A picturesque setting in Sorrento was the perfect location for these newlyweds. Our WED2B Real Weddings feature reveals more:

Elizabeth and Mark went to school together and first met in 1977. “Our first date was in Chester many years later in 2015,” says Elizabeth. “Mark proposed as we sailed through the stone archway of the Faraglioni di Mezzo, in Capri, while we were on a private boat tour.”

Elizabeth and Mark overlooking the sea at their destination wedding

The perfect dress

Elizabeth visited WED2B’s Bournemouth Store and fell in love with the very first dress she saw. “Alyssa was the first dress I laid eyes on and I fell in love with it immediately,” says Elizabeth. “Everything was perfect. I did feel like Cinderella with the slipper!”

Elizabeth outside in Anna Sorrano Alyssa at her destination wedding

A destination wedding in Italy

The couple were married at Chiostro di San Francesco in Sorrento, Italy. “It’s a tranquil, flower-filled, former 14th-century monastery, adjacent to the gardens of the Baroque San Francesco Church,” says Elizabeth. “We choose it because we love Sorrento and it’s where Mark proposed. We were absolutely in awe of the beauty and romantic atmosphere of the venue.”

Elizabeth and Mark at their Italian venue for their destination wedding

The big day

The wedding was on the 3rd July 2019. “I arrived at the venue at 11.30. After the midday church bells had rung out the hour I entered with my daughter’s boyfriend, to the sounds of traditional Italian music played on a guitar and mandolin,” says Elizabeth. “The ceremony lasted about 20 minutes, after which Maria, one of our Italian friends, did a short reading. Then we left the cloisters and went to the gardens of the Piazza Gargiulo, which has views across the Bay of Naples to Mount Vesuvius. There we had more photographs and drinks at La Villa Ristobar.”

Elizabeth and Mark with their guests at their destination wedding

Spectacular views

Later the newlyweds took a short stroll to the Terrazza delle Sirene for their wedding breakfast. “It was arranged by our two Italian friends, Anna and Maria, who were also our witnesses,” says Elizabeth. “It also has amazing views across the Bay of Naples, which were the perfect backdrop for a special meal with family and friends.”

Elizabeth and Mark kissing overlooking the sea at their destination wedding

A day of highlights

“Arriving at the venue and seeing my husband-to-be waiting for me was one of my highlights,” says Elizabeth. “Although the most memorable moment was the applause when we were pronounced man and wife.”

Elizabeth's bouquet for her destination wedding

My top tips…

If you’re planning a destination wedding it’s cheaper to arrange things directly online with your suppliers,” says Elizabeth. “They all speak good English and we didn’t have a problem arranging our own music and photographer. We wish we’d arranged our own flowers and hair too. You’ll also need a translator for the ceremony and GTO Weddings and other coordinators in Sorrento can provide this."

Elizabeth and Mark with the guitar and mandolin players at their destination wedding

Elizabeth’s Dream Team:

Photographer: Janara Studio (janarastudio.com)

Destination Wedding Planners: GTO Weddings (gtoweddings.com)

Venues: La Villa Ristobar (lavillasorrento.it) and Terrazza delle Sirene  (terrazzadellesirene.com/en)

Guitar and Mandolin Players: Sorrento Live Music