Helena and Vivek, Belmond Castello di Casole, Italy
An ultimate luxury Tuscan resort in Italy hosted Helena and Vivek's wedding celebration that was high on personalized touches and festive revelry.
An ultimate luxury Tuscan resort in Italy hosted Helena and Vivek’s wedding celebration that was high on personalized touches and festive revelry.
The gorgeous Belmond Castello di Casole in Italy was lit up with dance performances, gorgeous décor and guests from all over the globe who came to celebrate Helena and Vivek’s wedding in a quintessentially Indian way.
Here, bride Helena shares how they pulled off such a fun extravaganza.
How we met
“Vivek and I met in Tokyo in 2009. We were sitting at a bar ignoring what was going to happen to our lives when a mutual friend introduced us. Vivek always says he was struck by our meeting but we became friends only much later when we met again by chance at a Halloween party. He actually asked me out on a date a few years later, i.e. in 2014! He took his time thinking about it.”
“On September 21st 2016, while we hiked in southwestern US, Vivek organized the most amazing proposal a girl could imagine. Heading to Antelope Canyon on a special helicopter tour, the two guys sitting with us didn’t let on that one of them was a photographer and the other a videographer.
Vivek wanted to propose high in the sky and so he’d planned this, the sweetest surprise ever. When he held my hand and started to speak, I started to cry! Obviously I said yes and obviously, the photographer and video maker were there to catch the moment.”
“We chose the fairy-tale location of Belmond Castello di Casole in world famous Tuscany for our special day. We had friends and relatives coming from all over the world; the US, Chile, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Australia, and Great Britain. So we decided that a destination wedding was the perfect way to gather everyone in one place to relax and celebrate for four days in a row.
Vivek and I were looking for a boutique hotel, a cozy though elegant and refined location. We started to Google a bit but when we found this luxury resort, we fell in love immediately. It looked just perfect for us and it was only an hour away from the Florence airport which was surely a plus.”
“We are very grateful to all the professionals that worked hard to render a unique wedding day for us! We want to mention our incredible wedding planner agency, SposiamoVi based in Florence, Genoa and Salerno for the special attention to every single detail. We have a special mention for our wedding photographer, Nicola Tonolini. He was the best addition to our wedding day because he managed to capture and save all our emotions forever. We still enjoy looking at the pictures over and over to relive that day. A big thank you goes to my hairdresser Andrea Gennaro and to Flowers Living from Arezzo for their incredible flower arrangements. Alma Project 24/7 and Scarlett Entertainment were in charge of the music for ceremony and receptions and they truly did an amazing job. Finally we are truly thankful to Preludio Noleggi for the place settings and to JD Events for the light design.”
“We had an Indian wedding followed by a western wedding the next day. We were very colorful on the first day while the second one was marked by a prevalence of white and neutral colors. To render the Indian atmosphere, there were many colorful cushions, candles, lanterns and linens all around, giving a real intimate touch to the location.
Vivek and I are pretty creative so we prepared the goodie bags and personally designed our own stationery, signs and place cards. The Indian ceremony was conducted in Sanskrit so a wedding program was designed by my sisters and I to help our guests figure out what was exactly going on!
We couldn’t believe all the important people of our lives that were gathered there for us. My sister’s speech was so touching. We do not see each other often but we love tenderly and her words were really important to me.
My wedding dress was really uncommon! I designed my own gown with a tailor, using online pictures online as a reference. I had never pictured myself wearing an Indian lehenga at my wedding, so that was interesting to shop for. My wedding shoes were by Jimmy Choo and I bought all my accessories from India. Vivek followed the Indian tradition and wore a Sherwani that I picked out for him in Long Island. We were looking for something elegant in a light fabric, to survive the hot Italian summer and I think he was really an incredible prince on our day. He even wore a special commemorative sword! He then changed into a backup kurta for the party, another Indian outfit but much easier to wear, to be able to dance and move around during the party.”
Advice for Couples
“Follow your dreams for every single aspect, such as location, wedding dress and details. A wedding day should really be a reflection of the couple’s style so follow your desires and do not listen to everyone else! We took 5 months to get everything done and we still believe it was the perfect amount of time to arrange things stress-free. The other big advice is – select an excellent photographer and video maker. They will be responsible for capturing all the emotions and render them timeless so it is a big effort indeed. Take time to get to know each other and understand what kind of photographic style is your favorite.”
The Wedding Makers
Venue: Belmond Castello di Casole, Italy
Wedding Planners: SposiamoVi
Florals: Flowers Living
Light Design and Setup: JD Events
Entertainment: Alma Project 24/7, Scarlett Entertainment
Hair Stylist: Andrea Gennaro
Photographer: Nicola Tonolini