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WEDDINGSnow is published by

editor’s letter
Listen up brides to be, WEDDINGSnow is your answer to fulfilling your dream of the perfect wedding day. You have found the man of your dreams and now it’s time to plan your special day. The best advice that any bride can give you is not to panic. Speaking from experience as a newlywed, if you set achievable goals when organising your big day, it will all fall into place. The initial thing to do if you are getting married is to find out the legal side of what you have to do in order to get married. Then it is all down to personal preference when it comes to venues. We have compiled some of the best venues throughout the western and southern counties to help you choose what suits you. We ask the all important questions like how much it will cost and whether or not the hotel charges corkage. Another important area that can be difficult to organise is your pre-marriage course if you are getting married in a Catholic Church. We have a list of the different types of courses available. Our bridal fashion shoot has some of the most amazing wedding dresses to suit all tastes and all you have to do is flick the page! If you are a bit on the adventurous side and feel like getting married in style, check out our feature on alternative weddings. I’m a firm believer in not re-inventing the wheel, so we got the low down from other newlyweds on how they organised their special day. Your bridal party plays an important role in your wedding so make sure you choose the right people for the job (because it is not all about looking pretty, they will have to work!) Stick to our guide to choosing a bridesmaid and groomsman and you’re sure to be in safe hands. Everything from your flowers, wine and photographer to your wedding gifts, hair and make up needs a little bit of thought. So before you start stressing out, grab a cup of coffee, a quiet room, sit down and let WEDDINGSnow guide you through the next few months. P.S Enjoy every moment of it! SINÉAD NÍ NEACHTAIN EDITOR

Golden Egg Productions Ltd, Clarenbridge Business Park, Clarenbridge, Co Galway, Ireland Tel 091 777077 Fax 091 777080 e-mail info@galwaynow.com www.galwaynow.com Managing Director Patricia McCrossan patricia@goldenegg.ie Group Editor Sinéad Ní Neachtain sinead@galwaynow.com editor@corknow.ie Deputy Editor Jo Lavelle jo@galwaynow.com deputyeditor@corknow.ie

Accounts Manager Patricia Larkin accounts@goldenegg.ie DESIGN Art Director Helen Gunning art@galwaynow.com Senior Designer Marcella Burns images@goldenegg.ie Advertising Design Colm Brennan design@goldenegg.ie SALES Sales and Marketing Manager Fergal O’Connor 086 8137116 fergal@goldenegg.ie Advertising Executives Michelle Sweeney 086 8231663 michelle@galwaynow.com Christina Gleeson 087 9981647 christina@galwaynow.com Elaine Divilly 086 8194025 elaine@corknow.ie

wedding fairs...
7 January Wedding Fair, Midleton Park

Michelle Queally 086 8216547 michelle@corknow.ie

Hotel, Midleton Cork 021 4635101 13 and 14 January Dream Weddings Exhibition, Leisureland, Galway 087 2450288 13 and 14 January Wedding Fair, Silver Springs Moran Hotel Cork. Contact www.silverspringshotel.ie 21 January Galway Bay Hotel Wedding Fair www.galwaybayhotel.net 21 January Wedding Fair, The Shamrock Lodge Country House Hotel, Athlone www.shamrocklodgecountryhotel.com 27 and 28 January 2007 The Wedding and Bridal Show, The Burlington Hotel,

Ballsbridge, Dublin 4 terryburns@wed. ie. 4 February 2007 Bride of The Year Show RDS. Contact terryburns@wed.ie 19 February 2007 Tipperary Wedding Show Premier Theatre Thurles. 086 1623644 069 61974 www.tippweddingshow.com 19 February Wedding Show, Hilton Hotel, Dublin 2 www.hilton.com 4 March 2007 Wedding Show, Hilton Hotel, Charlemount Place, Dublin 2 terryburns@wed.ie. 4 March 2007 Wedding Fair Extravangza, The Wyatt Hotel, Westport, Co. Mayo 098 25027 www.wyatthotel.com

Contributors Brian R Walsh, Antoinette Geraghty and Patrick Henaghan Distribution Easons, Ireland

Golden Egg Productions Ltd will not be responsible for, nor will it return, unsolicited manuscripts. Transparencies or prints submitted for publication are sent at the owner’s risk and, while every care is taken, Golden Egg Productions Ltd cannot accept any liability for loss or damage. The views expressed in the magazine are those of the authors and not necessarily those of Golden Egg Productions Ltd. The entire contents of the magazine are the copyright of Golden Egg Productions Ltd and may not be reproduced in any form without the prior written consent of the publishers.

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18 Gowning Glory
stylish bridal wear revealed

68
cover stories

76

inside
Picture courtesy of ICEHOTEL

31 Best Wedding Venues 40 Before I Do
the legal side

51 Real Weddings 64 Be Brave

three brides share their day alternative weddings gifts for the wedding party weddings made easy your wedding gifts

68 What Gives... 70 Plan Ahead

49
73 Countdown
monthly advice

74 To List Or Not To List

features
28 Perfect Beauty 38 Budget
the cost bridal make-up and hair

76 Happy Honeymoon
alternative getaways

39 Traditions
just in case!

79 Music

the way it goes

our wedding favourites choosing a photographer

43 Pre Nuptial 44 Best Man Duties
pay attention

80 Picture Perfect

snapped
82 Weddings
your wedding pictures

45 Choosing a Bridesmaid
your questions answered the experts advise wine for your wedding flowers for your wedding top tips

46 Caketastic 49 Toast

regulars
2
Editor’s letter

18
4
WEDDINGSnow

60 Message In A Blossom 66 Getting Married Abroad

6 What’s new 95 In The Stars 96 Directory

are you meant to be?

what’s new
Pure Beauty
Just arrived at Purejoy beauty is the amazing high technical skin scanning machine, one of the best tools in the beauty business to analyse your skin. It can see sun damage, which will help to prevent ageing, dehydration, collagen breakdown and congestion. Purejoy beauty specialises in facials using two of the leading skin brands in the world, Dermalogica and Matis. The beauty therapists at Purejoy beauty all have extra high levels of training in skin care on sensitive skin, acne, ageing, hormonal, and menopausal skin. With all of these, you will not get a better treatment to prepare you and your wedding party for your big day. Contact Purejoy Beauty, Mainguard Street, Galway 091 530540

The SpecialistsHartmanns Jewellers

Hartmanns jewellers in Williamsgate Street is Galway’s engagement and wedding ring specialist. Hartmanns are the West of Ireland’s only stockist for the world’s most perfectly cut diamond by Hearts on Fire. They have two spacious private fitting rooms where you can comfortably choose from Galway’s largest selection of engagement rings. It they don’t have exactly what you are looking for, Hartmanns will happily custom make a ring to your specific needs. Apart from the all important ring, Hartmanns also have a wide array of items perfect for gifts on

the day of the wedding. For the groom, they stock a large array of Swiss watches such as Tag Heuer, Omega and Rolex. They are also exclusive stockists of Mont Blanc pens and accessories. For the bridesmaids there is a great selection of fashionable and reasonably priced jewellery from top international brands such as Ti Sento, Milano and Links of London. Hartmanns of Galway is simply a one stop shop for all your wedding day gifts and jewellery. A.Hartmann & Son Ltd, 27-29 William St,Galway, 091 562063, www.hartmanns.ie

What a man
If you want to feel good, you need to look good first. In today’s world, small differences make all the difference and being well-groomed can make that difference. UdeMan is a new online store for men’s grooming and skincare. The brands are designed specifically for men, and come from the US, Canada, the UK, and Australia. The brands are tested on humans, not animals. People say that men’s skin is tougher than women’s and ages better, but if you think of the damage shaving and being out in the elements can do to your skin, you know that it needs to be protected. Udeman will also give you tips on looking after your skin, hair and shaving needs. You won’t have to go to an upmarket department store to get quality men’s grooming products delivered to your door. To have your husband-to-be look his best on your wedding day just order online at www.udeman.ie

Fuzion Hair Design
Fuzion Hair Design is based in Newcastle, Galway and is the ideal place for brides-to-be to get that beautiful hair style they long for on their wedding day! From bridal up-styles to stunning GHD curls, you’re sure to get exactly what you want. Fuzion recommends that you get your colour and cutting done two weeks before your big day. A consultation and bridal trial before is also a must. To book an appointment call 091 582965.

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what’s new
Diamonds by Julia
Julia McAndrew has just launched a new business venture, Diamonds by Julia. Julia worked and studied jewellery in London and now brings her expertise and knowledge to Galway. Her beautiful stunning collection of diamonds set in 18ct gold can fulfil your every desire. The diamonds are carefully selected from De Beers, using only the highest quality and cuts. Julia with her partner Ludek Hubrt, an expert in diamonds, gemstones and jewellery combine to create an excellent team to give their clients a truly personal and professional service. Contact Julia on 087 6050050 email: info@diamondsbyjulia.com or visit www.diamondsbyjulia.com

Church Flowers
Jessamyn Sommers, of Bloomsday in Carrigtwohill, Co Cork, offers advice on planning your church flowers

ITSFABULOUS.NET
WRITTEN BY LEONA MCPHILLIPS Helga Kampff founder of itsFabulous.net is a vivacious and innovative business woman. She set up her company which is based in Galway, just over a year and a half ago. Helga’s expansive career incorporates international hair companies such as Wella and Revlon. Helga’s profession has not only taken in the salon arena, but more challengingly, the domain of film, fashion and TV. Originally from Dublin, Helga has settled in Galway for the last five years. ItsFabulous.net has an exclusive criterion that covers the brides and her wedding party’s consultation on hair cut, colour, condition and up-styles. To top off this excellent package, Helga travels to the bride on her wedding day, ensuring that being fabulous begins that day the moment you wake up. ItsFabulous.net emphasises its ethos as a provision that creates peace of mind in a friendly, professional, relaxed and most importantly, fun atmosphere. Check out Helga’s website on www.itsfabulous.net or contact her directly on 0861960061

• Ask at your church or venue when they have another wedding scheduled, so that you can visualise how it looks dressed with flowers. If you fancy filling the church with flowers, ask your florist to meet you on site to map out the best layout for your arrangements. • When planning the layout of your flowers, keep the arrangements towards the centre aisle of the church. If the church is large, draw your guests to the front by grouping pew ends at the front rows. Remember to place some

flowers at the first row of seats as you enter the church, they will set the scene for your guests as they arrive, and when they turn to watch you enter the church. • Use candles to warm up a dark church or a winter wedding. Posies of scented flowers as pew ends can sweeten a damp or musty church. Simple, modern arrangements will suit a highly decorative church, while traditional arrangements of summery flowers will pretty up a plain venue.

a favor with a statement
Many brides are now moving away from the standard favors of miniature boxes holding chocolates and are being tempted by the wide variety of favors to suit individual couple’s personalities and make a more personal statement. The new range of favors from Receptions in Clonmel, Co Tipperary caters for just this. These favors feature individual sachets of tea, coffee, cappuccino, cocktails or pots of honey that are then personalised with the couple’s names and wedding date. The range features over 20 choices of labels for the sachet, both humorous and romantic. View these and the wide selection of ‘different’ favors on www.receptions.ie

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what’s new

Sarah Morrisey wearing Otazu on the catwalk at a fashionshow organized by the I.C.A.

Something Special
A special piece of jewellery is something often forgotten by busy brides or left until the last minute. Azure Jewellery offers the most fabulous handmade items to suit all bridal tastes and budgets including Princesse d’un Jour, the Wedding Jules Collection from Dublin-born Julie Bevan, and pictured above Otazu. Azure, Careys Lane, Cork, 021 4905941

Head-turners
While there is a current trend for flamboyant head pieces, this look is not for everyone. Some love to make a statement, others prefer understated chic and that is where The Galway Hat Shop comes in. One of the best-known hat stockists in the city, The Galway Hat Shop stocks a wide variety of hats and headpieces for every occasion to suit every taste and every pocket, with head piece prices ranging from €24.95 to €1,150. The Galway Hat Shop stocks over 12 designers from all over Europe including designs by Phillip Treacy. Another Irish designer stocked by the hat shop is Balbo Designs, which makes hat or headpiece and handbag matching sets for that finished-off look. For a very chic look, Whiteley design hats and head pieces for mothers of the bride and guests. Nigel Raymond’s hatmosphere is a subtle range with feather or flower trimmings and pretty head pieces for those who want an understated look. The Galway Hat Shop also stocks jewellery, wraps and handbags to complete any outfit. Corbett Court, Eyre Square Shopping Centre, Galway 091 561052

Lady M
Lady M is the first ever lingerie boutique to open in Loughrea. Located on Dunkellin Street, the main street in Loughrea, it stocks a wide range of goods from lingerie to fashion to accessories. It has everything! For bridal lingerie, proprietor Mairead Hanbury ensures that all of her customers get a friendly and confidential consultation. The fantastic ranges in Lady M are Plie, Rosa Cha Brazilian lingerie, Elle Macpherson, Ted Baker, Lepel, Discover Mademoiselle, Charnos, Panache, Fantasie, and Freya! The accessories are by Wishes and Braza, fashion by Maillili Paris, tights by Aristoc, nightwear by Frankie and Johnny! Lady M Lingerie Boutique, 51 Dunkellin Street, Loughrea. 091 871141

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what’s new
Music to your ears!
Fantango specialises in what is surely the most passionate of music genres – the Argentinian Tango.
This group features the songs of Carlos Gardel, the world’s best known and most beloved Tango vocalist. The combination of bandoneon, violin, guitar and vocals recreate the authentic sound of the golden era of Tango. Fantango’s music provide a romantic atmosphere for your wedding reception. You can catch Fantango live at The Galway Tango Club’s monthly Milongas at the Galway Rowing Club from February 2007. For more details contact Paul Gunning on 091 638205.

Bridal Rooms
The Ivory Rose Bridal Rooms have just opened in Passage West, Co Cork. Choosing a gown at the Ivory Rose is a pleasurable and memorable experience. Owner Marie has carefully selected pretty, stylish, fun, contemporary and classic gowns for her 2007 designer collection. She also stocks bridesmaid dresses and a range of veils, tiaras, jewellery and shoes to complete your dream look. Call 021 4859750 or email marie@theivoryrose.ie to arrange an appointment. View the collection on-line at www.theivoryrose.ie.

