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The rise of the Micro Wedding in the age of COVID-19

The rise of the Micro Wedding in the age of COVID-19

“Everything has changed for weddings this year”

Everything has changed for weddings this year and it’s even more uncertain as it changes all the time. We accept questions about all things weddings via laura@beourguest.app and a number of couples have asked us about having fewer guests at their wedding.

As you know, because of the COVID-19 restrictions, wedding guest numbers have been decreased. This is particularly stressful if you were planning a bigger wedding. This is also changing from place to place, from day to day, leading to a feeling of uncertainty and a need for flexibility.

Many of you have had to postpone your wedding and now, as this continues, you are looking for an alternative option. Hence, the rise of the Micro Wedding.

What is a Micro Wedding?

Micro Weddings have been around for a long time, but this year they are becoming much more popular. With the restrictions around guest numbers in place, 2020 and 2021 will definitely see an increase in Micro Weddings. A large number of people in Ireland and the UK have postponed their weddings, but for those of you who still want to go ahead, the micro wedding is on the rise.

How many guests at a micro wedding?

A micro-wedding is defined as any wedding where there are less than twenty guests. Anything between twenty and sixty people is considered a small wedding.

Casual Wedding

This type of wedding is often (but not always) a more casual event. It usually is shorter than a traditional wedding, with far fewer formalities. With such an intimate group, the atmosphere changes. Couples often forgo activities like speeches, live music, dances and throwing the bouquet. These can be replaced with storytelling, passing the bouquet around as a talking stick, sing songs. As it costs less per guest, there is often a trend towards gourmet meals and delicious treats for guests.

Tight Budget Weddings

As for 2019, the cost of the average wedding in Ireland is 28,000. That’s quite a lot of money. What’s more, around 14,000 of this goes to the venue. For many people, this is too much money to spend on one day.

If you are on a smaller budget or you would prefer a toned-down occasion, micro-weddings are an excellent choice as they give you the wedding experience on a more intimate scale.

Wedding Restrictions

With larger weddings on hold at the moment and the number of guests allowed changing all the time and since these numbers can be changed with little or no notice, the micro wedding is becoming an excellent choice.

Our advice for a brilliant Micro Wedding

Whether you’ve always planned on having a  micro wedding or it’s an adaptation to the COVID-19 restrictions, we are here to help you to reinvent the Micro Wedding for your dream day.

Guest List Cuts - Digital Weddings, flexibility and consideration

Can you reduce your guest list down to twenty people? If you can choose twenty guests you want to be at your wedding, then a micro-wedding is certainly an option for you.

Choosing is difficult and it’s a minefield trying not to offend people. We will be adding ‘unvite due to restrictions’ feature to the Be Our Guest app that gives you some handy templates about what to say when uninviting guests. The main pointers are to remind guests that this is a health-related crisis, that there are government restrictions in place and that you apologise for any inconvenience they might experience. It might also be good to talk to your venue about refunds for guests who have booked accommodation and relay this information to them.

Flexibility is important. That’s why we recommend our Wedding Journey app Be Our Guest. You can download Be Our Guest for free from the home page (www.beourguest.app) and use our fantastic wedding journey app to send unlimited, free digital Save the Dates, invitations and RSVPs. This helps with uncertainty as it provides you with the flexibility to let guests know about restrictions, change your invites or your wedding details at any time.

However, if cutting your guest list down dramatically gives you a sense of dread, then perhaps waiting it out and postponing your wedding is a better choice for you. If your wedding must be postponed due to COVID-19 in order to have the day you really want, then postponing is best.

Choose a Micro Wedding Venue

It’s quite easy for any venue to provide the guests with an appropriately sized space for a medium or large wedding. It becomes a bit harder with small or micro weddings. The venue might not have spaces that suit a small group.

But don’t fret, there are plenty of options. Picking the right type of wedding venue is so important. You want to select a place that gives your guests the space they need to relax. On the other hand, it needs to be a small enough space to create the type of intimacy that can be experienced with a micro-wedding. This doesn’t have to be a traditional hotel-style venue, you could look at having it in your back garden, a restaurant, a local hall or a specialised venue catering to small weddings.

