A dreamscape of manicured gardens, Suzy and Jimmy’s destination wedding was set within the grounds of a Gothic Spanish castle near Barcelona. The restored 11th century Castell de Sant Marcal has been in the same family for over 700 years and made for a magical backdrop. The couple said their vows by the grand fountain, framed by towering trees, beneath the muted castle facade. The romantic reception dinner was enveloped by chestnut trees with a canopy of chandeliers and wisteria floating above. A single long garland of white flowers was draped along the garden setting table.
Photographer Raquel Benito beautifully captured the romantic Spanish castle wedding.
Names / Suzy Sone and Jimmy Xi
Location / Barcelona, Spain
Wedding Date / July 3rd, 2023
Guest Numbers / 100
How We Met
Jimmy was my first date from a dating app. We agreed to meet for a drink on a Thursday night. Our first date lasted for six hours, our second date was the very next day, and our third date was two days after that. And that was that.
Our Engagement Story
Jimmy proposed while we were spending time with my family in Hawaii, my home state. Jimmy involved all of my close friends and family and planned a whole day of surprises for me which included a surprise gift, hair and nail appointments, lunch at my favourite restaurant, and a suite at the Ko’Olina Resorts that was decorated with the help of some friends and filled with roses and champagne. Throughout the day, none of the friends I was with would tell me what was coming next but everyone had received a personalized itinerary from Jimmy detailing their respective responsibilities for the day. Jimmy also had put together a video with well wishes from all my friends and family that was almost 45 minutes long! It was the most beautiful and thoughtfully planned proposal. We celebrated with my family and friends and had dinner all together at one of the restaurants in the resort.
Marriage to us means
Putting each other first.
We got married at an 11th century castle nestled in the mountains just outside of Barcelona, Spain. I was instantly won over through photos of Castell de Sant Marcal and committed to the venue before even seeing it in person. Luckily, the venue is even more impressive in real life than in photos. The castle served as a stunning backdrop for our wedding festivities. Walking through the grounds on my first visit there made me feel like I was in a fairy tale.
Simple and timeless. Our priority was to host our friends and loved ones at a fun party with good food, lots of wine and pretty décor. We opted for white and neutral colors and added fun elements like chandeliers and hanging wisteria for ambiance.
Jimmy and I sent each other letters the morning of our wedding. He gifted me the earrings I wore on our wedding day. My gift for him was a surprise hula dance at our wedding reception (as is tradition in Hawaii).
I got ready with my man of honor (my little brother) and my bridesmaids. I gifted my bridesmaids pyjamas and pearl bracelets. We got ready together while eating breakfast and drinking champagne.
The castle grounds were already so gorgeous we didn’t need a lot of decor for the ceremony. We chose to have a white carpet lined with flowers and greenery, leading up to the ceremony arch, which was gold and accented with white roses, orchids and hydrangeas.
For the reception, we had one long dinner table for all 100 guests. The table was set with a garland of flowers spilling over the edges and placed under hundreds of strands of wisteria and crystal chandeliers hanging from the trees above. It was magical.
Wedding Planner & Stylist
Carole Bipat from Marry Me in Spain. She was the best wedding planner – organized and had so many helpful suggestions. I was able to relax leading up to the wedding day because I knew she had everything handled in advance. I cannot recommend her enough!
My bouquet consisted of blush/pink coloured roses, peonies and orchids (all of my favorites!). My bridesmaids’ bouquets were similar to mine and made of roses and peonies. We chose white flowers for the rest of the floral arrangements. The florists did such an amazing job making my vision come to life – especially with the wisteria over the dinner table. The florals were definitely my favorite part of the wedding décor.
We gave our guests pineapple cookies from Hawaii and chocolate buckeyes from Ohio, our home states.
We had a wedding cake table with three cakes – red velvet, cheesecake and sacher torte.
Food & Beverages
The dinner menu consisted of foie raviolis with truffles and olive oil pearls as an appertizer, duck confit as the main course, and the three cakes for dessert. Each came with a wine paired for the course. After the ceremony and before dinner we had a cocktail hour with 10 different kinds of tapas and four ready to order stations – a ceviche bar, burrata bar, mini burgers and a guacamole bar. At 1am we had churros con chocolate.
“For the reception, we had one long dinner table for all 100 guests. The table was set with a garland of flowers spilling over the edges and placed under hundreds of strands of wisteria and crystal chandeliers hanging from the trees above. It was magical.”
Fashion & Beauty Notes
Bride’s Dress & Shoes
My dress was a custom Galia Lahav gown. It was so fun designing the gown and veil! I loved how the white floral and pearl appliques popped against the more muted nude base of the gown. My second dress was a sequinned gold dress with floral and vine motifs from Oscar de la Renta – the perfect party dress!
Wedding Rings, Jewelry & Accessories
We shopped for our wedding bands while we were in Barcelona planning our wedding. Jimmy opted for a classic gold band while I got the matching one in platinum with diamonds.
The Tiffany pearl/diamond drop earrings I wore on the wedding day were a gift from Jimmy. My something borrowed, old and blue was a sapphire and diamond ring that my dad gave my mom when they were dating. I wore my two Cartier love bracelets which are sentimental to me; I never take them off.
Hair & Makeup
I wanted to look like myself, just elevated, so I went for a brown smoky eye and kept the colors and style similar to how I do my everyday makeup. I wore my hair in loose waves, which is also how I usually wear my hair.
We took a month-long honeymoon and went to Lake Como, Lake Lugano, Dubai, the Maldives, safari in the Serengeti, and Zanzibar. Our favorite place was the Maldives. We had high expectations going in and the experience exceeded our expectations in every way. Our only regret was that we didn’t book more than five days in the Maldives.
A memorable moment…
The first look. It just hits you.
If i could give other brides to be one piece of advice
Think about what you want your wedding to be like and don’t let anyone pressure you into doing it differently.
Wedding Venue / Castell De Sant Marcal
Videography / Bonnie Clyde Productions
Bride’s Dress / Galia Lahav
Wedding Rings / Cartier
Cake & Catering / Monchos
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