The Chocolate Tier
The chocolate tier is the leading supplier of chocolate fountains on the west coast and there is only one reason - quality. The Chocolate Tier provides the finest Belgian chocolate with dipping foods that include fresh strawberries, marshmallows, malted fudge and profiteroles with a vanilla cream. Contact: Orla or Anthony on 086 8488107 or 086 8233825 or email info@thechocolatetier.ie

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what’s new
Perfect Match
Suzie Mahony Designs has just introduced a new line of handmade beaded jewellery to complement your headpiece and ensemble for that special day. Suzie can also create handmade bridal headdresses and matching jewellery. For further information contact Suzie Mahony Designs 086 1948315

The workshop
Elegant Undies
Elegant Undies has picked lingerie labels and styles that look amazing and feel great to wear. It prides itself on its fitting service and has carefully chosen their stock based on quality, look and fit. Elegant Undies is currently widening its bridal lingerie collection to cater for every wedding dress style possible! Whether it is to slim you down or boost you up, at Elegant Undies, you will find a range of bras, bodices and accessories that will support you under any style of dress and make you feel comfortable on your big day. From comfortable basic bras to the most gorgeous nightwear and camisole sets, there is something for everyone in Elegant Undies. Unit 3, Downstairs Corbett Court Shopping Centre, Williamsgate Street, Galway 091 567512 As your wedding day edges closer, you wonder if it’s just you or does every bride suddenly feel this stressed out? Firstly, rest assured that stress and weddings go hand in hand so what you need to do is to de-stress and leave it to the professionals. That’s where a visit to Angela Silke and The Workshop is a must. What is unique to the workshop is its impressive line up of hairdressing and beauty talent all under the one roof. Deirdre, the salon’s artistic up-style creative director and her team will work in conjunction with you, the bride, to discuss your vision and together with Angela’s beauty expertise, will create a breathtaking style exclusive to you, making your visit to The Workshop a truly special experience unlike any other. The Workshop Hair and Beauty, Abbeygate Street 091 566680 WK2 Ballymoneen Road 091 510029

Flower Power
The Flower Basket, Clonakilty, Co Cork is in business almost 20 years. Its proprietor, Ann O’Neill travels throughout Europe regularly to keep up to date with modern trends in weddings and the interior industry. With so many people deciding to get married in West Cork, The Flower Basket is perfect to make your wedding day even more special.
Anne caters to all budgets and tastes so contact her on 023 33535 or e-mail her at flowerbasker@eircom.net

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what’s new
Bridal Consultation
The dress, the cake, the long embrace - a wedding paints a picture that lingers in the mind. The Jo Malone Bridal Consultation offers you innovative ideas to create deliciously scented memories for all who attend your special day. From selecting the perfect bridal fragrance to addressing your skin care needs for beautiful wedding day skin to choosing thank you gifts for the wedding party, no detail of your wedding day will go unnoticed. Allow Jo Malone to add the fragrant finishing touches to your special day. Jo Malone Express(tm), Mail order and worldwide delivery
service, +44(0) 20 7720 0202 Shop online at www.jomalone.co.uk

Branch Flowers
Flowers are an integral part of any wedding ceremony and knowing where to source the best flower specialists is vital to achieve a romantic and atmospheric scene. Branch florists specialise in weddings, working on celebrity ceremonies, in conjunction with top wedding co-ordinators and in exclusive venues such as Ashford Castle. This team guarantees to bring that extra something to your special day, be it a small intimate celebration or a larger congregation. Branch Flowers 18 Townpark Centre, Tuam Road, Galway 091 770869 www.branchflowers.com

Total Look Hair Salon
Get the Total Hair Look this wedding season where all your individual hair needs are catered for. Bridal hair specialists are on hand to perfect your wedding day look and an extensive hat studio offers sale or hire of magnificent hats, bags and feathers. So whether you’re the mother of the bride or the beautiful bride herself, don’t miss out on this special salon.Total Look Hair Salon, Renmore, Galway 091 769772

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what’s new
Finalist
5th Avenue is one of five beauty salons contending for the title of Beast Beauty Salon 2007’. The winner of the awards will be announced at a Gala Banquet in Dublin in early March. This is the most prestigious event on the Irish Beauty Industry calendar. We wish the 5th avenue team all the best. 14e Liosban Business Park, Galway 091 764755

Beautiful Bride
All brides strive for perfection on their big day, so why not get a helping hand and visit Beyond Beauty in Claregalway to get primed and pampered before your big day? The beautiful bride package includes a Hydraessance facial, eyelash tint and brow shape, full body spray tan, French polish for hands and feet, and a trial make-up and make-up application on the day all for just €170. Beyond Beauty, Hughes Shopping Centre, Claregalway, Co Galway 091 799392

Wedding Rings
Celebrate your wedding with a ring made especially for you. Nothing says it better than something special individually crafted for you. Tuula can incorporate your ideas into her design and will go through the design process discussing the different aspects involved in putting together that perfect wedding rings. Designworks, Tuula Harrington goldsmith and designer, Floor 1, 34 Grand Parade, Cork, Ireland 021 4279420 or 086 6031881 www.tuulaharrington.com

The Moderne on Patrick Street, Cork is worth a visit in search of your dream wedding dress. With creations from Maggie Sottero to Alfred Argelo, The Moderne also stocks veils, headpieces, shoes and accessories for the bride-to-be.
The Moderne, Patrick Street, Cork 021 4270266. www.themoderne.com

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what’s new

Bellissimo provides a full bridal package and special day, ideal for bridesmaids or mums of brides. Its bridal package covers everything from waxing, facials, make-up and hair design plus much more. It also offers advanced skincare treatments in photo-rejuvenation and acne treatments, plus permanent hair reduction. If you prefer, you can custom-make your own package. Check out its website for further details. www.bellissimo.ie Open Monday to Friday 9am to 9pm Saturday 9am to 6pm and Sundays 10am to 5pm 091 568555

Your Special Day

Dream Wedding Jewellers
Castalia Jewellers offers a unique experience when selecting engagement and wedding rings. It offers a private viewing room for the happy couples. Experienced and friendly staff will give you the time you deserve when selecting your engagement or wedding bands. You even have the opportunity to design your dream engagement ring, which is hand-crafted for you by its very own gold-smith. Castalia offers a fine selection of wedding rings for him and her including traditional, diamond-set and hand-crafted bands. For brides seeking that special piece of jewellery for the big day, the luxurious Italian Diamond Jewellery Collection, Prestigio, is on-hand. Castalia Jewellers, 63 Main Street, Midleton, Co Cork

Gemini Beauty
Before that big day, Therese Costello and her team at Gemini beauty recommends that facial care should start three to six months prior to the big day. Most brides, even if not regular waxers, will opt for this method of hair removal to ensure they are hair free for their special day. Eye therapy is a must for all brides to be. It is the ground work that is done before the all important bridal make up. As we all know, every bride wants to be positively glowing as she walks up the aisle. Having your make up done professionally will certainly ensure this. For a consultation or appointment call Therese and her team on 091 770776

Making it Count
Clifford Designs is now a well-established specialist in wedding stationery and wedding coordination in Cork. Run by Noreen and her team, it provides a wide range of bespoke and handmade stationery including ceremony invitations, evening invitations, reply cards, thank you cards, place names, menu stationery, and more. Whatever your wedding stationery needs, Clifford Designs can provide them and will provide a personal, friendly and reliable service with a quick turnaround and an unparalleled level of quality. What sets Noreen apart from her competition is the quality of her stationery, as well as the level of service that she provides. She understands how the details are important in the planning of a wedding and so she works one-on-one with each of her customers to produce high quality handmade bespoke stationery, which is coordinated right through from first invitation, to ceremony and reception. Working within your budget, together you can design a stationery range unique to your own wedding. Now offering a ten per cent discount off main invitations when you say you saw her advert in WEDDINGSnow. www.clifforddesigns.ie 021 4642986

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Photography: Patrick Henaghan, Assisted by: Thierry-Joseph Schumann; Fashion Stylist: Antoinette Geraghty, Assisted by: Aisling Lawless, Model: Sara Kavanagh from Assets; Make-up Artist: Aoife Madden for Lancôme at Brown Thomas Galway; Hair Stylist: Jason Doherty at Zenith Hairdressing, 33 Eyre Street, Galway 091 533680; Location: Glenlo Abbey Hotel, Bushy Park 091 526666, www.glenlo.com Coffee bustier, skirt and wrap by Rembo Styling, sandals from Rainbow Shoes

WEDDINGSnow

fashion
Bordeaux gown by Special Day, diamonte shoes by Benjamin Adams

PHOTOGRAPHY Patrick Henaghan | STYLIST Antoinette Geraghty

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Ruffled tulle dress by Lam Hyun Hee at Rococo, shoes by Benjamin Adams

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Bias cut, with long train of tulle over satin gown by Roswitha Molloy, Best Wedding Couturier 2005, shoes by Gabriella Lucido from Rainbow Shoes. Watch stylist’s own.

fashion

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Chantilly lace over ivory satin gown with halter neck fish tail train by Rowitha Molloy, Best Wedding Couturier 2005

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fashion

Cream/lace bodice with satin skirt by Mathyro

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fashion
Ivory lace dress with a puddle train and bow detail by Jen Doherty, Best Wedding Couturier 2006

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fashion

White gown by Pronovais, butterfly hair grip by Emily-Jean Designs

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fashion

Silk taffeta with appliqué and silk tulle over one shoulder flowing into a dramatic fish tail wedding gown by Jen Doherty, Best Wedding Couturier 2006, Diamonté tiara from Marians of Boyle and Galway

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FOR STOCKISTS LIST SEE PAGE 81

fashion

Bronze gown by Rembo Styling, diamonte shoes by Benjamin Adams

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beauty

perfectbeauty
Your wedding day is one day in your life when you want to look your best. You want glowing skin and glossy hair. Basically, you’re aiming for the wow factor.

So apart from eating well and exercising in the run-up to the wedding, there are certain guidelines you should follow to ensure you look simply stunning on the day.

Hair
Your crowning glory needs to be in tip top shape for your big day, so treating it well, getting regular trims and treatments in the months prior to the day is essential. If you decide to change your hairstyle, aim to do it at least six months beforehand to allow time to grow it out if it’s too short or if you don’t like the style. When you decide on how you’re going to wear your hair on the day, visit your hairdresser and try it out a couple of months ahead of time. If you are happy with it, book the same stylist who did your hair for your wedding day. On the day, make sure you leave yourself plenty of time for your hair, just in case of any hiccups. If you are considering wearing your hair down, keep in mind that most hair that is longer than your shoulders will not hold well in hot or humid weather, while most up-styles will last until you take them down. A sophisticated up-style may be more appropriate for a lavish formal evening wedding, whereas a soft chignon may be more suitable for a casual daytime wedding on the beach. Even wearing your hair down with fresh flowers designed through it may be the most appropriate style of all! If you plan on wearing fresh flowers in your hair on the day, be sure to find out if the flowers you plan on wearing will stay fresh for the day, there’s nothing worse than a wilting flower on a gorgeous bride. Chat to your florist before making any decisions. Also, keep in mind that if a flower is too big, it will take away from your hairstyle. If in doubt, keep it small and simple. It’s important to keep in mind what hairstyles have and have not worked for you in the past. If you have very fine, dead straight hair and are looking for really tight curls, they will most definitely not hold for the day. Be realistic.

Makeup
You want your make-up to enhance your beauty, not act as a mask. At the same time, you want to hide any blemishes. To achieve this radiant look, a good foundation is essential. Whether you choose to do your own make-up or enlist the help of a professional makeup artist, ensure that you choose the perfect foundation. Try out lots of different brands and colours in the weeks leading up to the day. You can use this time to also try out different looks for your eyes and lips. The most important thing is that you feel good about yourself. The makeup should enhance your beauty, not hide it. However, it should be slightly heavier than normal so that you look your best in photos.

beauty
The Hair

Hair by Itsfabulous.net

Hair by Itsfabulous.net

The Look
To ensure your skin is in tip-top condition, drink lots of water and take it easy on the alcohol. A course of facials is always a good idea, but make sure that you have your last facial at least two weeks prior to the wedding in case of breakouts.

Tan
While some women like to go au natural on their wedding day, you can't beat a bronze glow for a healthy look. Fake tans today are so well advanced that you can't even notice that it is fake. One word of advice though, don't attempt this yourself. Go to a reputable beautician and make sure you do a trial a month or so before the big day. Exfoliate before getting your spray tan and get it done about two days before your wedding to ensure that the colour has settled.

Nails
Beautiful hands and feet are essential for your wedding day and are often overlooked. Get a manicure and pedicure the day before your wedding day. Ensure that you leave adequate time to set the nail varnish, as smudged nails will ruin the look. Keep it natural with neutral colours and short nails.

Indulge
Indulge in a full body massage, an Indian head massage or reflexology in the weeks leading up to the big day to ensure that you are fully destressed and relaxed.

The Rectory
Glandore, West Cork, 028 33072 Email: rectory@ireland.com, www.rectory.ie The Rectory is a delightful early 19th Century listed residence nestled in an eight-acre woodland. It overlooks what is considered to be one of Ireland’s most beautiful sea inlets, Glandore Harbour, an ideal backdrop for unforgettable photos on your wedding day. The Rectory’s large, bright dining rooms, in glowing reds, greens and blues, provide a perfect setting for sophisticated weddings with menus offering meat and fish. The standard of preparation and excellence of service is second to none. Price per person: €51 to €64 per person (2007 prices)
What this price includes:

best venues
Let WEDDINGSnow take the guess work out of choosing your wedding venue with our guide to the best wedding venues around.

Starter course, middle course, main course, dessert course, tea and coffee Corkage, if applicable: No, wine prices start from €17.50 per bottle (2007 prices)
Table arrangements, if provided: Free fresh house

The Rectory

flowers around the building (Not table flower centrepieces, which can be done at extra cost.) Complimentary folded napkin linens and use of bulb candle nightlight holders.
Reception on arrival?

Hotel Meyrick
Eyre Square, Galway, 091 564041 reshm@monogramhotels.ie www.hotelmeyrick.ie At Hotel Meyrick in the heart of Galway City’s Eyre Square, there is no other venue more idyllic for your special day. Elegant, refined and sophisticated, the Hotel Meyrick is unique and coupled with the professionalism of our experienced team, will ensure that your celebrations unfold with effortless perfection. The idyllic surroundings of the Hotel Meyrick provide an exquisite backdrop for the photos which will preserve the memory of this unforgettable day and the unrivalled comfort of our banqueting suite will leave nothing to be desired in catering the wedding of your dreams Price per person: from 41€ per person
What this price includes:

Complimentary tea, coffee, juices and biscuits on arrival. Red carpet welcome. Champagne greeting for bride and groom on arrival.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom?

No accommodation on site – restaurant only.
The maximum numbers catered for? 100 guests max

ornate table arrangements with candelabra table settings; personalised menu cards and table plans; complimentary reception room hire; luxurious suite for the bride and groom on their wedding night followed by a Champagne breakfast served to your room the following morning; Sherry reception with tea and coffee. Corkage, if applicable: available on selected dates. Table arrangements, if provided: Ornate table arrangements with candelabra table settings Reception on arrival? Tea, coffee, Sherry, home-made biscuits, selection of canapes.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom? Discounted rates available in

sister hotels.
The maximum numbers you cater for?

for seating. Additional 60 guests for evening.
Any other relevant details

350max
Any other relevant details Extensive menu

No venue hire fee, service charge at your own discretion, open from February to December.