Essential Parts of the Micro Wedding

With a typical micro-wedding, couples opt to cut out many traditional parts that you would experience at a bigger wedding. However, depending on your budget, what you have or don’t have is up to you.

Our top tip for a micro-wedding is making a list of all the must-haves, the essentials, that you see as part of your wedding day. Perhaps you would like an amazing wedding cake, an expensive, talented photographer, a designer gown, full hair and makeup, a live band, or a luxury meal. Decide on the things that you and your partner aren’t willing to compromise on.

With bands, one couple we talked to mentioned that they were worried about the impact of having a more intimate wedding gathering. Their big fear was that the dancing just wouldn’t be fun with fewer people or that the dance floor would be empty all night.

They thought about getting a smaller band or asking less of the band members to play, some people are opting for a DJ instead or even just having a sing-song session.

What I would say to this – is know your crowd. Remember that wedding bands do get people up dancing but it depends on the guests you are inviting and how likely they will be to join in. Perhaps another type of entertainment would suit better? Personally, I feel that a good wedding band makes the evening and that you would be surprised at how many people get up to dance.

Get Wedding Suppliers

If you are ready to plan your micro-wedding, the first step is downloading Be Our Guest – the wedding journey app. Use the app to invite your guests, keep them informed of all the wedding details and any changes as they happen and search our app-based directory for local venues and suppliers that cater to micro weddings.

Hope you have a fantastic wedding! Remember to send all your questions to laura@beourguest.app and download our Wedding Journey app for free from our home page www.beourguest.app

If you’d like a free copy of our wedding guide ‘150 Steps to Wed’ send us a quick email entitled 150 Steps to Wed and we’ll send it on to you.

Eco friendly Weddings – 10 Things you can do

Eco friendly Weddings – 10 Things you can do

Weddings are a celebration of love and life. And what better way to celebrate these values than by making your day as sustainable as possible. I won’t go into climate change facts or the reasons to reduce carbon emissions because you know that already, that’s why you’re reading this. As much as we love the jubilant excitement of wedding celebrations, we have to be aware that weddings can be really wasteful events and the wedding sector has a major impact on carbon emissions. Between the travel, food, paper stationery and all those little, disposable extras, weddings can be expensive for you and for the planet. You don’t want to skimp on your big day or feel like you are missing out on anything and we get that. So, here are some eco friendly alternatives that can help you to have it all while still being sustainable.

1. Opt for a pre-loved dress

Instead of buying a brand new dress that you will wear once, what about getting a pre-loved alternative? This can work really well as you can get a designer gown at a better price and also reduce waste. And the money you save could be spent on some vintage accessories.

On a practical level, Oxfam offers a wedding section where you can make an appointment and try on dresses. There are also a growing number of vintage wedding dress suppliers. There is something lovely about giving a beautifully and carefully made garment the chance to shine again. You can have it all – the perfect dress at the best price and help the planet.

2. Go paperless for your wedding

Weddings involve a lot of paper. It may not be the first thing you think of when weddings come to mind, but that wedding stationery really adds up.Wedding stationery goes way beyond Save The Dates. There are… Save the Date cards, invitations, info sheets (often included with invitation), RSVP cards, thank you cards, envelopes for all these posted cards… and on the way there are ceremony booklets, menu cards & seating plan cards. When you add it up, that’s a lot of paper.

Eco-friendly, sustainable wedding invitations are key. Paperless wedding invitations are becoming more popular both in Ireland and around the world.

If you want to go with a paperless alternative that goes beyond invitations and Save the Dates, check out our Everything wedding app ‘Be Our Guest’. Our app is a mobile platform for you to communicate with your guests at every stage in the run up to your wedding and the big day itself and among our 75 (and growing) features, we’ve added a digital, paperless alternative for all the wedding stationery.

This is also a flexible option. We are living in uncertain times. Many weddings are being postponed. If you need to send Change The Dates, it’s free and easy to do this with Be Our Guest.

