It’s not very often the opportunity arises to photograph a destination wedding, in fact this was my first time photographing a wedding in Spain. I know Debbie from school, we were friends in our teens and I hadn’t actually seen Debbie and many of the guests for over 12 years! So this was a really special wedding for me to be a part of.
Debbie is half Spanish and spent all of her childhood and adult life holidays in the tiny village of Milagros, in the heart of the Ribera Del Duero. With Marcus joining her there in more recent years, it seemed only fitting that they married in this idyllic Spanish village in the same church that her parents married almost to the day 37 years ago – I know, how romantic!
After a few visits to Spain, they found and fell in love with the stunning La Casona de La Vid restaurant, which is also a very well known winery in the region and now a boutique wine themed hotel, el lagar de Isilla, set in the rolling hills of La Vid, Burgos. With an idyllic serene setting, a 12th century working Monastry, stunning landscape, trees, beautiful stonework (Debbie’s favourite) and the picturesque working vineyard, they knew this would be the perfect place to celebrate destination wedding.
The Big WeekendWhen I arrived in Madrid having flown out from Gatwick, I was met by Caroline, Debbie’s younger sister and Maid of Honour. I hadn’t seen Caroline for years, and it was so nice to have a good catch up, she welcomed me with a huge hug and squeeze. She is utterly lovely, and throughout the whole visit she most definitely reminded me of Jennifer Lopez in The Wedding Planner, she just needed the headset!
My first evening there I met up with Debbie, Marcus, family and friends over at the family bar, El Herrero, followed by dinner at El Lagar De Milagros, everyone made me feel so welcome and I knew then it was going to be an amazing few days. This was the first time I met Marcus, he is drop dead gorgeous, just like Debbie! I just wish I had been there to capture the moment Marcus proposed on the ski slope in La Rosiére last year. I mean just look at them, who wouldn’t love to photograph such a gorgeous couple???!
I was lucky enough to have the amazingly talented Motiejus as my second photographer (by no means second) capturing the day with me. This was the best decision we could have made, as Motiejus was able to document the getting ready stages of Marcus and the guys, as well as capture details, while I concentrated on group photos, not to mention Motiejus being another pair of eyes and perspective on the day! Everyone warmed to him and I have to say we had such a giggle working together. Motiejus arrived late the night before the wedding, but was up and ready to go bright and early…
Spending the morning with the girls is a precious time, this is the Brides’ last moments with her family and friends before becoming a married woman, and I was honoured to be there. Debbie and Marcus had decided on a rare colour theme for their Spanish destination wedding, the girls wore black dresses from Goddiva and the bouquets included black cala-lilies. Debbie of course looked absolutely stunning wearing the Heli lace dress in ivory by Enzoani, one of my favourite designers, which she found at White Dresses & Tiara’s. Working for CrownBrush she had been taught exactly how to do her own make-up, and wow, I can honestly say I now want her to teach me, she did a better job than I’ve seen most professional make-up artists apply. Debbie topped her look with a half-up hair do by ‘Rebeca Herrero Make UP’ and the most incredible tattooed shoes which she designed herself.
Marcus made sure he too looked ultra dapper in a grey Hugo Boss suit, while his two best men, Father of the bride and Usher hired grey suits from Dickies Suit Hire.
The Catholic ceremony took place at 1pm in the beautiful Parroquia de Santa Maria Church in the center of Milagros. Father Alberto Rodriguez Garcia is most definitely my favourite Priest I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with! He was so friendly, and was super relaxed about where and when we could take photos, repeatedly saying to me “you have full roam of the church”. The ceremony was really intimate, Marcus managed to say his vows to Debbie in Spanish perfectly, it was so sweet and there were lots of smiles and laughter throughout.
After the ceremony, we headed to the nearby river and to the local Bodegas, these are places which were sentimental to Debbie and her sister, places that are not only beautiful settings for photos but also where they played as young children. After taking some romantic portraits we moved onto the reception at La Casona de La Vid. The setting was perfect, with everyone enjoying lavish canapés and cava outside in the sunshine, I took this opportunity to capture the group photos around the grounds of the Monastery, before moving inside for the wedding breakfast. We were seated together with the guests, and I was sat not only next to Motiejus but also one of my oldest friends, Louise, I was chuffed to bits to be sat with her as it’s been years since we caught up and this was the perfect opportunity. Every now and then everyone would start singing and dancing around the tables in true Spanish style, leaving the most enjoyable atmosphere to be a part of. The conga led by the bride took place before the starter was even served !
We partied into the early hours, the DJ was awesome and wow do the spanish know how to party! Everyone was dancing to their hearts content. To top off the day for us when we departed the wedding to head back to our hotel with many of the guests, we stepped up last onto the bus to everyone singing and cheering us for doing a great job – it felt amazing and an experience we shall never forget. All in all it was a fantastic wedding and I wish they could do it all over again!
Thank you so much for having us there to capture the best day of your life. A huge congratulations to you both, I can’t wait to show you the rest of your photos and look forward to catching up again soon. And as for Spain, you could never fail to inspire…
The day after this amazing wedding, Motiejus and I took a stroll in the village of Milagros followed by a mini tour with Caroline and Kim, just take a look at how beautiful this idyllic village is…
Are you planning a destination wedding? Whether it’s in Spain, Africa, Italy, Greece, Mexico or even further afield, please enquire now for your perfect destination wedding photography with Nicci at Adorlee.