Pre wedding consultations with our experienced team; red carpet with Champagne to welcome the bride and groom on arrival;

selections which have been designed to allow flexibility in personalising your own menu. Discounted car parking facilities.

hotels
Carlton Hotel Kinsale and Spa

Clifden Station House Hotel
Clifden, Connemara, Co. Galway, 095 21699 www.clifdenstationhouse.com The Clifden Station House is a contemporary hotel set in unique surroundings. Our Wedding Packages for 2007/2008 are unrivalled and can be especially designed to suit your needs. Price per person: Packages range from a minimum price of À35.00 per person to a maximum of À85.00 per person depending on the package chosen.
What this price includes:

Carlton Hotel & Spa
Rathmore Road, Kinsale, Co Cork, 021 470 6000 info@carltonkinsalehotel.com www.carltonkinsalehotel.com Set on 90 acres of parkland with panoramic views over Oysterhaven Bay, Carlton Hotel Kinsale has magical locations to capture those photographs that will be treasured for your lifetime. Our winding, enchanting woodland entrance will lead you to the lobby of the hotel where our team will meet you and ensure you receive the ultimate in personal attention and service. Price per person: From À42.00 What this price includes: 4 course meal, tea and coffee.
Corkage, if applicable: À8.00 per bottle. Table arrangements, if provided:

Personalised table plan and menus. Linen napkins. Floral arrangement for each table. Silver cake knife and stand. Reception on arrival?Red carpet. Champagne reception for the bride and groom. Complimentary tea, coffee and biscuits for all your guests.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom? Complimentary over night in

the bridal suite for the bride and groom.
The maximum numbers you cater for? 200

This price is for the reception and meal only. It does not include the drinks package or accommodation. Corkage, if applicable: Wine À15.00 per bottle, Champagne À13.00 per bottle
Table arrangements, if provided:

Shearwater Plaza Hotel
Ballinasloe, Co Galway, 090 9630400 info@shearwaterhotel.com, www.shearwaterhotel.com The Shearwater Plaza Hotel is an exquisite hotel and wellness resort finished to an exceptional high 4 star standard. Ideally situated beside the Marina offering you a unique setting perfect for intimate and family photographs. Our personal wedding co-ordinators offer expert advice and support ensuring that your wedding day is everything you dreamed and more. The Plaza Suite at the Shearwater is the ultimate venue for your wedding banquet. The Hotel offers a superb culinary experience to all our guests. The exquisite selection of fine wines, match the eloquent setting of the special occasion. Our experienced management team provides an excellent level of service, allowing you to relax and savour the most special day of your life. Price Per Person Menu prices range from À30.50 - À60.00. What this price includes: Selection of menus from a 4 course to an excellent buffet menu.; A wedding reception at the Shearwater Plaza Hotel includes strict ‘One Wedding A Day’ policy.; V.I.P welcome.; Champagne reception and canopies for the bridal party on arrival.; Complimentary tea, coffee and biscuits for your guests.; Complimentary use of superb leisure facilities for residential guests.; Complimentary dinner and wine for the bride and groom on their 1st anniversary.; Complimentary pre-wedding day facial for the bride. Corkage, if applicable A fine selection of wines and Champagnes to choose from to compliment your menu. Table Arrangements: Beautiful white linen and fresh flower arrangement with candle on each table. You can enhance your wedding reception with elegant chair covers and bow which are provided complimentary on the top table. The maximum numbers catered for - up to 460.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom: Complimentary bridal suite

Colour coordinated floral arrangements, white table linen, candles and personalised menus. All other options can be discussed at the consultation stage with a member of our team in advance. Reception on arrival Red carpet, Champagne for the bride and groom. Complimentary tea and coffee for all guests.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom

Complimentary B&B for the bride and groom. Preferential rate on ten rooms for your wedding guests subject to availability.
The maximum numbers you cater for 150 sit down meal. Any other relevant details

Our packages can be made to suit your needs.

including breakfast for the bride and groom. Special accommodation rates on a selected number of rooms for your wedding. Midweek Weddings Midweek discount of 10% on the food menu (Valid Sunday to Thursday excluding Bank Holiday Mondays) Complimentary chair covers. Any other details: A beautiful new hotel elegantly designed with your Special Day in mind.

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hotels
Glenlo Abbey Hotel
Bushypark, Galway, 091 519663 weddings@glenloabbey.ie, www.glenlo.com Glenlo Abbey is Galway's only 5 Star Failte rated hotel and is specialising in weddings since opening in 1992. With four venues to choose from, we can cater to weddings in the Abbey, the River Room, the Pullman Restaurant and the Pavilion Suite. Situated on the shores of Lough Corrib, Glenlo Abbey affords the best photographic opportunities in Galway with the extensive golf estate, mature gardens and trees in addition to the backdrop of the 18th century building.
Price per person:

Glenlo Abbey Hotel

Wedding celebratory dinner prices from €50.00 per person.
What this price includes:

Complimentary room hire in the Pavilion with 50 guests or more. Red carpet on arrival along with Champagne for the newlyweds. Personalised wedding menus, table plans.
Reception on arrival?

The Imperial Hotel

Complimentary tea/coffee reception on arrival.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom?

The Imperial Hotel
South Mall, Cork, 021 7306618 www.flynnhotels.com The Imperial Hotel is the perfect setting for your glamorous wedding. The Imperial and Escape Salon and Spa is a magical hotel that blends the warmth and intimacy of times past with the style and luxury of a contemporary hotel. Its design merges the traditional and the contemporary to create an environment with a unique warm and welcoming personality. Price per person: Set dinner menus start from €28 per person (based on a minimum of 80 guests). Corkage, if applicable: €8.50 Table arrangements, if provided: The Imperial Hotel provides personalised menus and table settings as well as floral decorations matching the brides and bridesmaids colours of the day. Reception on arrival? Royal red carpet greets the bride and groom who are welcomed to the hotel by management with a glass of chilled Champagne while guests are treated to a tea and coffee reception. Complimentary tea

and coffee reception on arrival to the hotel for you and your guests.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom? Where better to spend the

Complimentary bridal suite for the bride and groom including champagne on ice. Special rates for up to ten rooms.
Table arrangements, if provided: Large circular place

mirrors, candleabras and candles. The hotel can also help you with choosing the ideal floral experience for your big day.
Any other relevant details:

wedding night than in the luxurious penthouse, which offers breathtaking views of Cork City and can also provide a perfect setting for photos or an intimate reception? The hotel also offers a generous bedroom allocation for wedding guests at a special rate. The maximum numbers catered for? On round tables, it can accommodate 150 while on trestles, it can accommodate 220.
Any other relevant details

Consultation with our experienced wedding team, including head chef to choose the right seasonal meal for you and your guests. 150 free car park spaces. Pre-wedding group dinner packages in the Pullman and River Room. Activities include own golf course on-site, driving range, clay pigeon shooting, which can all be organised for the groom and friends.

From Ireland’s first Aveda Lifestyle Salon and Spa Escape, avail of Pre-wedding Escape – a back, neck and shoulder massage or a focus facial for two. Pre-wedding make-up trial and hair consultation – for the bridal party at Escape Salon and Spa. First anniversary package – dinner at The Pembroke Restaurant, overnight in one of the luxurious executive rooms, time at the Vitality Suite and a Dry Float at Escape Salon and Spa.

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hotels
Clarinbridge Court Hotel
Clarinbridge, Co Galway, 091 796988 clarenbridgecourt@gmail.com The Clarinbridge Court Hotel, only ten minutes from Galway City, is nestled in the midst of mature woodlands. This romantic picturesque location is the ideal wedding venue. The photographic opportunities are old world and with the help and support of its wedding coordinator, the team will work together to make your wedding a dream come true. Price per person: Varies with choice of main course.
What this price includes:
The Claregalway Hotel

Aghadoe Heights
Kerry, 064 31766, info@aghadoeheights.com The 5 Red Star Aghadoe Heights Hotel & Spa in Killarney, Co Kerry is recognised as one of Ireland's most luxurious five star hotels. The Aghadoe Heights Hotel & Spa is a truly magical residence, that blends the warmth of a country home with the style and luxury of a contemporary, five star international hotel. Overlooking the Lakes of Killarney, every guest room gazes out upon Killarney's majestic landscape. Price per person: Dinner menus from €65 per person. Wine from €30 per bottle, ten per cent off RAC accommodation rate. Starting at €225 per room including breakfast. Drinks reception from €8.50 per glass. Choice of canapes for drinks/evening reception from €12 per person.
Corkage, if applicable:

The Claregalway Hotel

The price of main course includes the price of every other course, red carpet, complimentary tea/coffee reception, complimentary stay in the bridal suite, colour co-ordinated floral arrangements, cake stand and knife, use of public address system. Corkage, if applicable: €10 per bottle Table arrangements, if provided: Complimentary and designed to correspond with colour schemes. Reception on arrival? Complimentary tea and coffee reception for guests on arrival. Any other reception can be arranged at your own discretion.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom?

Reduced rate on ten rooms, as well as a complimentary stay in the bridal suite. The maximum numbers you cater for? 400
Any other relevant details

The Clarenbridge Court has a wedding coordinator at your disposal to help plan and tease out any ideas or difficulties that you may have. The head chef is also available by appointment to discuss any menu requirements. The hotel’s main goal is to tailor the day to the couple’s requirements and provide award winning food and service. With the new head chef, you are sure to get a spectacular meal on your big day.

From €30 per bottle.

Claregalway Hotel
Claregalway Village, Claregalway, Co Galway, 091 738300 Email: stay@claregalwayhotel.ie The Claregalway Hotel has established itself as one of Galway’ s leading wedding venues since the opening of its doors in July 2004. Each individual enquiry is handled with care and attention by its in-house wedding coordinator, Julie Murphy and professional management team. By catering for just one wedding per day, each couple is guaranteed by the hotel that every effort is made to ensure their perfect wedding day. Claregalway Hotel provides quality and service time and time again. Price per person: From €27.95 per person approximately, depending on choice of menu. What this price includes: This includes five-course meal, room hire, table and room arrangement, staff. Corkage, if applicable: Corkage €10 per bottle approximately Table arrangements, if provided: Yes, there is an assortment of candle and flower arrangements, t-lights and napkins (which can be colour coordinated with your wedding theme if required) Reception on arrival? Yes, each couple has a choice of complimentary summer punch, mulled wine or sparkling wine served with tea and coffee. It also provides a complimentary Champagne reception for each bridal party on arrival.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom? Yes, these are offered by the

Table arrangements, if provided: From €35 per

arrangement
Reception on arrival?

Red carpet welcome on arrival. Tea and coffee on arrival for all guests. Champagne welcome for the bride and groom.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom?

reservations department for each wedding.
The maximum numbers catered for?

Luxury suite overnight for bride and groom, Special accommodation rate for your guests.
The maximum numbers you cater for?

280 persons in the Waterdale Wedding Suite Any other relevant details: The hotel caters for one wedding per day and therefore, each couple have the hotels exclusive personal attention for their stay. It also provides the complimentary release of doves on the day for pictures as a gift to all couples for booking their special day at the hotel.

75 banquet style, 150 when exclusive use of hotel is taken.
Any other relevant details

Personalised souvenir menus for all tables. Use of cake stand and knife. Candelabras on all tables.

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hotels
Menlo Park Hotel
Terryland, Galway, 091 76 11 22. www.menloparkhotel.com The Menlo Park Hotel offers a fourstar product at a reasonable price where you don’ t need to compromise on quality. Its in-house planner will work with you to create the wedding day of your dreams. The hotel is owned by a Galway family and run by professional managers with years of experience. The whole hotel is benefiting from a major refurbishment, which is due to finish in early 2007. Before you decide on a Galway hotel, check out www.menloparkhotel.com and view its 360 (degrees) tour. Price per person: Four-course menus starting from €30
What this price includes:

The Menlo Park Hotel

The Menlo Park Hotel

The Menlo Park Hotel

Experienced in-house wedding planner available throughout to oversee and coordinate all activities. Your choice of banqueting suite and seating The Claregalway Hotel arrangement complete with self contained foyer/conservatory private bar and cloakroom facilities. Personalised menus and seating plan. Choice of cake stand and knife. Champagne breakfast for bride and groom. Complimentary menu listing tasting dinner. Corkage, if applicable: €9.00 per bottle.
Table arrangements, if provided: Fresh floral table

The Galway Bay Hotel

Galway Bay Hotel
Galway Bay Hotel Conference & Leisure Centre, The Promenade, Salthill, Galway, 091 520 520, The 4* Galway Bay Hotel is uniquely situated on the Promenade in Salthill overlooking Galway Bay and the Clare Hills, providing you with the most elegant and breathtaking setting to host your wedding reception. The Hotel was awarded the best 4* hotel in Ireland 2005 and has a reputation for fine food providing a versatile range of menus presented and served by our team of experienced professionals. Our Executive Head Chef Mr Robert Bell was awarded ‘Catering Manager of the Year 2005’ by the Irish Hospitality Industry. Our Annual Wedding Fair Extravaganza takes place on Sunday 21 January 2007. Our management team will await you and take you through all of our uniquely and expertly appointed facilities and services to assist you in creating the Wedding Day of your dreams. Price Per Person Menu prices range from €30.50 - €60.00 What this price includes; Range of 5

arrangements, candles and serviettes – white linen or luxury wedding serviettes to complement your scheme. Reception on arrival? Red carpet welcome on arrival with Champagne reception for bride and groom. A warm welcome and reception on arrival for your guests with summer punch or mulled wine and tea, coffee and biscuits.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom?

course meals to a gala buffet menu. Wedding special includes Sherry or hot/cold punch on arrival. A glass of red/white wine at the meal. A top up for toast. An evening buffet of tea, coffee, selection of sandwiches and cocktail sausages from €13.75 per person. Corkage: À10 per bottle of wine. À12.50 per bottle of Champagne Table Arrangements: Complimentary luxurious choice of table arrangements expertly created by our local florist. Reception on arrival: VIP welcome with red carpet and champagne on ice await the bridal party on arrival. Complimentary tea and coffee on arrival for the wedding party.
Any Accommodation deals for the bride and groom: Complimentary wed-

ding night accommodation in our luxurious bridal suite for the bride and groom. Maximum numbers catered for Up to 420 guests
Any other details

Complementary bridal suite for bride and groom with jacuzzi. Special overnight rates for other guests.
The maximum numbers catered for? 280

Awarded best 4* hotel in Ireland 2005. Our executive chef Mr. Robert Bell was awarded Catering Manager of the Year 2006.

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hotels
Clayton Hotel Galway
Ballybrit, Galway,091 721900. Email: info@clayton.ie, www.clayton.ie The Clayton Hotel looks forward to welcoming your wedding party to its exclusive new four star hotel. Be dazzled by its professional service and attention to detail as your family and friends enjoy the ambiance of the comfortable surroundings. Designed to impress, the hotel is chic and fashionable with a spacious ballroom offering wonderful views. Celebrate your wedding day in style at the Clayton, Galway where special memories are made to last. Price per person: Wedding menus are personally designed to cater for all your requirements and requests and range in price from €32 to €49 per person.
What this price includes:

complimentary bridal suite for the bride and groom.
Table arrangements, if provided:

The Clayton provides complimentary table/floral arrangements. Reception on arrival? Arrival tea and coffee reception for all your guests.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom? Complimentary bridal

suite for the bride and groom.
The maximum numbers catered for?

