A Pastel-Hued Cashel Palace Hotel Wedding: Sally & Corey

A Pastel-Hued Cashel Palace Hotel Wedding: Sally & Corey

US real wedding couple chose an Sally and Corey celebrated their love with an immensely stylish wedding which was imbued with ornate French flair. Sally was born in Cork but she grew up in Boston and they chose a seriously wonderfully sentimental venue on Irish soil for their special day. It was a autumn wedding of luxurious beauty at Cashel Palace Hotel in Co. Tipperary. With a Palace of Versailles-inspired theme and a delicate pastel palette, flowers in cream and pink shades brought a whimsical air to their lavish festivities. Sally’s bridal style was uber-romantic and their big day was loaded with sweet personal touches which included a long list of touching gifts for members of their wedding party. With an epic photoshoot in the grounds of a ruined castle, an elegantly refined ballroom reception, a champagne tower, a dazzling fireworks display, and not to mention the party that broke out on the dancefloor later with “jigs, conga lines and limbo”, it was a day that the couple and their guests will always cherish. Kathy Silke Photography was on hand to capture all the magic. Are you ready to swoon?

Corey is originally from Columbus, Ohio, and he and Sally met while they were studying at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. They met through two of our closest friends, who were also a couple, and are also now married! They tell us, “They were even our maid of honour and a groomsmen in our wedding. We also spent a lot of time together at various events thanks to our respective Fraternity (Delta Chi) and Sorority (Kappa Delta). We became friendly acquaintances and then friends throughout our university days.”

“We didn’t get together as a couple until our last year of school after we ended up interning at the same Chicago company for a summer. After a team karaoke night we shared a cab ride back to Evanston together. Corey asked to hold Sally’s hand in the car but didn’t go any further, when the driver pulled up to her apartment she thought that would be it. She made it to her door before she heard him get out of the car. He told her he had feelings for her, and she said the same. They had their first kiss right on her doorstep. The rest is history.”

He popped the question during COVID in 2020. “At first, he had wanted to propose at the beach near Sally’s parents’ home in Chatham, Cape Cod in Massachusetts. But with the lockdown on most travel during that time, he had to organize an alternative. Instead, he coordinated with a few of the couple’s closest friends to surprise Sally during a Labor Day long weekend trip to Holland, Michigan (which is an easily driveable distance from Chicago). Sally had no idea he was going to propose, she was sure he would do it at Christmas.”

“On their second night there, the group was supposed to go to dinner in town, but they told Sally they were running late for the reservation, so she and Corey went ahead to secure the table. Near the restaurant is Holland’s Centennial Park, a lovely park with a large, beautiful fountain at its centre. Corey meandered them through the park until they reached the fountain then dropped to one knee to propose. Sally said yes of course, and then through happy tears asked if their friends and her parents knew what was happening.”

“Sally as an only child has always had an incredibly close relationship with her mom and dad, so when she thought they weren’t around to see her get engaged she was a bit anxious. She didn’t need to worry though because Corey had planned for that too! After she said yes, her parents, Sarah and Richard (who had travelled from Boston for the occasion) and all their friends popped up from their hiding places around the park to surprise them with champagne, balloons and cake. They all spent the rest of the evening celebrating out in Holland, it was an amazing surprise.”

The couple wanted their wedding to exude understated elegance. “It was fun and fashionable rolled into one remarkable package.” Sally adores weddings and she relished poring over every little detail with help from her mum, and she enlisted a wedding planner and stylist to bring her dream wedding day to life. “We chose many of our vendors because their past work showed the exact glam vibe we were trying to achieve for our wedding.”

Their colour palette was a whimsical medley of creams, soft pinks and pale greens and drawings of the venue and Rock of Cashel were included in their wedding décor. “Though originally we wanted something more akin to art deco, by the time we were done the aesthetic was much more French in nature. Between the grand house, its gardens, the Hore Abbey ruins where we did our photos, our flowers, the candles, the chandeliers, and other design choices we made, the closest inspiration we can offer would be something like the Palace of Versailles.”

While the couple viewed a number of venues, they knew Cashel Palace was the one for them, even after touring it before it was even open. “There are some great photos of us in hard hats walking around the construction site!” The Palace and Cashel itself holds a very special place in the couple’s hearts. “Sally spent a lot of time in the town throughout her childhood, and enjoyed many afternoons at the Palace either running around the gardens with her cousins, having dinner at the Buttery, or drinks in the Guinness bar, before the hotel closed for renovations in 2014.”

Bride holds her bouquet with pastel flowers ahead of her Cashel Palace Hotel wedding

“Her beloved grandparents, Ted and Vera Scannell, owned a house at the top of Palmer’s hill in Cashel, where Sally and her parents spent many of their Christmases and summers after traveling from their home in Boston back to Ireland for the holidays. Cashel holds so many significant memories for the family, and even though sadly both of Sally’s grandparents were deceased by the time of her wedding, getting married in a place that was so connected to her family was wondrous.”

