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Tina and Chris’s 3 days wedding events

 

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TINA AND CHRIS’S INTERVIEW:

 

Where are you and your families from?

I ( Tina) am American and lived and worked in New York City before moving to London for a Masters degree. Chris is English and lived and worked in London.

 

How and where did you met for the first time?

We met at a pub in Covent Garden six months after I moved to London (now over 5 years ago!) Our first date was at a wine bar in Embankment called Champagne Charlies and we talked for hours about everything. It felt so genuine and we had so much fun together.

 

Where  did you got enganged?

Three and a half years after we met, Chris proposed to me on the Passarelle Debilly overlooking the Seine in Paris.  He had planned a surprise weekend away and he got down on one knee on the bridge while a guitarist played our favorite song. After I said yes, the guitarist handed him a bottle of champagne and two glasses. I thought it was a busker, but Chris had hired him for the proposal! Afterwards we went to lunch at L’Epicure, and it really was the most romantic weekend.

 

Why have you decided to getting married in Tuscany?

I knew that we would have family and friends traveling from all over the world to attend our wedding, so I wanted a celebration that would last several days and one where we could celebrate both our Indian and English heritages. We had visited Tuscany before and fell in love with the gorgeous landscape, delicious food and wonderful wine.

 

Why do you decide to choose Castello di Meleto as your wedding reception?

We went on a trip to Tuscany to tour several venues – we saw castles, villas and hotels, both near cities and deep in the country, large and small. I remember what it felt like when we first visited Castello di Meleto.  There were so many beautiful spaces where we could hold a multi day event, and I was struck by how incredibly peaceful it was. We were nestled in between Radda and Gaoile, deep in the countryside. Rolling green hills, vineyards, and starry night skies. There were also two pools, a villa, and an enoteca – It felt like a beautiful dream.

 

 

 DAY 1 : THE TUSCAN NIGHT

 

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Where the welcome dinner took place?

We held a welcome Tuscan dinner party in the Picnic area of the castle grounds. It was a secluded space that overlooked the vineyards.  

 

Which table settings and flower decorations have you picked?

 I wanted a very rustic feel for this night, so we rented long wooden tables with lace table runners and had potted plants filled with aromatic herbs, lavender and lemons.

 

How was the food ?

We had delicious bowls of pasta and pizza served family style and of course local wine made from the Meleto vineyards. We also had a traditional gelato cart for dessert. 

 

Which kind of entertainment did you had during and after dinner?

We hired a guitar and keyboard player, and he really exceeded our expectations. I remember when Chris and I stood at the top of the stairs that led down to the picnic area -  the fairy lights and herbs mixed with the softness of lace and lemons to create the perfect rustic atmosphere. Fabry was singing “Over the Rainbow” and our family and friends were mingling and laughing below. It was a magical moment. He played classic favorites that everyone could sing and dance to through the night. It was unforgettable first day! 

 

Location and event coordinator : Castello di Meleto

Photo: David Bastianoni photographer

Food service: Castello di Meleto

Music entertainment: Fabry Music

Flower arrangments: Il bouquet Siena

DAY 2: THE HINDU WEDDING

 

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What have you been doing with ladies on the morning of the hindu wedding?

After breakfast, we held a mehndi and mimosas party for the ladies. We had two professional henna artists come to apply the mehndi and also brought mimosas, Indian snacks, bangles and bindhis for the girls.

 

How were guest dressed like?

I was sincerely touched by how much effort all of the guests made to buy and wear Indian outfits for the event. They bought, rented and borrowed to embrace the Indian wedding.

 

What happened before the ceremony begins?

In the evening around 5pm was when the baraat started. A dhol player led Chris and all of the men from the top of the hill down to the castle gardens, where my family and friends were waiting. In the old times, the groom and his family would travel to the bride’s village for the wedding in this procession.

 

Which colors have you picked for the flowers decorations?

I wanted the Indian day to be full of bright colors as Indian culture is colorful and loud by nature. During the ceremony, we had an orange and purple mandap and bright, bold flowers.

 

Where dinner took place?

After the Indian ceremony officiated by the Hindu Priest, we were led by the dhol player to the herb garden for cocktail hour and an Indian buffet dinner. 

 

How was the food?