Harbour Hotel
New Docks Road, Galway City 091 569 466 Email: info@harbour.ie The Harbour Hotel is the ideal venue for an intimate, tailored wedding reception. Located in the heart of Galway on the city’s waterfront area, the Harbour Hotel is there to make your special day memorable. From your red carpet Champagne arrival to your luxurious breakfast in bed the following morning, the hotel can guarantee you a day to remember. Its in-house wedding co-ordinator offers a personal service and is on hand to help you plan every aspect of your big day. Price per person: Menus range from €30 to €80
What this price includes:

Comfortably at banqueting round tables with ten people at each, 400 people.
Any other relevant details

Four-course dinner with tea and coffee; pre-wedding consultation with a dedicated wedding coordinator and executive chef; complimentary red carpet; Champagne for bridal party on arrival; master of ceremonies; complimentary fresh floral arrangement on every table;

The exquisite new four-star Clayton, Galway, only 2 km from the city centre and 1km from Galway Airport, has 200 superbly appointed rooms including a dedicated executive floor with 14 luxurious executive rooms with individual balconies and also a private executive lounge on this floor. The Clayton boasts a magnificent presidential suite on the top floor of the hotel, with its own private terrace overlooking Ballybrit Racecourse.
Radisson SAS are also located in Cork 021 4297000 and in Limerick 061 456200

Radisson
Lough Atalia, Galway, 091 538 300 www.radissonhotelgalway.ie You are guaranteed the best of all worlds when you choose the luxurious Radisson SAS Hotel & Spa, Galway for your special day. With scenic Galway Bay views, luxury hotel accommodation, excellent food, spirit one leisure facilities and an award winning spa, this really is the ultimate in wedding luxury. The hotel is situated on the waterfront of Lough Atalia with an outdoor terrace perfect for welcome drinks. Receptions can also be enjoyed in the light-filled Atrium Bar and Lounge. The wedding planner arranges weddings from family occasions to larger receptions.
Price per person:

Tea/coffee on arrival for all guests and full meal Corkage, if applicable: €8 wine, €16 Champagne
Table arrangements, if provided: White linen, flowers to

groom prior to the day; wedding party greeted with red carpet and glass of champagne; complimentary presidential suite for the bride and groom with champagne and strawberries.
Table arrangements, if provided:

Candelabras are provided as the table centrepiece.
Reception on arrival?

coordinate with bridal colours Reception on arrival: Red carpet, Champagne for bridal party, tea/coffee for all guests
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom: Special

Wedding packages include a complimentary tea and coffee reception on arrival.
Any accommodation deals for the bride and groom? Complimentary

rates available on request
The maximum numbers catered for? 100 Any other relevant details: We

accommodation in a luxurious suite for the bride and groom on the evening of their wedding. Special accommodation rates apply for wedding guests.
The maximum numbers catered for?

Menus start from €38.00 per person
What this price includes:

50 guests to 600 guests.
Any other relevant details?

cater for those brides and grooms who have gotten married abroad and wish to have a wedding party when they get home – room available with bar and dance floor, finger food menus provided.

Four-course dinner with tea and coffee;. pre-wedding consultation with the wedding planner and executive chef; welcome tea and coffee reception on arrival for all your guests; wedding menu tasting for the bride and

The multi-award winning spa at the Radisson SAS Hotel Galway, spirit one, combines luxury and pampering with choice and flexibility. An ideal pre or post wedding relaxing escape that offers unique bride and groom wedding packages.

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spend spend spend
The dream of a fairy tale wedding does not come cheap
The average cost of a wedding in Ireland at the moment is €30,000 to €35,000. The average number of guests at an Irish wedding is 200. The average hotel sit down meal is €40, so right away you have spent €8,000. How much you spend on your day is really down to proper planning, creative thinking and being realistic with what you can afford. The following is an average budget for 200 guests, three bridesmaids, three groomsmen, two flower girls and two page boys. Drinks for toast Wedding Dress Shoes Veil Headdress Lingerie Beauty Groomsmen atire Wedding rings Photography Video Music at chuch Band DJ Flowers Cake Stationery Transport 3 Bridesmaids dresses 200 sit down meal Wine Bar extension Tea and sandwiches Honeymoon Pre marriage course Gift for priest Church servers Wedding party gifts Misc. expenses €400 €1500 €100 €200 €200 €150 €500 €1000 €1800 €1500 €1500 €500 €1500 €400 €900 €1000 €500 €500 €700 €8000 €1500 €250 €800 €4000 €250 €200 €100 €600 €1000

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Total

À31,550
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traditions
Why does the bride wear a veil?

Tradition has it that it is bad luck for the bride to be seen by the groom before the ceremony. The lifting of the veil at the end of the ceremony symbolises male dominance. When the bride decides to lift her own veil, it shows her independence.
What does the ring symbolise?

The connection between the third finger on the left hand and the heart is the source of the engagement and wedding ring. Wearing a ring on this finger symbolises the strong connection of a heartfelt love and commitment to one another.
Giving the bride away

In the past, the bride was given away to the groom by her father, usually in exchange for monetary gain. Now, it is a sign of a family’s blessing of the union.

something old, something new...
We’ve all heard of the old tradition of having something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue with you on your wedding day. However, the usual suspects, ie blue garter, are beginning to feel a little tired to some brides, who want to opt for alternatives. That is why we have come up with a few different ideas to make sure you stick to tradition, while bending the rules a little.
Something old

• On the morning of your wedding, indulge in a vintage wine from the year you were born. • Have a vintage car take you to the church. • Carry an old picture of yourself as a little girl. • Wear a vintage headpiece or beaded bag.
Something new

• Sport hair extensions or a brand new haircut. • Wear a spanking new wonder bra. • Bring a guest book for guests to write notes at the reception. • Invite a newly made friend.
Something borrowed

• A flower girl. • An adorable puppy. • Fresh flowers from your nan’s garden. • Your parents first dance song.
Something blue

• Blue eyeshadow. • Blue Manolo Blahniks. • A blues band at your reception. • Groom dressed in blue.

Getting married, like everything else, has rules that must be followed. In Ireland, to contract a valid marriage both parties must: • Be over 18 years of age or have a Court Exemption Order if this is not the case. • Have given the Registrar three months notification of the marriage or have a Court Exemption Order if this is not the case. • Be either single, widowed or divorced in Ireland or have a state annulment or a valid foreign divorce. • Be of opposite sexes – for legal purposes, a person’s gender is deemed to be the one he/she had at birth, even if he/she subsequently had medical procedures to alter his/her gender. • Have the mental capacity to understand the nature of marriage • Not be related by blood or marriage to a degree that prohibits you in law from marrying each other. If you are related to your proposed spouse by blood or by marriage, you should contact a solicitor to ensure that you do not fall within the prohibited degree of relationship. If either party doesn’t fulfil even one of the above requirements, any subsequent marriage ceremony is legally void.

Before ‘I do’
Couples can get caught up in the hype of organising their special day and forget one of the most important, yet unromantic aspects of the marriage – the legal side

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Marriage by civil ceremony is a civil contract. Marriage by certain religious ceremonies is also recognised by civil law as being a civil contract. If you are planning a church wedding, you need to approach the authorities of the religious denomination concerned for advice on how to proceed, and also the local Registrar of Marriages of the district in which the marriage is to take place. Every couple intending to marry in a Catholic Church must complete a pre-marriage course. PRE-MARRIAGE COURSES For all of those wanting to get married in a Catholic Church, it is mandatory to undertake a pre-marriage course. Deciding to get married is probably one of the biggest decisions a man and woman will ever make and so, the church believes that some advice and preparation is essential in providing a sound foundation for every marriage. Here are some of the courses on offer throughout the country:
MRCS

sion but individual couples are given time in a relaxed atmosphere to discuss the topics, together with some question aids and materials provided to help their discussion. PreMarriage Preparation for Couples – Non-residential weekend course is €100 per couple. Pre-Marriage Preparation and Training – Seven-week course which runs once a week is €70 or €10 per session The Nazareth Family Institute, P Box .O. 9005, Glenageary, Co Dublin 01 2896647 01 2821899 nazarethfamilyinst@eircom.net www.nazarethfamilyinstitute.org
NAOMI

ACCORD highlights the core elements of relationships and the course concentrates on exploring each of these. Courses are widely available nationwide. €100 per couple. ACCORD Central Office, Columba Centre, Maynooth, Co Kildare. 01 5053112, 01 6016410, www.accord.ie. PRE-NUPTIAL ENQUIRY FORM This church document has two main purposes. Firstly, to ascertain whether both parties are free to marry and secondly to ensure the parties understand what marriage is about. The priest goes through the form with the couple at least two months before the wedding, completing various questions. A Letter of Freedom is also necessary. This document states that you are free to marry your intended or that you are not committing bigamy by entering into this marriage. A letter of freedom can be obtained from the priest of any parish you have been resident in for six months or longer. If you intend to marry in a registry office, contact the Registrar of Civil Marriages for the district in which you intend getting married. See www.groireland.ie/registrars for a list of registrars. Whatever kind of ceremony you’re planning, every person marrying in the state must give at least three months’ written notification to the registrar for the district in which the marriage is to take place or obtain an exemption from this requirement under Section 33 of the Family Law Act, 1995. The requirement to give three months’ notification of an intended marriage is a legal requirement for a valid marriage. A marriage will not be valid in civil law unless three months written notification has been given, or unless permission to marry has been granted by the High Court or Circuit Family Court under Section 33, of the Family Law Act, 1995. The three months’ minimum notification period does not commence until a notification has been received from each of the parties to a proposed marriage. Only original documents, including original signatures, may be accepted as notifications of intention to marry. The registrar will issue each party to the intended marriage with an acknowledgement confirming the date of the receipt of the notification. You must retain and produce it, when requested, to the person solemnising the marriage.

MRCS is a long established non-denominational couple counselling service. The tailormade pre-marriage courses are three hours long and involve one couple and one counsellor only, with no one else involved. Pre-marriage courses are booked through MRCS head office with counsellors available at locations around the country. Generally, MRCS finds couples based in the West and South like to make a day out of the requirement to do a pre-marriage course and opt for the trip to Dublin. Others avail of the Saturday pre-marriage slots and make a weekend out of their trip to the capital. €220. MRCS, 38 Upper Fitzwilliam Street, Dublin 2, 01 6785256 or lo call 1890 380380 info@mrcs.ie
The Nazareth Family Institute

NAOMI Pre-Marriage Courses are designed to assist couples in making the most of their marriage preparation time and to encourage them to become more interactive with regard to the material and topics presented by the speakers. The topics covered deal with the essential dimensions of successful marriages and families. The aim of the course is to be informative, thought provoking, to generate communication, to foster mutual understanding, to prepare spiritually for Christian marriage and to create an awareness of responsibility and decision making within marriage. NAOMI staff offers private consultation throughout each course and also at any future date, if required. The duration of each course is from 6.15pm to 9pm on Friday evenings and from 9.15am to 2pm on Saturdays. €100 per course (group or private) Contact: Ita McDonnell between 9.30 am to 1pm Monday to Friday. NAOMI Pre-Marriage Course, Lower Ground Floor, 16 North Great Georges Street, Dublin 1. 01 8786156 inforequest@naomi.ie. NAOMI courses also available at 119 Patrick’s Street, Cork 021 4272213.
ACCORD

The Nazareth Family Institute offers a modern pre-marriage course for engaged couples. It is unique because the courses are given by couples for couples, so you benefit from those who have experience. Established since 1984 and based in the Dun Laoghaire area, the Nazareth Family Institute provides both non-residential weekend courses, run over Friday night and all day Saturday for groups of up to 20 couples, in addition to seven-week courses for one to three couples only. There is no group discus-

ACCORD is a voluntary Catholic organisation that aims to promote a deeper understanding of Christian marriage. A marriage preparation course is an opportunity for couples to take time out from the hectic planning of the wedding day, to focus on how things are between them, to affirm what is going well and to name the areas of their relationship that might need some attention. All of this takes place in the company of other couples preparing for marriage and with the assistance of trained facilitators, themselves experienced in marriage.

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Prenuptial agreements
You’re madly in love and can’t wait to get married. The thought that this perfect relationship might turn sour is the farthest thing from your mind. But let’s get real here!

According to the Central Statistics Office, there were 20,619 marriages in Ireland in 2004. The same year, there were 3,347 divorces. There are no statistics for the number of separated couples in Ireland. Prenuptial agreements are no longer just for the rich and famous and, when you think about it, make perfect sense. Gone are the days when couples getting married started out with nothing and worked together, scrimping and saving and doing without, for every stick of furniture they eventually owned. It is quite common now for both parties entering a marriage to be homeowners in their own right. Many have children from previous relationships. The increase in the number of marriages between people who have accumulated substantial assets – especially those entering second marriages and marriages later in life – has brought about a greater need for couples to create a prenuptial agreement.

This details in advance any and all financial structures should the marriage come to an end, leaving both persons (and the heirs of those persons) protected and secure. The agreement also allows each party to the agreement to provide that their assets, or at least a large portion of them, go to their children in the event of their death. Usually your prenuptial agreement provides that assets or property owned by one of the spouses prior to the marriage remains the property of that spouse upon the dissolution of the marriage and that any asset or property acquired after the marriage shall be owned by both parties jointly, with the right of survivorship. Communication is the key to the success of any relationship. Structuring a prenuptial agreement gives you both the opportunity to deal with potentially contentious issues in a calm and rational way. Contact your solicitor for more information.

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The best man duties
The best man probably has more to do than anyone else on the day, the biggest job being the best man’s speech
Everyone looks forward to this speech, which usually tells childhood tales and sets the scene for the remainder of the speeches. Make sure that the best man is fully briefed on what exactly his responsibilities are for the day. Before the big day, the best man has to organise the stag night. This means coming up with the location, making lists of who to invite, arrange the necessary bookings and making sure that everything goes to plan. The day before the wedding, the best man usually collects the bridal party’s suits and helps with accommodation for guests. On the day of the wedding, he makes sure that the groom gets to the church on time, is responsible for the rings, reads wedding messages, and co-ordinates the speeches. In short, the best man becomes the main man for making sure everything runs smoothly. Be nice to him. BEST MAN DO'S AND DON'TS
Do's

• Acknowledge bridesmaids during your speech • Remember you're there to help things run smoothly • Think before you speak • Be polite
Don'ts

• Mention ex girlfriends during your speech • Get drunk • Tell dirty jokes • Make the speech all about yourself

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choosing a bridesmaid
Choosing your wedding party is one of the most important decisions you will make when planning your wedding day. Choosing your bridesmaids can also be a stressful decision. Here are some tips and suggestions to help you solve some of the most common bridesmaid dilemmas.
Do I have to ask my fiance’s sister to be bridesmaid?

No, it’s your day and you are absolutely free to choose the bridal party you want. However, there are ways of getting around the awkwardness of the situation. Ask her to do a reading.
What can I do about bitter bridesmaids? You may think

you know your bridesmaids, but weddings can bring out some surprisingly intense emotions. If a friend is worried that your friendship will suffer once you are married, make plans now to meet once a week or month and spend some time together. If someone is unhappy about being single, give her the inside info on all the cute groomsmen and wedding guests she will soon meet. The most important thing to remember is to make sure that your bridesmaids are happy and content, but most importantly only surround yourself with those who are truly happy for you.
What if my bridesmaids are all different shapes and sizes? Choosing the bridesmaid dress is difficult as usually the

bride already has her mind made up about what she wants. Unfortunately, the dress you love may not flatter the colouring, size or shape of all your bridemaids. One great solution is to pick the colour, designer and fabric you want and allow your bridesmaids to pick the style that looks best on them. You could also do the everyone wears something black if you want to keep it really simple. No matter what you choose, your bridesmaids know that it is your day and it’s what you want that matters most. After all, you’re the one who is going to be looking at the wedding album for years to come, so you might as well love the dresses.

