Alan and Rachel wanted their elopement to Madeira to be fun, unique and a day to remember. Becky de Sancha, from Madeira Wedding Ceremonies, wrote and conducted their ceremony and Rodolfo from The Memory Shop was their to capture the day. Their day started at Belmond Reids Palace in Funchal, a truly magical hotel where Winston Churchill used to take his afternoon tea.
With the plan for the day, there was no aisle as such for Rachel to walk down and everyone was travelling together to the ceremony area, so before they left the hotel, Rodolfo set up a "first look' moment where Alan could turn and see his Bride looking stunning in her dress. The entrance of Belmond Reids Palace was a perfect back drop. This moment started the first happy tears of the day.
Driving in convoy, everyone headed up up up to get above the clouds at Pico do Arriero, the tallest peak in Madeira. A short walk from the car park, the perfect ceremony area was found, high on a peak with a bed of clouds below. Everyone got themselves ready and the ceremony began.
Alan and Rachel are true soul mates. They have shared hopes and dreams for the future and they laugh a lot! Rachel had chosen these words to be included in her Ceremony:
From the words of Richard Bach, A soul mate is someone who has locks that fit our keys, and keys to fit our locks. When we feel safe enough to open the locks, our truest selves step out and we can be completely and honestly who we are; we can be loved for who we are and not for who we’re pretending to be.
Each unveils the best part of the other. No matter what else goes wrong around us, with that one person we’re safe in our own paradise. Our soul mate is someone who shares our deepest longings, our sense of direction. When we’re two balloons, and together our direction is up, chances are we’ve found the right person. Our soul mate is the one who makes life come to life.
After the I Do's , Alan and Rachel shared personal Vows with each other. Elopements allow couples to be more personal and free with their Vows and throw in a few humorous promises that only the couple really understand.
Now Alan and Rachel like Madeira Wine...... a lot! So chose to incorporate a Wine Ceremony within the service. Any excuse to have a glass of their favourite 10 year old bottle.
This bottle of wine contains within it a wine with certain properties, that are sweet and symbolic of happiness, joy, hope, peace, love and delight. This same wine also holds some bitter properties that are symbolic of disappointment, sorrow, grief, despair, and life’s trials and tribulations. Together the sweet and the bitter represent "Love’s Journey" and all of the experiences that are a natural part of it.
The goblet of wine is symbolic of the cup of life. As you share the wine, you promise to share all that the future will bring. All the sweetness the cup of life holds for you is sweeter because you drink it together; and whatever drops of bitterness it contains are less, because they are shared.
Al and Rachel, when you drink this wine, may you share all things from this day on with love and understanding. This wine is symbolic of the pledges you have made to one another today, to share together the fullness of life. As you drink from this wine, you acknowledge to one another that your lives, separate until this moment, have now become one.
Now drink to the love you’ve shared in the past all the way back to that beginning of your relationship 4 years ago. Drink to your love in the present, on this, your wedding day, here in Madeira. And drink to your love in the future and forever more!
As you have shared this wine, so may you share your lives. May you find life’s joys heightened, its bitterness sweetened, and all of life enriched by the love you have for each other.
So they were pronounce Husband and Wife and Alan kissed his Bride above the clouds. To celebrate, they decided to dig into their Wedding Cake, a giant Pastel de Nata and Rodolfo and Becky toasted them both with a glass of Madeira Wine.
Now time for photos. First the Drone captured the wedding from the sky's and then Rodolfo took the couple to some stunning locations on their way back to Funchal. They also made use of Belmond Reid's Palace and had amazing photos in the gardens.
They achieved their goal. They had a truly fun and unique wedding and a day I dont think they will ever forget.
Becky de Sancha, Celebrant - Madeira Wedding Ceremonies
Rodolfo Fernandes, Photographer - The Memory Shop