3. Opt for an Eco friendly venue

There are a growing number of wedding venues who go above and beyond to be as environmentally sustainable as possible. These venues are run with sustainability in mind and this comes across in every aspect of the venue and their policies. They aim to reduce food waste, prevent the need for disposable plastic and they often come with a verified list of eco-friendly suppliers whom they’ve worked with in the past.

4. Advice guests about single-use, disposable items

Ban single use items like coffee cups or water bottles at your wedding – or at least mention that you’d prefer guests to use sustainable alternatives. A good reminder can often be more effective than imposing a ban on anything! Many eco friendly venues already impose this ban. Personally, I hate the idea of banning something and I doubt it’s effectiveness. Instead, I’d opt for advising and reminding guests about the problems associated with disposable bottles, cups, plastic food containers, cameras, etc. This is where communication is key.

5. Have guests order food in advance – (guests can do this with beourguest.app) or opt for a banquet style meal to reduce food waste

One way to reduce the waste impact of your wedding is to reduce wedding food waste.

There are a few ways to do this. First, you could have a buffet or banquet style wedding. This can be great in terms of reducing food waste but it could be challenging for any guests with allergies or dietary requirements as it can lead to cross contamination. It can also be uncomfortable for guests if they feel that they have to compete with other guests to get to the food!

Another option is to ask guests in advance what meal options they will choose. Yes, this removes the element of surprise, but for many guests, it also helps them to relax and enjoy the wedding better as they are not worrying about whether they will enjoy the meal. This can really help to dramatically reduce wedding food waste.

As well as the sustainability impact, pre-choosing meals makes the event less stressful for the wedding venue and this can give the waiting staff the opportunity to dedicate more time to every guest as they are not as run off their feed, leading to a better guest experience.

6. Go local

Get locally grown flowers, chair covers, wedding cake, foods, favours, etc. If you can source it locally then you are reducing carbon emissions from transport and helping your local businesses too.

For sustainable weddings, you can’t go wrong when you source stuff locally. Carbon emmissions from transporting and storing foods, flowers and other items can really have an impact on the environment. Many florists now offer locally grown flowers and the same goes for other wedding components. Shopping local also helps to keep our economy going and ensures that we still have our little, homegrown businesses which enrich the tapestry of our lives.

7. Offer shared transport for guests to and from wedding venues

For example you could provide a bus from your wedding venue to your ceremony location and back. There are many benefits to providing guest transport between wedding venues. This is particularly useful if your wedding ceremony and reception are in different locations and if many of our guests are staying at the same hotel.

Providing a bus to transport your guests means that they can leave their cars at home. If your reception is in a different location from the guest accommodation this also provides guests with the opportunity to drink alcohol and they don’t have to worry about booking taxis.

The wedding bus experience can also be an awesome bonding experience for your wedding guests and provides them with a unique way to get to know other wedding guests. With Be Our Guest, you can collect guest names for group transport and share this with your transport provider.

8. Provide vegan options, in-season options and local foods where possible

Always give your guests a good meal and try to cater for everyone, that’s a given. But, if you’re vegan or just open to vegan food, why not have a vegan main meal, evening buffet or welcome reception? Vegan food can be delicious, full of colour, texture and flavour and is often healthy too.

As well as this, vegan food tends to be much better for the environment.If you have vegetarians, vegans or flexitarians attending your wedding, provide them with vegan options. This is a no-brainer. But you can also incorporate more vegan options into your wedding meals as starters, sides and evening buffet. This makes your meal more inclusive and also reduces carbon emissions as many vegan foods, especially those made with locally grown, in season fruits and vegetables. If you can afford to go organic, that’s brilliant too!

9. Travelling to your honeymoon

Trains, boats and fantastic staycations are becoming more popular, especially with train transport getting better all the time.

Trains are the new planes. We often think of honeymoons as beach paradises that we can only reach by airplane. There is an expectation placed on couples to travel to far flung, expensive destinations. But your honeymoon can be anything you want it to be. If you would prefer a luxury glamping holiday at home or a train journey adventure stopping in fascinating places, that’s up to you.

If you have enough time, travelling by boat or train can be really pleasant and you can incorporate the travelling into your honeymoon as something enjoyable by booking luxury cabins or getting first class train tickets. Getting to the same destination via land or sea travel is much more sustainable than air travel and can be a lot more relaxing too.