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TOP TIPS • A square cake feeds more people than a round cake. A two tier 14” round feeds 80 whereas a two tier 14” square feeds 100 • For your photos get a small beautiful cake and have a cheaper and less fancy cake in the kitchen to feed your guests

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caketastic

We spoke to some of the people who bring us the best in wedding cakes, and asked them what’s hot and what’s not in wedding cakes this season.

weddings
Goya’s in Galway say there has been a big return to traditional iced cakes with fresh flowers. While the cakes may look traditional though, the fillings are not with a selection of chocolate biscuit cake, Madeira and maybe one fruit to please all palates. Goya’s suggest that just because you’re having big numbers, doesn’t mean you have to have a big cake. They believe that three tiers of content cake are enough for any size wedding, even up to 250, as people simply don’t eat it all. Chocolate cakes are the most popular wedding cakes at Healy’s in Cork. Their advice would be to shop around, see what’s out there and bring a photo of your ideal cake into the store. They also advise that if you’re on a strict budget, Maderia cakes are best value, as opposed to fruit. Lilies and Pearls in Galway has noticed that not everyone is going for the traditional three-tier fruitcake also. Instead, they are opting for chocolate fudge cake, carrot cake and chocolate biscuit cake. Lilies and Pearls suggest that you sit down and think about what other people might like when choosing your cake, as traditional fruitcakes are not to everyone’s taste. However, if you are opting for the fruit option, order well in advance. You should also think about a colour scheme when considering your cake and the type of flowers, either fresh or handmade, that you would like to complement the cake. Evelyn at Marina’s in Ballinrobe says that the firmer the cake, the more portions you will get, so it’s best to stay away from fresh cream cakes. She also suggests leaving the cutting of the cake until the evening. When it’s served with teas and coffees later on, guests are more likely to eat it than when served directly after desert. Melissa at Cakes of Distinction in Cobh advises couples not to be too extravagant when choosing a wedding cake. To avoid waste, she advises choosing a selection of cakes, with one tier chocolate fudge, one Madeira and the other fruit, which gives variety of choice and the fruit cake will keep if not eaten on the day. MK Cakes in Cork says that two of their most popular types of cakes this season are strawberries and fresh cream and mandarin.

Half dark chocolate, half white chocolate

Sleek and stylish

Pink and white wedding cake with a bow

Decorate with flowers

Cake topped with reddish orange flowers

Beautifully artistic square wedding cake

OUR TOP RATED
Cakes of Distinction, Cobh, 021 4815559, www.corkweddingcakes.com Goya’s, 2/3 Kirwin’s Lane, Galway, 091 567010 Celebration Cakes, Healy’s Bakery, Blackpool Bridge, Blackpool, 021 4303466 or 021 4270991 Lilies and Pearls, 52 Burren View, Ennis Road, Gort, Co Galway, 091 630931, www.weddingcakes.ie MK Cakes, Unit 4, Ballycurreen Industrial Estate, Kinsale Road, Cork, 021-4311096, Cakes by Marina, No 1 Church Lane, Ballinrobe, Co Mayo, 094 9520664

top styles

Traditional three tier with a twist

Contemporary cake garnished with flowers

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drink
THE RECEPTION Guests are normally welcomed to the reception with a drink. Usually Champagne or perhaps Sherry, but there are alternatives – sparkling wines such as Vouvray, Saumur or Cava. These sparklers are very reasonable in price, about half the price of Champagne. Why not be different if you are having a summer wedding - serve Buck’s Fizz, Pimms Cocktail or even a Sangria. They are light and refreshing. If you are having a winter wedding, you could have a punch, mulled wine or port, all bound to start the proceedings off with a flourish and it will be a talking point. Don’t forget tea, coffee or orange juice. A nice extra is to get the barman to cut little hearts from strawberries (done with a pastry cutter) and serve one in each glass of Champagne. When people see the little red heart floating in the Champagne glass, they will be reminded of romance and that’s what the day is all about! A modern trend is ‘Kir’ so a ‘Kir Royale’ Crème De Cassis (1/2 teaspoon per glass) and Champagne or sparkling wine would be a new idea. THE DINNER Choosing wine for the main meal can be a difficult choice. If your main meal is fish or meat, you must have a choice of white or red wine. For example, if your main course is Salmon or beef, you can choose French Sauvignon Blanc, Chablis, German or Alsace Riesling. For the beef, be it grilled fillet or roast beef, you could choose any red Bordeaux, Australian Cabernet Sauvignon or Shiraz. Do not serve very full bodied, oaky, red wines as they are not to everybody’s taste. Likewise do not choose any white wine that would be too dry or acidic. Choose a dry, fruity style. You must remember to try and get a wine that everybody will enjoy so

toast
Since biblical times, wine has been an important component of weddings. Here are some tips to think about when choosing wine for your wedding day.
BY BRIAN R. WALSHE think fruity, dry wines and light, fruity reds. A good choice would be a New World Sauvignon Blanc and a French Merlot/ Cabernet Sauvignon. Both of these will be right and they are not too expensive either. THE TOASTS Champagne is traditional for the toasts but sparkling wine or Cava are quite suitable. You could use the same brand as you had for your reception – why not? If you are on a budget, you can simply top up the glasses with the same wine you had with your meal. THE EVENING RECEPTION Usually the evening reception consists of a small buffet – sandwiches, cocktail sausages, mini pizzas etc. The wines you had for your main meal would be a fine choice here. The hotel staff could pour out some white and red wine in glasses and your new arrivals could help themselves. BUDGETING You will get six glasses of wine from one bottle, Champagne as well, so allow one bottle per three guests. If choosing wines from a hotel list, ask for sample bottles to take home to taste at your leisure. You are bringing a lot of business to the hotel, so they shouldn’t refuse this request. If you decide to bring your own wine – a practise which is becoming quite common – check how much corkage the hotel will charge. It can work out quite expensive. So thinking of driving over on the ferry to France and loading up on wine, might not be as economical as you think. Talk to the hotel manager, work out a special budget price for wine from the hotel’s list. Remember to save the best wine until last – for your honeymoon. Treat yourself to a bottle of the wine of romance – Champagne. Sláinte.

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a fair affair
Breandán Ó Conláin, An Spidéal took Deirdre Ní Choistín, Kilcock, Co Kildare completely by surprise when he proposed to her on a weekend away in Prague in March 2005

They tied the knot in An Spidéal, on 1 September 2006, a day Deirdre says she’ll never forget. Deirdre, a producer and director for TG4 and Breandán, who is currently studying for a HDIP, met four years ago and have a son, Finian, who is two years old. While nearing the end of her maternity leave, Deirdre and Breandán travelled to Prague for the weekend and it was there, in true romantic style, that Breandán asked Deirdre to marry him. “I didn’t know anything about it. Basically, I was about to go back to work after my maternity leave. So we went away for a weekend break and he proposed in the old town square in front of the astronomical clock. I wasn’t expecting it at all, so it was lovely. I said yes, of course, and then went back to the hotel where he had the ring there for me,” says Deirdre. Due to the fact that Breandán was studying at the time, the couple had to come up with a suitable time to get married. So they chose 1 September and then went about organising the big day. “The first thing we wanted to do was decide where we were going to get married. Although I’m from Kildare, we live in Galway, so we both decided that we would get married there. We went around to a few venues and a lot of the hotels have similar packages. Someone had recommended Renvyle House Hotel in Connemara so we went out there and as soon as we walked through the door, we loved it. The atmosphere was great. Then once we saw the menu, we kind of knew that it was going to be the place.”

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DEIRDRE AND BREANDAN’S WEDDDING STATIONERY

With the venue booked, next on the agenda was to find the perfect wedding dress. But with very little idea of the type of dress she was looking for, the quest for a dress took a little longer than expected. “I didn’t want to go looking straight away as I still had a bit of weight on from the baby, so I said I’d leave it a while but everyone was saying, ‘you need a year at least’ and it takes six months to order your dress and all that. I didn’t have a clue what kind of a dress I was looking for. I never had a dream dress in mind, so I was open to anything.” Following an unsuccessful trawl around some wedding shops, and just as Deirdre was starting to panic a little, she spotted a few dresses in a wed-

ding magazine that seemed to fit the kind of look she was hoping to go for. “I had been looking through some wedding journals and there were dresses from Scarlett Bridal in Ennis that kept jumping off the page as they were quite quirky and different. So I made an appointment and went down with my mother and sister last December. The third dress I tried on was the one I chose and as soon as I put it on, my mum said, “That’s the one.” While Deirdre says the whole wedding day went by like a dream, one of the highlights for her was the actual ceremony. “I loved the mass because we didn’t hire any musicians, we had all family and friends. We had Ronan Browne,

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Breandán’s brother-in-law playing the Uileann pipes, Loretta Gavin played the flute. Máire, Breandán’s sister sang as did my friend Dáithí Ó Sé, who had just appeared on ‘Celebrity You’re A Star’. “It was just really personal, I was really, really happy and the music was lovely. I had been really stressed out in the morning for some reason and I was a bit panicky, but there was no need as everything went really well. “So after the mass, we were conscious of the fact that the drive from An Spidéal to Renvyle was an hour and ten minutes away and we didn’t want everyone to arrive starving, so Breandán’s good friend Nollaig, who runs An Caladh Mór in An Spidéal put on a fabulous spread for the guests. We were shocked when we walked into the pub, they really outdid themselves. They had florists in and bunting in the hall and there was so much food. Loads of people were coming in off the street to see what was going on. So everyone was on a high when heading off to the hotel.” Everyone sat down for the meal at 7pm, and were then entertained until the wee hours of the morning by the band Discovery and Colin Coyle, a DJ recommended by the hotel. Looking back, Deirdre says she found that there was a lot more preparation involved than she would have imagined. “It’s a lot of work and it involves a lot of preparation. You need at least a year, I don’t know how people do it in less time than that. For me, getting guest lists together and sorting out accommodation was the hardest part of it.” The happy couple honeymooned in Venice and Lake Garda, and four months on, Deirdre is still on a high. “We’re still getting the thank you cards ready and we still have to edit the video, so there’s still bits and bobs to do. We’re literally just after opening the presents, which is always a pleasure!”

Flowers: Branch Florists Make-up: Lorraine Walsh Hair: Anna from Yourell’s Dress: Ian Stuart from Scarlett Bridal, Ennis Photographer: Philip Smyth, Moycullen Music: Discovery Hotel: Renvyle House Hotel

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weddings

Definitely worth it!
Self employed organisational coach and PR Expert, Emily Hurley-Wilkinson and IT Analyst, Spencer Wilkinson tied the knot in November
Emily is originally from Toghar in Co Cork and Spencer is from New Zealand. They met in London in the late nineties and got engaged shortly afterwards. They moved back to Ireland in 2000 when she fell pregnant with her first child, Joshua (5) and they also have a two year old boy, Ben. “What’s odd is that when I was travelling, I lived in Australia for a year and at the time, had contemplated moving to New Zealand, so I nearly met him over there,” laughs Emily.

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wedding

The plans for Emily and Spencer’s wedding were by no means without any hitches, with Emily being one of the unlucky women to have chosen a dress from the now notorious shop, The Wedding Dress, which went into liquidation last March, leaving almost 200 brides without dresses. “Christmas last year, I was sitting in work and my sister told me what had happened. I had seen this dress and had hired the suit a couple of months before the shop closed down. It’s like anyone, you think you have your dress sorted. It was being designed by Miriam from Bronte

designs and I had paid my deposit. So when we heard the news, Spencer tracked down Miriam. She had heard about what had happened and said she, in addition to Ria from ‘Say I do’, were prepared to pick up the pieces so to speak and carry on with the dress. They also said they would charge me only what I was being charged originally. I was hugely lucky because these guys continued making my dress as if nothing happened so that was fantastic. “I was absolutely shocked when I first heard. When it hit me, I went to pieces, I was very upset. I started thinking that I’d just have to go

abroad to get married. Within an hour, you start to put things into perspective. I was angry at the fact we had been in just a few weeks before and had found some things amiss, but I started to think, at the end of the day, you have to put all of the materialistic things aside. I thought, ‘I’m still going to get married, I’m still going to make this pact.” In addition, due to the fact that Spencer isn’t Catholic, the couple had been through almost two years of to-ing and fro-ing with the Church in New Zealand to make the arrangements that would allow

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weddings

them to marry in a Catholic Church. “So marrying him hasn’t been easy,” she laughs. “It took the bones of a couple of years for us, not to mention the money. It took time; an awful lot of effort and a lot of calls to New Zealand and tracking down of birth certificates in a place that Spencer had left when he was five. That was a lot of to-ing and fro-oing on that front.” So all of this, in addition to raising two little boys, meant that getting married wasn’t the smoothest of operations for the couple. “But I put things into perspective. At the end of the day, I was still getting married.” All the other plans, thankfully, went smoothly. “Even down to the cake lady and the florist, I tried not to interfere. I told them a little bit about what I was hoping to achieve and then listened to their side of the story and allowed their expertise to come together. That’s why I found it really easy because I left it to them; they were the ones who came up with the ideas and that’s why a lot of the planning and the décor was so great.” Emily and Spencer finally tied the knot on 18 November 2006 in St Mary’s Church in Mallow, with the reception in the Old Country Manor, Springfort Hall in Doneraile, with a modest 100 guests. “It went extremely well. There were a few overseas people that unfortunately couldn’t make it so there were a couple of cancellations but the whole wedding itself was fantastic.” Emily says that the special moment of the day for her was when she arrived at the altar. “When I was walking down with dad and when I got to the alter and then when we were both saying our vows and looked at each other, as if to say, ‘We’ve got here finally’, there was just that lovely magical moment between us. That would have been our favourite part. There is absolutely nothing I’d change about the day.”

Flowers: Stems and Stalks Make-up: Emily’s own work Hair: Vivienne in Goodfellows Dress: Bronte Designs Photographer: Mike English Music: Midnight Hour Hotel: Springfort Hall

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wedding

picture perfect
While some would imagine that getting married abroad involves a lot of time, money and hassle, Cathy Gately, who married Brian Walsh in Ravello, Italy on 22 September, says that things couldn’t have been easier, and both the preparations and the day went by like a dream.
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Cathy and Brian got engaged while on holiday in Ravello in September 2005 and decided to return there to get married. “We saw lots of weddings there between Amalfi, Positano and Ravello and we just thought it would be a beautiful place to get married.” So Cathy and Brian went about emailing a few hotels and flew over in January to view some of the venues. They decided on Villa Eva in Ravello, a house and gardens that are rented out for weddings. “It was perfect and there were absolutely stunning views. When we went to see it, we realised it was everything we were looking for - we could have our reception outdoors, there was a great view and good food.

