Sorrento, Italy Destination Wedding in Navy

Sorrento Italy destination wedding

Carla and Mike said I do in Sorrento, Italy overlooking the ocean and the island of Capri at their intimate destination wedding with oodles of fashion and fun travel details too!

We asked the couple to share their love of travel and love story with us. “We fell in love with Sorrento, Italy the moment we visited…Watching the world go by in an open air-cafe we were completely captivated by the relaxing Italian flare, vibe and the seductive mythical town of Sorrento, so therefore we couldn’t resist getting married there.”

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“For our colour palette we decided to have champagne and navy blue. We actually got Carla’s dress, which is champagne, before we decided on going to Italy for our wedding. When we chose Sorrento We knew the dress would be perfect for the Italian style and with the old traditional golds they use for their décor. We used these colours and other items such as rustic string ties and champagne card invitations, labels etc. to fit in with our Italian/travel theme. We chose navy blue as we felt this complimented the champagne elegantly and perfectly. Also, with the blue sea and sky surrounding Sorrento and with Relais Blu having blue as their main colour, we felt navy blue went well and matched perfectly.”

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“Our ceremony was held in the Chiostro di San Francesco, known to anyone visiting as the ‘Cloisters’. This is an old Franciscan Chiostro in the centre of Sorrento, it is a beautiful little courtyard surrounded by elegant arches. Next to the cloisters is the church of St.Francis which dates back to the 16th Century.”

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“We absolutely loved the quiet tranquil nature of the garden we thought it was the ideal place to hold the ceremony. We added lots of rose flowers and had a beautiful harp to play throughout the ceremony, which completed the setting perfectly. Monks still use this place today and can often be seen, quietly walking through the grounds, or inviting in their latest guests.”

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“Our favourite moments of the day are very hard to select but, as cliché as it may sound, nothing compared to the moment we laid eyes on one another as Carla entered the Cloisters. Mike was blown away by how stunning Carla looked in her dress and couldn’t help but shed a tear.”

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“Make sure you have photographers who have the capability to capture the day perfectly. We picked creative and unique photographers who ticked every box for us. At the end of the day this is what you look back on and we just love our photographs as they captured some amazing shots of us that we’d never dream of having. They captured everything from the funniest moment to the most emotional, they were so passionate that they captured everything! Being able to relive the day through those heart felt in-the-moment shots is amazing and something we like to do almost daily.” 

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“Mike surprised Carla by hiring a wedding car to drive them to the reception in, an original 1960s Fiat 500 !! Trying to get into the car was hysterical, because of Carla’s very large dress, Carla had to sit in the backseat because there would be no room in the front for Mike to drive us to the reception. Then, because the car was so old, it was difficult to drive and it was amazing that Mike even got us there in one piece!! Especially with the renowned Italian drivers around us. We were giggling so much and as we hadn’t been alone together since the ceremony it was the first time we both felt we could relax and soak it all in”

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Then it was off to the reception!  “We enjoyed drinks and canapés upon arrival on our own private terrace, then indulged in a gorgeous traditional Italian meal as we watched the sun set. After the meal and speeches we then all made our way up to the pool area to enjoy some music, dancing and drinks, whiling away the evening until our chariot arrived to return our guests to Sorrento.”

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For the dinner seating design? “Bespoke table plan, table names with Romeo and Juliet scripts in the background, the table names were the places we were visiting on our honeymoon.”

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We often ask couples what advise they would give having gone through the destination process. “Our advise to future couples is to enjoy.every.moment!!! Take some alone time to really grasp that you both have just got married so you can enjoy being excited and happy together, then you’ll feel relaxed and can really enjoy the rest of the day. This was our favourite memory just being able to be with the one you love on the most important day of your life for a few minutes so you can really savour that you’ve both just got married and you’re having the time of your lives.”

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Even the wedding favors were a nod to the location! “’Grazie’ on little luggage tags for the lemoncello bottles given to guests as wedding favours at reception.”  Clearly a good time was had by all and even left some of the smaller guests exhausted from so much fun!

