The couple: Sonia Spollen & Alan Logan
Wedding date: 31st December 2014
Wedding location: Bridge House Hotel, Tullamore, Co. Offaly
Photographer: M&M Photography
Wedding planning… We decided to get married in 2013 and as we live in Australia we could take advantage of the holidays and have our wedding over Christmas in 2014. The only thing I was certain about was the venue. Being from Offaly I know the food and service at the Bridge House Hotel are always to the highest standard. I also felt that as it was a winter wedding, I did not want to choose a hotel based on grounds and then the good old Irish weather kicks in. The Bridge House has an amazing interior and if we were lucky enough to get good weather, they have many photo opportunities in the secret garden or the surrounding Charlesville Castle and Town Park.
Our Wedding planner… From the moment I met the wedding planner I knew I made the right decision regarding our venue. I can be indecisive but also love organisation so I went in with a million ideas as to how we wanted our day to be a reflection of us. Stella from the Bridge House Hotel was always so open to ideas and nothing was too much trouble but the real work didn’t start until we went back to Australia. We had to organise our entire wedding in the three weeks we were at home. That included the dress, bridesmaids, suits, photographers, the lot. It was such a stressful time and then during the year we began second guessing our choices as we had made them in such a rush. The Bridge House Hotel was always on hand. Within 8 weeks of returning to Australia, Stella and Catriona made contact so see how we were getting on and if they could help in any way being on the ground in Ireland. For the remainder of the year we got an email every 6-8 weeks checking in with us. When we made numerous changes, including the wedding date to New Year’s Eve, the Bridge House Hotel could not have been more flexible and willing to help when they could.
Our venue… Upon arriving at the Bridge House Hotel we were so pleased with the wonderful welcome we received. When I approached the reception for our appointment, the ladies and gentlemen at the desk could not have been more pleasant. You felt more like a family member than a paying guest. Nothing was too much, tea coffee whilst you wait, how about a scone! Whilst we were waiting another wedding was taking place and again I was so pleased with our venue choice. Weddings really are the hotel’s speciality and they make it all look so easy. Stella was so professional and efficient that my nerves started to calm after our first meeting. I loved her openness and willingness to be honest, often when you are planning a wedding, suppliers will tell you what they think you want to hear. For weeks I would drop in bags of props and decorations, each time ringing Stella as to what new idea had popped into my head that day.
The wedding… The night before the wedding had finally arrived and there was calmness about the house that all we had to do was wait. Stella called to wish me well and confirm the seating arrangements. It also gave me peace of mind to know that she was on it and I didn’t have to worry. Our wedding was truly the best day of our lives. The church looked magical and it felt like our fairy tale was coming through. However like all weddings, they go by so fast and we were running slightly late. Again we went to the castle for photos we were about an hour behind. I need not have worried, when my bridesmaid called Stella all was under control. One of our best memories of our wedding day is our arrival at the Bridge House. The bagpipes, the concierge and again Stella was on hand to greet us. Words cannot describe how we felt when we entered the reception room. Even though I had seen a wedding in the room days before, it was like I was seeing the room for the first time. It was beyond my wildest dreams, better than anything I had seen in magazines in the previous year and was trying to recreate. It looked amazing!! From the decorations to the procession of the bridesmaids, our surprise entrance into the room and the food, our guests are still talking about our wedding months on!
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Pamela enjoys writing about all things decor (she loves buying it too) and has a not so secret addiction to stationery.