“We sent out an email to all of our guests, gave them some information and said if they were planning a holiday that year that they might consider travelling to Italy for the wedding, no pressure. We just said that whoever would like to come, would be more than welcome, here are the dates, here’s the venue. We suggested that the guests stayed in Amalfi. So we put together a document about the area, with relevant websites, accommodation, how to get there, what airlines flew and how to get there from Naples.” As with most weddings in Italy, the venue provided a wedding planner who coordinated the whole wedding for them, including the organisation of accommodation for many of the 80 guests.“So from that point

weddings
of view, we didn’t get involved in organising our guests’ trips. Everyone did their own thing and that kept things simple for us.” When Cathy and Brian arrived a few days before the wedding, they undertook a civil declaration, to ensure that all paper work was in order and that they were legally entitled to get married. So, apart from that and meeting with the florist and the photographer, there was little for the couple to do but relax and enjoy the run-up to the wedding. “Maybe it wouldn’t be so easy for someone who wants to get into the detail but we didn’t get too involved. I think it’s easier than getting married in Ireland. I could imagine that if you’re nearer your venue, you’d be popping in all the time and getting down to the smaller details. But when your venue is that far away, you just have to judge it all from photos and emails. We placed a lot of trust in the wedding planner, though. He was superb and he came up trumps. We also went by a lot of recommendations from people online. Everything was better than I ever imagined it would be.” “The day went great. Once we had our final bits sorted, I found that I could relax straight away. I think that if you were at home, you might still be doing bits and pieces until the morning of the wedding, but there was so much to get ready before you leave Ireland, you can relax once you get there because you’ve it all done before that. Also, we didn’t get married until 5pm, so we had all day to get ready.” On the day, the picturesque and intimate church was adorned with candles, petals were strewn up the aisle and there was classical music playing throughout the ceremony. Afterwards, the couple and the wedding party walked down to the nearby square where there was a champagne reception. The meal was held outside the villa, after which the party started and continued until 4am. So all in all, Cathy says that her wedding day couldn’t have been more perfect. “I’d definitely recommend it,” she says.

Flowers: Local florist, Ravello Make-up: Cathy’s sister, Niamh, Belleza Hair: Local hairdresser, Amalfi Dress: Scarlett Brides, Ennis Photographer: Local, Ravello Music: Local Jazz band Hotel: Villa Eva, Ravello

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feature

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at sed s. nu n bee eratio uet e uq av en rs h for g dal bo o the t l we i Flo dings nal br back led al d we aditio roots ion ru . its stit nts e tr Th trace super r eve o can when ’s maj s fe day of li

To ward off evil spirits, protect themselves from danger and ensure a long, happy and fruitful marriage, brides would adorn themselves with a variety of herbs and flowers. Over time this practice evolved into much more manageable floral accessories but brides are still choosing wedding flowers with a specific message in mind. A good florist or a trawl through the World Wide Web will provide a list of what each type of bloom stands for. But what if red tulips say ‘I love you’ and you don’t like tulips? Just choose a flower and a colour that appeals to you and reflects your personality. The choice is huge and you’re bound to find at least one that suits. Any florist worth his or her salt will ensure that all the flowers used on your wedding day complement each other, carry your theme and colour scheme through every aspect and add their contribution to your perfect day.

Almond Blossom – Hope Apple Blossom – Good Fortune Asphodel – My regrets follow you to the grave Barberry – Bad Temper Burdock – Touch me not Camellia – Gratitude Carnation – Fascination Chrysanthemum Red – I love you Chrysanthemum White – Truth Cyclamen – Modesty Daffodil – Regard Daisy – Innocence Fern – Fascination Forget-me-not – Remembrance Gardenia – Joy Heather – Good Luck Hellebore – Scandal Heliotrope – Devotion Honeysuckle – Generosity Hyacinth – Loveliness Hydrangea – Boastfulness Ivy – Fidelity Iris – Flame/Burning love Japonica – Loveliness Jasmine – Amiability

King’s Cup – I wish I were rich Larkspur – Fickleness Lemon Blossom – Fidelity in love Lilac – Youthful Innocence Lily – Majesty Lily-of-the-valley – Return of happiness Magnolia – Perseverance Maidenhair – Discretion Marigold – Grief Meadow Saffron – My best days are past Mimosa – Sensitivity Myrtle – Love Narcissus – Egotism Orange Blossom – Purity Orchid – Beauty Peach Blossom – Captive Pink – Boldness Rose – Love, Happiness Snowdrop – Hope Sweet pea – Pleasure Tulip Red – I love you Tulip White – I am worthy of you Veronica – Fidelity Violet – Faithfulness

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Claregalway Hotel for ...

perfect weddings
Claregalway Hotel has captured the hearts of many couples since opening its doors in July 2004

Ideally located on the edge of Galway City, Claregalway Hotel has established itself as a leading wedding venue in Galway. Every couple wants their wedding day to be special and the Claregalway Hotel believes in tailoring your wedding reception to your needs, thus ensuring your every desire is met. Each couple receives the personnal and professional attention of the Claregalway Hotel’s in-house wedding coordinator Julie Murphy. Julie meets with each couple and devotes great care and attention to each individual wedding enquiry.

The Claregalway Hotel delivers a personal touch on every occasion. By catering for just one wedding per day, the Claregalway Hotel ensures that special requirements are professionally dealt with by our experienced management and banqueting team. Each room is carefully set, with attention paid to the smallest detail from the layout, napkins and centre pieces. Even the colour scheme of your wedding is considered. The Waterdale Suite has been purposely designed with your wedding in mind. The wedding suite exudes elegance and style, creating a warm and intimate

WWW.CLAREGALWAYHOTEL.IE TEL: 091 738300 EMAIL C+B@CLAREGALWAYHOTEL.IE

atmosphere for you and your guests. The hotel continuously wishes to develop its service and with this in mind, has added elegant touches over recent weeks to enhance the Waterdale Suite. If you and your loved one have recently gotten engaged, the Claregalway Hotel would be delighted to welcome you to view the hotel facilities. Call 091 738300 to make an appointment with Julie Murphy, in-house wedding coordinator. Julie will be delighted to discuss your wedding plans. Log onto www.claregalwayhotel.ie or email c+b@claregalwayhotel.ie.

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Be brave
Go on, dare to be different!

alternative weddings

Underwater wedding in Maui, Hawaii
Are you and your partner true lovers of the ocean? Or maybe you share a common love for scuba diving? If you are both certified divers and you would like to get married underwater, this is a truly original (and brave) way to tie the knot. A wedding reception and rehearsal dinners can also take place underwater. www.justmauied.com

Chateaux weddings
While celebs are flocking to Ireland to get married in our stunning castles, why not be a little different and head for one of Europe’s beautiful châteaux’s and castles? Prague is just one country to offer the ultimate in romantic castle weddings, at a very competitive rate. www.mycastlewedding.com

Las Vegas
For a truly fun and different wedding, there’s nothing like getting hitched in Vegas for those with a quirky sense a humour, little time on their hands and a desire to sway from the norm. Choose from an Elvis-themed wedding, an exotic Egyptian theme wedding, a Camelot theme wedding or a pirate-themed Las Vegas wedding. The choice is endless, the tone is delightfully irreverent and takes place in party central. There’s also an option for the wedding to be broadcast over the internet so your friends and family can watch you tie the knot! www.vivalasvegasweddings.com www.vegas.com/weddings

Sky dive weddings
Head to the States and tie the knot while falling thousands of feet from the sky. The ultimate in dare devil antics, if you and your partner like to live on the edge, there’s no edgier way to get hitched. www.ascskydiving.com www.vegasextremeskydiving.com

An organic wedding
For those of you socially responsible couples who want to make a statement, you can always get married organically. Yes, believe it. You can have an organic wedding, from your wedding dress, down to your organic spuds at the meal. www.organicweddings.com

Get hitched in a hot air balloon in Oz
A specially chosen local location provides ideal climate and weather conditions to view the Atherton Tablelands/Cairns Highlands from high above. A sunrise flight while declaring your love for one another will be an experience you’ll never forget. www.fantaseaweddings.com

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welcome to something new
We look forward to welcoming your wedding party to the Clayton Hotel Galway, our exclusive new four star hotel.
CONTACT INFO: WWW.CLAYTON.IE EMAIL:INFO@CLAYTON.IE TEL: 091 721900 Be dazzled by our professional service and attention to detail as your family and friends enjoy the ambiance of our comfortable surroundings. Designed to impress, our hotel is chic and fashionable with a spacious ballroom offering wonderful views. Celebrate your wedding day in style at the Clayton Galway where special memories are made to last. We will ensure that your day is an amazing experience for you and your guests with exquisite and flawless coordination of all details of your wedding day. ARRIVE IN STYLE Let our hotel be the backdrop to a perfect day. OUR BALLROOM Our fabulous ballroom can accommodate up to 400 people banquet style with an option to partition the room for smaller weddings. An extended glass façade offers wonderful views with the internal furnishings of only the highest standard. CULINARY DELIGHTS Sample the remarkable creations of our experienced and award winning chefs.Whether you are a top table guest or simply dining in our stylish restaurant, we want you to have a sublime taste experience at the Clayton. • Special menus can be prepared for your wedding day, ranging from buffet to banqueting styles. • Our wedding menus are personally designed to cater for all your requirements and requests and range in price from €32 to €49 per person. • We invite you to sit with our dedicated wedding coordinator and chef to discuss your menus and your requirements in detail. ACCOMMODATION Clayton has 200 superbly appointed rooms including a dedicated executive floor with 14 luxurious executive rooms with individual balconies and a private executive lounge on this floor also. The Clayton boasts a magnificent presidential suite on the top floor of the hotel with its own private terrace overlooking Ballybrit Racecourse. We offer a special wedding accommodation rate for your family and friends. EXCLUSIVE WEDDING PACKAGE INCLUDES • Wedding Banquet in private function room. • Complimentary red carpet. • Complimentary Champagne for bride and groom on arrival. • Complimentary fresh floral arrangement on every table. • Bridal suite for the honeymoon couple. • Choice of cake stand and accessories. • Use of the grounds for photographs. • Special accommodation rates for wedding party. • Our professional team will help you with all of your queries even down to the smallest details such as place settings, menus and cake stands, etc.

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feature

There are several reasons why more and more people are heading for the hills when getting married

getting married abroad

Firstly, t h e r e ’s the whole family issue where a couple’s reluctance to invite every first, second and third cousin, their children, and their cousins, not to mention all the in-laws and their aunts and cousins, causes copious amounts of friction within families. Then there’s the whole cost issue where weddings can set a couple back tens of thousands of euro. The whole stress issue is another factor that couples try to avoid by getting married abroad. While plan-

ning for a wedding needn’t be stressful, there will inevitably be moments during the preparation stages when you wonder why you bothered. One of the main reasons, however, is that people just want to get away, tie the knot somewhere romantic and hot, something a little different. The main thing, following cost and availability issues, that should be considered is that there are several regulations to be adhered to when getting married abroad, which take time and patience and should be taken into consideration when opting for a foreign wedding. For example, a church marriage abroad is usually a purely religious ceremony with no legal effect. Because it is not recognised in law in the country in which it takes place, it cannot be regarded as a legal marriage in Ireland. It is very important that you make sure to meet all the legal requirements of the country you are marrying in. You should contact the relevant embassy or the religious

authorities in that country to find out what is required. For more information on legal requirements, log onto www.oasis.gov.ie/relationships/marriage. There’s always the Vegas route, but there are so many other beautiful destinations to choose from around the world that wont break the bank and are a little more traditionally romantic. Italy is now one of the top destinations for Irish couples opting to get married abroad. One of the most romantic destinations in the world, Italy is stunning, steeped in history, with fantastic food and wine, not to mention its gloriously passionate people. In Italy, you can have a valid civil wedding, a religious wedding, a symbolic ceremony or a simple blessing or elopement. For legally recognised weddings, you must present documents to the local authorities. Visit www.irishcollege.org for information on requirements for Catholic Church weddings in Italy or www.weddingsinitaly.it.

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Requirements for getting married in Spain are quite similar to that of Italy and like Italy there is an abundance of stunning and romantic locations to choose from with almost guaranteed good weather, depending on the season. As Spain is somewhat cheaper than many places in Italy, many people opt to get married there. In addition, flights are cheaper and so, the option of travelling to Spain is sometimes a more preferable option for guests than Italy. www.spanishweddings.ie Getting married in France is not as popular in Ireland as other destinations, mainly due to the fact that there are several legal loops. However, Paris still remains one of the most romantic cities in Europe to tie the knot. It is always a good idea to make contact with the embassy of the country of your choice to become ofay with any requirements. In general, getting married within most European countries requires: passports, birth certificates, and evidence of termination of any previous marriages, certificates of marital status. Some countries require medical certificates, marriage certificate of parents, certificates of registration from local registration office and an avadavat of law.
For more information on getting married abroad, visit www.wedding-ireland.com

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Hearts on Fire available at Hartmanns of Galway

Cobwebs Jewellery

Designworks, Cork

Compleat from Diamonds by Julia

Ti Sento available at Castalia Jewellers, Cork

Cobwebs Jewellery

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Designworks, Cork

Cielo Gioielli from Helga’s Antiques, Cork

Ti Sento available at Castalia Jewellers, Cork and Hartmanns of Galway

what gives...
presents for the wedding party
Show your wedding party your appreciation with a gift. Choose from our selection of top wedding gifts
Hearts on Fire available at Hartmanns of Galway

The Orchid set from Michel Jewellers, Cork

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Stress has become part and parcel of everyday life. Managing it can be difficult, especially when you’re planning a wedding

Plan ahead
More and more couples are opting for some experienced help when it comes to organising their big day. If you, like so many brides-to-be, wish there were more hours in the day, then perhaps a quick consultation with an expert is just what you need. Who wouldn’t pay for someone to take away the stress of planning a wedding, leaving you with just the fun bits, and commit to delivering the wedding of your dreams within your budget? Most people think that hiring a wedding planner is something the rich and famous avail of. But wedding planners are cheaper than you think. The standard fee for a wedding coordinator is ten per cent of your wedding budget, which means depending on the size of your wedding, you could pay more for your photographer than remove your wedding coordinator. Top of a wedding planner’s ‘to do’ list is to ensure that you do not get stressed. They will do all the running around, researching venues for the ceremony and reception, florists, photographers, wedding cars, and all of the other products and services required for a wedding. The planner will guide you through step-bystep all that needs to be done for your big day. They will reassure you that everything will run smoothly and will be on hand on the day of the wedding to make sure that everything is in place. They can advise you on all aspects of wedding budgets, table plans, themed weddings and tips on saving money. Hiring a wedding planner could mean the difference between a great day and the best day of your life.

countdown
So you have made the decision to marry the man/woman of your dreams. Now the fun begins. If you are intending on getting married right away, there are a few ground rules to cover beforehand
ONE YEAR/SIX MONTHS TO GO Budget – how much are you willing to spend? Check out page 38, where we have compiled a typical wedding budget. Pick a date, book the church and the hotel. Some hotels are booked up a year in advance so have a few dates in mind to avoid disappointment. Get working. Pick up wedding magazines, sneak into other weddings for a peek. Start noticing bridesmaids dresses, colours, veils, tiaras, flowers etc. Pick your bridesmaids. Check out page 45 for advice on picking bridesmaids. Compile a guest list. Yes, you will have rows over it but it needs to be done. Decide on how many friends your parents can bring and stick to it. Children or no children, it will make a difference to your budget. Start booking your photographer, musicians, wedding stationery, florist, cars, hair and make up, wedding cake, honeymoon etc. Begin the search for the dress. Only bring one person along with you. Too many opinions can lead to stress. Mothers are usually the best and it is a great way to bond (This is a very emotional time for her as well). Decide what colours you want for the wedding party. Talk to your hairdresser about what style would best suit and take his/her advice. Inform the relevant registrar of your intention to marry. Three months is now the minimum notice required. THREE MONTHS TO GO Organise your wedding gift list, post wedding invitations, finalise bedrooms with hotel, finalise menu, arrange hen/stag night and check passports. ONE MONTH TO GO Finalise table plan, make a list of wedding acceptances and refusals, check out the progress of the dresses, write thank you cards as presents arrive, draw up seating plan, book hair, fake tan etc. ONE WEEK TO GO Pack for your honeymoon, wear in your wedding shoes, arrange for somebody reliable to pick up the formal wear, cake, flowers etc. Contact the hotel to make sure everything is in order, have a facial and massage.