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer:  Caroline + Ben Photography

Wedding Vendors: Reception Venue: Relais Blu, Ceremony: Chiostro di San Francesco, Wedding Organizer: Sylvia Schiappa, Flowers: Flowers and Confetti, Invitations: Artcadia Stationery, Calligraphy: Castadrift, Paper Goods: Nerissa Eve Weddings, Guestbook: Etsy, Fingerprint Tree: Vespa Guestbook, Wedding Dress: Ian Stuart – Antoinette, London Bride Couture, Shoes: Harriet Wilde Shoes, Groom Suit: Chester Barrie Savile Row Hopsack Suit, Bridesmaids Dresses: Ted Baker – Saphira, Personalised ‘Mr and Mrs Gray’ Wedding Cake Topper + Heart Bracelet + Cufflinks: Noton The High Street, Lace Parasols + Luggage Tags: Confetti, Honeymoon: Mr and Mrs Smith Hotels, Flower Girls: Monsoon, Car: Sergio Spider Life Style


Formal Destination Wedding in Italy

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It’s the wedding day!  After sharing day one and two of Lama and Suhail’s glamorous destination wedding in Capri, Italy it’s time to share the big moment!  The black-tie clad groom and his gorgeous bride celebrated with 200 friends and family in a magical, and culturally rich ceremony and reception at the famed Capri Palace Hotel.  The entire weekend was produced by Diana Sorensen for Sugokuii Events, who shared with us all the details from the day.

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Lama’s wedding dress was designed with her input, by the famed Lebanese couture designer, Abed Mahfouz“Lama is a super stylish – true fashionista – who owns a well known avant garde fashion boutique in Dubai – and needless to say, this was one very stylish bride who was preparing for her three day wedding – with the most beautifully planned outfits for each evening & one of the most stunning wedding dresses you can imagine – a couture dress no less.” 

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Lama had fun with the process.  “I worked directly with the Abed Mahfouz team. The fittings were so exciting; it was amazing to see the collaboration develop and finally come alive!  I thought to myself that the only time I would ever be able to go all out with a big dress would be on my wedding day – so I took full advantage, but kept it classic with the lace.”

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The veil was equally beautiful & delicate. I wanted to keep the same embellishment consistent on the veil with the Swarovski white crystals and tulle.  My jewelery was my mother’s earrings which have been passed down from my sister on her wedding day and finally to me.  The most special ring for me was when my husband and I picked out our gold Cartier bands. My engagement ring is a custom made cushion cut diamond and the wedding band is a Graff. I really love it.”

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The groom, equally stylish was decked out in Givenchy & Lanvin which complimented her look perfectly.

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Diana tells us more about this pair’s big day.  “The couple and all their friends rented out the entire Tiberio Palace hotel in Capri for the three day occasion. The hotel, has a very young, cool vibe feel – perfect getaway for this young crowd to feel at home in and all the luxuries you can imagine – while the parents and older generation stayed at the beautiful Grand Hotel Quisisana, only a few minutes apart from each other in the center of Capri – next to all the major boutiques, chic restaurants and clubs.” 

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“The ceremony, was not a traditional one as such – it started with an Arabic tradition known as the “Zaffe” – a very festive type of wedding festival with musical procession accompanied by a percussionist we flew in for the occasion. First the groom goes out with his groomsmen accompanied by a percussionist – and all the guests clap and celebrate him for few minutes in a festive fashion – then she comes out with her bridesmaids – and is met by her father – who then “gives” her to the groom. They then dance together and are celebrated by their family and guests while they usually clap and cheer them on. There is no “altar”, no “celebrant/officiant” with readings.  It was definitely one of the “happiest” ceremonies we have ever arranged and when the bride came out in her amazing couture dress, the guests were stunned – not to mention the groom who had a true feeling of pride, when Lama came out.”

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“Following the ceremony the guests were transported to the sea side venue Il Riccio, which they rented in its entirety for the night.  The couple followed the guests by arriving in style in a beautiful vintage Fiat cabriolet (owned by the proprietor of Capri Palace).

We had a caricaturist from Napoli brought in – to draw guests exaggerated portraits, we had a personalized Capri perfume bar which we created for the occasion – where guests could create & custom blend their own perfume by choosing scents & oils typical for Capri and then bottled into their very own tiny Caprese perfume – to take home afterwards as a gift from the couple.”

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 “The reception took place on the roof top, al fresco, overlooking the sea. We had spent 24 hours building an open air white pergola structure on the rooftop of the restaurant – making sure that the white washed wood, blended in naturally with the rest of the actual building. From the pergola, we wanted to create a feel of sitting in an amazing Italian garden – but with a contemporary feel. We therefore hung hundreds upon hundreds of flowing jasmine – hung very close to each other, to give a feel almost of a “carpet” of white floral which was covering the entire roof top. In between these – to give some amazing & natural light, we had hundreds of glass candle holders made in white painted glass (not transparent glass) which we hung in between the white floral to give some additional warmth to all the white.”

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“Lama and Suhail expressed to me that they wanted a contemporary styled event – with beautiful views of the sea – and wanted more of an “amazing party” feel than a “wedding-ish” feel. They wanted their guests to have the time of their lives – at each and every venue, representing a different perspective to Capri each night. Believe it or not – the couple had never previously been to Capri before – although had always wanted to go – and took great faith in us in making sure that we would be able to design the wedding & showcase Capri in the way they had being dreaming about it.”