Lodovichi provided the catering for the Indian canapes and dinner, and the food exceeded expectations. There was a selection of vegetarian and non vegetarian Indian specialities that our guests really enjoyed.

 

Which tables settings and colors have you picked?

We had green table clothes and peach and fuschia napkins on the dinner table. The centerpieces were giant gold lanterns with fuschia and peach rose petals, and we placed typical Indian jeweled boxes as wedding favours that my aunts brought from Delhi. 

 

What happen after dinner?

After the dinner, the dhol player led everyone to the Stable for the Indian reception. The normally rustic stable was now covered with colorful drapes and silk flowers and bathed in fuschia and purple light. A series of choreographed dances are usually involved in Indian receptions, and we had a surprise in store for everyone. Back in London, we had organized Bollywood dance lessons for our bridal party by a professional choreographer. The 8 of us had actually practiced relentlessly in parks and studios around London to perfect a 6 minute medley of popular Bollywood hits. We had practiced so much, and we were so excited to perform it although I admit it was not as easy in my heavy bridal lengha! After our dance, my brother and friend also performed a surprise dance for me and ended up bringing Chris on stage to perform with them! He had learned the sequence that afternoon and I have to say I was really impressed. My aunt and uncle also performed a dance along with my bridesmaid from New York. It was so much fun – I’m not sure if I ever laughed or cheered so much in my life. After the dances by our family and friends, we had professional Bollywood dancers from Rome perform. We danced the night away for a second time, this time Bollywood style!

 

Location and event coordinator : Castello di Meleto

Photo: David Bastianoni photographer

Food service: Lodovichi ricevimenti

Music entertainment: Fabio Dex

Flower arrangments: Il bouquet Siena

Dance entertainment: Apsaras dance

Beauty service: Hair’s

DAY 3: THE ENGLISH WEDDING

 

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Where did you get ready?

My bridesmaids and I got ready in the beautiful Virginia Bridal Suite in the castle.

 

Which was the color scheme of the wedding?

The color scheme for this day was soft pastels with hydrangeas, peonies and roses as the main flowers. We wanted a romantic, soft and elegant theme, in contrast with the bright and bold colors of the previous day.

 

Where ceremony took place?

Our ceremony took place on a hilltop overlooking the castle. There was a gentle breeze and a few clouds in the otherwise gloriously blue sky, and there was silence except for the sounds of Pachelbel’s Canon in D by the string ensemble.

 

Which is one of the most beatiful memory of the ceremony?

There were so many beautiful memories! My mother and brother walking me down the aisle, the surprise welcome remarks by the celebrant after interviewing Chris and I, and the Velveteen Rabbit reading by my bridesmaid, to name a few. We included traditional English hymns like “ Be Still in the Presence of the Lord” in keeping with Chris’s family traditions. I remember the string ensemble played and I felt the soft gentle breeze while looking around at the castle, my husband, the guests. It felt surreal.

 

Where cocktail hour took place ?

We had cocktail hour and a jazz band in the castle rooms and then dinner outside in the castle garden.

 

Where dinner took place ?

We had dinner in the castle garden, which had transformed into a magical landscape of fairy lights, soft pastel flower arrangements, lanterns, and candles, with a soft amber glow emanating from the castle. It was amazing to watch the scene transform as the sun set and the reception started

 

Where the party took place?

Since we had the Indian party in the stable the night before, we decided to rent an outdoor dance floor and have the English wedding party under the stars.

 

Which was the higlight of the event?

The sparkler entrance to the dance floor for our first dance was a big highlight of the event. I felt like a princess as my husband and I walked through a sea of sparklers to the dance floor, our friends and family cheering us on.

 

We were also so incredibly blessed with the weather for our wedding weekend. It ended up being beautiful blue skies every day, and we were able to hold all of the events outdoors as planned.  We definitely want to say a big thank you to Katia and the rest of the staff at Castello Meleto for helping us to organize the most beautiful wedding of our dreams.

 

Location and event coordinator : Castello di Meleto

Photo: David Bastianoni photographer

Food service: Lodovichi ricevimenti

Dj service: Fabio Dex

Flower arrangments: Only Art Siena

Live music entertainment:  Firenze Classica 

Lights service: AudioVisual

Celebrant: Tuscan Pledges

Beauty service: Hair’s

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