Destination weddings in Ireland and DC/MD USA. Your Irish wedding planner – styling and coordination to die for weddings since 2006. Based in Dublin and Maryland.

Brian & Kimberly: A Gorgeous Classic Woodland Castle Elopement

Brian and Kimberley’s elopement to Ireland is exactly what we’re talking about when we say Ireland is a really special place that will truly embrace you and make your entire wedding experience one you’ll never forget. Besides the incredible scenery and breathtaking backdrops, one distinguishable factor is the people. “We did not have a first dance until a day later when we randomly went to a pub in Kinsale,” Brittany explains.  Their dream destination elopement spanned eleven days of exploring and touring the island, with their charming intimate elopement at Waterford Castle the highlight event. “The musicians found out we were just married and called us to the floor and began playing ‘Wonderful Tonight’ by Eric Clapton.  It was such a perfect moment that added to the overall experience! And during our private dinner at the castle after the ceremony, people kept buying us bottles of champagne!”  We love Kimberley’s gorgeous Stella York dress — the lace and flow suited just perfectly for the woodland castle setting — she made the most beautiful bride.  Brian looked classic and dashing in his suit.  But most of all we love how effortlessly the day flowed, as you can see from the uber-talented Aspect Photography.

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It Started Back In College…

They met seven years ago at the University of Florida.  One day, in a parking lot on campus, their eyes locked and for one brief but fantastic moment, time stopped. Fast forward two years later and Kimberly’s roommate invited “the new guys who just moved in” to come over and watch TV, taking mercy upon them for not having their cable set up yet. As Fate would have it, one of the those “new guys” was Brian. They remembered each other from the parking lot and instantly took to one another.  Weeks went by, Brian would come over to watch TV (that cable company sure took an awful long time to set up their cable! wink) and by month’s end Brian and Kimberly knew they were each The One. Patiently waiting to finish school, they took a trip to Ireland five years later during spring break and were staying at Ashford Castle. There, in one of the most picturesque parts of Ireland, Brian asked Kimberly to marry him and she said yes!

An Intimate Castle Wedding

During their trip to Ireland Brian and Kimberley fell in love with the island and knew they’d return to marry here.  “His great-grandparents were from Ireland so we thought it would be a special way to incorporate his heritage and my new adopted heritage!” Kimberly says.  The idea of getting married in a castle felt like a dream, and Waterford fit the bill perfectly.  With its private location on its own island together with the gorgeous grounds and interior, it was an ideal fit for the intimate wedding they had envisioned. “The toughest part was not being able to be there physically and see everything in person,” Kimberly confesses.  “We had to go with our gut and trust our instinct that it was going to work out. Waterlily Wedding’s entire planning team was amazing — they were very good at capturing what we wanted and communicating throughout the entire process.”

A Great Start To the morning

Kimberly and Brian broke with tradition the morning of their wedding. Instead of spending the time apart, they took a falconry experience together at the castle! “We spent the morning of our wedding learning about birds of prey and having them land on our arm! It was amazing!” Kimberly recalls. We love that they took the opportunity the morning of their wedding to experience something new and fun together, a great way to bond and get the excitement going for the rest of the day! “Having a fun experience took the news out of the day. Our mentality was we were just going to enjoy every moment and not worry about anything.”  They saved the surprise for their First Look moment later.

The Details

We love that Kimberly and Brian chose to get married under the giant oak tree in front of the castle. It made for such a unique backdrop with the moss-covered branches, huge gorgeous trees, and quiet woodland.  The spectacular green natural setting felt in keeping with the Irish traditions they were looking to incorporate.  Their traditional Irish ceremony was filled with lots of Irish traditions as well, and the natural space felt really romantic for their intimate elopement and created the perfect atmosphere for them to say their vows. “We’ve been through a lot in the past 7 years and it was beautiful to reminisce through our vows,” says Kimberly. The overcast day added a lovely coziness that seemed to heighten the greenery around them. After the ceremony they explored the grounds and took some pictures before returning to the castle for some champagne and cake.  “We wanted to incorporate a more traditional cake so we went with a chocolate biscuit cake. It was the first time we ever tried it and loved it! We laughed because we attempted to cut it together and it’s literally like trying to cut through a brick!”  Thankfully a member of the castle’s staff came in to save the day, cut the slices and they enjoyed the cake in the cozy castle together.  Rounding out the day included a private dinner at the castle and a vintage car to tour the area to take pictures.

All in all a classic romantic elopement at Waterford Castle!

Favorite Moments

We cannot recommend a First Look enough to couples, especially those who are eloping. It’s such a beautiful, raw moment that photographs so eloquently and purely, as you can clearly see from Kimberly and Brian’s photos.  “It made us both giddy seeing each other all dressed up,” says Kimberly. “We had imagined it for the last 7 years so all we could do was giggle with giant smiles on our faces!”  They also loved taking the vintage car off the island and over to the nearby cliffs.  The view was spectacular and made for some breathtaking photos.

A Piece of Advice

“Trust the process and have an open mind!” Kimberly advises.  “Don’t be afraid to ask questions and get suggestions from Michelle and her Team.  Our wedding day was absolutely perfect and we wouldn’t change a thing (except maybe have stayed longer in Ireland than 11 days!).”


Congratulations Kimberly and Brian!! We loved working with you and wish you both a lifetime of nothing but happiness and continued adventures together!

For more information and to begin conceptualizing your dream castle elopement to Ireland, contact us today!



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