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 “The couple also chose to do a fun idea – in cooperation with the amazing videographer hired for the day. The videographer brought guests into a designated “video room” and asked them to sing the words of the Italian national anthem – in as good Italian they were able to speak…if you see their video at the very end (past the credits), you will see (and hear!) that at 2 am in the morning – this can sound pretty funny – and challenging to pronounce (and sing)…It was a fun detail that guests loved to view and remember after the wedding took place – as well as the wonderful video which not only captured the couple in some adorable moments – but also captured Capri in a beautiful way.

Additionally, we had cigarette girls pass Italian cigars & limoncello candies & servers passed bite sized Neapolitan desserts until early morning.” 

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To see more from this stunning affair, check out the video by Marco Caputo Films.  What a wonderful weekend this couple and their guests had!!  Truly the trip of a lifetime!

Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographers: Photographers: Anne Ciotola (couple photos & day/getting ready photos) & Capri Flash (roof top design photos)

Wedding Vendors:  Ceremony + Reception (Il Riccio) locations: Capri Palace Hotel, Wedding Planners + Designer, Caricaturist, Perfume Bar, Digital Invitation, Website + Magazine: Diana Sorensen for Sugokuii Events, Floral: Domenico Ruggiero for Capri Fiori e Piante, Wedding Dress: Abed Mahfouz, Bride’s Shoes: YSL, Hair and Makeup: Capri Palace Hotel, Guest Hotels: Tiberio Palace & Hotel Quisisana, Groom’s Suit: Givenchy, Groom’s Bow Tie: Lanvin, Groom’s Shoes: Dior, Videographer: Marco Caputo Films


Capri, Italy Three Day Destination Wedding, Part Two

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We’re back for day two of Lama and Suhail’s beautiful three day destination wedding in Capri, Italy.  After their wonderful welcome dinner, guests settled into the island and got the chance to explore before another swanky evening of fun.

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Diana Sorensen of Sugokuii Events who orchestrated the fete, shared with us the details of day two on island.  “During the day, guests were treated to a trip on the local “gozzo’s” all around Capri with breaks for swimming in Capri’s many caves (a big highlight during the day!) and ended with a fresh seafood lunch at the historic beach club by the sea, La Fontelina. It was amazing to see 200 beautiful guests – divided into 15 boats – all following each other around Capri. It looked like an amazing party at sea!”

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“In the evening, guests had some free time – and were then treated to a cocktail party at one of Capri’s hippest bars; the new “Jacky Bar” at the Hotel Tiberio Palace, where the couple and their guests were also staying. This hotel bar – part indoors and outdoors – has all the ingredients and style you would want in a pre-clubbing bar in the center of Capri. Here, we only enhanced the beauty of the location with hundreds of candles on the floor, stairs, bar, tables, piano – everywhere you looked there were candles.” 

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 “The siblings of the bride – gave as a favor to all the guests, a customized bottle of a small size Limoncello. The names of the couple & a tiny tag attached made it very personalized.” 

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 “After being treated to an open bar of Italian style cocktails – everyone went out for a night of “clubbing” – including all the parents & relatives who stayed out til 5 am! Guests partied the night away – at one of the most characteristic & most famous “taverna’s” in Capri; Anema e Core.  For those who know Capri, Anema e Core needs no further introduction – to those who don’t know it, I can only say it is a “must do” for anyone who is in Capri for the night – as it is for any celebrity who visits Capri). It is a blend of a rustic styled bar meets Italian style karaoke with a lively atmosphere- but that would not even coming close to giving it proper justice.”

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“Old Neapolitan songs were sung (even a few Arabic as a nod to the couple), lots of drinks were served and tables were danced on til early am. Definitely a day the guests will not forget.”

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Check in tomorrow for the formal gala and wedding day of this darling destination couple!

Wedding Vendors: Cocktail Bar Venue: Jacky Bar at Tiberio Palace, Wedding Planner + Designer: Sugokuii Events, Boat trip around the island: Gianni Tedesco for Capri Wonderful, Bride’s Outfit: Jaime Lee, Dancing/post bar venue: Anema e Core, Photographers: Anne Ciotola & Capri Flash


Capri, Italy Wedding Welcome Dinner

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Lama and Suhail hosted a three day destination wedding in Capri, Italy.  They met while he was living in New York and she in London.  Today they reside together in Dubai but traveled with 200 of their closest friends and family to Capri for their big day.

