Beautiful, Understated, Victoria Falls Hotel Wedding in Zimbabwe: James & Holly

 In All, Garden, Outdoor, Real Wedding, Romantic, Timeless

What type of theme or colour scheme should you choose when your wedding venue does all the talking? A great option is to keep it simple… that’s what James & Holly did, and their big day was simply beautiful!

Words by Holly. Images by Dust & Dreams Photography.

I knew the exact wedding dress I wanted. I stepped into a shop, two years prior to the wedding, picked a dress off the rail, paired it with a dramatic veil and said: “Mum, this is the one”.

It was the first dress I tried on, and this was all happening while Meghan Markle walked down the aisle to meet Prince Harry. It was quite surreal standing in my dress watching the tiny little TV that was screening the Royal Wedding.

We married at The Victoria Falls Hotel in Zimbabwe. It was a childhood dream of mine to get married on the lush lawns of the Victoria Falls Hotel. We wanted to combine our love for nature and the bush, with the classy affair that we believe a wedding should be.

No venue screams ‘colonial safari’ the way The Victoria Falls Hotel does. Everything from the architecture, the décor, the beautiful views and the scurrying warthogs were what we had imagined for our big day.

My grandfather played a very significant role in my life. During the last few days of his life, I expressed to him how it was my dream to marry James on the lawns of the Victoria Falls Hotel (we had spent his 80th birthday there a few years prior to this).

The 13th of July 2019 was the 3 year anniversary of my Grandad’s passing. It was my tribute to him, to make sure he knew he was included in the special day.

My Dad walked me down the aisle to Canon in D, just like I had always imagined as a little girl.

However, just before the prelude, an African choir opened the ceremony by walking down the aisle, singing, Can You Feel The Love Tonight from Lion King. (Mine & James’ first date was to the Lion King on Broadway in London)

Our wedding favours were miniature hand-painted elephants. Not only did they resemble the big elephant population in Vic Falls, but they were actually brought from Chiang Mai where James and I now live.

The favours were meant to be a token of our adventure, and new home in Asia.

Our wedding planner did the flower arrangements. We wanted the venue and surroundings to speak for themselves, so we didn’t want the flowers to be too elaborate. Our request was ‘uncomplicated white with greenery’.

The cake was made by Anne Marie Ashby. Again, we wanted it to be uncomplicated but in keeping with our theme and the colour scheme. 

Steph & Elaine of Dust and Dreams Photography were everything a bride could wish for in wedding photographers. They were deeply personal, calm and collected, and most importantly knew exactly what we wanted out of our images.

Planning an understated wedding and need some timeless wedding inspiration, do follow the link.

photography: dust and dreams photography / event design and planning: vic falls occasions / florals and bouquet: vic falls occasions / venue and catering: victoria falls hotel / stationery: matthew garvin / wedding dress: alfred angelo, sapphire collection / hair: fiona mason / make up: michele vickery / cake: anne-marie ashby / groomsmen suits – moss bros / bridesmaids dresses: adrianna papell / entertainment: dj francis

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