10. The little things

Opt for less hen or stag night decorations, especially throw away stuff, go for favours that are usable and won’t simply become waste. Send digital thank you cards or messages to your guests. Choose reusable plates and cutlery. You can even get seed packets to your guests as favours!
  Remember that it’s your big day. Have it your way. If you can’t do everything on this list, pick what can do and make that happen.

Check out our 75 FEATURE Wedding App Be Our Guest. Save the Date and save the planet with ‘Be Our Guest’.

Everything about ‘Save the Date’s

Everything about ‘Save the Date’s

What is a ‘Save The Date’?

You’re getting married! Congratulations and yippee! Now you need to tell everyone.

It’s important that as many of your guests as possible are able to make it to your big day.

 

Although everyone wants to make it, there are things that they need to do well in advance to make sure that they’re able to be there.

 

They might need to take time off work well ahead of your day. If they are travelling they’ll need to book train/plane/boat tickets.

 

And if you’re big day is in the middle of summer time (or any holiday time) it’s essential that early holiday bookers haven’t booked a non-refundable, unchangeable week away for your wedding day.

 

 

So you want to let people know well in advance but at that stage in your wedding planning you might not know all the times, the day plan, the food menu, etc.

You might not even know where exactly your venue will be. Don’t worry, you fill in these details at a later date e.g. Using our ‘Be Our Guest’ app or sending out traditional invitations.

But that very first contact with your potential guests to make sure that they are free on your chosen day is your ‘Save The Date’.

 

 

When to send your ‘Save The Date’?

The general rule of thumb is to send your ‘Save The Date’ between a year and 8 months before your wedding.  Where you place your timing within that framework depends on a few things.

 

Where your wedding is (is it a destination wedding? If so, add more time) and where your guests are determine how much time and planning they will need to get to your wedding.

 

If quite a number of your guests will be travelling a long distance to your wedding, give them about 1 year to prepare. They may need to save up and budget for attending your wedding as well as booking their transport and accommodation.

 

Another point is that if you are having a smaller wedding and everyone invited informally knows about it, you can leave your ‘Save The Dates’ a bit longer, sending them around 8 months.

 

If you are having your wedding in a location with limited accommodation or transport options, it’s best to give people a bit more time, especially if it is expensive to get their. In this case you would be wise to veer towards 10 months to a year.

 

Important to note that if you are booking your wedding for the middle of summer or a holiday time it’s best to let guests know earlier as they might end up booking holidays that are non-refundable and land on your wedding day!

 

Finally, if your wedding guests will not need to travel and your destination has plenty of accommodation you can leave it closer to 8 months.

How ‘Save The Date’s work with the ‘Be Our Guest’ App

If you’re opting for our ‘Be Our Guest’ app, invitations & Save the Dates are easy!

  1. With ‘Be Our Guest’ you invite your guests by adding them to your app.
  2. Each guest is automatically sent a digital ‘Save The Date’ and a link to their own copy of ‘Be Our Guest’
  3. With their app, they can view and communicate with you on your wedding journey.

We have over 40 features including…

  • guest RSVP
  • photo sharing
  • digital ceremony booklets
  • seating plan and much, much more.

Check out our pricing here… packages for as little as 5 euros (lifetime ownership for you and your guests!)

 

Save the Date  – Essential Information

The following information is necessary on your ‘Save The Date’

  • The day you are getting married
  • Your name and the name of your betrothed.
  • The general location (if you don’t know the venue yet) of your wedding.

 

Nice to Haves

You can mention at this time where the venue is (this is not needed but adding it is a personal choice)
You could mention here that your invitation will follow.

 

If you’re using ‘Be Our Guest’ your guests will get a link to their own app which will later contain (once you add it) your venue and ceremony times and locations.

 

Wording

Aside from these details ‘Save The Dates’ usually come with the words ‘Save The Date’ and a little message from you to your guests.

