Meet Becci and Richard & the San Francesco Cloisters
Stunning venues like The Cloisters in Sorrento make such a beautiful setting for the perfect wedding. Becci and Richard’s wedding was a mix of stunning locations, amazing food and a romantic sunset over the island of Capri.
Mark Raffan from Valentina Weddings had a fantastic trip back to Sorrento for this fabulous wedding. He first met Becci and Richard last year when they were being shown around the wedding venue that he was working at. It was definitely fate as Becci used to live in the same village as him so when they saw each other there was that “Is it you? What are you doing in Sorrento?” moment!
Becci and Richard chose to work with Don Pedro as their wedding planner in Sorrento and chose Ristorante Villa Caprile as their reception venue. Ristorante Villa Caprile is set on top of the hills overlooking Capri and Ischia, it has views to die for as the sun comes down and the party gets started.
The whole day for Mark was a perfect mix of photography around Sorrento, The Cloisters, then a great party at Ristorante Villa Caprile which made for a great destination wedding. It was certainly a wedding that everyone will remember and cherish forever. Becci kindly agreed to an Interview and here’s what she had to say… congratulations by the way, you both look absolutely stunning!
Bride & Groom: Becci & Richard Catford
Wedding Date: Thursday, May 22, 2014
Wedding Ceremony Venue/Church: The San Francesco Cloister, Sorrento
Wedding Reception Venue: Villa Caprile, Massa Lubrense, Sorrento
What excited you about getting married and the planning process, what was the first thing you booked?:-
As soon as we got engaged, we knew we wanted a totally different wedding to the norm! After talking through different wedding ideas we decided we really liked the idea of a small wedding party with our closest friends & family. We also really liked the idea of an amazing location & guaranteed sunshine! Both sets of parents had visited Sorrento in time gone by & had both loved it, so after lots of online research & the help of Trip Advisor we decided that Sorrento was the only place for us. We organised a short break to Italy a year before we hoped to get married & planned on meeting our wedding planner who we’d found online whilst we were there. Within our 3 day break we had visited several wedding locations & booked the ceremony & reception venue, the Italian wedding planners made it all so simple! Whilst in Italy our wedding planners, Don Pedro & Family invited is to a wedding they were hosting – which did feel a bit strange at first – but it was lovely meeting another British bride who was more than happy to share her thoughts on her perfect day with us. Whilst at her wedding, we met her photographer who had flown out from the UK especially for the day. The strangest part of all this was that I thought I recognised him from the tiny village in Yorkshire that I was brought up in, but thought it must just be the Prosecco going to my head! Only on arrival home did we realise it was Mark from Valentina Weddings who did indeed live over the road from my parents!
How did you plan your wedding, what parts of the wedding were more important to you and why:-
We allowed ourselves 12 months to plan our perfect day, which was great as it meant we had enough time without having to stress out to much & also meant we could spread out the budget. The most important parts of the wedding to us was the location – which had been booked, and then the photographer. Because we had seen Mark already over in Italy we had researched his work & soon realised we had to book him! Some people did think it was extravagant having a photographer fly out to your wedding, but to us it was so important to have great photos to look back on the day. Once we had booked Mark we focused on the next most important part for us, the wedding rings! We found visiting wedding fairs really helpful as it meant we could see several different jewellers showcasing their work. We wanted something really personal & decided to have them custom made by Craven Jewellers. For Richard & I, we felt after the venue, the photographer & the rings we the most important part as we would have them to look at forever, to remind us of the most amazing day of our lives.
Tell our readers about your wedding venue, where is it and why you chose it?
We looked at a few local wedding venues in Yorkshire, and they were all lovely but just not right for us. To us, Italy is the most romantic place in the world & from the moment we first walked in to The Cloisters in Sorrento we knew it was the right place, it was just beautiful & the perfect size for our small party of 20. The reception venue was harder to pick as everywhere you look in Sorrento there is another picturesque view of the Amalfi coastline. The restaurant we picked was located in the hills above Sorrento, with a view of Capri in one direction and Mount Vesuvius in the other. Once you’d walked through the lemon grove gardens to the outdoor dining area your breathe had literally been taken away with the view. Its one of the most amazing views we will remember all our lives. We spent the night eating the most delicious traditional Italian food, chatting to our closest family & friends just staring out to sea & not wanting the night to end.
Can you tell us about your Day, did you have a theme and what made it so special?
Our wedding day really was the most memorable day of our lives, I can honestly say I have never felt so relaxed in all my life! Everything seemed perfect, from the Italian hairdresser who spoke no English – but managed to exceed all my expectations & ideas, to the pre-planned menus & table plan I had scribbled on paper for the wedding planners. We didn’t really have a theme for our wedding, just a traditional Italian meal with limoncello to finish! The wedding planners had emailed me ideas for menus which we made our own with a choice of 3 dishes for each course. Good food is really important to us & our guests so the fact that most of them said it was the best meal they had ever eaten was amazing! The restaurant also made their own limoncello which they had labelled with our names & date of wedding which we gave to our guests as our wedding favours. It was little touches like that which made our day so personal & special!
Where did you get your wedding dress and why did you choose that designer or style? Tell us more about the bridesmaids, groom and usher outfits and what brought them all together?
For my wedding dress I had always convinced myself I would get a dress of the high street that could literally be thrown in a suitcase – how wrong I was! As if my perfect coincidence a bridal outlet opened next to where I worked whilst I was looking for my dress! Some ladies may find it hard to believe, but I actually picked my wedding dress within my lunch hour on the 1st visit! Much to the dismay of my Maid of Honour who was quite disappointed I’d picked it all alone! With the help of the staff at Elite Bridal I found the dress of my dreams, although it was double my budget! I have to add they did advise me not the try it as it was over budget but I couldn’t resist, I knew it was perfect, after all it was a full Italian lace gown!
If you had the chance to do it all again and you could change one thing, what would it be and why?:-
We’ve sat & thought about this & can both genuinely say there isn’t 1 thing we would change! It was the perfect day.
If you were to give other Brides and Grooms three top tips, what would they be and why?
Our top tips would be:
1. Do everything for you! Don’t be swayed by friends & family, its your day not theirs!
2. If your planning a wedding abroad, visit before hand don’t just book through a travel agent, its so much easier & personal to organise yourself.
3. Enjoy every second, the day goes faster then you could ever imagine.
Can you please list the suppliers you chose to help you plan your Big Day?:-
Photographer – Mark Raffan of www.valentinaweddings.co.uk
Wedding Rings – Craven Jewellers, www.cravenjewellers.com
Wedding Dress – Elite Bridal, www.elite.gb.net
Wedding Planners (in Italy for the reception) – www.ristorantedonpedro.it
Wedding Planner (in Italy for the ceremony) – www.thebookofdreams.net
We wish Becci and Richard all the love in the World and thank you for sharing your Wedding Day with our Readers. Congratulations again from The Wedding Affair team…
Stunning images Mark, nothing less than we expect from such a professional and lovely photographer as you!
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