying a drink on the terrace of our hotel overlooking the marina, Anthony got down on one knee and asked a shocked and unsuspecting myself to be his wife. Luckily for him, I said ‘YES’!

DESTINATION DECISION 

Both of us had always spoken of getting married abroad, and so the planning began. Anthony and I spent a number of months researching different destinations across Europe for our special day, however we wanted to choose somewhere at least one of us had visited. My Mum and I had holidayed in Hvar a few months before myself and Anthony got engaged and both instantly fell in love with the island. We came back to England telling Anthony about how stunning the island is and how he had to go. After hours of searching the internet, we soon realised that the beautiful Croatian Island of Hvar was the perfect setting for our big day. We found the venues for our ceremony and reception and booked it.

THE BIG DAY 

Anthony and I arrived in beautiful Hvar a week before the wedding, we only had one day to ourselves before all of our fifty guests began to arrive. We had such a wonderful week with all our families and friends. Every day we sunbathed, swam in the sea and drank cocktails by the pool. The next thing we knew we were all waking up and it was the day of our wedding. That morning we all went for a light breakfast and then all of the boys were shipped off to a different hotel room. We met with Danijela and Zvonimir for the first time after breakfast to talk through the running of the day. Our ceremony began in the courtyard of St Marks- an old Dominican Monastery. The venue was so pretty and was exactly what we both wanted. St Marks is the most beautiful church and courtyard in Hvar, located just off the main square. It really is amazing and perfect for such a special service. Luckily the day began with bright sunshine and then turned slightly overcast, we didn’t mind though as it had been so hot all week, I think all of the men welcomed the cooler weather with open arms seeing as they were all wearing suits! Anthony, both of our Dads and all of the groomsmen party wore matching black tuxedos with black bow ties and all looked so smart. Both of our Mums wore different shades of pink and my bridesmaids wore long, nude maxi dresses with sandals. My wedding dress and veil were designed by myself and custom made for me by a lady called Blanka from a bridal boutique in Brighton. Our florist did a brilliant job of all the bouquets, men’s button holes and flowers for our ceremony. To decorate St Marks we chose all white hydrangea and roses with some greenery which looked so simple yet so lovely. For mine and the bridesmaid bouquets I was undecided for a while, but in the end chose cream and pale pink roses with greenery.

The Ceremony was performed by two local registrars. One lady spoke in Croatian and another translated what she had said into English, this lasted around forty minutes in total. Straight after we said our “I do’s” we stayed at the venue to all enjoy champagne and have photographs taken. Following this all of our guests headed to the very glamorous Bonj les Bains Beach Club where Pimms and canapes were awaiting them. Just as Anthony and I had finished having our photos taken we started to feel light droplets of rain, so we walked a little faster and arrived at the reception venue luckily before the heavens opened. I had arranged with the the local lighting technicians for them to drape fairy lights on the ceiling of the top floor of Bonj les Bains, which was something they had never done before. We were both unsure how it would look, but the risk paid off and everyone commented on how nice they looked.

We all sat down for the meal and within five or so minutes the light rain had turned into a massive storm. The venue is sheltered buts open at the sides, therefore by this time wind and rain was soaking mainly the top table. The staff were really fast to act and bought lots of umbrellas to us to keep us dry, shots of Jager were poured for everyone and the storm passed within fifteen minutes… Only to leave us with no electricity! So we along with our fifty guests all ate our three course meal by candle light. The food was delicious, for starter we chose linguini with melted cherry tomatoes, fluffy sliced prosciutto in a buttery wine sauce. For the main meal we chose grilled seabass fillet, dauphinoise potato with grilled vegetables, and for dessert vanilla cheesecake with blueberry sauce. Following three great speeches we all headed to the top floor of Bonj les Bains to dance the night away. All of the staff were so amazing and ensured we all had the best night, they joined in with everyone on the dancefloor and kept the bar open an extra two hours for us.” 

Photography & Videography: OneDayStudio | Venue: Bonj ‘les Bains’ Beach Club | Wedding Planning, Catering & Florist: Suncani Hotel Group | Dress & Veil: Custom from White Leaf Boutique

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