Stephanie and Dans Villa Passalacqua Wedding on Lake Como looks like something from a movie, it’s that gorgeous! Every luxurious detail was so thoughtfully planned out and from the dapper groom to the floral bridesmaid corsages, you’d be forgiven for thinking this was in fact a styled shoot. To say I’m obsessed would be putting it mildly but with planning in the hands of the talented bunch over at Wedding Italy and photography by Lauren Michelle it was always going to turn out this beautiful.

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From the bride, Stephanie:

Dan and I both live and work in Hong Kong. We met 5-6 years ago for the first time at the gym but we never introduced ourselves. We saw each other again a couple of years later at a member’s only restaurant in Hong Kong. We were both at the bar, I finally decided to introduce myself and we exchanged numbers. That’s how our story began…

I took Dan on a weekend trip to Macau to celebrate his 30th birthday. I organised a surprise birthday dinner with a few of our friends. They were going to meet us at the restaurant. Dan didn’t know about it. We checked in at the Banyan Tree in Macau and I could tell he was very nervous and I didn’t know why. I was too busy thinking about the surprise and making sure all went according to plan.

He started talking about the future, he was so nervous I didn’t understand what he was talking about and I thought maybe he is very stressed out with work…Then he dropped on one knee and asked me to marry him. I didn’t know what was happening. I was so shocked and I said: “but…this is your birthday! I’m surprising you! Your friends are downstairs waiting for us”. I started crying of course as I didn’t expect it at all. We ended up celebrating his 30th birthday and our engagement with our friends!

Dan is American and I am from Belgium but most of our friends live in Hong Kong. We were looking for a destination that was central and easily accessible for our guests coming from Asia, USA and Europe. Italy seemed to be the perfect location. Dan is half Italian and I know Italy quite well as I spent a lot of family holidays there.

We chose Lake Como as it’s very close to an international airport, Milan. We wanted to make the trip as easy as possible for our guests.

We were looking for a villa for the wedding weekend and we both fell in love with Villa Passalacqua. It’s a gorgeous villa overlooking the lake.

The first couple of months planning were stressful but overall the planning went pretty smoothly. Dan and I had some disagreements at first but it all worked out in the end.

I wanted an elegant and romantic wedding but fun at the same time. Our guests travelled so far, it was important for us they could relax and make a holiday out of it. We organised a 3 day wedding with a boat trip and a welcome dinner on Friday, the wedding day on Saturday and a brunch on Sunday.

We chose a well-known Italian caterer. The cocktail, wedding reception and the cake were traditional Italian. Spritz were served during the cocktail and until now our friends drink Spritz in Hong Kong! We also incorporated small touches from our respective country of origin such as Belgian chocolate in the welcome bags, American candies and Chinese fortune cookies on the wedding day.

The colour palette was neutral with touches of beige, champagne and blush pink.

Lake Como is such an amazing part of the world, I am so pleased we got married there. I think it will be memorable for all our guests.

The majority of our guests arrived a couple of days before the wedding. They arrived on Thursday morning and seeing our family and friends together in Lake Como felt so unreal. We couldn’t believe they were there with us in Lake Como to celebrate our wedding.

Of course the wedding day was one of the best days of my life.

The only regret we had was the music. The DJ the wedding planner recommended wasn’t exactly what we were looking for. Our friends ended up playing their own music during the after party. Having mentioned that, I highly recommend hiring a wedding planner for a destination wedding. It makes the planning so much easier and stress free on the big day and I could have not organised our wedding from Hong Kong without her.

Photography; Lauren Michelle | Ceremony Venue; Villa Passalacqua | Videographer; Matteo Casteluccia | Wedding Planner; Wedding Italy | Catering; Galateo Ricevimenti | Stationary; Sallbo Design Atelier | Wedding Dress; Rosa Clara | Hair and Make Up Stylist; Parruchiera L’Atelier Cernobbi


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