The season 2021 was all about the “last moment” events in Crete. In June the island still was empty. The countries changed the covid-19 regulations constantly. And Greece as well. In July out of sudden Crete was flooded by tourists thirsty for the sun, sea and relaxed holidays. Since then we have been receiving messages with the same sort of request: “Guys, we are coming in Crete. Could you please arrange the symbolic wedding for us next week?” Unfortunately I don’t like planning weddings and being in a hurry. I like to enjoy this process together with my couples. We move forward slowly, carefully building close relationships with brides and grooms. Then the result will be perfect. But Vera and Boris, my compatriots from Moscow, the crazy city that never sleeps… These two, they had lead me astray. They reached me by the recommendation of a friend and trusted me blindly. As a wedding planner, I could hardly resist. I bought myself two months to make this day happen.
The wedding has been booked for October. I was a bit worried about the weather. It’s still warm in Crete, however there’s a risk of rains. Important detail when it’s about the outdoor wedding… I had to find a wedding venue where the plan B could also work. Thus, the ceremony took place at the ancient basilica Agia Paraskevi (14 AC) in Amary valley and the reception was at my beloved family run tavern Aravanes.
The couple chose to stay at a hotel in Bali, which is 45 minutes drive from the venue. Vera fell in love with the brand new hotel Nostos . She didn’t want to change the place of stay on something closer to Amari. Mountain roads are so scenic!
The Wedding day of Vera and Boris
On the morning of the wedding, it was raining. Hopefully there was a possibility of the weather change during the day. I asked our decoration team to wait for the sun till the last possible moment and only then to proceed to the decor installation. Meanwhile Vera and Boris did their preparations in the hotel.
Boris left with guests on the bus and Vera took a Mercedes with a personal driver. The first look, the most moving moment of the day, was supposed to happen right at the place of ceremony.
It was something a miracle! The rain has stopped one hour before the ceremony, and the sun is peeking out from behind the clouds. The decorators removed the whole set up outside of the church. Bravo, Leska Decor!
At the decor we used the olive tree branches, Cretan herbs and pieces of wood. Our aim was to highlight a bit the natural beauty of the place. Not to damage the charm of passing ages.
Boris and the guests were amazed by the beauty of the ancient church and the simplicity of the set up. While waiting for the bride, the celebrant was making jokes with Boris.
And then… “Here she comes!” Here comes the bride! (This moment makes my eyes water too. )
The ceremony is a climax of a wedding day. Once it’s over, I always feel happy and relieved. Then it’s time to take pictures with friends, to feast, to drink and to dance. I assume most of the newlyweds feel same way.
Reception at Aravanes
Aravanes is a family run tavern and small hotel. The biggest advantages of this place are a large terrace with a stunning view and really good Cretan kitchen. Maybe I am not objective. My heart is attached to this place and I love to make weddings here. Just look at the view!
The table was decorated with a rustic touch. Every guest got a thank you gift from the couple. It was a pot of hand made papaya jam. Did you know that they cultivate papaya trees in Crete? Now you did! In Crete you may find plantations of tropic fruits such as papaya, avacado, banana, kiwi etc.
A tree named Zeus
Right before starting a wedding dinner Vera and Boris surprised the guests with a ritual. They planted a tree. I was sure they would like an idea of plating a tree together. It’s symbolic of new common beginning. Isn’t it cool to have your own tree in Crete?
Vera named the tree after the god of gods in Ancient Greek mythology – Zeus. The couple has a reason to travel to Crete at least once a year to visit Zeus. If you also believe that the planting of a tree is a great alternative to smashing a wedding cake, write me . New time – new customs. Crete Within Weddings goes green!
People say the foundation of a happy married life is love, trust. Have a wonderful family life together, dear Boris and Vera. Thank you for choosing Crete Within Weddings as your event planner in Crete!
Photos by amazing Natalia Pateraki
Video by Aleks Iliakis/DG films
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