Jen and Dean flew to Italy from the UK for their destination wedding, choosing Sorrento after Jen’s parents showed the couple photos of their first holiday along the Amalfi Coast. The couple were blown away by the beauty of the area, and were delighted they picked Cheryl Pagano at Bella Sposa to plan their day. After visiting the Cloisters of St Francis with Cheryl they knew they had found the perfect ceremony location, and celebrated afterwards in the Relais Blu hotel with stunning views of the Amalfi coastline.

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DECIDING ON THE DESTINATION

“Dean and I met in June 2010 when we began working as police officers in London. We got engaged in 2012 in Mexico and I immediately jumped into planning a big English wedding. A year later, we decided to buy a house so the wedding sadly had to be delayed. Following lots of late night conversations, we finally decided that we wanted to do something different and more low key in terms of guest numbers. Italy has always been my favourite country but Dean and I had never travelled there together. Following a conversation with my parents, my Mum began showing me photos of the first holiday she’d been on with my Dad. The photos of Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast blew me away and luckily Dean loved them as well! Through lots of research, we found our wedding planning Cheryl Pagano at Bella Sposa. I emailed her and immediately felt a connection. The fact that she is British was a positive thing for me because as well as understanding the Italian wedding scene, she also knew that as a British bride, there would probably be some styles and traditions I would want to keep. Getting married abroad can be very daunting so for me having the perfect wedding planner was vital.

CHOOSING THE VENUE

Dean and I travelled out to Sorrento in June 2014 to visit some of the venues Cheryl had recommended. This was the perfect way of getting a true feeling as to to how the day would be. We decided on a civil ceremony at the beautiful medieval Cloisters of St Francis. It’s natural beauty speaks for itself so we didn’t want to do too much in terms of decorations. We simply added a white carpet and white chairs and added a touch of blush with soft pink flowers at the altar. Dean and I were able to write our own vows and chose music that was special to us for during the ceremony. The music was played on a violin and mandolin which just heightened the magic of an Italian wedding. For some brides, being so far away from the venues during the planning process maybe hard, but for me this just made the magic of the day even more so!

THE WEDDING DAY

I rented some classic Vespas for Dean and his best men to ride to the ceremony on. The photos speak for themselves but this was a special gift to him with great meaning behind them.  Cheryl shared my enthusiasm and found me the perfect bikes at a great price. After the ceremony, our guests took the short walk to the five star Grand Hotel La Favorita for Prosecco and canapés. While they enjoyed the much needed air conditioning, Dean and I took a walk around the streets of Sorrento whilst having the most beautiful photographs taken. All the locals would cheer and clap and this was a lovely moment for us as newly weds.

We then made our way via Rolls Royce to Relais Blu, one of Italy’s top wedding locations where we met our guests to enjoy canapés on the terrace overlooking beautiful views of Capri. We then made our way down for the most fabulous wedding breakfast with more stunning views, finally followed by music and dancing at the infinity pool. The best decision in terms of marrying abroad was having a wedding planner. We hit the jackpot with Cheryl and she has now become a lifelong friend. We had 40 guests at the wedding and although there were some that couldn’t make it, everyone understands why we chose Sorrento for our wedding. It was the most beautiful day and will always be the best day of my life!”

Photography & Videography: Alfonso Longobardi | Wedding Planner: Cheryl Pagano at Bella Sposa | Wedding Reception: Relais Blu | Aperitifs & Canapés: Grand Hotel La FavoritaHair & Make Up: Elia & Maria Rosaria from Coiffeur Forte in Sorrento | Vespa Rental: Exclusive Dreams | Rolls Royce Rental: Bella Sposa

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