Intimate Italian Wedding at Villa Cetinale

Villa Cetinale is a stunning family home that has only hosted a couple of weddings in its recent history. This absolutely breathtaking venue is where Jose Villa recently held his workshop, and every detail of this exquisite home is absolutely perfect. We were so excited when Heather Waraksa sent us Lee and Cristiano’s intimate wedding at Villa Cetinale because there have been so few events held there in the past, and it all just seems like a dream.

Words from the Bride about their beautiful day:

We met abroad, as you do, in the South of France. It was a total set-up by mutual friends. We actually dated long distance for almost 2 years – I was living in London. Cri was part-time living in Italy and the rest of the time in Dubai. We traveled non-stop all the time seeing each other before I made the move to leave London and relocate to Dubai. This made a big impact on our wedding, as we have friends literally all over the place.

A few things made our wedding special. Firstly, numbers. Cristiano and I are really wanted something small, intimate and private. We wanted to do something beautiful, but do it for the people that really mean the most to us. I couldn’t really stomach the idea of exchanging our vows in front of 200 people. That was something really important to me – I wanted to be comfortable, not feel like I was performing. When Cri and I first did our list, Cri’s list was only 6 people long! So, we had 29 or 30 people total for the ceremony and lunch, and then had other friends join us in the evening for a reception.

I guess we take it for granted, but there was obviously a very international vibe to our wedding. In a small group of 30, we had guests from the UK, Netherlands, America, Australia, UAE, Italy, France, Hong Kong! We also mixed in lots of Italian elements because of Cristiano’s Italian family: we had ‘cantucci’ from a famous artisanal baking family in Prato, we also had ‘confetti’ which in Italian is actually almonds with sugar coating.

I didn’t want a standard Tuscan ‘wedding factory’ wedding. Villa Cetinale beyond fulfilled our dreams – it has such innate personality because it’s a true family home. 

Lee and Cristiano succeeded in creating an intimate gathering for their closest friends and family. I’m sure this dinner was one for the books for all of their lucky guests who traveled from all over the world to be there. We’re just in awe of the beauty of this Italian landscape and want to bask in it all day…

Photography: Heather Waraksa | Venue: Villa Cetinale | Caterer: Villa Cetinale | Dress: Bespoke by a dressmaker in Dubai, Anastasia Yermakova | Bride’s shoes: Christian Louboutin  | Groom’s shoes:  Ferragamo | Wedding Rings: T. Ristori | Earrings: Annoushka | Cufflinks: Hermes | Florist: Heaven Flower Fioristi | Embroidered chair backs: Etsy

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04.07.14 / Featured, Real Weddings, Real Weddings Blog

Elegant Seaside Mexico Wedding

After that jaw-dropping rehearsal dinner, we didn’t think it could get more beautiful, but we were mistaken. How stunning is every single detail of this seaside wedding?! We have a little more from the bride Stefy on her perfect day:

My wedding day was something I had been waiting for since I was about 4 years old.

When I met my Texan husband in Cabo, it only made sense to get married in the very place I grew up in, Mazatlan.

I am a travel writer for Posh Voyage and have always been fascinated by luxury beach hotels in remote destinations. The mix of palm trees, sand, great food and chic decor is what I live for, and essentially my inspiration for my wedding.

Mazatlan is an exotic beach destination in the Pacific coast and given that my family owns a hotel down there, it came natural to have the wedding take place there. Since me and my now husband travel constantly and have studied abroad for most of our adult life, 70% of our guests were from out of town. It was a perfect excuse for them to make a vacation out of it. Some of them took a few weeks off and explored the most enchanting towns around Mexico like Oaxaca and San Miguel de Allende.

Finally, the wedding was an instant success due to the best wedding planner in Mexico, Peter de Anda. He is a genius in every way and made the whole year coming up to the wedding a fun and relaxing ride.

Event Design, Styling, and Production: Peter de Anda | Photographer: Eric Kelley | Floral Design: Peter de Anda | Lighting: Peter de Anda | Farm Tables, Chairs, Runners, Chargers, Napkins: Peter de Anda  | Linens and Rentals: Peter de Anda | Printed Materials & Details: Bell Invito | Venue: Pueblo Bonito Emerald | Calligraphy: Patricia Gorostiza | Catering: I Latina | Brides’ Wedding Dress: Badgley Mishka | Bride’s Shoes: Christian Louboutin | Groom’s Suiting: Hadleighs | Hair: Lourdes Salon | Make Up: Dania in Lourdes Salon | Ceremony Music: Philarmonic of Mazatlan | Cocktail and Reception Music: Metropolis

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04.04.14 / Featured, Real Weddings, Real Weddings Blog

Win a Dress from Teri Jon

We’re thrilled to introduce you to our newest sponsor, Teri Jon! Teri Jon has a wonderful collection of dresses that are perfect for anyone attending a special event this summer- especially a wedding. They have a huge selection of stunning dresses for mothers, bridesmaids and guests. Your mom can easily find an elegant, flattering, and most importantly of all, affordable dress to wear to your wedding. It’s not always easy to find a great Mother of the Bride dress, and Teri Jon’s dresses are designed to make every woman feel and look absolutely beautiful. The feminine silhouettes are perfect for all shapes, and they have a huge selection of dresses that are both modern and flattering. We absolutely love the large collection that Teri Jon has compiled for you to look through; we’re sure your mom, you, or your bridesmaids will find the perfect dress to complement the style of your wedding!

We have some exciting news: Teri Jon wants every Once Wed bride to have the perfect day, and they want to give each one of you the chance to win one of their affordable luxury dresses. Like Teri Jon on facebook, visit Teri Jon.com, browse through their huge collection of feminine, elegant, and timeless dresses, and let us know which is your favorite and where you would wear it! One lucky reader will be entered to win a dress worth up to $800! Good luck!

Contest ends April 28th.

Graphic: Hannah Lee

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04.04.14 / Contests, Featured, New Sponsor Blog

Colorful Evening Rehearsal Dinner In Mexico

How fun are all of these colorful flowers and magical decorations? We can’t wait to share the gorgeous wedding with you tomorrow!

From Easton Events:

Dinner was set on the first floor in an atrium style room with an open ceiling to the stars. It was a perfectly warm November night. Lanterns, stars, and candles were suspended throughout to create a canopy of twinkling light. The night commenced with a fabulous dinner and a series of epic toasts. At the close of dinner the Bossa Nova band struck up the chords and all of the guests transitioned to the roof top lounge for a late night of dancing.

Event Design, Styling, and Production: Easton Events | Photographer: Eric Kelley | Florals, Lighting, and Rentals: Ambienta | Printed Materials & Details: The Printery | Venue – Cocktails: Casa Garcia Mazatlan | Venue – Dinner & Dancing: La Casona | Calligraphy: Ginny Rogan | Catering: La Casona | Hair & Make Up: Lora Kelley | Videographer: Videa | Bride’s Dress Designer: Agua Dulce | Bride’s Shoes: Dolce & Gabbana

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04.03.14 / Featured, Wedding Ideas, Wedding Ideas Blog