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Romantic bilingual destination wedding on Nantucket

I love doing destination weddings. The excitement of travelling overseas and conducting ceremonies at the most exotic, unusual and spectacular locations is second to none!

Destination wedding on a magical island

When Andrew and Laura approached me to ask if I was in for a wild adventure, I replied with a heartfelt 'I do!'

This beautiful couple were planning to get married on a small island in the mighty Atlantic: Nantucket. It is also known as 'the far away land' and the 'Old Grey Lady of the Sea' as it always seems to hide its secrets under a veil of fog. Nantucket truly is a unique place on this planet. This magical island feels separate from the rest of the world and is therefore intimate by nature - a poetic place to celebrate love.

Henry Melville wrote his famous novel Moby Dick inspired by this island, of which he said:

‘It is not down on any map - true places never are’

Andrew and Laura's wedding felt indeed as a place which was out of this world. Surrounded by people who had flown in from all over the world, they radiated magic and beauty, making a dream come true.

Andrew had visited the island since childhood, and soon after he and Laura had met he introduced his German-born bride-to-be to this special place where so many precious memories were buried in the sand and whispered by the wind. New memories were created, all converging into that special weekend in June, where they shared their love in all its abundance with their beloved family and friends.

Blessing at rehearsal dinner - Love is a gift

The wedding celebrations started with a rehearsal dinner followed by a party in a cocktail bar on the Friday evening. It was an honour to be invited to both, and at the rehearsal dinner I was asked to open the main meal with a non-religious blessing. It was a touching way for everyone to feel connected and to give thanks for the people and things they were grateful for.

"We are here to celebrate the gift of love. The love that connects Laura and Andrew, but also the love they share with you as their beloved family and friends.

I found a beautiful quote by Elin Hilderbrand, a Nantucket resident who wrote many novels about the island:

“When you’re in love, every day is like a present you get to open.”

Love is a gift - just like us all being here, gathered to celebrate this special moment with our beautiful couple. Let’s, as we are about to enjoy the meal we are about to receive, take a moment of quiet contemplation to reflect on the things we consider gifts in our lives. (....)

May this meal nourish your body, and may the gifts in your life nourish your souls."

Romantic wedding ceremony with a view

The ceremony took place the following day at a stunning location with sea views. The weather was amazing. No fog in sight, clear blue skies and sunshine in abundance.

The groom and his groomsmen gathered at the front, while Laura and her bridesmaids were getting ready behind the scenes. A string quartet welcomed the guests who had travelled from all over the world to celebrate with Andrew and Laura.

Laura walked down to aisle to 'Clair de Lune' - a romantic piece about moonlight and dreams of all-conquering love and when Andrew saw his bride, he knew that his dream had come true.

A German-English wedding poem

To honour Laura's German heritage, we included some personal German touches in the ceremony. I welcomed the thus guests in English and German, and summarised their story in Laura's mother tongue. One of Laura's friend read a German poem:

Die Ehe ist das Ruhen zweier Herzen - Theobald Kerner

Die Ehe ist das Ruhen zweier Herzen. da ist kein Sehnen mehr und ist kein Schmerzen, da ist kein Suchen, nein, man hat gefunden,

Man lebt und lebt, doch nimmer zählt man Stunden.

Es ist ein Leben, wie zwei Bäume leben, die ihre Wurzeln ineinander weben, treuinnig mit den Zweigen sich umfassen, kommt auch ein Sturm, keins kann vom andern lassen.

Derselbe Tau trifft sie, derselbe Regen, was einem wohltut, bringt dem andern Segen.

Mag Mond, mag Sonne auf sie niederschauen, sie steh’n vereint in kindlichem Vertrauen. Sie harren still, was ihnen kommt von oben, ob Freud’, ob Leid - sie sind in eins verwoben.

[English Translation]

Marriage is the resting of two hearts by Theobald Kerner

There is no more longing and no more pain,

There is no searching, no, one has found,

One lives and lives, but one never counts hours.

It is a life, like two trees live,

Who weave their roots into each other,

Faithfully embracing each other with their branches.

Even if a storm comes, neither will lose grasp of the other;

The same dew befalls them, the same rain,

What is good for one, is a blessing to the other.

May the moon, may the sun look down on them,

They stand united in childlike trust.

They wait in silence, what comes to them from above,

Whether joy or sorrow, they are interwoven as one.

Personal wedding vows - from heart to heart

Andrew and Laura both shared their vows by heart, in English and German. There truly wasn't a dry eye to be found on the whole of Nantucket when they filled the air with their love.

"I promise that my love will accompany you on all of life’s adventures – it will celebrate with you in moments like today when life showers us with gifts and will hold your hand in times when we face challenges. I promise to cherish each moment that we get to share and to make sure that you do not go a day without knowing how deep and unconditional my love for you is." (Laura to Andrew)

"In us I have found the greatest love, the strongest friendship, and the most joyful partnership—in each way more than I could ever hope for. In you I have found the most amazing woman, compassionate, brilliant, loving, and incredibly beautiful—as you always are." (Andrew to Laura)

After their heartfelt 'I do's' and ring exchange I read some surprise messages from people who could not be there. It wasn't easy to keep this a secret, but with the help of their amazing wedding planner, Andrew's mother, we managed to move them to laughs and tears.

Andrew and Laura walked back down the aisle to a Rondeau, Jean-Joseph Mouret, a subtle nod to the newly-weds surname!

The sun partied with us!

The celebrations continued with a drinks reception, dinner and dancing under the roof of a magnificent marquee. The sun said its goodbye in the most spectacular way, colouring the sky in a stunning palette of fiery colours.

It has been a wild and wonderful adventure, and an incredible honour to be part of Andrew and Laura's journey. I wish Mr and Mrs Rondeau all the happiness in the world.

"May you always feel the love and the joy that is filling the air and stirring the waves of the sea today."

Photo credits: Brian Sager Photography

Wedding venue: The Wauwinet, Nantucket

Wedding planner: The groom's mother

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