 

You can be as formal or informal as you like with this message. Here are a few ideas…

 

Some formal choices

X and X invite you to celebrate their marriage on Aug 1st 2020

X and X would like you to join them in their wedding celebration on Aug 1st 2020

Save the Date of August The First Two Thousand and Twenty for the Wedding of X and X

Kindly save the date of Aug 1, 2020, X and X will be united in Holy Matrimony

Please save the date of Aug 1, 2020 for a wedding uniting X and X

Your presence is requested at the wedding of X and X

X and X request the pleasure of your company

 

Some Casual Choices

She said yes!

We’re tying the knot

Save a place for us. Put it in your calendar.

You’re invited to our wedding celebration

Save Our Date. We’re getting married.

 

 

Cute Wording Choices

It all began on a night out…

Finally… He asked me & I said yes

Something big is coming.

We’re getting married, you’re getting an app (if you use ‘Be Our Guest 😉

He put a ring on it.

Love truly, drink deeply and dance badly

These two kids are getting married.

 

 

 

Something a bit different…

Presenting WedFest 2020

Come for the beer, stay for the wedding

What are you doing on Aug 1st 2020? Nothing! Come to our wedding.

Shit just got real – we’re getting married

Woah. Things just got real – we’re getting married

It’s a match

Come crash our wedding

Until Death do us part

Now act surprised like you had no idea this was coming

CTR and S the date

 

 

 

Destination Wedding Choices

Pack your Bags

Bon Voyage

Take a trip with us

Love is in the air. Will you be there?

Come fly with us

Interesting ‘Save The Date’ ideas…

How Digital ‘Save The Dates’ work

When to send out ‘Save the Dates’

If you are not using ‘Save The Dates’, when do you send invitations?

Digital ‘Save The Dates’

Using ‘Be Our Guest’ to go beyond digital ‘Save The Dates’….

 

 

Your wedding theme and your ‘Save The Date’

The colour scheme, font and images for your ‘Save The Date’ will optimally match the rest of your wedding communications to create a coherent theme.

Of course, this is up to you, everyone is different and some people prefer a more eclectic collection.

But if you are going to have a colour scheme and theme to your wedding or your wedding communications now is your opportunity to set the scene and choose your theme.

 

Check out our blog on wedding themes…

 

Our eco-friendly, recycled matched paper stationery

As a companion to our paperless wedding app, we provide matched, small batch recycled paper stationery. Our eco friendly offering is handmade using our own in-house acrylic, watercolour, oil pastel and chalk pastel artwork. We make this in our Donegal based home studio.

You can view and order our eco friendly, paper stationery here.

 

 

 

Go Paperless for your Wedding with ‘Be Our Guest’

With ‘Be Our Guest’ you invite your guests by adding them to your app. They are automatically sent a digital ‘Save The Date’ and a link to their own copy of ‘Be Our Guest’ where they can view and communicate with you on your wedding journey.

We have over 40 features including guest RSVP, guest photo sharing, private chat wedding countdown, digital ceremony booklets, accommodation concierge, suggestions, advice space, gift list, seating plan and much, much more. Perfect for destination weddings – each guest receives their own personalised wedding event itinerary with each venue on a map.

You can find out more about our features here.

 

 

Pricing

‘Be Our Guest’ is really affordable and much better value than traditional wedding stationery.

But your data is secure too – we charge for our premium app, this pays our bills. We do not sell your information or your guests information OR push paid 3rd party ‘partners’ onto you or your guests (unlike certain free alternatives which may make their money by using you and your guests as the product!)

We try to make ‘Be Our Guest’ accessible to everyone by keeping our pricing lower than the traditional alternative. This is especially true during our Winter Sale where we have packages for as little as 5 euros (lifetime ownership for you and your guests!).

Check out our pricing or purchase ‘Be Our Guest’ here… 

Want to try before you buy? No problem, you can download ‘Be Our Guest’ from iOS or android stores and try our fully functional, free demo mode. Get your copy of our demo here. 

 

Thanks for Reading

Thank you for taking the time to read our blog post. Please check out our other blogs for wedding planning advice, our 150 step wedding planning checklist, real life wedding stories and tips and more!

 

Wedding Fails – Wedding dress fiasco

Wedding Fails – Wedding dress fiasco

I ordered my dress online. I know, I know, risky. It was very risky. But I thought that it would have to be decent standard, maybe not as nice at the whopping 4K dresses I’d seen friends splash out and buy, but usable. Right?

