Sealed With a Kiss

sealed-with-a-kiss-1Louise and Andrew’s wedding was a truly international affair

The Love Boat

Andrew and I met in 1996, while working in the casino on-board the SS Atlantic cruise liner sailing around the Bahamas. Our departure from port had been delayed due to Hurricane Bertha, so we had our first date at the Atlantis hotel, Nassau. It was very romantic.

Shortly after moving to Suriname in South America we met up with friends for a rum-tasting evening when, out of the blue, Andrew felt the time was right to get down on one knee and ask me to marry him. After I accepted his proposal we celebrated till dawn and sat by the side of the huge wide river and saw the sun come up, giggling to each other about what we had just done. It was a lovely time.

Our life together was very much on the move, travelling and working around the world and our children Sophie, born in 1999 and James, who came along in 2003, arrived before we managed to arrange the wedding.

We moved to Spain in 2003 so it was natural to arrange our wedding here and have all our family and friends fly in to this beautiful part of Europe. We therefore arranged three days of celebrations.

Solid as The Rock

Friday was the marriage ceremony at The Dell in the Alameda Botanical Gardens in Gibraltar, which was followed by champagne and canapés at the Molly Bloom area of the gardens, which was the perfect setting while the photographer conducted the photo shoot. The coach (that had already been arranged to bring everyone from Marbella to Gibraltar in case we lost anyone en route!) then took the guests on to a champagne reception at the Caleta Hotel followed by a wedding breakfast in Nunos Terrace, a restaurant overlooking the beautiful blue Mediterranean Sea. We stayed the night at the hotel as this is now a legal requirement for marriages in Gibraltar.

sealed-with-a-kiss-2Marbella Blessing

After looking at various venues in and around Marbella for the Saturday blessing of the marriage ceremony, which was conducted by Father Peter Cavanagh of San Pedro Christian Church, we agreed that El Campanario Golf & Country Club in Marbella was the perfect venue. The oriental gardens, fountains and beautiful array of flowers were the perfect setting to celebrate such an important day.

As we were celebrating over three days I wanted to have a different style and theme for each day. On the Friday I wore a simple Greek style dress and Sophie, my daughter who was bridesmaid, wore a dress in a similar style and colour, which was perfect for the ceremony. The colour scheme was cream with fresh flowers from Lola’s Florist.

Saturday morning arrived and we left the Caleta Hotel and luckily crossed the border with no major delays to make it back to El Campanario Golf & Country Club in Marbella in time for the blessing of the marriage which was to take place in front of 80 family members and friends.

For this ceremony I wore a beautiful cream and lace fishtail dress while my daughter wore my beautiful gold wedding dress which I had bought 16 years before, but had never got around to wearing, due to our work commitments and travel. We had the train of the dress made into ties and handkerchiefs for the groom and best men, who were our son James and old friend Graham, to make everything match and bring something old into the equation.

The Dream Team

Nicole Schneider and Carmen Vazquez Flores, directors at El Campanario, worked tirelessly to make sure everything was perfect and their attention to detail was noticed by all. The food and service was both professional and well prepared. The red velvet three- tier wedding cake made by Warren Jasper was to die for!

Michelle Hastwell from Gorgeous Event Decoration worked tirelessly with the decorations and co-ordinated perfectly with the El Campanario team to make sure that the organisation on the day ran to perfection. Michelle and Carmen made El Campanario look magical with all the candles around the pool, in the gardens and on the tables and, as the sun went down, it all looked beautiful.

Jo Nugent sang through the blessing ceremony, which was set up on the putting green and  again - beautifully - during the wedding breakfast. She only finished just before the cake was cut and the speeches took place.

Then came the amazing Jackie Brown Band - the atmosphere changed from a serene wedding breakfast into an electric vibrant dance floor where no one could remain sitting down for long and we danced the night away until the early hours.

Sunday involved recovering from the night before, but getting ready for the final day of celebrations which was at Heaven Beach, Estepona for champagne, paella and a brilliant flamenco show.

Favourite Moments

My favourite moment of the weekend was walking over the bridge, listening to ‘From This Moment On’ by Shania Twain and looking down over the bridge to see Andrew waiting for me and finally becoming Mr. and Mrs. Behan, Also, on the Saturday after the blessing ceremony had finished, turning around to see all our family and friends sharing and witnessing our marriage.

If I had to do it again, I would change…

Both Andrew and I asked each other if we would change anything but we can truly say, hand on heart, that we would not have done anything differently as it was just perfect and being able to involve our children was lovely. It was all very emotional, memorable and only 18 years in the planning!

If anybody is thinking of getting married in Spain, I cannot think of a better place to make all your wishes and dreams for your perfect day come true.

As so many friends travelled to Spain from all parts of the globe to be here with us we decided to spend time with them, as Spain is already a beautiful place by the sea with great beach bars, restaurants and nightlife, so we are staying here and delaying our honeymoon till next July, when we will be travelling to South Africa.

It was truly worth waiting the 18 years!

 

Louise´s Address Book:

Photographer: Christopher Hulme, flickr.com/hybridchoky
Videographer: Alejandro Roviralta, alejandroroviralta.com
Wedding venue: El Campanario Country Club, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Entertainment: Jackie Brown band,  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Decoration and organization: Michelle Hastwell, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Flowers: Lola’s florist, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Wedding singer: Joanne Nugent, notjustjazzwithjo.com
Cake: Warren Jasper, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Dresses and suit hire: Eventos MJ in Cancelada, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Wedding planner: Jeanette Obytz, Gibraltar weddings, medweddings.com
Hotel in Gibraltar: The Caleta, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Transport: Coach to and from Gibraltar, blandstravel.com

 
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