Sorrento Cloisters & Villa Antiche Mura review
I found Ionian Weddings (IW) online and booked the Cloisters throughout them a year in advance. Having been to Sorrento before we knew the cloisters and wanted our ceremony there. It has lots of naturally growing flowers so no extra needed! We then visited 5 venue locations with the wedding planner and picked Villa Antiche Mura because you have the place exclusively, as well as the amazing setting and views over the bay to Naples/Vesuvius. You can also personalise the decorations completely.
IW helped us get the paperwork sorted, which you need to factor ion as extra cost to the wedding package.
I booked a hair trial and hairdresser who came to our hotel through IW, I sent photos beforehand and Louisa was very good copying the style, although she didn't speak much English.
I took my dress as hand luggage but it was a bit stressful unpacking it and trying to get the creases out. You can get it steamed in Sorrento for around 80 euros.
We booked our transport with Eurolimo who the villa recommended. They were much cheaper than the company used by IW. We just booked a van for us and vans for the guests. I did find that on the day there was another wedding at the church next door blocking our car out, so try to arrive on time to make the most of your hour at the cloisters.
We booked Umberto D'Aniello from Capri for our photos. We haven't received them yet, but Umberto and his assistant photographed from getting ready until the first dance. Umberto directs you for the bride and groom photos, and you can tell him who else you want photos with. His assistant look lots of reportage style shots.
On the day the cloisters ceremony was lovely. It's about 20 mins so we added a reading and vows. We hired a violinist through IW to play, and he was able to play songs I requested, I just had to send him the sheet music which I bought online. You are allowed confetti outside the entrance but only real petals.
At the villa Michele the manager was very easy to email and organise everything. He was very patient, replying quickly to my many emails! I took my owns lights, pom poms etc but you can also hire decorations from Michele. The flowers I asked for were very nice, if you want more you can pay extra. Michele arranged the non standard seating I wanted. He let me post a box of stuff to him that I couldn't put in my suitcase.
Welcome aperitifs - we chose the basic option, which included canapés, cocktails, beer, soft drinks and water. We added extra beers, although they didn't all get used up. The cocktails also didn't all get used so the basic option is probably plenty.
Dinner - the wedding was at 4.30pm, and we sat down to dinner about 7pm. The food exceeded my expectations, we didn't get to taste the food before picking our options, so used some tips from other peoples reviews. We paid a bit extra to offer guests a choice of 3 dishes. Everyone enjoyed their food, we had Starters of Parma Ham & Melon, Caprese Salad & Mixed cheese and salami. Pasta course of Baked risotto, Amalfi crepes & Gnocchi. Main course of Prawn & Swordfish, Seabass & Chicken.
Desert was the wedding cake, I sent a photo for the decoration and it looked lovely. We chose a layer of chocolate and a layer of lemon sponge. Both were nice. We thought two flavours would mean everyone had something they liked but people didn't get a choice of which type they wanted.
We bought 10 extra bottles of wine to what was included which seemed sufficient. After dinner, we gave guests vouchers to use at the bar. Michele counted the number used which we paid for afterwards.
Music - we used our laptop which was connected up to the sound system. You can hire a dj or band but we wanted to play our own music. There is a tax payable for music regardless and to use the