April 14, 2014

COSMO BRIDES - SOPHIA & CHAD

The new issue of Australian Cosmo Brides is out this week and we are excited to see one of our recent weddings in there. Congrats to Sophia & Chad on their Sydney wedding day in October and thank you for letting us share your beautiful images in the magazine. We look forward to sharing the full series of favourites from their day on the blog this month x

April 1, 2014

HONEYMOON DREAMING

Couples often ask us about any suggestions we have for amazing honeymoon locations, the worlds best hidden hotels or the most dreamy locations for a gorgeous couple photo....then they joke about taking us along for the trip to document their stay. We thought it was about time we shared some of our favorite hotels, islands and honeymoon locations with you..... all experienced first hand and all suitable for your own camera or video coverage after the big day!!
Nusa Lembongan is a small island off the southeast coast of the main island of Bali. The aqua blue water is some of the clearest you will find. The diving & snorkelling is filled with abundant marine life and live coral. Nusa Lembongan Resort is a 5 star boutique resort with stunning restaurant, bar, day spa, 25 metre lap pool, pool bar, 9 x 9 metre infinity edge pool, steam room, gymnasium, day lounge and wedding pavilion. 
  
All rooms have air-conditioning, internet, safe, 220 thread cotton sheets, king size double beds, mini bars and turn down service. The outdoor bathrooms and toilets have spectacular views over the surf breaks and across to Mt Agung in Bali
Nusa Lembongan will forever hold special memories as our engagement island. As the clock struck midnight on New Years Eve 2001 we celebrated poolside with champagne and a little surprise visitor hidden inside a little blue Tiffanys box just waiting to be found.
  The resort is perfect..... "In harmony with nature and the gods. It combines the seclusion of an island retreat with style and personalized service". One day we have promised to return for an anniversary celebration.
The Four Seasons Resort in Jimbaran Bay, Bali is like visiting a world all of its own. An expansive and elegant private Balinese villa awaits you and it is hard not to find yourselves so immersed in the separate sleeping, bathing and living pavilions that there is really no need to leave. This is before you fall in love with the ocean views from your private plunge pool.
When we finally did escape from our new home 3 days later to walk around the dramatic hilltop setting, experience some sandy oceanside dining and choose from the extensive range of books & dvds in the hotel library our trip was by private golf buggy delivered within seconds of the request to our front door. The Four Seasons staff are incredible and are best described as "intuitive, catering to every moment and every detail in the mystique of this spiritual land".
 Bedarra Island Villa is situated on the Great Barrier Reef, QLD. Both the villa and adjoining studio are situated on 2 acres of private land which wraps around a palm fringed white sandy beach. It was an unforgettable moment arriving by private charter boat on the island. Our guide escorted us to the villa and unpacked all of our pre-ordered food & beverage before saying goodbye for our 5 night/6 day Robinson Crusoe adventure.
 Total seclusion led to hours of swimming & snorkelling in the clear turquoise waters of the coral sea. Interiors were relaxed yet modern designed by renowned interior architect, Ian Moore.  No day trippers are allowed on the island which means you are assured complete privacy. Bedarra Island Villa was the perfect place for our honeymoon in November 2001. A Conde Nast favorite from year to year, Perivolas infinity pool was the most magical place to watch the sunset of Oia. Preservation of the original stone 300 year old caves has ensured each suite has its own stone terrace overlooking the caldera.
Furnished with rustic island antiques the boutique hotel has just 17 houses providing a unique blend of elegant simplicity. The infinity pool was simply the best we have seen in the world.  Perivolas, the clifftop retreat that we visited in 2003 enroute to Paris wins 1st place for the most incredible view. Vowing to return to the Island we could not resist documenting a last minute toe dipping into the pool.
In 2003 we stayed at the delightful Old Sea Captains House in Oia, Santorini for the first time as well. After being assigned to cover a clients wedding on the island this year (6 years later) we could not go past another visit to Tony Mosiman’s private three suite hotel.
The Kapetanospito (meaning sea captain's house in Greek) is one of a very few historic-preservation houses in Oia. By village standards, this is a very grand place, with its double-terraced front with false pillars of volcanic red rock, courtyard, and wide-plank floors; yet it's also typically Santorinian, with high vaulted ceilings and an interior partially carved into the cliffs. The hotel is split into two villas and three suites, although it's possible to rent the whole place to yourself, perfect for small wedding celebrations.
This is the venetian suite, home for our 7 night stay just 2months ago. All suites have canopy beds, antiques and local artwork. The breakfasts at the Old Sea Captains House are legendary and one of the key reasons we chose to return six years later. The new Caldera Massages Studio run by Antonio is worth a regular visit. Inspired by the natural beauty of the caldera the new Aromatherapy based cosmetic line smells divine and has made a welcome addition back home in Sydney. The deck and relaxing hot tub on the roof top terrace made relaxing with a good book, afternoon siestas and champagne sunset toasts a daily ritual during our visit.
This year we also stayed at stylish new find, the luxurious 5 star Lord Byron Hotel in Rome. Carefully tucked away in the exclusive Parioli quarter of Rome, but just a few steps from Villa Borghese, the “Dolce Vita” of Via Veneto and a stroll in the park away from Piazza di Spagna. 
The Lord Byron is the choice of distinguished travellers wishing to escape the hustle & bustle of Rome but experience the best of both worlds: the vicinity to the bustling Eternal City’s main attractions and the opportunity to relax in a most placid private atmosphere. The charming rooms and suites were recently restored in the Thirties art-d├ęco style. The service is impeccable, the staff stylish and the vibe private & discreet. It is no surprise that the hotel is a favorite of celebrity clients, George Clooney and Julia Roberts.