Wrong!!!

The place I ordered from was based overseas in China. They apparently took a month to make and ship the dress. I ordered my dress and all my bridesmaids dresses too. My order was placed well in advance, like a year before my wedding.

This is what happened.

I gave them my measurements, my friend helped me to measure myself for the dress. We checked out all the terms online and submitted the measurements for me and her (she was one of my three bridesmaids). The site crashed as we uploaded the measurements, an ominous sign perhaps?

Anyways, I ordered the three dresses and every single order went wrong in a different way.

My dress was totally wrong in terms of the length. It was way to short. I had added my height as part of my measurement so I was surprised. I complained by email (as they did not answer their phone for customer service) and after a week of emailing them every day they finally replied with a link to the FAQ on their website. I would have to send the dress back and pay an admin fee to get the dress refitted. The admin fee was a quarter of the price of the dress. Reluctantly I agreed.

I got the dress back again and this time it was longer (new dress) but the waste line and bust were really big. I didn’t want to return it again so I got it tailored locally. The seamstress doing the adjustments said that the material was really low quality and ripped during the process. I was in tears and my dress was in tatters. In the end I got a second hand dress in Oxfam and it turned out really nice. I wish I’d thought of that first.

At the same time my bridesmaids dresses went wrong too. The first dress was the wrong size. The company argued (again by email) that the measurements didn’t make sense because my bridesmaid is extremely curvy and they assumed that our measurements were incorrect. My bridesmaid sent it back, got another dress and had to send that back too. The third dress actually fitted okay but it was far from ideal.

My second bridesmaid never received her dress. We found out that it had been held back at customs and the courier had not called me (I check my phone religiously) at all about it. Customs actually sent the dress back and again I had to pay a fee to get it redelivered. But at least it fitted!

The third bridesmaids’ dress was stained. The worst thing was that she didn’t notice when she tried it on for size. It wasn’t until two days before the wedding that she realised it was stained at the back. It looked like it had been preworn and returned.

Things went from bad to worse. My first bridesmaids dress ripped at the bust. She tried to put it back together but it was too late. In the end I went out to the shops and bought three dresses for them and apologised for all the hassle.

I tried to take legal action against the bridal company but I had no comeback because they were based abroad. The same thing happened to a friend of mine who got a website and software application done by an outsourced team. People don’t always realise how little legal rights you have in these cases.

My wedding day itself was fantastic and our dresses all looked fabulous. I never got a refund from the company. I email them every day and will continue to do so until they respond. Maybe they just block my mails. Who knows? I give them bad reviews all the time but they already get so many of those. I suppose it’s one of those things – I took a risk and it backfired but at least I was in a position to be able to get it all sorted.

Jane, Australia

 

If you would like to share your wedding story just send us an email to info@beourguest.app

Wedding Fails – The Venue Disaster

Wedding Fails – The Venue Disaster

We booked our venue early, really early and it was expensive. I’m not talking 5 star, but it was a 3.5 star place and we expected better. Looking back, hindsight being 2020 there were immediate red flags but we had our mind set on the place and nothing could change it.

We loved their website. In fact, their online presence was a hell of a lot nicer than their actual venue. Still, when we went to see the place we were enamored by the decor and design. It was also recommended by an online wedding directory so we thought that we were making a safe bet.

As I mentioned, there were red flags early on. I booked an appointment to talk to them about a month in advance. On the appointment day we arrived early and went to reception. They hadn’t got our appointment listed. They acted like it was my fault. So irritating!!

 

Finally, after lots of complaining they agreed to see us but told us we’d have to wait. We were sitting in reception for about 40 minutes. They didn’t tell us how long it would be, we were not offered tea, coffee, snacks or even a glass of water. When we did get to talk to the wedding coordinator, she was abrupt, rude and dismissive implying that we would not be able to afford their fantastic wedding venue and even asking us what we did for a living.

I’m a vegetarian and I asked about this. Again, the wedding coordinator acted like this was going to be a hassle for them. She offered a risotto as the initial choice and when I asked if they had something else, she sighed and went through another three options acting like it was a major inconvenience.