We’ll be sharing the wedding later this week, but to kick it off today it’s all about Lama and Suhail’s welcome dinner held for guests the night everyone arrived.  Hosted at the famed Da Paolino restaurant, the setting was the inspiration for the décor.  Diana Sorensen of Sugokuii Events shared with us a bit behind the scenes.  “It’s set amongst a field of lemon trees – in one of the most characteristic settings in Capri.  The restaurants’ location – is already adorable in itself as it is – sitting beneath hundreds of lemons – but we wanted to take the design a step further – wanting to make a great first impression for the guests first night in Capri.”

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“In order to achieve a natural design – we decided to hang hundreds of tiny candles in the lemon trees – and almost “hide” them, so it gave this amazing sparkly effect. In addition to this, we brought in very narrow & tiny tree trunks – which we attached to the corners of the tables – and hung hundreds of individual yellow wisteria from the branches – to give the illusion of beautiful trees overflowing with yellow floral hanging casually over the tables to look as if it had been growing there for years – which it really looked like it did.”

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“In lieu of traditional escort cards, we had special special “ceramic tiles” made – with the name of each guest written on each tile which had a typical Caprese design on them. These were hugely popular with the guests – as they could also take them home afterwards. It was a great detail which is so Italian and very Caprese.” 

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“We kept to the colors of the location in greens, yellows & rustic browns – which together looked beautiful.”

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“The dinner also had many special details designed for the couple. As a tiny antipasto – we asked the restaurant to make one large heart shaped raviolo to start with. Other dishes included fresh mozzarella served by the kilo (Da Paolino serves one of the best mozzarella’s in Capri),  a tiny sampling of 4 characteristic pastas of the restaurant – and to end it, a sorbetto al limone (naturally!) with Lama & Suhail written in chocolate around the ceramic plates.” 

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“Throughout the evening and after dinner – one of the highlights of the evening were the two talented musicians brought in from Sorrento; a very talented young duo playing the mandolin & guitar – which had everyone out of their chairs dancing and singing until early morning – they were definitely a highlight of the evening.”

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Clearly a good time was had by all!  What a way to kick off a wedding weekend!

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Stay tuned for day two of this fairy tale destination wedding weekend tomorrow!

Wedding Vendors: Restaurant venue: Da Paolino, Wedding Planner + Designer + Ceramic Tiles: Sugokuii Events, Brides outfit: Stella McCartney, Grooms outfit: Givenchy, Floral: Capri Fiori e Piante, Photographers: Anne Ciotola & Capri Flash 


Tips to Getting Married in Italy

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We’re back with more information from destination wedding planner and Italy I do expert, Diana Sorensen of Sugokuii Events.  Don’t forget to read part one here for more great tips and planning insights.  It takes a little more than a plane ticket to wed abroad, but these tips will help you plan with ease.

Q: If planning an Italian destination wedding, what should a couple keep in mind as they set the date?

August is the month when most Italians are on vacation – therefore most seaside resorts like Capri – are at their busiest. This also means that most large towns like Rome, Milano and similar – have many restaurants and local shops closed during this period.  

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Q:  How do you recommend travelers, guests and the couple get around town and the country?

To travel around Italy – my opinion is to take the train. I think the train service in Italy in general is rather good and easy to navigate. In addition, there has come a new competitor to the scene, the Italo high speed trains – which is owned by the CEO of Ferrari, owner of TOD’S shoes – it offers dinners from Eataly, cinema etc.  You can arrive in Napoli from Rome in 1 hour flat. 

In Capri, the hands down best way to get around is with a Vespa or one of the famous open air taxi’s.

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Q: What is your favorite part about hosting a destination wedding in Italy?

Taking the traditions of the area where the wedding is taking place – and showcasing them in new and creative ways throughout the wedding in ways not yet seen before. 

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 Q: Where does your love of Capri come from?  It seems to go deeper than just the beauty of the island.

My connection to Capri comes from having an Italian mother and having partially grown up in Rome, New York & Copenhagen – but spent most of my childhood summers in Capri. I have always had a real affection for Capri, I really love it and am extremely protective about it – and am eager to show my clients and their guests new sides to Capri when they attend our Capri weddings – even if they have been here many times before. I always knew, even from a young age – that I would somehow always be attached to Capri and come back here the rest of my life which turned out to be true!  

Thanks so much Diana for sharing your insights and ideas for couples getting married in Italy!  To see more of Diana’s work, check out this stunning Capri destination wedding we shared with you last year.

Photo Credits: Empty White Reception Tables: Foto Flash Capri, Guest Filled Reception Table: Simply Bloom Photography, Couple: Annie Ciotola