When our couple Natalie & Saeed first got in touch with us about planning their wedding in Lake Como, we jumped at the chance! As a region, it is beyond stunning, and it is easy to see why George Clooney spends most of his time there. As a location for your wedding, it is beyond compare. As wedding planners in Italy, it is actually one of our favorite destination wedding spots for foreign couples, as it ticks every box when looking for a classically magical Italian location. And when it comes to wedding venues in Lake Como, Villa del Balbianello speaks for itself. It is here that our soon-to-be-weds wanted to tie the knot, and we can’t think of a more charming locale to do it in.
A marriage is traditionally a union not just of two people, but also of two families. For our couple Natalie and Saeed it was very important to honor their family and their heritage during their wedding – in particular the ceremony. Saeed being of Persian origin wanted to celebrate the traditions of his country, while his fiancé Natalie, of Polish descent, also wanted to incorporate the rituals of her heritage into their ceremony. This was a fun challenge for us as wedding planners in Italy, because many of their specific traditions were new to us, and so we needed to learn about them quickly and then decide how best to incorporate them into their Lake Como wedding.
A vital element in our couple’s wedding in Lake Como was the Sofreh Aghd, an ancient Persian tradition whereby a table (sofreh) is spread with many different kinds of food and decorations, each with their own symbolic meaning. The aghd is the ceremony and in essence it is where legal marriage and ceremonial traditions are exchanged, via the sofreh. This intricate spread of items stands for the shared journey of life and marriage that the couple is about to embark on. Some elements on a sofreh may include a mirror that signifies eternity, two candlesticks that signify light, nuts, and eggs for fertility, and coins for wealth and prosperity.
This special Persian ceremony needed to be performed by Saeed’s family, and so we made sure to keep in constant contact with them, in order to guarantee they had everything they needed for the big day. We planned this traditional ceremony to follow a more personal one, presided over by a friend of the couple who managed to create a very moving moment for her friends.
Following the ceremonies, our bride, groom and their loved ones continued the festivities with their reception, which took place at Villa Aura del Lago. It was a wonderful celebration of both their heritages with traditional dances and rituals from both the Polish and Persian cultures. Upon arriving at the venue, Natalie and Saed were presented with a specially prepared bread and a dish of salt. Gifts that symbolised how our couple will never going hungry, yet they must learn to cope through life’s difficulties.
Following this, they were presented with two shot glasses. One glass contained water, the other Vodka and our couple did not know which was which. The first glass is offered to the bride, and it is said that whoever consumes the vodka will be the leader in their marriage. We’ll leave it up to them to tell you who found the Vodka!
From there we organised flashes of both family’s traditions at the reception, a highlight being the Persian Knife Dance! Known as Raghseh Chagoo, this custom is about our bride and groom earning the right to cut their wedding cake. For Natalie and Saed, this involved one of their female guests dancing rhythmically to Persian music while holding the cake knife. In the hope of getting the knife, our groom offered money to the dancer. He kept offering her money, but it was never enough! And so she passed the knife around the other female guests, who in turn were offered more money while they danced around our newly-weds. Soon our groom was surrounded by lots of dancers and he was shaking money at all of them! But eventually the price was right for one of our girls, and the bride and groom could cut their cake.
On the day of the wedding, the weather was beautifully sunny, however it was very windy in Lake Como – and so we needed to rearrange our best made plans in-order to not get blown away! Our team of wedding planners moved the ceremony from the iconic Loggia Durini (one of the most breathtaking views in Lake Como and Italy), to the Loggia Segré which has a beautiful terrace and at the time, no wind was blowing. The symbolic ceremony presided over by our couples’ friends was conducted inside and then the Sofreh was placed outside. Inside or out, this wedding was full of love, friendship and good vibes. Everyone was so emotional, and you could really feel their closeness to the couple.
Words cannot describe the beauty of Villa del Balbianello, and its picturesque gardens made the dreamiest location for our Lake Como wedding. The gardens in particular were captured so expertly by their very well known wedding photographer, David Bastianoni. His imagery not only managed to express just how much love was shown on that day, but also it displayed just how amazing their overall big day aesthetic was. When planning the look of their big day we were determined not to distract from the beauty of their venue, instead simply bring their elegant gardens inside. Using a wash of soft pastels ranging from creams and blushes to pistachios and grayish-blue, we created a timeless look that was effortlessly in keeping with our environment.
We hope we have inspired your own destination wedding in Italy, or maybe you have fallen for Lake Como in particular! As wedding planners in Italy we have expert, local knowledge of the venues and vendors not just in Lake Como, but across the country. From the jaw-dropping destinations of Tuscany, Portofino, Capri, to the historic cities of Rome, Venice, Puglia and Florence – wherever you choose to tie the knot in Italy, we have the knowledge to make it magnificent. If you would like to book Sposiamovi as your wedding planners in Italy then please feel free to get in touch via our contact page, and in the meantime please browse our other real weddings in Lake Como and beyond!