Luzio was in for a surprise when Matthew proposed during a helicopter tour. “We flew around Rio de Janeiro and then hovered in front of Christ the Redeemer,” shares Luzio. “I was looking at the statue when Matthew called my name. I turned around, and he was holding the ring and asked me to marry him. We had champagne in the sky as we continued our flight. There was a photographer, but I was told he was there taking pictures of the flight for his website, but it turns out he was really there to capture our engagement. It was a truly unforgettable moment.”
"With the country dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, our wedding numbers were drastically reduced," explains Luzio. "We wanted to make sure that even with a smaller guest list, we could still have a beautiful wedding which would not reflect or leave memories of the pandemic. Coombe Abbey is a breathtaking venue with exterior landscaping, a lake and a historic interior. From the moment we arrived, we fell in love with the property and liked that there were so many places to take photographs."
For their favours, the couple chose personalised chocolates decorated with purple bows.
"Our tables had a mixture of English and Brazilian guests, each with a direct view of the head table," says Luzio. "We found a lady on Etsy who made hexagon shaped glass cut-outs which we used as our place names. We wrote each person's name in beautiful gold and placed them on white napkins."
The happy couple chose gorgeous centrepieces from Fairytale Flowers. "These included a selection of fresh blooms in dusky pink placed in large black and silver oval vases," shares Luzio. "We requested to have lots of vases ranging in size and shape placed around the venue to create a floral smell. We also had a flower arch at the front of the ceremony and trees with lights in the corner."
"The cake was the hardest part of the wedding," Luzio adds. "We knew what we wanted but couldn't find anything like it online. We chose more than 20 pictures where we liked an aspect of the cake's design and did some terrible drawings. From these, Cakes 4 U By Julz created a design that was exactly what we wanted. Julz was incredibly patient with us, and it looked perfect."
Luzio and Matthew chose a neon light-up sign that they placed behind the cake. "It said 'crazy in love', which is a reference to the early part of our relationship before we said I love you to each other we would say I am Beyoncé referring to the song Crazy in Love," explains Luzio. "To finish off the day, we hired a white Rolls Royce Phantom from Manns Limousines that we decorated with a purple ribbon."
"We wanted to have a different look that stood out from other weddings," recalls Luzio. "We went to several clothing specialists, and sadly, we couldn't find what we were looking for as our vision was so specific. We liked the idea of dinner jackets and wanted three-piece suits, where we could take the jackets off to reveal a more casual look without getting changed. Matthew opted for a grey dinner jacket with black edging and a grey waistcoat, and I chose a blue dinner jacket with matching black edging and a blue waistcoat. We had the same trousers, shoes and belt and opted for dusky pink bow ties and matching corner pockets. We liked that we hadn't seen pictures of similar concepts and feel it was unique to our wedding."
Due to COVID-19, the couple were unable to have any entertainment at their reception. "We did have musicians play throughout the ceremony, which was an excellent addition to the wedding," says Luzio. "The small number of guests made the wedding feel very personal and intimate with people getting to know each other and celebrating as a big family."
"We had both put off writing our speeches, and as a result, it ended up impacting our sleep the night before the wedding," Luzio explains. "It was stressful but more so because we had an action plan to follow to ensure everything was complete and we were on time. Having 24 hours apart really impacted us, so when we saw each other at the ceremony, we were overcome with emotion."
Luzio and Matthew had a slight mishap on the morning of the wedding. "We had the same wedding trousers in different sizes, and Matthew had accidently taken my pair," shares Luzio. "We had spent the night before in separate hotels, so I had to meet our guests in jeans until Matthew arrived to get changed."
"The registrars were very excited about the wedding as it was their first one that year due to COVID-19 and the first with two men," says Luzio. "They were as emotional as we were and really made the entire ceremony personal to us. They made our guests laugh, even when I become overcome with emotion, they started a joke to give me time to breathe. All our guests commented on how amazing the registrars were and adding that personal touch made a real difference. We were also very blessed that after a dark start to the morning, the sun came out and the clouds disappeared, and we had the perfect wedding weather."