My Destination Wedding: Part 1

 
Tuscan_vineyard

Thursday marked one month since Dave and I said our vows in front of 34 family members and friends in the tuscan countryside.  We couldn't think of a better way to celebrate than to open a bottle of Italian wine and go through our wedding photos and video footage.  I made a conscious decision to not take too many of my own photos during our wedding weekend, because I wanted to be focused on the people around me rather than capturing the perfect shot.  Below is a recap from the first two days of our wedding weekend through the eyes of our family and friends.    

Our room at The Ad Astra Boutique Hotel in Florence

Our room at The Ad Astra Boutique Hotel in Florence

Ad Adstra's Terrace

Ad Adstra's Terrace

Dave and I arrived a day earlier than most of our guests with the intention of taking some time to relax and the city.  We stayed a bit off the beaten path at the Ad Adstra (more on that later).  I can't say I was very relaxed (though I can't say why as all the planning was done), but it was nice to take a minute alone and enjoy the city with my soon-to-be husband before all of the events started.  

Michelangelo's David

Michelangelo's David

Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fior

Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fior

Piazza della Signoria

Piazza della Signoria

One of my favorite things to do in Florence is wander the streets at night.  The city has done an amazing job of not only preserving its architecture, but there is tons of amazing art on display an even lit up to enjoy on a romantic stroll. 

Me and my soon-to-be husband on the wine tour

Me and my soon-to-be husband on the wine tour

Friends and family at the wine tasting

Friends and family at the wine tasting

The first event for our wedding was a vineyard tour and tasting in the countryside of Tuscany on Saturday.  We toured a few vineyards where we learned about the process of their wine making and also drank some delicious wines.  Our wedding planner, Tuscan Wedding, organized the tour for us which made things run very smoothly!  Anyone can drive to different vineyards and taste wines, but if you are going to roll up with a group of 20 people I definitely recommend booking a private tour!

La Ménagère in Florence

La Ménagère in Florence

My friend Jasmine and I

My friend Jasmine and I

Dave and I have friends that live in different parts of the US and the world.  It was tricky to get everyone together for bachelor and bachelorette parties so we decided to do them in Florence when everyone would be together.  After we had all taken a quick disco nap from the wine tour, my ladies and I had a beautiful dinner at Le Ménagère and Dave and his buds ate bistecca florentina the size of their heads at Bucca Mario.  My ladies then took me to Eby's for the most uniquely crafted shots of our lives, while Dave and his guys headed to Mosto Dolce for Italian craft beers.  Later, all we all met up and stayed out until the sun was starting to come up.  It was such a magical night to have our friends together from different stages of our lives in a place we both love.

Rooftop view of the sunset behind Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore

Rooftop view of the sunset behind Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore

The night before our wedding we hosted an Apertivo on the rooftop of the Grand Hotel Cavour.  We arrived just in time to take in a gorgeous sunset behind the Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore.  Our guests sipped on Aperol Spitz and Italian wines as they had a 360 degree view of Florence lighting up in the night sky. 

Apertivo outfits!  My dress is from Reformation.

Apertivo outfits!  My dress is from Reformation.

For me, one of the highlights of the night was hearing speaches from my brother and sister, dear friends Katherine and Jasmine, and Dave's friend Nick.  Everyone put so much thought into their words and talked about so many fun memories we had together.  I always thought about the love I would feel for my fiancé during the days leading up to our wedding day, but I didn't anticipate being so filled with love from and for those around me.