Mira & Sean’s Wedding: Albanian dances and a last-second flight that created a special wedding
Vintage cars filled with white dresses and golf course greenery up to the blue horizon, shooting Mira and Sean’s wedding at The View reminded me of exactly why I love wedding photography. Weddings are always a privilege to witness, and this one accentuated everything close to my heart. There was traditional heritage dancing, relatives travelling miles and battling visa constraints, lack of Covid restrictions allowed liberated guests to dance and a beautiful venue that made my job much easier!
The couple decided on St. Bonaventure Church for the ceremony and The View as a reception venue for its spacious greenery, intimate gardens, and accommodating features for guests. Let’s look at how it all went.
Mira pulled up to St. Bonaventure’s Church in a baby blue vintage ride filled the car with a pure white dress and a contagious smile. Her lovely daughter graced the aisle as the flower girl before her, and Sean’s father took the role of giving away the bride. Sean’s Irish heritage may have influenced the old fashioned theme and venue, and the church made a captivating service for the wonderful young couple.
Mira has an Albanian heritage and family that lives there, which for them to make the wedding, meant they had to go through the red-tape heavy process of government visas. All well and good, but throw in some Covid restrictions, processing delays and hard-to-predict wedding date, and it starts to get a bit more complicated.
In fact, Mira’s own parents got the worst of it. Her mother had planned to come a week early and help her daughter prepare and share in the excitement, but her visa process had other plans. It was only approved days before the wedding, to which she made a swift flight and arrived the day before – she got to see her daughter get married after all. Though her father wasn’t as lucky, his visa was refused and he couldn't make it to England.
Blessed by golf course-sized greenery, blue skies and gardens, the venue had plenty of perfect photo opportunities and areas. I talked the newlyweds through all of the options, and we walked around to my most recommended locations. Within the venue, there's a garden area sectioned off for the wedding and guests, which hosts a beautiful white gazebo. The traditional car Mira drive-in on also made a picture-perfect shot, with the couple in all of their candid love glory.
We ended the shoot at a location overlooking the hills that the venue had access to. While the day was turning into a glary-grey sky, I managed to tune the settings to filter out the brightness and create an atmospheric twilight mood, where the couple stood out among the gorgeous view.
Mira and Sean’s shoot held a special historical significance - it was one of the first weddings in 2021 where people were allowed to get up and dance together! So, you can imagine the energy that filled the room as old friends reunited and people saw the loved ones that they couldn’t see before. The reception was held in a conservatory area with big glass windows allowing the day to light up the space, while the table decorations added colour and elegance for a truly stunning experience.
I captured moments of laughter, connection, love and dance from all of the guests at the wedding throughout the day, in between the stand out moments that I captured. The first was, of course, the first dance. The newlyweds slow-danced, with the passion that only a young couple in love could, to ‘I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing’ by Aerosmith. The classic strung the heartstrings of everyone in the room who couldn’t wait to get up and join at the first appropriate moment.
Another special moment came from Mira’s mother, who doesn’t understand English. Throughout the ceremony and speeches, Mira’s sister translated everything that was said to Albanian for her mother. While languages may have barriers, the emotions of love, pride and joy do not, and caused Mira’s mother to shed many tears throughout the translation. Finally, during the dancing, Mira’s side of the family halted the DJ and changed the tone - they began dancing a traditional Albanian dance and encouraged everyone to join. It was the perfect addition for Mira to mix her culture into her special day.
A View of The View
While The View hosts a large golf course, weddings are also a priority for them. This means that weddings can take advantage of the beautiful scenery and spacious atmosphere of the golf course while benefiting from private gardens and facilities. There’s ample room and opportunities to capture the perfect photographs, both during the sessions and throughout the day.
Guests also love it because the golf course has plenty of parking and accommodation in the area is great value, with many great affordable and lovely options, such as Tewin Bury Farm Hotel, Best Western Homestead Court Hotel or Pear Tree Inn. If you would any more information about the venue from me, Horatio at Horatio Photography, who experienced it first hand, or to book a consultation for your wedding photography, please get in touch.