A fairytale Italian wedding in Lucca


A WEDDING IN LUCCA This was written about a wedding arranged by the owners of Villa del Barbaro summer of 2003. The host and hostess are simply wonderful and they invite all their guests to dinner once during their villa stay. Villa Del Barbaro, Villa Cardinale and Vera One and Two apartments are all on the same large wine estate but there are 3 large private swimming pools, so it makes a splendid family reunion estate. There are also two good hotels within walking distance from the villa. Guests can walk to the bus to Lucca (4 km to Lucca), walk to a village or walk to the cappuccino and pastry bar, which also is serves gelato in the afternoon. The nearest airport is Pisa. Florence is 1 hour east.

"Coming back down to earth slowly from the best time ever! Every one of our guests thought so! Wanted to share with you a few pictures that I had scanned. We are slowly getting others that we can send. It was an unbelievable time - as you can only imagine with Gianna and Joe as our hosts! Truly wonderful people - that are so generous and they worked so hard to make it such a special week for Mike and me. I can't say enough. Money wouldn't do it either

Not to inundate you with detail but when we arrived, we met all the people we contracted (band, photographer, officiant) over cocktails in their home. What a way to start. Gianna helped translate in every instance - like with the photographer. When we learned about some of the parties that they regularly throw - and got to know them, I knew immediately we were in good hands, I relaxed and wished I had only met her before then so I wouldn't have worried and worked so hard at trying to do so much from here in the states! She had everything under control and never let us see her under any pressure if there was any. I can't say enough - Not only did she help pick up some of our guests at area airports that we could not get to or Angelo di Raneri couldn't get to, but she: -arranged to have all our hair done on the wedding day (she came along as well - it was fun!) -she took all of the women shopping at great factory priced places -several times! -we harvested the cabernet grape one day (tried to help) that ended in a celebratory pig roast -Joe took us all to a wine tasting at a vineyard that serves The Pope -recommended restaurants throughout the week and help arrange for the grooms dinner and translate -handled the florist, cook, pastry chef, and numerous details that made our wedding day and week - absolutely perfect!

I kept waiting for something to happen or go wrong - but nothing did. It was flawless. The weather was fabulous all week. Flights were easy and uneventful. The wedding ceremony went off without a hitch, I was relaxed and it was really beautiful in front of those gates. The fields of mint that we walked thru to get to the vineyards for pictures was amazing. The photographer had such fun with their place. Her mom picked live flowers that day to make a path down the aisle. The cocktails under the grape arbor that was brimming with grapes was so fragrant. We were drinking mojitos with fresh mint from her herb garden. The dinner was truly the best meal I have ever had - and I get wined and dined by vendors and experience some pretty nice restaurants in NYC. This is why I loved Italy so much. Magical. An experience. We gave special favors to everyone at the table including her family - the $2 Euro was put in a sterling bezel and made into pendants for the women and key chains for the men. (You can do this with an intimate wedding). You have to picture it - The toasts, the songs that we sang in English, the ballads that were sung in Italian and the mix of music from American, Salsa, Italian and Reggae - well, let me just say my family and friends don't sit out too many chances to dance and carry on. We laughed and shook up that 12th Century home of theirs! And they were right there with us!

We were able to sneak in some day trips to Siena and Castellina in Chianti, to Florence, to Viareggio, and Pisa. I fell in love with Lucca - and by the end of the week - moved around those Piazzas like a local! Mike and I can't wait to go back (without our lively family and friends) for a romantic getaway. And not to sound too sappy - but we'll probably have to name our first child Lucca!

Thank you for all your work in making everything happen from your end -from booking the car to arrangements with Gianna - to directions - (by the way -all we did was ask the man at the counter where we rented the car - how to get to SS12 - piece of cake - then again - we did make quite a few trips to the airport picking up our friends that didn't rent cars - grrrrr -perhaps my only complaint). We really appreciate your positive support from the beginning of planning this trip. I remember when on that Sunday morning coffee I decided to pick up the phone and call you - not expecting anyone to be there and Kit, you answered all my questions. You made it seem easy to someone who had never traveled internationally (only two people in the entire group of 23 had ever traveled internationally) and made it possible for us to make it easy for the others that we supported and took along with us. Think about how amazing it was that both our parents and my 82 yr old grandmother - who had never been to Europe - were able to experience it in a perfect, safe, relaxed way. Everyone had a memorable experience. I feel great about it. I hope you do too.

Please feel free to forward this to Gianna - I know she knows how much we appreciated all her efforts - but I still feel in adequate in having her know that she made lifetime memories for so many people - and for Mike and me - a dream come true."

Trea and Mike


See also: Villa Buonvisi Wedding Album




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