We have saved what is I believe is truly one of the most incredible properties in the world to last.....Le Sirenuse in Positano is located on the spectacular Amalfi Coast in Italy and is a glamous 18th century villa with white-washed walls and colourful tiled floors. Opening in 1951 when the Sersale family turned their summer house into a charming hotel, today there are 63 rooms furnished with all the comforts of a luxury hotel, while maintaining the atmosphere of a private home.
The champagne & oyster bar is located on the hotel terrace overlooking the bay of Positano. Our dinner below at La Sponda was extraordinary.

John Steinbeck wrote "Positano bites deep. It is a dream place that isn’t quite real when you are there and becomes beckoningly real after you have gone". Not a more perfect word has been spoken about this magical place.

The pool is surrounded by lemon trees and is the perfect backdrop to a candlelit dinner. You may recall the scene from Only You starring Billy Zane & Marisa Tomei. Yes this is the pool and the location of several scenes filmed by the lead cast which included Robert Downey Jnr. The Sant' Antonio is a magnificent old wooden boat, just one of 2 available for charter at the hotel.

Finally some hotels we dream about visiting – well there are many but here is just 10 of them from all areas of the globe that you may love too.. Lizard Island, North Queensland – http://www.lizardisland.com.au/ Turtle Island, Fiji – http://www.turtlefiji.com/ Hibiscus Hill, Bahamas – http://www.hibiscushillharbourisland.com/ Kauri Cliffs, New Zealand – http://www.kauricliffs.com/ Four Seasons Hotel, King Georges V, Paris – www.fourseasons.com/paris The Grove, England – http://www.thegrove.co.uk/ Villa Marie, St Tropez, France – http://www.villamarie.fr/ Molori Lodge, South Africa – http://www.molori.com/ Blanket Bay, New Zealand – http://www.blanketbay.com/ Post Ranch Inn, Big Sur, USA – http://www.postranchinn.com/ We hope you have enjoyed hearing our stories & experiences from around the globe, we would love to hear what your most memorable discoveries have been too....happy travels x

March 4, 2014

HELLO AUTUMN 2014

Make an entrance on your wedding day and invest in a stunning arrangement of greenery and florals that will not only smell divine but look beautiful as a backdrop for your photography. We loved photographing this ceremony for Jane & Robbie at Kincoppal Church styled by Philip Carr & Associates. Thank you for choosing us to cover your beautiful day.