Bridal

Destination Weddings – Santorini, Barbados, Tuscany

If you’ve decided to say ‘I Do’ and are looking for a dream wedding setting, here’re three inspiring destinations. It’s best to hire a wedding planner who comes highly recommended. Do your homework when looking for your wedding planner – look up their website and browse through the services they offer and who are the clients they have worked with? Have they won any awards? Are they members of professional associations or have they been featured in the media? What is their style and does it match yours? Are they boutique-y intimate wedding planners or large-scale glamorous ones? Some of these tips will help you zero in on the wedding planner who turns your dream into a reality.

 

Santorini

One of the most popular tourist destinations in Greece, Santorini is picture perfect.

The famed blue rooftops in Oia Town with dramatic ocean views always pop-up on the Internet, when you look up Santorini – Instagrammable, no doubt! This volcanic island with its turquoise waters and dark-pebble beaches is on everyone’s travel list. Nestling in the Aegean, Santorini attracts tens of thousands of people during the tourist season, which runs from early April to late September. You might be tempted to pick a date for your wedding when Santorini isn’t swarming with travelers, be warned though as the off-season is usually rainy and windy. So a Spring-Summer wedding would work best. Exchange vows on the edge of the caldera, one of the famous Santorini wineries, a chic boutique hotel or on the black volcanic sand beaches. La Maltese in Santorini is a great venue to host weddings. Set in a historic location, perched 250 meters above the waters of the Santorini Caldera, La Maltese has three luxury properties and villas. Guests can visit the Museum of Prehistoric Thera, Art Space, beaches, churches, wineries and breweries, go scuba diving or take day trips to nearby islets.

Info: www.lamaltese.com, www.thevasilicos.com, www.divineweddingsantorini.com, www.ionianweddings.co.uk, www.thebridalconsultants.com, www.weddingssantorini.com, www.santorini-wedding.com, www.santorini.gr

 

Barbados

Beautiful beaches, historic plantation houses to some of the world’s most gorgeous beaches and lush tropical gardens is what makes up Barbados. The tranquil west coast, facing the Caribbean Sea, is dotted with tony resorts on this tiny coral island nestling between the Caribbean and the Atlantic.  Turtle Beach, Sandy Lane, The Crane, Port Ferdinand are luxury stay options. Located on the platinum west coast of Barbados, the beachside hotel Cobbler’s Cove conjures up the charm of an English country house – a nice venue for an intimate wedding. The Flower Forest near Mt. Hillaby is a floral paradise, and great for photo-shoots. Sight-seeing itinerary for guests could include trips to the Barbados Wildlife Reserve, picnic at the scenic Farley Hill National Park, sailing in the catamaran or snorkeling along the coast.

Guests could tee off at the world-class golf courses, or go on hikes, visit the botanical gardens and enjoy a plethora of watersports.

Info: www.eleganthotels.com (Turtle Beach), www.sandylane.com, www.lhw.com, www.thecrane.com, www.portferdinand.com, www.sandals.com

 

Tuscany

Truffle fields, rolling green hills, sun-dappled cypress trees and swathes of olive groves hemmed by the Tyrrhenian Sea, Tuscany undeniably make for a great wedding destination and memories too. The vineyards of Chianti and Montalcino are stunning. Host the wedding at Sienna, Florence, Pisa, Cortona. A delightful chateau, hamlet, seaside villas and castles, wine resorts would provide a picture-perfect setting as you say ‘I do.’ Besides the Palazzo Vecchio, Villa Vistarenni, another grand venue is the 16th century Castle Mago situated between Sienna and Lucca was the former residence of Leopold II, Grand Duke of Tuscany. This castle is open during the summer months and rented weekly as an exclusive villa. L’Andana in Southern Tuscany is a fabulous wedding venue. This hotel in Castiglione della Pescaia has an enchanting landscape. The gardens blend into the hills, with olive groves and grapevines sloping towards the sea.

Tourists flock to Tuscany in summer; with rising temperatures and huge crowds in the province, it would be ideal to set the wedding date during the shoulder season.

Day trips to Florence, Pisa and Sienna could be arranged for guests along with visits to wineries and art galleries.

Info: www.discovertuscany.com, www.excellenceluxuryvillas.com, www.expressionholidays.co.uk, www.weddingsintuscany.info, www.andana.it, www.villavistarenni.com

 

Smitha Sadanandan

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