Ahh, Prague. One of the most beautiful cities in the ENTIRE world and the ultimate backdrop for a destination wedding. No surprise, Exclusive Weddings In Prague and Stepan Vrzala Photography were behind this incredible day and The Vault album is like a wedding + travel gallery all rolled into one.
From the Bride…I met the man of my dreams in sunny California, and it was love at first sight. Then, in February of 2015, Nicholas proposed. We were spending a day together in beautiful Carmel, along the coast on the famous 17-mile drive. During one of the stops while sitting in front of the vast Pacific Ocean, he took my hand and said he will love me forever. He pulled a ring from his pocket and asked me to marry him. I will never forget the moment he made me the happiest girl in the world.
Nicholas was born and raised in California, but his parents grew up in the Czech Republic and Austria. My family lives in Russia, where I was born and raised, and I moved to California when I was 21. Because of our family ties overseas, we wanted to hold a destination wedding in Europe so our loved ones could all attend. We wanted the location to be meaningful, and after much consideration we decided on Prague. This romantic city full of history and beautiful architecture felt like the perfect fit- a blend of Eastern and Western European cultures, as well as the birthplace of Nicholas’ father. Excited about our decision, we immediately went to work planning our destination wedding in the “Golden City”.
Our preparations began with a search for a local wedding planning agency. We came across Exclusive Weddings in Prague, owned by Andrea Hanusova, and immediately she made a great impression on us. What followed was close to a year of hard work and diligence, to plan the perfect wedding. Andrea patiently helped us through the whole process, and we enjoyed every minute of working with her. She was so personable and talented, making us feel comfortable even in stressful times. She understood our ideas and wishes easily, and helped make our dream wedding come true.
Our fairy-tale wedding in May of 2016 could not have been more perfect. We stayed in the historic Pachtuv Palace, which was established in 1628 and was a favorite lodging of Mozart and other luminaries. The hotel was ideally situated in the heart of Prague, and our room had a wonderful view of The Vltava River and Charles Bridge. We started the weekend with a welcome dinner at a Czech restaurant the night before our wedding, where our guests had a chance to meet each other and break the ice. The following morning was a blur of excitement as I got ready for our big day, and before I knew it I was standing in front of the beautiful Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul. This antique church built in a neo-gothic style stands majestically atop a hill in the Vysehrad fortress and overlooks the Vltava River. The interior is embellished with gold statues and delicate paintings, but I hardly noticed these details as my Daddy walked me down the aisle, my heart beating. Nicholas and I exchanged our vows in front of God and our family and friends, a moment we will cherish forever.
The reception that followed was held at Villa Richter, a restaurant in St. Wenceslas’ Vineyard, the oldest vineyard in Bohemia. Nicholas and I first toured Prague in a Rolls Royce Silver Cloud and visited several picturesque spots for our photo shoot. Meanwhile, our guests arrived at the restaurant and were greeted with signature cocktails and canapés, which included smoked duck breast, prosciutto and figs, and marinated salmon. After enjoying the breathtaking view of Prague’s Old City from the terrace, we took our seats at the beautifully-decorated wedding table. The theme of the reception was one of romantic elegance, with hydrangeas, peonies, roses, carnations, eustomas, sweet peas, astilbes, and astrantias in cream, off-white, and shades of pink. These were surrounded by stunning candles, glass ornaments, and mercury vases. In true Russian tradition, the table was covered with platters of meats, fish and caviar, cheeses, and other delicacies. Grilled tiger prawns with chili ginger sauce were served as the first course, followed by lobster cream soup, and the most delicious main courses including deer tenderloin, grilled veal ribeye steak, and rolled corn chicken. We went back out to the terrace to cut the cake, which was a combination of our two favorite flavors: mud cake with raspberry and dulce de leche.
We had a very fun and lively reception, full of Czech, Russian, American, and Austrian traditions, followed by an emotional first dance to Ed Sheeran’s “Speaking Out Loud”. On the last day we met up with our guests for a boat cruise with live music and buffet-style lunch. As we were enjoying the sunny spring weather and reliving memories of the previous night, we got a chance to see Prague from the river, including the Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul. We said our goodbyes with a heavy heart, but we were grateful that our loved ones could get together and share our special day in the romantic, beautiful city of Prague. It was truly a dream wedding and the happiest moment of our lives.
Photography: Stepan Vrzala Photography | Event Planning: Exclusive Weddings In Prague | Floral Design: Inspirito | Wedding Dress: Olvi's | Stationery: Wedding Paper Divas | Ceremony Venue: Vysehrad Church | Reception Venue: Villa Richter | Rings: Shane Co. | Hair + Makeup: Lucie Pruzkova | DJ: DJ Jirka Brezina | Groom's Attire: Men's Wearhouse | Transportation: Sebatour | Hotel: Pachtuv Palace | Cake + Desserts: Punkrock Cakes | Getaway Car: Oldtimer Sebek