CROWD of sightseers gathers round as a kilted Scotsman and an
Englishwoman in an ivory coloured suit emerge from Rome city hall into
Michelangelo's incomparable square on the Capitol Hill, obviously just
married. "Why did you get married in Rome?" the couple are
asked "Because it is a romantic city, isn't it?" replies the
bridegroom happily. The onlookers cheer and clap.
and Janet Morrison from Aberdeen are just one of a fast increasing
number of British couples who are visiting Italy to be married in its
sumptuous city halls or splendid Baroque churches, possibly with
receptions in Tuscan villas or medieval castles.
Lo Jacono, a wedding co-ordinator in Rome, arranged for around 70
couples to tie the knot in Rome, Florence and Venice last year; and
says that the figure promises to be even higher this year,
"I already have a thick file for 2002," she said.
are drawn by the romance of Italy. Thanks to the exchange rate a
wedding in Italy could cost no more, probably less, than one in
Britain, although for couples who invite hundreds of
wedding guests to stay at specially rented Tuscan villas, the
bill can rise steeply.
Ms. Lo Jacono's
clients tend to be slightly older than the average. 'About 65 per cent
of them are marrying for the second or third time,"
she said. Most visit alone, or with a very few friends or relations,
for an intimate wedding, often with a reception back home later.
Sandy Morrison, an oil Industry engineer, who is 50, and Janet, a
personnel officer, who is 48, were both marrying for the second time.