Weddings in Greece
Getting Married in Greece Mystical Romance, Ancient and Traditional, Natural beauty … Landscaped and Artistic. The dream of Greece is yours to delight in … Greece is one of the most sought after and romantic Wedding and Honeymoon destinations in the world.
See how Greek tradition and unlimited imagination can make your wedding dreams come true. Our specialists at Windmills Travel will make sure that every magnificent detail of your most important day is brought to life. Whether you prefer to be married on the mainland in Athens or on one of our breathtaking Islands, we will make sure that it is amazing in every way. Choose between a party with friends and relatives or an intimate ceremony and reception for two.
The Wedding Ceremony
Wedding Ceremonies can be held in a church, a chapel on the beach, or in the town hall. At some locations, such as Santorini, a wedding can be held just about anywhere on the island that you prefer, including on a hotel terrace, in a restaurant, in an old factory, on a hilltop overlooking the sea, at a winery, on a boat, or even in the water. For this most precious of occasions, we will assist you with everything you want and need from the moment you land in Greece until you are happily returning home.
Our professional and multilingual staff has the experience and dedication to make your wedding everything you have dreamt it would be. Every couple is assigned an on-site wedding coordinator, knowledgeable in every aspect of planning, who will help create the wedding of your dreams. This plan is called “Windmills Weddings by Design”, which is the ultimate in personalized destination weddings and honeymoons.
Together, we will plan a complete package from the moment you arrive, and throughout your ceremony, the reception, and your honeymoon. It is a one-of-a-kind package tailored for couples coming alone or with an entire wedding party.
Our program affords couples the opportunity to pick and choose from a host of arrangements, services, and items guaranteed to personalize their special day. From intimate and simple barefoot elegance on the beach to the ultimate 5-star wedding with musicians and fireworks, couples can truly have their day their way.
The Windmills Weddings by Design includes the following:
• Marriage Documentation
(License fee, processing, publication, officiate, witnesses and certificate. Officiates perform Christian, Orthodox, or non-denominational ceremony, depending on your wishes and where you are within Greece)
• Wedding Planner
(Consultation, coordination and assistance with marriage certificate processing for the Bride and Groom and everything necessary for the ceremony and reception or dinner)
(Transfers by private car to and from the ceremony, Photographer with 50 photos and negatives, Bottle of Champagne, Bridal Bouquet and Boutonniere, Wedding Cake, Private Romantic Dinner for two at a 5-Star venue, Gift Certificate to be used on any future visit to Greece)
• Wedding Requirements
A marriage certificate is a legal document issued by the Mayor of the City where you are married and is recognized in other countries. In order to obtain your marriage certificate, there is a list of requirements that couples must complete in order to be married in Greece. Your marriage certificate will be in Greek, and you will need to have it translated in order to use it in your country. The Greek Embassy of your country will do this for a fee. For your marriage, no blood test is necessary.
To complete the process, couples must submit paperwork in advance. Each destination may have slightly different requirements, of which you will be advised in our initial correspondence.
Here are the standard requirements that pertain to all legal marriages in Greece.
• A clean and legible copy of the Bride and Groom’s birth certificates.
• If either party has been divorced, the original Final Decree or a certified copy (with a raised or colored seal) must be produced, along with a translated certified or notarized copy in Greek.
• If either party is widowed, the death certificate of the deceased spouse must be produced.
• A certificate from the Greek consular office nearest your home which states that there are no problems for the ceremony to take place in Greece, i.e. you are free to be married. “Single Status” letter from the Embassy. Or, see below regarding Marriage License.
• If you already have a license for the marriage from your community, then you must have it translated into Greek. The Greek Embassy in your area can do this for you by mail for a fee.
• If you wish to have a religious ceremony, either the Bride or Groom must be of the denomination of the church performing the ceremony. One of you must be Catholic to have a Catholic ceremony, and you must have a signed affirmation that you have completed your sacraments from your local church. For a Greek Orthodox ceremony, one of you must be Greek Orthodox. Civil ceremonies can take place in any mayor’s office in Greece. In some areas, the Mayor’s office is the only place where a civil ceremony can take place, and in other areas it is possible to have a civil ceremony anywhere you wish. It depends on the destination you choose for your wedding.
• A copy of your passports that must be valid.
Before the Wedding …
Tradition in Greece is to have your “Bed” made before you actually sleep in it with your new spouse. During this ceremony, the bed is “made” with hand-knit linens and then adorned with Koufetta – almond candies, rose petals and, of course, money from friends and family for good luck. In many Greek villages, they gently roll babies on the bed to insure fertility. This ceremony is usually followed by a light meal and drinks. We can do this right in your hotel room the day before the ceremony, or during the morning of the ceremony, together with a lovely brunch. You can also purchase the handmade blanket used on your wedding night to have as a keepsake of this memorable ceremony.
When attending a Greek wedding, guests might wear a small “Eye” to ward off evil and keep the Bride and Groom protected from bad luck. You will see these for sale all over Greece. Greek Brides often put a lump of sugar in their glove for a “sweet” marriage. In Ancient Greece, Brides often carried Ivy at the weddings as a symbol of their never-ending love. Traditionally, during medieval times, the bride was abducted from her home and village by force. To do this, a large expedition was formed, led by the groom, which attacked the bride’s home so as to kidnap her. The reason for this was biologically based in theory. Since villages were remote from one another, and since each village was basically inhabited by one extended family, the incursion by an expedition from another village literally brought “new blood” to the gene pool, assuring stronger and healthier offspring. In more modern times, however, due to the establishment of large cities and towns, creating a more mobile society, only a farcial re-enactment of the expedition took place. In this case, musicians played the central role of the bride and groom, and the bride’s relatives were “bribed” to let the bride go, rather than to have actually have been defeated in battle.
The whole ceremony was accompanied by special music and songs specific to each individual community (marriage songs, “tragoudia tou gamou”). The best of these songs eventually managed to spread throughout Greece and are considered to be fine jewels in our rich cultural tradition. Nowadays, after the wedding ceremony, guests are offered bombonieres. These delightful gifts of sugar-coated almonds are wrapped in net and attached to a small memento of your wedding.
And, by the way, another hallmark of modern weddings is the wild and deafening loud concerto of automobile horns before and after a wedding ceremony. You can smile when you hear this, since you now know the tradition behind it … the bride has been abducted!!
Following the ceremony, we can take you to the venue of your choice for the wedding reception of your dreams. No matter where you choose to have it, we can tailor the food and ambience exactly to your taste. Together we can create a small reception in a beautiful setting for just the two of you, such as a candlelit dinner for two near the beach, just after sunset, followed by a stay in the honeymoon suite or dancing until dawn.
If you are expecting a few family members, we will take it up a notch and find the perfect traditional atmosphere for your celebration. From 4 guests to 1400 guests, we take care of it all. Together, we will plan the menu, the decoration, the music, and the time of day in the place your choice, to make it all simply perfect. Standard Reception package will include rental and decoration of the venue, 4-course meal, photographer, videographer, and musicians / DJ.
Pricing will depend upon the number of guests and the venue chosen. Many such venues pride themselves on having an excellent chef who will bake all the breads and sweets on the premises and offer the freshest produce and fish caught the same day.
A very nice touch is to add a fireworks display to announce the arrival of the Bride and Groom at the reception.