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To list or not to list
Choosing to list or not to list your wedding gifts is a decision both you and your future husband should seriously consider.

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Some couples, who may already have a home and all the appliances in the world, prefer monetary gifts. If wedding lists are not your thing, then you could ask guests to donate money to a charity of your choice or ask family and friends to contribute to the honeymoon. Up until recently, the wedding gift list sat uncomfortably with the Irish psyche but, as with everything that comes to us from our westerly neighbours, most of us have got used to it now. Getting a list with your wedding invitation seemed a bit on the cheeky side. It seemed to say ‘We’re providing you with a free dinner and we want one of the following in return’. But in reality, all it was doing was stating the obvious, pointing us in the right direction present-wise and preventing the newly married couple from suffering a glut of cutlery and steam irons. A well thought out wedding gift list caters for a wide range of budgets, which can be something of a doubleedged sword. On the positive side, it allows guests to choose how much they want to spend on a wedding gift that you are guaranteed to appreciate (because you asked for it). The down side is that everyone knows how much everyone else spent – which if you’re lucky, could lead to competition! Getting a wedding gift list is one thing but making one is quite another! It is very important to create your list about three months beforehand to allow for order and delivery times. Down to the nitty gritty! Set aside an evening or two or however long it takes and write down everything you’d like to get. The sky’s the limit here. You can get realistic later. Do you need items for a new home? If your nest is already well feathered what about paintings, garden accessories, sports equipment or even holiday vouchers? You need to decide together how to categorise the gifts price-wise. You can be quite specific (and organised) and group several gifts of the same value together, for example, ‘Under À50’, ‘Under À100’ etc. Or you could be really vague and say ‘Anything in Waterford Crystal’. Put more than you want on the list, which gives your guests a choice. Always include gift vouchers; they are handy for completing partially bought gift sets. Once you’ve come up with a workable list, start thinking about where the items can be purchased. It’s unlikely that everything will be available from one store and it is perfectly acceptable to have two or more on the list. Before you finalise your list, you need to contact the stores to find out how they handle wedding lists. Questions to ask include what is their policy for exchanging gifts; do they deliver and have they an online service? It’s important to remember to include the store’s contact details and any reference numbered needed on your list. Once you’ve sorted all that out and registered with the store, you can put the finishing touches to your list and then sit back and wait for the goodies to start arriving!

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happy honeymoon
Everyone knows that a honeymoon is the most enjoyable aspect of getting married. You’ve stressed, you’ve fretted, the big day’s over, and now it’s time to chill and enjoy the time alone with your newly acquired life partner

While there are one hundred and one ideal honeymoon destinations around the world, you may want to sway from the norm and do something a little different. So we have put together a few ideas for an alternative honeymoon. ICEHOTEL, JUKKASJARVI Set among the wilderness in the stunning Swedish Lapland, the Icehotel is the ultimate alternative destination for your honeymoon. Each year, a team of snow builders, architects, designers and artists from all corners of the world create the Icehotel. The ice used to build the structure is one of the main features

of the hotel as it is crystal clear, with a few bubbles trapped within it. Staying at Icehotel is an experience utterly unlike other hotel stays. After a day of adventure, nightfall approaches quickly. The outdoor temperature drops and when you step inside Icehotel, you feel a rush of warm air. Inside, the temperature is never colder than -5°C to 8°C, regardless of how cold it may be outside. When it is time to go to bed, wrapped in thermal night wear and a woolly hat, you sleep on a bed of ice, covered with reindeer skin, and in a cozy sleeping bag. Bliss! See www.icehotel.com.

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HOLISTIC RETREATS There are numerous holistic retreat destinations to choose from, be they in Ireland, the UK or in more exotic locations such as Spain, Turkey and Thailand. If you want your honeymoon to be the ultimate in de-stressing, relaxing and finding your inner-self retreats, this could be the ideal choice for you. Many holistic retreats offer a whole range of activities and therapies to ensure you arrive back from your honeymoon refreshed and rejuvenated, such as yoga retreats, detox holidays, massage, writing and outdoor adventures. Check out www.sustainable.ie for ideas for Irish holistic getaways, or log onto www.hoho.co.uk for a taste of something further afield. BACKPACKING Traditionally considered to be the holiday of the early 20 something going on one last extended debauched holiday before embarking on real life, backpacking is becoming more and more popular with young newlyweds. If travelling around Australia or inter-railing around Europe was something that you always wanted to do, but never got the chance, then no better time to do it than at the beginning of your married life. Apart from the fact that this type of holiday won’t break the bank, you are also more likely to discover parts of the country that you would never have seen were you a regular traveller. Not for the fainthearted though, backpacking can be trying at the best of times, so make sure that you and your new husband/wife know what you’re letting yourselves in for. Choose from destinations like Amsterdam, Buenos Aires, the Grand Canyon, Angkor, Mombasa or Sardinia; this holiday will definitely be one to remember. Log onto www.backpacker.com or www.thebackpacker.net for ideas and tips. RAISING FUNDS FOR CHARITY Many charities are now using treks as a way of raising funds. So, why not incorporate your honeymoon, with the fantastic experience of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, while also raising some much-needed funds for charities? Treks usually last from ten days to three weeks, and are a great way to have an unforgettable experience with your new spouse, meet like-minded people and give something back. A trek can be anything from a snow trek through the Swiss Alps to walking the Great Wall of China. So for the socially conscious of you out there, find more details on www.goal.ie, www.accrossthe divide.com/Ireland,www.croi.ie or www.selfhelp.ie.

If you are having a church wedding, decide what type of music you want. Do you want musical instruments ie harp, bagpipes, or hymns, one piece band, gospel choir, a tenor – the choice is endless. Make contact with the musician of your choice and together you can go through the relevant music, choosing the hymns you want. Most church musicians know exactly what is suitable as you also must consider that some churches may not allow certain types of music. Discuss this initally with your priest or whomever is presiding over the marriage. According to harpist and singer Annette Griffin the most popular church songs are Ave Maria, The Prayer by Andrea Bocelli and Celine Dion and The Voyage. YOUR RECEPTION Getting the right band, and/or DJ could take months of research. Everyone will recommend the right one, but it is up to you and your husband-to-be to take the time to go and listen to the band/DJ do their thing. Good music can mean the difference between a good wedding and an unforgettable wedding. If you find the band that you like, book them as soon as you can. Arrange to meet again and let them know whether you want them to play a few of your own special songs. Don’t bombard the band/dj with a list of songs, it will break up the flow of their performance. Most venues supply couples with a local list of bands and DJS.

Music
Choosing music for your wedding deserves as much time and effort as choosing your wine, flowers or photographer.

FIRST DANCE FAVOURITES Most couples will supply the band with their all important first dance. If you don’t have a song for your first dance yet, then borrow from some of our favourites. From this moment – Shania Twain Amazed – Lonestar I don’t want to miss a thing – Aerosmith Always – Atlantic Star Because you loved me – Celine Dion Endless Love – Diane Ross and Lionel Richie Have I told you lately – Rod Stewart

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Dillon Photography Tom Coppinger Photography

Clare O’Rourke Photography

Steve Foster Photography

Martina Regan Photography

picture perfect
Now cast your mind forward to 20 years after your wedding day. What will you still have? The dress, the flowers and the cake will all be long gone. Some of your guests will have passed away. The children will be all grown up and some will even have children of their own. All you really have left are your memories and that’s why it’s so important to choose your photographer carefully. A good wedding photographer can capture the day to perfection so that every time you look at the pictures they evoke all the feelings, sights, sounds and smells you experienced the day you got married. It might make economic sense at the time to get your friend with the good camera and a knack for taking snaps to do the job but, if you can manage to employ a professional photographer, your wedding album will always be a source of joy, nostalgia and amusement! So, how do you choose a photographer? Firstly, do your homework. Like artists, every photographer has his or her own distinctive style. Take an interest in the wedding pages of magazines and get a feel for what kind of images you like. Ask around for recommendations. When you have a list of four or five names, make appointments to meet each photographer. No matter how brilliant a photographer is or how many people have recommended him or her, you need to be able to communicate clearly with each other and this is where personality comes in. If the right ‘chemistry’ isn’t there between you, if you are not 100 per cent confident that you are being heard and that he or she fully understands and appreciates how you feel and what you’re looking for, you need a different photographer. Your wedding day is an intimate and special time for you, your family and friends and it’s vital that you feel comfortable with the photographer who is capturing those special moments. Once you have found a suitable photographer, talk through all the nitty gritty

Steve Foster Photography

Planning a wedding is multi-tasking at the highest level. It takes skill, determination, versatility, patience and sheer hard work to pull all the elements together into one big, coherent and coordinated event
details – what time and where he will start taking photographs; the style of photographs and any special effects you want; contingency plans if the weather is bad; how long he anticipates the formal shots to take; how many photographs you will have in your album etc. Agree on a price so that there are no shocks when the bill arrives and find out exactly what you will be getting for your money. Some photographers offer a free engagement portrait as part of the wedding package, which is very useful for giving you an opportunity to work with your photographer in a relaxed setting and get to know each other better. As with just about everything else involved in organising any major event, the key to success lies in careful planning and working with the right people. Your photographer will prove to be an integral part of your wedding experience, so it is worth investing some time and money getting it perfect.

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Featured designers
Roswitha Molloy
Born with a passion for design, coupled with a keen sense of style, Roswitha is a natural born bridal designer. She is inspired by the clean lines of the twenties, thirties, forties and fifties. Her collection of ‘contemporary-classic’ dresses are timeless in their elegance, combining sumptuous fabrics and a romantic grace with up to the minute styling. Check out Roswitha’s collections in our wedding shoot on pages 21 and 22. www.romolloy.com

Bridal Designer of the Year 2006
WEDDINGSnow Magazine is delighted to feature Bridal Designer of the Year 2006 Jen Doherty in our fashion shoot. Not only did Jen scoop the overall prize, she was also named Romantic Category winner. Check her out on pages 24 and 26. www.jendoherty.com

Fashion shoot stockists
Benjamin Adams Shoes, McElhineys, Main Street, Ballybofey, 074 9131217, Co Donegal and McElhiney’s Fashions, Main Street, Athboy Co Meath 046 9432112; Flanagans, 111 Lower Level Eyre Square Centre, 091 565308 (many thanks to Flanagans for supplying the shoes); Perfect Pairs, 10 Church Street, Listowell, Co Kerry 068 23773. Aisle of Brides, Main Street, Carrick-on-Shannon, 071 9650784.Aislinn Bridal & Evening Wear, Main Street, Abbeyfeale, Co Limerick, 087 8384482; Bliss, Unit 9, Racefield Centre, Friar Russell Road, Limerick 061 307040; Lauda Bridal Unit, 6 Kennedy House, Kennedy Road, Navan 0469 022701; Simones, Hyde Bridge, Lower O’Connell Street, Sligo; The Bridal Academy, 22 Main Street, Carrick-on-Suir, Co Tipperary 051 642463. My Dress, Chapel Street, Carrick on Suir, 051 645533; The White Room, 39 Austin Friars Street, Mullingar, Co Westmeath, 044 47661; Eden, 14 Esmonde Street, Gorey, Co Wexford 0558 1932. Jen Doherty, Award winning bridal couture 2006, Studio 1, Buncrana Co Donegal 074 93 63459 and Studio 2, Dublin Docklands, Dublin 4, 01 614 4894; Mathyro gowns, Marions, Francis Strett, Galway, 091 564966 and Boyle, Co Roscommon, 071 966203 (Many thanks to Marions for supplying the gowns); Melody Brides, Newry. 0044 2830 821724. Pronovais gowns; Aibheil, Main Street 061 396026, Adare, Co Limerick; Lorren Bridal, Ballinlough, Co Roscommon, 0949 640793; McElhiney’s Stores Ballybofey,Donegal 0749 131217; Marions, Francis Street, Galway 091 564966 and Boyle, Co Roscommon, 071 966203 (Many thanks to Marions for supplying the gowns); Rice n Roses, Douglas, Cork, 0489 8889; Rainbow Shoes (Gabriella Lucido); Kiss the Bride, 12 Time Square, Ballincollig, Co Cork 0214 289966; Nozomi, O’Connell Street, Ennis, Co Clare. 065 6228655. Flanagans, 111 Lower Level, Eyre Square Centre, Galway. 091 565308. (Many thanks to Flanagans for supplying the shoes); Aibheil, Main Street, Adare, Limerick 061 396026; The Weddding shop, First floor, 10 Thomas Street, Limerick. 061 411553; Rembo Styling gowns; The Moderne, 89-90 Patrick Street, Cork; McElhineys, Main Street, Ballybofey, Co Donegal, 074 9131217; & McElhiney’s Fashions, Main Street, Athboy, Co Meath. 046 9432112; Marions, Francis Street, Galway, 091 564966 and Boyle, Co Roscommon, 071 966203 (Many thanks to Marions for supplying the gowns); Patricia’s Bridal, Newcastlewest, Co Limerick, The Elegant Touch, Market Square, Ballina, Co Mayo; Lauda, Kennedy Road, Navan; Simones, Hyde Bridge, Lower O’Connell Street, Sligo. Hera, 75 South Main Street, Wexford; Rococo; Cross Street, Galway 091 565856 and The Westbury Mall, 01 6704007; Roswitha Molloy, Ireland, Best Weddings Couturier 2005 by The Irish Weddings Awards 01 8385947 www.romolloy.com, Special Day Gowns; Aisle of Brides, Carrick on Shannon, 071 9650784; Marians, Francis Street, Galway, 091 564966 and Boyle, Co Roscommon, 071 966203 (Many thanks to Marians for supplying the gowns), McElhinney, Ballybofey, Co Donegal; Midland Bridalwear, Birr, 0509 22014; My Dress, Carrick on Suir, 051 645-533; Perfect Day Bridal, Limerick, 061 314291; Pronuptia of Cork, 021 4273530, Rice N Roses, Cork, 021 4898899; The Bridal Gallery, Castle Island, 064 20017; The Modern Cork, 021 4270266; Treacy Bridal, 091 564601; Ultimate Brides, Co Roscommon 090 6628912; Wedding Belle, Mallow, Co Cork, 022 21468; Virgina Bridal, 7/8 Roches Street, Limerick 061 41518 & 085 7184454 www.virginjasbridal.com (Many thanks to Virginija for supplying the gowns) Headpiece by Emily-Jean Designs, Irish Handmade butterfly headpiece, emilyjeandesigns@eircom.net

weddings
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1 Rosemarie Hosty and Declan O’Brien celebrated their wedding at Bushypark Church with the reception afterwards at the Ardilaun House Hotel.
Photos The Lane Studios, Church lane, Galway 091 567938

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2 Elaine White tand Kieran Harten, both from Navan were married in Furbo Church followed by a reception in the Connemara Coast Hotel.
Photos Martina Regan Photography www.martinaregan.com 087 202 1992

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The wedding of Geraldine Kerins and Desmond Grennan at Glandore, Cork
Photos by GMC Photography, 087 8537228 www.germac.ie

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1 Donna Cunningham and Noel McNena were married recently in The Church of Mary Immaculate Queen, Bearna, Galway

