Stunning coastal weddings in breath-taking, dramatic landscapes, captured by Alicante wedding photographer, Phil Salisbury.
I couldn’t wait to join Sven and Jacqueline as their Alicante wedding photographer on a beautiful few days in the sun. Combining photographing their wedding with a much needed break by the pool has definitely recharged my batteries for the rest of the season. Although I’m based in the UK as a Manchester wedding photographer, I also love to travel and capture destination weddings all over the world!
As we got off the plane in Alicante we were met by Jacqueline and Sven, who were waiting to take us to their venue (where we’d also be staying). Their wedding would be held at the stunning Pueblo Ancantilado Suites overlooking the sea, and we were super excited to explore the area.
Based on the cliffside (and at the top of a huge hill, that I must have climbed up and down 30 times over the course of the weekend!), Pueblo Ancantilado Suites is a peaceful place, surrounded by a small residential area.
To make the most of the day we dropped our bags at our apartment and headed out for a bit of a scout around, getting our creative brains busy with lots of ideas for epic photos. Jacqueline and Sven joined us and we took a little tour of a few different coastal locations including an incredible bay and the dramatic cliffside, where we captured some pre-wedding photos.
This Dutch and Costa Rician couple are completely head over heels in love, and you can see that the moment you meet them, we had a great time getting to know them and chatting whilst capturing some portraits. We had a few hours together in the sunshine with Jacqueline wearing a gorgeous summery maxi dress, and Sven in his Tommy Hilfiger shirt, chinos and loafers. The photos really captured the relaxed, romantic vibe of the whole weekend. If you are planning to have a similar photoshoot before you get married, check out my article on what to wear to a pre wedding shoot.
Jacqueline and Sven then spent the evening visiting family living nearby (part of the reason they’d planned an Alicante wedding), and we made the most of the beautiful evening, relaxing by the pool with paella and sangria before prepping our kit, ready for the wedding the following day.
Bright and early the next day we got up to start preparing to capture Jacqueline and Sven’s Alicante wedding photography. Although we were up by 8am, Spanish weddings don’t usually start until about 4pm so we had plenty of time to capture preparation and the build up to the big moment!
Every perfect day starts with breakfast, and we joined Jacqueline and Sven who were both getting ready separately in rooms one above the other, overlooking the sea.
With everyone chatting away in Dutch or Spanish, it was definitely a learning curve for me, and I relied heavily on my instincts as a documentary wedding photographer to understand what was going on! Happiness, excitement and emotion has a similar tone in all languages so I was using all my senses to pick up on the cues and capture all of the important moments.
Before the ceremony the couple had an emotional first look on the clifftops, with Jacqueline’s elegant dress looking stunning in the Alicante sunshine. They had a few quiet moments together in the coastal breeze which created gorgeous movement in Jacqueline’s long veil.
Their ceremony on the terraced clifftop took place at the end of an aisle decorated with fans and floral displays. It was a really breath-taking sight, the spectacular setting making it even more memorable.
Again, I was relying on my intuition as the majority of the ceremony was in Dutch, so I was paying extra attention to every little cue in tone of voice and body language.
They walked back down the aisle as newlyweds to be showered in rice and bubbles. Accompanied by Spanish guitar, Jacqueline and Sven enjoyed cocktails and lots of excited cheering and hugs of congratulations with their friends and family.
They’d been joined by very special people from around the world, including an aunt from America, and their 84-year-old grandparents had made the trip to see them get married.
The bouquet toss turned into a brilliant group photo opportunity, with plenty of high fives and cheers from the boys when some of their partners failed to catch the bouquet!
Everyone sat down for a three-course meal and speeches; the local cuisine, fresh fish, tiramisu, and lots of wine seemed to be going down very well. I can confirm everything was absolutely delicious!
We took Jacqueline and Sven away for a few moments to capture some portraits of them in the area surrounding the venue. It’s uniquely positioned in a semi-residential area, so there was a little high street type area for them to walk through.
The evening party was a vibrant and surreal experience – I didn’t realise playing ‘Nelly the Elephant’ was such a big tradition at weddings… in the UK we play it at kids parties so it definitely brought a wry smile, mixed with a little bit of ‘WTF??’ puzzlement to my face!
The bride and groom were waved off waved off by their friends and family with a sparkler exit at midnight, which was the perfect way to end their day.
The morning after the wedding everyone came back together to have breakfast together. This was particularly emotional as the Jacqueline and Sven are soon to emigrate to Australia. Saying goodbye to Sven’s sister was a real tear-jerking moment, you could see how much they mean to each other.
It was a real privilege to be part of this family celebration, in a beautiful country and really special venue. I can’t wait to return and work as an Alicante wedding photographer again, I regularly shoot destination weddings and it’s always a treat to indulge my love for travel as part of my work. Please do get in touch if you are planning an Alicante wedding, or getting married anywhere else in the world!