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Wedding Destination in Europe and Second in the World

Natasha Lardera (March 21, 2016)
Italy is indeed Europe's number one wedding destination, followed by France and Greece, and only the runner up on a global level coming second after the Caribbean and Hawaii, unparalleled for their romantic and breathtaking beaches. The information was presented in Ravello during a special event, “Italy coast to coast weddings,” that welcomed some of the most renown international wedding planners and local administrators.

Grammy award winning singer John Legend and the famous fashion model Chrissy Teigen chose Lake Como; Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka picked a castle in Perugia, while Kim and Kanye opted for Florence. For decades celebrities have decided to tie the knot in Italy, one of the loveliest destinations. Things have changed though and arranging a wedding in a distant country like Italy is not a dream anymore. 

Italy is indeed Europe's number one wedding destination, followed by France and Greece, and only the runner up on a global level coming second after the Caribbean and Hawaii, unparalleled for their romantic and breathtaking beaches. The information was presented in Ravello during a special event, “Italy coast to coast weddings,” that welcomed some of the most renown international wedding planners and local administrators.

The following data has been provided by the Observatory of International  Weddings of  Sposa Mediterranea Network a group of international event planners based in Ravello. The event's objective was to “educate and explore the territory,” while discovering cultural and landscape riches as well as traditional food specialties and unique artistic gems.

A wedding in Italy means excellent food, astounding wines, unparalleled art and culture and unique landscapes but also a general sense of friendliness and warmth that cannot be found in any other country. Data show that 75% of people vacationing in Italy decide to get married there. In 2014 the wedding business earned more than 350 million euros, roughly calculated on 6200 weddings that cost about 50.000 euros each, and in 2015 earnings amounted to more than 400 millions.

It's too soon to tell how 2016 is going to be but predictions show that this constant rise will increase by 50%. On top of that, after their wedding, couples decide to spend their honeymoon in Italy. 25% of couples who marry in Italy return to celebrate their first anniversary, 47,6% return after 2 or years, and 12,4% return after 5 years. 90% of couples suggest to their friends to get married in Italy. This proves that international weddings are an excellent vehicle to retain tourists and thereby to increase even general tourism.

The Amalfi Coast (favored by 38%) comes second behind Tuscany (43%) that has been a favorite for decades. They are followed by Umbria (8%), Venice and the Lakes (6%). The regions that are just recently getting more popular are Puglia and Sicily. The first who love getting hitched in Italy are the Brits, followed by the Americans and Canadians, the Russians, the Japanese and the Chinese.

"The wedding business should not be underestimated or considered frivolous,” Suita Carrano, General Manager of Sposa Mediterranea Network and coordinator of the Observatory has explained, “It is a significant economic sector. The data speak clearly. All institutions should be more aware of this phenomenon as it can help increase tourism and all other sectors. The potential is immense and international celebrities such as George Clooney,who married in Venice, could become efficient testimonials.”

The locations that couple seem to prefer are unique hotels, not necessarily luxurious hotels but places that have something special to offer, followed by historical villas and castles. “There are also requests for more rustic locations,” Carrano continued, “such as agriturismos (a farm designed to also receive guests), masserias (a masseria is a country estate found in the region of Puglia), cellars, and unknown borghi (old towns).” Some planners, such as Slow Dreams, can even arrange an "armada" of boats to one of  HYPERLINK Italy's most secluded and dramatic cliff surrounded beaches.

Italy has often been called the country of love, as it is  beyond doubt such a romantic getaway, not only because of its beauty and romantic views but also the Italian lifestyle. Italians love romance, even their songs are all about love, and people from all over the world are welcome to enjoy a piece of that.

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