We should have said ‘no, we’ll find somewhere else’ but I suppose we were naive at the time and didn’t know what to expect.

When the day itself approached, two years after booking the venue, we arrived back at the hotel. Myself and my family were planning to stay there the night before. My partner was from that location so he stayed at home. The night before the wedding I couldn’t sleep. The room was really warm and loud. There were actually four different sources of noise. There was a wedding downstairs and I was just above the bar, the air conditioning unit (or heater or whatever) outside the building was very loud, there was a door outside my room in the corridor which was continuously being opened and slamming shut and I could hear the loud, drunken guests in the room next door cackling into the night. I went and knocked on their door at one point and they nodded and agreed to keep it down, as soon as I left they were laughing about me and purposefully became louder. I called reception and they said that they’d do something about it but never did.

The day itself was even worse. I woke up exhausted after sleeping through my alarm. I almost missed breakfast, heading down in the last ten minutes before it closed. They refused to let me into the breakfast room. I explained that there was still ten minutes left an they still refused saying that I was too late. I pulled bridal status explaining that it was wedding day and they finally relented.

I got poached eggs on toast and they tasted like rubber and vinegar. The toaster wasn’t working well and actually burnt my toast even though it was on a low setting and there were bits of bacon in the tomato halves. I settled for the poached eggs, yogurt, fruit salad and some toast. The eggs were cold.

Still, I made the best of it. I put on a brave face, opened a bottle of prosecco with my bridesmaids and got our hair and makeup done. That part was lovely. After that we headed to the ceremony by horse drawn carriage. It was sensational. Our ceremony itself was magical and I loved every moment of it. The photography was a long process but our photographer got some great shots. She was a perfectionist and I salute that.

When we got back to the hotel, I was worried after the night before. But initially things went well. We were given a glass of champagne each, walked down a lovely carpeted runway and were greeted by our guests. I circled the room asking my guests if they were enjoying themselves. Most of them smiled and said yet. One guest mentioned that they hadn’t gotten a welcome drink. I was puzzled by this and found out that they had stopped serving welcome drinks before everyone got a drink.

I asked the guy serving drinks about this. He still had another two bottles unopened and argued with me that everyone had already received a drink. I got really annoyed and feeling like Bridezilla I threatened to talk to the manager. He relented, looking nervous and opened a new bottle.

The meal was late. That was another bugbear of mine. The hotel complained that the seating plan was not accurate. I had written this myself and sent each copy to them so I asked to see it. They had an earlier draft of it. My husband took over talks with them and told me to relax and spend some time with the guests, he’s in sales so he does have a talent for negotiating.

When it was all sorted, we were brought into the reception room. In fairness the room was lovely, the chair covers were delightful and the decor was stunning. But two tables of guests were placed really far away with a big gap between them and everyone else. I was worried that they might be offended by this. The food was cold or at least luke warm which was a bit annoying. They accidentally served my maid of honor the wrong dish and mortifyingly our priest found a hair in his main course.

We had supplied our own wine and were told that this would be used until it was gone. There was plenty for each table and we hoped that it would last into the night. This is the most annoying part. Our wine just about made it through dinner. We couldn’t really work it out on the day as we were obviously preoccupied but I knew, in my heart, that the hotel had stolen our extra wine bottles. Of course there was nothing we could do about it.

We did had a nice day all in all but it was in spite of the venue. Still, we were embarrassed by the food, the service (the staff were really rude and obnoxious and acted like they couldn’t care less) and irritated by the mishaps. Later we found out that several guests had been missing desserts, had the wrong main courses and that the soup was cold for starters.

Our hotel room (the honeymoon suite) was nice and quiet as well. We had breakfast in bed (again, terrible vinegar flavored eggs but at least it was delivered to our room) and we took some nice pics around the place the next day.

After we got back from our honeymoon (who am I kidding, I did this on our honeymoon!) I wrote a bad review about the wedding venue on the online wedding directory in which they were mentioned. All the other reviews there were positive. Guess what? The wedding directory actually removed my review!!

Nancy from the US

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