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Chic & Glamorous Wedding at Villa Cora on the Hills of Florence

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Chic & Glamorous Wedding at Villa Cora on the Hills of Florence.

This couple met in their hometown of London, though both were born and raised in Russia. After scouting many cities, the couple fell in love with Florence: the “Jewel of Tuscany,” a city known for its fascinating architecture, artistic masterpieces, and culinary cuisine. Having decided on an intimate wedding, they selected Villa Cora as their venue. Part of the Relais and Château Chain, Villa Cora is peacefully located inside a century-old park overlooking the Boboli Gardens on a hill just outside the city center. The bride took charge of most of the wedding planning, but the groom did have one request: for her to marry him.

Although the wedding was in November, the weather was ideal. The couple opted for a pre-nuptial dinner where guests gathered around the heated pool and were offered a buffet from the villa’s elegant restaurant, “Le Bistrot.” Highlights of the evening included a live DJ, a saxophone performance, and a nostalgic video compilation of the bride and groom when they were young. Artists were also brought in to draw cartoonist portraits of each guest. One of the most romantic moments of the evening was when the bride, along with her beloved guests, placed white lotus lanterns in the pool accompanied by the extraordinary voices of Luciano Pavarotti and Lucio Dalla singing “Caruso.”

The wedding ceremony took place in the Sphinx Garden, which had been covered in a white gazebo to account for unpredicted weather. Per the bride’s request, white, pink, and blush roses adorned the backdrop, and identical floral arrangements decorated the aisle, chairs, and chandelier, creating a magical and fable-like atmosphere. The bride, accompanied by her father, wore a heavenly laced Haute Couture gown by Pronovias and a hand-made embroidered veil. Needless to say, the groom was speechless! The ceremony included the Ritual of the Mixed Sand where the bride and groom each hold a vase of differently colored sands and slowly pour them together into one vase, signifying their union. Once they officially became Mr. & Mrs., the reception began with many surprises yet to come.

The aperitif was served in the Ceramic Room while the bride changed her hairstyle and make-up. Once the bride was ready, the guests were ushered into the luxurious Mirror Room. The 18th-century parquet floor was safely covered in a beautiful beige carpet. Floral designs, gold chairs, and floral vases accented the tables. The room itself was a treat for the eye, with classical frescos on the walls and ceiling! The 5-course meal was accompanied by a concert from the Italian Crooner Matteo Brancaleone. The 4-tiered wedding cake was covered with a cascade of sugar hydrangea petals topped with sugar flowers from the American bakery Sugar & Spice. It was served in the splendid Moresque Room where another table was set up with miniature delights and macarons prepared by the pastry chef of Villa Cora.

The bride’s 18 month-old niece held 50 white balloons and led the way to the balcony where each guest was given one balloon. The musical fireworks began then, with each burst synchronized to the notes of Italian songs chosen by the couple. The evening ended with a performance from a Latin-American group from the Pasha restaurant. As a parting gift, the couple presented each guest with a silk purse favor containing confetti (celebratory sugar-coated chocolates), elegantly packaged by the La Confetteria di Firenze.

  • Wedding Planner: Victoria Donkina – Carpe Diem Events
  • Venue: Villa Cora | Florence
  • Videographers: Emotional Movie
  • Photographer: David Bastianoni