I know, it’s been a while since I wrote a blog post, but that’s about to change considerably. I am currently undergoing a brand restyle which will affect both my overall business and this blog as a consequence, so prepare to read more and more articles about planning your destination wedding in Italy! I will try to make them short, useful and insightful, so that this blog can turn into an effective resource for all of you, so feel free to comment and provide feedback to help me stay on track. I would love to hear from you!
As I’m already planning 2016 weddings I realized there are still a few myths around the whole “destination wedding in Italy” thing. Even my most savvy clients have encountered some of these during their research process, and defusing their worries is a big part of our first meetings together.
For the benefit of all of you I thought I’d share the most common misconceptions I’ve heard and set the record straight, so that you can tweak your expectations and get the most stress-free planning process ever!
1. Tuscany is the best part of Italy
I know, almost every editorial you’ve seen on a wedding blog was labelled “Tuscan inspiration” or something, as if a destination wedding in Italy could only ever happen in that region, or Tuscany was eponymous for everything that you can love about Italy, nature, art, food. The truth is that Italy is the country with the highest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the whole world (51) but these are evenly divided among its regions. The island of Sicily has the most sites (8), while Tuscany sports just as many sites (7) as Campania and Lombardy. None of the natural World Heritage Sites is located in Tuscany (on the contrary, the Dolomites are one of the most famous, and I love planning there), so if you fell in love with pictures of the Tuscan landscape just imagine what the rest of the Country must look like!
Don’t get me wrong, I love Tuscany! It sports the widest variety of venues and great opportunities for wedding receptions under the stars. But don’t rule out other locations which might be just as magical!
2. A summer wedding will guarantee you great warm weather
I am so sorry to be the one bursting the bubble here (as I already did here), but nothing will guarantee you great warm weather anymore. Sure, central and southern Italy usually have higher temperatures and pressure during the summer months, but like everywhere else in the world, climate changes are affecting weather trends, and we sometimes have cold and rainy Julys, or miserable ends of August. Consider this when planning your wedding, and always make sure you have a strong plan B to fall onto.
3. Italy is a small Country easy to navigate
Don’t get me wrong, it actually is much smaller than the United States, of course. And yes, we have any number of transportation networks that can get you from point A to point B quite easily, but the truth is that driving from Milan to Siena, say, could take a whole day. Make sure you check with Google Maps whenever you’re planning a trip or scouting locations. Especially in the centre of Italy, where the internal Appennines (the mountains outlining the centre spine of the Country) are, it could take 2 to 3 hours by car to get from the nearest airport to your venue, and be next to impossible by any other means of transportation. Beware of this when selecting your location, crossing available flight info with a selection of venues you like, to ensure you make traveling easy for your guests.
4. All you get to eat is pasta and pizza
Maybe you wish it were this way, but the truth is that Italy has one of the most diverse cuisines in the whole world. Sure, carbs are a funding element of our diet, but everywhere you go you’ll find so much more in terms of basic ingredients as well as recipes. If you’re gluten-intolerant you will also find that all establishments provide great alternatives at amazing quality standards. As one of my brides recently found out, Italy could actually be the first location where you can eat amazing food and the wedding cake of your dreams even if you’re a coeliac!
5. There are no options for vegetarians
Not surprisingly, myths about Italian food abound! If you’ve been traveling through the Country and considering a location in Tuscany or Umbria you might have read menus filled to the brim with all kinds of meat. There’s meat in the pasta sauces, meat as a main course, and on and on it goes. Game is a large component of the traditional cuisine in the centre of Italy so that’s only natural, but it shouldn’t scare you off. Everywhere you’ll go in Italy you’ll always find not simply great alternatives for vegetarians, but a strong selection of main courses which do not contain any meat. Ask your caterer or the restaurant you’ve chosen to sample a few and you will marvel at the great tastes available.
What about you? What have you heard about Italy that sounds like a stereotype you might want to check into? Please write me in the comments below and I will make sure to set the record straight for you!