From ZBBeauty: For Nathalie and Ben, their three-day wedding event in Capri and Positano was as much about their guests’ experience as it was celebrating their relationship. Each day was filled with unexpected moments designed both to ramp up guests’ enjoyment and to ensure that what the couple finds so utterly magical about this area in Italy was shared with their loved ones.
Even if you aren’t packing your passport for your own wedding festivities, be sure to read on to see the steps you can take to create a wedding experience your guests will love as much as you do.
DAY ONE – WELCOME DINNER
1: make your guests feel welcome… and well cared forKnowing many guests had traveled via at least two planes and a boat to join them in Positano, Nathalie and Ben wanted their arrival to be memorable, yet also relaxed. The couple had a welcome bag delivered to each hotel room ready to greet them as they checked in. The custom bags included a beautiful scarf made by local artist XXX for the lady guests and a silk pocket square for the men, which featured design elements inspired by the wedding venue, Villa Treville. The bags also included an itinerary, a guide to Positano, and the all-important hangover kit – remember, if you’d like your guests to attend more than one event for your wedding, it pays to prepare them to keep on partying!
2: This is also a vacation after all, so let guests relax…
Nathalie & Ben greeted their guests for the first time at a private beach club that afternoon. Its elegant, laidback blue and white theme was the perfect compliment to the idyllic cove steps just steps away, and included hydrangeas on every table and candles in each corner. With pizza-oven buffet set up, guests could mingle and get to know one another and soak in that gorgeous setting, minus any formalities – which aren’t exactly what you need when you’ve just gotten off a trans-Atlantic flight!
3: Let the surprises begin!
Once guests had their fill of oven fired pizza and copious Jenga games, they were ready to take things up a notch. First up, the fire-dancing winners of Italia’s Got Talent performed on the beach just after sunset, getting guests in the right mindset for the big twist of the night that was still to come. Everyone was then taken by water taxi to the after party – on a sailboat anchored in the middle of the ocean! On board, the open bar, DJ and pirate costumes really got guests in the mood for the next couple of days.
DAY TWO – BOAT TRIP & REHEARSAL DINNER
4: Keep the momentum going by changing things up
At this point, you might be thinking ‘where to from here’? How do you top what your guests have experienced so far, and make sure the wedding itself isn’t less exciting than any other activities you may have planned? The trick is to do something different – change the location if you can, but certainly switch up the mood and the tempo. After Nathalie and Ben’s crazy late night pirate party, they didn’t want to limit the traditional ‘rehearsal dinner’ to just another nighttime event, so they made it a whole day instead – starting with a private ferry ride to take their guests from Positano to Capri. A new location, new feel!
5: Don’t feel the need to tell your guests everything!
It’s essential, of course, that your guests know the basics you have planned so that they can be comfortable – nothing is going to make people crankier than being cold or hot, or wearing the wrong shoes! So while you should tell them just enough so that they can be prepared, it keeps things fresh if you keep some of your plans a surprise. Nathalie and Ben simply told their guests what to wear (colorful clothing!) and where to wait for the ferry, but that was it!
After guests landed in Capri, they were taken by dinghy boats out to the sailboat from the previous night for a one hour cruise around the island, complete with cocktails. Back on dry land, the party was greeted by a brass band (in vintage Charlie Chaplin-esque outfits!) with a serious comedic streak. The band led a New Orleans-style second line parade from the dock through the winding streets of Capri, all the way to the venue for the rehearsal dinner. Not one guest could stop laughing, or dancing… magic!
6: Include meaningful elements
The setting or even the food itself can be what ends up evoking special memories for your guests well after the wedding is over. For Nathalie and Ben’s Italian island wedding, they simply couldn’t go past having the rehearsal dinner at world famous Da Paulino, ‘the lemon grove restaurant’, where both the setting and the food are synonymous with Capri. Plus it was important to share their favorite restaurant in the world with their nearest and dearest! By having your guests experience something inherently tied to your wedding’s location, it helps to cement a real meaningful sense of the place you’ve chosen to marry, and why it’s so unique to you. Plus, have you ever been there? The lemon fettuccine is to die for!
Ready for more? Be sure to swing by tomorrow to see PART 2 of Nathalie and Ben's unbelievable wedding in Italy.