Today we received in the mail the certified copy of our marriage certificate, which was the last and final piece of business related to our our wedding last month. The arrival of the certificate reminded me that I had not yet properly thanked you as I should have, so I wanted to take a moment to let you know incredibly happy we are with the way everything came together for our beautiful Ravello wedding.
When we first thought about "running away" to Italy to get married, I foolishly thought I could just have the hotel concierge arrange everything for us. I soon learned it was a bit more complicated than that and then started the search for a wedding planner. We chose Distinctive Italy Weddings based on your website and all the beautiful weddings posted there. We had no real way of knowing how legitimate you were and whether or not everything would be delivered as promised. We just closed our eyes, crossed our fingers and said "let's do this."
I am happy to report we were not disappointed. Not only were we not disappointed, we were blown away!
I am a double-checker, triple-checker by nature. I will call several times to confirm that so-and-so will be there for this or that appointment, because that's how I'm wired. I can't help myself. It makes me very good at my job, but it also drives everyone around me crazy. The problem with planning a wedding in Italy from afar is that it's hard to double-check and triple-check every detail. Torturous for me.
But little by little as we conversed via email, it became clear to me that you had things under control. I started to relax a bit and allow myself to assume that when you'd say something would be done, it would in fact be done. When we went to Rome two months prior to the wedding to obtain our Nulla Osta, you scheduled our appointment with the US Embassy there & told us your representative Edelva would meet us in front of the embassy at a certain time. And she did. I had a feeling then that everything would be alright. And it was. When you said that a driver would be here at a certain time or a representative would meet us at a certain place, it happened. When I sent you photographs of the flowers I wanted, you made sure I received that exact look on my wedding day. I never, ever assume that things will go as planned, but in this case -- they did.
And all of your representatives were fabulous! Lovely and personable. When Edelva met us at the Embassy in Rome, we immediately liked and trusted her. Not only was she there on time and on task, she was so outraged when we mentioned a bad experience with a vendor in Rome (our first ever in many years of traveling to Italy), she told us she was posting it on her personal Facebook page and would make sure everyone knew that this particular shop was not to be trusted.
Once we were in Positano and needed to travel to Ravello to file our Declaration of Intent to Marry the day before our wedding, I arrived at the Ravello Town Hall a bit nauseas from the wind-y climb up the Amalfi Coast Road. Anna took one look at me when I got out of the car and asked what was wrong. When I explained my issues with motion sickness, she immediately suggested moving everything up 15 minutes the next day. She didn't want me to arrive woozy and dizzy and have to run right out to the garden to start the ceremony. From there, she adjusted the hair & make-up people and made sure the driver knew we would be a bit earlier than originally planned so we could arrive in Ravello and have a few moments to breath. As we walked through Ravello after filing our Declaration, I mentioned how beautiful the hotel next to Giardino Principessa de Piemonte was -- and Anna immediately suggested we have a post-ceremony Champagne toast on the terrace there. She arranged it right then and there with the hotel staff - complete with a presentation of the menu so we could select the Champagne we preferred. This was not part of the "package" we contracted for, but it was a fabulous suggestion & allowed us a beautiful moment in time to relax in the shade and share a toast with our family before we began the procession through the streets to take photographs.
And speaking of photographs, we loved, loved, loved Massimo's work! Absolutely beautiful. Likewise, Dennis's video was perfect -- everything we'd hoped it would be. Our big celebration party (300 people) took place this past weekend here in Las Vegas. We had large, poster-size prints of our favorite photos placed around the room -- and we're still hearing from guests about how beautiful the pictures were. Although we wanted the party to not be too "wedding-like", we did show the 5-minute video Dennis produced & followed it up with a couple of quick toasts. The video was a huge hit! I still have people asking me to send them a link so they can view it again.
Honestly, everything was perfect. And I'm a perfectionist. When we first started looking at your website, I thought that all the weddings were too beautiful -- almost staged. I was prepared to be a bit disappointed with our final product -- setting not as nice as pictured, flowers not so great, people not as warm and friendly as advertised -- but in fact everything was absolutely, positively exactly as I'd hoped it would be.
I can't thank you and your team enough. From start to finish, everything was perfect!
While we were Italy, my daughter's long-time boyfriend proposed to her. I am crossing my fingers that they choose to get married in Italy so I can do this all over again. It was that great.
Thank you, thank you for making us feel like the only couple in the world on our special day.
Shawn & Tom