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featuremotoring

18 Townpark Centre, Tuam Road, Galway. T: 091 770869 F: 091 786048 E: flowers@iol.ie www.branchflowers.com

1 Karen Bolton and Anthony Ferguson were married in Tuam Catherdral with the reception in The Westwood Hotel.
Photos The Lane Studios, Church lane, Galway 091 567938

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2 Noírin Ni Chonghaile and Barry O’Coistealbha celebrated their wedding day at Carraroe Church and afterwards in The Galway Bay Hotel
Photos The Lane Studios, Church lane, Galway 091 567938

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out&about weddings

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2 Sinead Dunleavy and Gerard McDonagh were married in St James Church Bushypark with the reception in The Great Southern Hotel
Photos by Melissa Mannion melissamannion.com 086 8038034

2 Andrea Ryan and Paul Gray were married in August in St Marys Cathedral in Killarney. Reception in the Brehon Hotel.
Photo Claire O'Rorke

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Photography Dip Com Photo L.I.P.P.A 16 North Mall Cork 021 439 8181 info@corphotography.com www.corphotography.com

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1 Julie Nolan and Rob Eyers were married in St Peters Church Kilkee
Photos by Peter Harkin Photography, 1 Nile Lodge, Salthill, Galway 091 529700

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2 Karryanne Saunders and Gary Matthews were married in The Holy Family Church and the reception was in St Clerans
Photos by Peter Harkin Photography, 1 Nile Lodge, Salthill, Galway 091 529700

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3 Lorraine Scarry married Frank Kelly at Ballymacward Church and the reception was held in The Lady Gregory Hotel
Photos by Dillon Photography 086 8206171 www.dillonphotography.ie

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1 Wedding of Eva Reynolds, Carrick on Shannon to Mark Eggleton, London in the Church of the Immaculate Conception, Ballinakill followed by reception in Rosleague Manor Hotel, Letterfrack.
Photo Martina Regan Photography www.martinaregan.com 087 202 1992

2 Aoife Foley and Martin Ryan were married in

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August in the Honan chapel in UCC followed by reception for their 150 guests in the Trident Hotel Kinsale.
Photo Claire O'Rorke Photography Dip Com Photo L.I.P.P.A 16 North Mall Cork 021 439 8181 info@corphotography.com www.corphotography.com

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weddings
1 Edwina Forde and Francis Whiriskey were married recently in the Church of the Assumption Claregalway with the reception held in the Claregalway Hotel
Photos by Melissa Mannion melissamannion.com 086 8038034

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2 Elaine Whyte and Enda Fanning were married in Kiltulagh Church and the reception was held in St Clerans
Photo by Peter Harkin Photography, 1 Nile Lodge, Salthill, Galway 091 529700

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1 Marianne Lee from Kinsale and Ger O'Reilly from Schull after their wedding at Gouganne Barra
Photos Donagh Glavin 021 4872217 086 1722223 www.donaghglavin.com

2 Wedding of Suzanne Divilly and Patrick Oliver at the Claddagh

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Church. The reception was at Cloonacauneen Castle
Photo Lisa Daly lisa@lisadalyphotography.com

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1 Linda Walsh and Mike Flaherty who were married recently in Claregalway Church and the recption was held in the Ardilaun Hotel.
Photos by Philip Smyth. 091 555814 087 6381227 E-mail:philip@smythphotography.com

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2 Aine Keary and Christopher Dolan were married recently in Kinnitty Castle
Photos by Coppinger and Curran www.tcoppinger.com 090 9679429 086 2602770

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3 Michelle Warde and Michael Corless were married recently in Dunmore
Photos by Coppinger and Curran www.tcoppinger.com 090 9679429 086 2602770

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4 Mary Brett and Gerry Feeney were married recently in Kiltullagh.
Photos by Coppinger and Curran www.tcoppinger.com 090 9679429 086 2602770

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1 Wedding of Louise Murphy and Michael O'Donovan who were married recently in North Cathedral, Cork
Photos Life Studio www.lifestudio.ie

2 Michelle Kilkenny and Brian Cunningham were

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www.tcoppinger.com 090 9679429 086 2602770

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1 Barbara Hennessy and Frank Roche were married in Honan Chapel UCC with the reception after in Inchydoney
Photos by Healy Rimmington Photography, Norwood Gate, Rochestown, Cork 021 4366051 www.healyrimmington.com

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2 Gillian Davy and Adrian Searles were married at Honan Chapel UCC with the reception in the Garryvoe Hotel
Photos by Healy Rimmington Photography, Norwood Gate, Rochestown, Cork 021 4366051 www.healyrimmington.com

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3 Sinead Powell and Gareth Hanley were married in Ballinrostig Church, Midleton with the reception held in Inchydoney
Photos by Healy Rimmington Photography, Norwood Gate, Rochestown, Cork 021 4366051 www.healyrimmington.com

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1 Emma Croke and David Kinnevey who were married recently in Moycullen Church and the reception was held in the Westwood Hotel.
Photos by Philip Smyth. 091 555814 087 6381227 E-mail:philip@smythphotography.com

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2 Natasha Labos and Clancy Barret at their recent wedding in Ashford Castle
Photos by Melissa Mannion Photography www.melissiamannion.com 086 8038034

3 Christina Oliver and Martin Fahy were married recently in St Mary's the Claddagh Church with reception afterwards in the Claregalway Hotel.

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in the stars
The twelve signs of the zodiac are arranged into four groups, which correspond to the four elements of ancient and medieval philosophy: Fire, Earth, Air and Water. Each group contains three sun signs, which are influenced by their element in particular ways

Fire Signs
The Fire signs – Aries, Leo and Sagittarius – are assertive, enthusiastic, energetic and creative. Fire sign individuals are full of warmth and life and have a direct and immediate influence on their surroundings. Aries people need partners that help them keep their inner fire under control. Their unpredictability is sometimes enough to make you want to pull your hair out! But there is one thing about them that you can depend on: life with an Aries person is never, ever dull or boring. What Leo needs is a person who can tolerate the shows of ego and see through them for what they are: a very desirable partner! Leo can be showy and self-centred, but can also be extremely warm and generous. Leos have so much energy that it can’t help but emanate outwardly to the people they want to share their lives with. The best match for Sagittarius is a person whose intellect is active, who is interested in a wide variety of topics and talking points and who can keep themselves amused while their Sagittarian partner is off on a mad adventure.

hard to improve and consolidate their situation in life. Taurus needs a partner who will reinforce feelings of comfort and familiarity as well as nudge the Taurean into occasional encounters with emotion and spirituality. In general, Taurus’ stability makes for a person who is easily domesticated and an ideal marriage partner, so long as the Taurus person can be drawn away from a self-centred existence that consists mainly of keeping things just the way they are. Virgo places a very high priority on relationship and takes it extremely seriously but it’s important to realise that they don’t respond well to purely emotional appeals. Virgo needs to know that a relationship will produce practical returns, and that means they need a partner who will be willing to be subjected to Virgo’s improvement programme! Capricorn seeks someone who will provide a warm and secure home base. This person must also be extremely dependable, and have the desire to follow family traditions. Capricorn works hard to build a solid foundation that can always be counted on, so any prospective partner must be willing to follow through on this ambitious plan.

enforcing boundaries and showing Libra that there’s a lot to be gained by using one’s initiative. Mental stimulation is very important to Libra too. A relationship partner must be able to relate to Libra’s refined mind, and also be prepared to help Libra make decisions. In return, Libra’s partner will receive the kind of love most of us only dream about, as well as a best friend for life. Aquarius is an independent soul who needs an equal partner. This partner should ideally be alert, intellectually stimulating and very secure, but able to make occasional sacrifices for the sake of Aquarius’ special causes. It’s hard for an Aquarian to tolerate a person who is so irrational and insecure that they would think their feelings matter morethan the good of society.

Water Signs
The water signs – Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces – are governed by powerful emotions, making them intense and sensitive. Cancer people are looking for someone to nest with – for a very long time. These emotional souls need almost constant reassurance, and they don’t let go easily. Cancer is a self-starter, and will take action to prevent anything bad from happening to a loved one. Scorpio wants to be loved so desperately that their relationship partners often find themselves being controlled and manipulated into doing things they would never do if they were asked outright. To handle a Scorpio, the romantic partner must be clever and strong enough to make Scorpio own up to the little manipulation games that go on. Pisces is the most gentle sign in the zodiac. They are always taking care of other people, and often don’t have the desire to come down to earth and work on the practical areas of life. Their ideal partner is somebody who will take care of them, while they take care of everyone else!

Air Signs
The Air signs – Gemini, Libra and Aquarius – tend to value mental compatibility in romance more than passion or looks. They love discussing their thoughts. Shaping new ideas is far more exciting to them than carrying them through. Gemini needs variety, so originality and versatility in a partner are the most important attractions. If you need constant attention and devotion, a Gemini is not the person for you! To keep Gemini’s interest, make the effort to follow the constantly changing sea of ideas that emanates from this fascinating person’s mind. Libra needs a strong personality in a partner; someone who keeps

Earth Signs
The Earth signs – Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn – are practical and ambitious. Innately cautious, careful and restrained, Earth signs work

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wedding directory
Hotels Jewellers

Aghadoe Heights, Killarney, Co Kerry. 064 31766. Carlton Hotel Kinsale & Spa, Rathmore Road, Kinsale, Co Cork 021 470 6000, www.carltonkinsalehotel.com Claregalway Hotel, Claregalway Village, Galway, 091 738300, www.claregalwayhotel.ie Clarinbridge Court Hotel, Clarinbridge, Galway. 091 796988 www.clarinbridgecourthotel.com. Clayton Hotel, Ballybrit, Galway, 091 721900 www.clayton.ie Clifden Station House Hotel, Connemara, Co. Galway 095 21699, www.clifdenstationhouse.com Galway Bay Hotel, Promenade, Salthill, Galway, 091 520520 www.galwaybayhotel.net Harbour Hotel, New Docks Road, Galway City. 091 569466 www.galwayharbourhotel.com Hotel Meyrick, Eyre Square, Galway 091 564041 www.hotelmeyrick.ie Menlo Park Hotel, Terryland, Headford Road, Galway. 091-761122 www.menloparkhotel.ie. The Imperial Hotel, South Mall, Cork. 021 7306618. www.flynnhotels.com Radisson SAS Hotel and Spa, Lough Atalia, Galway, 091 538300 www.radissonhotelgalway.ie The Rectory, Glandore, West Cork. 028 33072. www.rectory.ie Shearwater Plaza Hotel, Ballinasloe, 090 9630400 www.shearwaterhotel.com
Cakes

Diamonds and Gold, 12 Cross Street, Galway, 091 539693 www.diamondsandgoldireland.com Diamonds By Julia, 178 Bluebell Woods, Maree Road, Oranmore, Co.Galway, 087 6050050 www.diamonsbyjulia.com Hartmanns of Galway, 27-29 William Street, Galway’091 562063, www.hartmanns.ie Helgas Antiques, 7 Cross St, Cork 021 4270034 Michel Jewellers, 116 Patrick St, Cork, 021 4271217
Hair & Beauty

Westbury Mall,Dublin 2 01 6704007; 20 Glasthule Road; Co.Dublin, 01 2300686 Susie Mahony Designs, Tynagh Road, Loughrea, 086 1948315 091 847326 www.susiemahonydesigns.ie
Mens

UdeMan, Unit 6, Mount Oval Village, Cork www.udeman.ie
Music

Constantly Cupid Hair Salon, 35 Temple Jarlath Court, Tuam, Co Galway 093 27027 5th Avenue Make Up and Beauty Salon, 14E Liosban Bus. Park, Tuam Road, Galway, 091 764755 Fuzion, 34 Newcastle Road, Galway 091 582965 Gemini Beauty, Gleann Na Ri (Behind Bodkins) Renmore, Galway. 091 770776 Itsfabulous.net 091 443944, 086 1960061 The Workshop, 10 Lower Abbeygate Street, Galway & Sli Gheal, Ballymoneen Road, Knocknacarra, 091 566680 Purejoy Beauty, Mainguard Street, Galway 091 530540
Fashion

Willie Carty Entertainment Agency, Wedding bands available. Conquerors – Keith McDonald. www.dancingdiary.com, www.keithmcdonald.ie 090 9741017 Email: conquerors@eircom.net. Willie Carty’s Entertainment Agency has been operating in Ireland for the last fifteen years. In that time he has gained a reputation as a provider of quality entertainment. Chris Deakin Professional Wedding DJ, specialise in unique celebrations. We help plan the perfect music for your wedding celebrations 087-6959372, www.galwayweddingdj.com Annette Griffin International Singer & Harpist 094 9546918,086 2525108
Flowers

Bloomsday Flowers, Main St, Carrigtwohill, Co. Cork 021 4287404 www.bloomsday.ie Branch Flowers, 18 Townpark Centre,Tuam Rd, Galway 091 770869 www.branchflowers.com The Flower Basket, Clonakilty, Co. Cork 023 33535
Stationary and Accessories

Goyas, Kirwans Lane, Galway 091 567010 www.goyas.ie
Photography

Claire O’Rorke, 16 North Main St, Cork City. www.corphotography.com 021 4398181 Coppinger and Curran Moylough, Galway, 0909679429, 086 2602770, www.tcoppinger.com Dillon Photography, 34 The Maltings, Loughrea, Galway. 091 871413 www.dillionphotography.com. Fuji Barna, Seapoint, Barna, Galway 091 867875, www.fujibarna.ie Martina Regan Photographer, 087 2021992 www.martinaregan.com Steve Foster Photography, 091 632891 www.sfimages.net

All Dressed Up, 4 Barr ns Straide, Ballincollig, Cork 021-4289966 Elegant Undies, Unit 3 Downstairs, Eyre Square Shopping Centre, Williamsgate Street, Galway. 091 567512 Emily Jean Designs, 34 Tudor Lawn, Newcastle, Galway. 086 4094190 Hat Shop Galway, U9 Basement, Corbett’s Court, Galway 091 561052 Lady M Lingerie, 51 Dunkellin Street, Loughrea, Galway. 091 871141 Marians, St Francis Street, Galway 091 564966; Boyle, Co.Roscommon, 071 9662031 www.marians.ie Monili, Sallybrook, Glanmire, Co Cork 085 7085031 The Moderne, 89/90 Patrick St, Cork City www.themoderne.com 021 4270266 Nozomi Shoe Boutiques, 71 O’Connell Street, Ennis, Co.Clare, 065 6828655; 60 Catherine Street, Limerick, 061 467408 www.nozomiireland.com Nestors, 18 Eglington Street, Galway, 091 562552 Rococo Cross Street Galway 091 565856;

Amanda Designs, Knocknahaw, Moyard, Co. Galway. 09541140, 0876531871 www.amanda-designs.net Specialist in Wedding Stationary, Cake Box Building, Handmade Cards. Receptions, Unit 4, Hughes Mill, Clonmel, Co Tipperary 052-87111 Coyne Design, Sliabh Garbh, Cullane Carraroe, Co.Galway, 091 869985 Noreen Clifford Designs 021 4642986 www.clifforddesigns.ie
Food and Wine

Lohans Bar and Restaurant, 232-234 Upper Salthill, Galway,091 522696
Travel

Fahy Travel Worldchoice, 3 Bridge Street Galway, 091 594747 www.fahytravel.ie
Pre- Marriage Course

NAOMI, 119 Patrick St, Cork City 021 4272213

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