For Ana and Hugh, a destination wedding was about their guest list. Ana’s family lives in Romania, and she and Hugh live in Canada. Bringing the two worlds together meant taking the party out of Canada, so they chose the Umbria region of Italy as the place where everyone could come together. The place? Le Silve di Armenzano, a beautiful resort in the Natural Park of Mount Subasio of Assisi.
How did you guys meet?
“Technically, we met in middle school, but became friends and started dating in high school. We had been together 11 years when we got married.”
How did you choose your gown?
“I was lucky to be helped by Vanessa at the Toronto flagship store when choosing my gown. When I went for my appointment, I had not tried on any wedding dresses and Vanessa was very helpful showing me all the different styles. We quickly found the Joy dress which I ended up choosing, and Vanessa was very helpful with modifying it slightly so it suited me better and also throughout the alterations process.”
Tell us about your day!
“We had our 36 guests stay with us for a few days before the wedding, because we wanted everyone to get in the spirit of things and to feel relaxed. Some family members had also not met before, and we felt this was a nice way for them to get to know one another.
The wedding day itself was great; we had a blessing ceremony officiated by an Anglican priest from New Zealand. The weather was good, and the ceremony site had a great view of the surrounding hills. After eating too many appetizers, we sat down for a traditional Italian dinner followed by a dessert buffet and millefoglie cake.
Our band incorporated British and Irish music, and we also danced the “hora” which is a traditional Romanian folk dance where everyone holds hands and dances in a circle. We were very grateful to those that could travel to celebrate with us, we had a lot of fun at our wedding!”
What was your first dance song?
“Our band played their version of “Can’t Help Falling in Love” while our guests watched on holding sparklers and singing along. It was a really nice moment.”
What was the funniest moment of your day?
“The funniest moment of our day had to be our first look. I had convinced Hugh that I would be wearing a green dress, because I don’t really wear a lot of white and we both like the colour green. I even had our family members in on this, so he was convinced that he would be seeing me in a green dress. You can tell from the photos that he was pretty surprised!”
Where did you go on your honeymoon?
“Since we were already in Italy, we decided to stay there after the wedding as well. After the festivities, we drove to the region of Abruzzo to relax and continue enjoying Italy.”
Any advice for future brides/grooms?
“We were able to visit potential wedding venues the year before; we recommend doing this if you can, because things look different online and you can get a better idea in person. Because this was a destination wedding, we hired a local planner who knew the area and the vendors really well. We got to talk to her regularly, and trusted her to execute our vision. You will not be able to please everyone, and people will have all sorts of opinions. So try to strike a balance, but at the end of the day make sure you’re happy with your decisions.”
Ana + Hugh’s Umbria Destination Wedding Vendors
wedding dress: Astrid & Mercedes Joy via the flagship Toronto Bridal Boutique | photography: Nicola Tonolini | venue: Le Silve di Armenzano | planner: Umbria Weddings and Events | Hugh’s suit: Harry Rosen | hair + makeup: Milo Sabariz | video: Daniele Donati Film | bridal Jewelry: Blair Nadeau | wedding bands: Dana Walden