They presented their loved ones with gorgeous gifts on their wedding morning with engraved bracelets by Irish designers for the mother and sister of the groom Irish designers and they had cufflinks engraved with the Ogham script for ‘Dad’ for the father of the bride. The bridesmaids and Sally’s mum received bespoke sketches of her wedding dress and their dresses while the mother of the bride also got a handkerchief inscribed with a beautiful message.

They gave their groomsmen personalised Guinness glasses. “A funny story here is that the engraving on the glasses was so delicate that the Cashel Palace staff who cleaned our rooms didn’t see it and thought the glasses belonged to the hotel. They washed them and put them with the rest of the Palace’s serving ware. Once we figured out the mishap they painstakingly searched and recovered each glass for our groomsmen before they departed back to the USA – they really are the best!”

Sally was a romantic vision in her strapless A-line ballgown wedding dress by Ines Di Santo which boasted a lace bodice, an ethereal ruffled skirt and diaphonous sleeves which she wore a pair of bespoke kitten block heels by Emmy London, a pearl necklace and a glittering hair pin. Her bridesmaids opted for mix and match navy bridesmaids dresses with varying necklines. The grooms party looked immensely dapper in grey suits.

When it came to their priorities for their special day, they had one clear goal and that was having a blast with their loved ones. “Everything that wasn’t fun would be left behind. We were determined that all the wedding work and woes that come with planning something so big would be done before we touched down in Ireland. We made the commitment that once the wedding day kicked off, we wouldn’t sweat the small stuff or any mistakes that happened, and we’d focus on each other and the excitement of having all our loved ones around us.”

“That mindset made a big difference and allowed them to easily look past any things that didn’t go ‘exactly to plan’. Additionally, with half the guests traveling from the USA, it was really important that everyone have a great experience, and each event in the wedding weekend was planned with both the bridal party and the wedding guests in mind.”

Delicate pastel blooms brought an ethereal flair to their ceremony. A highlight of their ceremony was saying the Our Father in Gaelic. “It was a lot of fun and something unique our American guests got to appreciate. Many of our guests have Irish ancestry, and American folks in general love Irish traditions and culture, so for them to hear Gaelic spoken aloud by the Irish guests in attendance was a real treat.” Their celebrant Enda who is a dear friend of Sally’s family conspired with the couple to pull of a gorgeous surprise.

“The guests didn’t know this was going to happen so it was great to see them try to shy away when he announced he was going to call on a few of them unexpectedly. The first guest he called on is a friend of Sally and Corey who has a reputation of being a bit of a jokester. When asked why he was at the wedding he said in complete earnestness, ‘Well, I’ve always wanted to visit Ireland.’ Everyone (including Sally and Corey) were in stitches and Enda was momentarily stunned silent. He went on to another guest who correctly (for Enda’s purposes) surmised that he was attending because of his close relationship with us.”

“It was the perfect combination of heartfelt and hilarious, and it gave our guests something to chuckle about all day.” One of the most memorable moments of the whole day came as they ventured to Hore Abbey with their bridesmaids and groomsmen. “We had decided the risk of getting wet was worth it. Our friend who recommended the Abby to us also happened to know the farmer who owns the land around the Abby and grazes his livestock there. He was kind enough to move them to a different field for the day of our wedding so as to avoid someone stepping in a cowpat!”

“And even with that, once we arrived we had to do some careful maneuvering to make sure no one slipped and ended up face down in the mud. That included the majority of the bridal party looking the other way while Corey and Kathy helped Sally lift her skirts to cross the threshold into the ruins. However, once we were inside, the sun broke through the clouds and blazed for the rest of our photos. We were so lucky to have this spectacular backdrop, and Kathy did an incredible job capturing these precious moments for us and our dearest friends.”

The celebrations kicked off with a stylish drinks reception at the five-star venue, where the couple even opted for a champagne tower which is always a crowd-pleaser! The couple held their reception in the bright ballroom which was styled to wow with stunning floral arrangements and towering silver candleholders while the chandeliers overhead glittered in the sunlight.

The couple opted for a sweetheart table which is an intimate seating trending which has become very popular with couples. “We wanted the bridal party to be able to eat and spend time with their respective partners who we didn’t include as bridesmaids and groomsmen, as well as other friends who had made the trek to Cashel for us.

“This afforded us a wonderful view to see all of our guests’ expressions and merriment throughout dinner. It also allowed us to spend a good amount of time together savouring the day.” Corey had been saving a very special bottle of wine for their most special day which was a bottle of wine they bought in the Rhône region in France during one of their first holidays.

The couple reflect on the speeches from their reception with the father of the bride, maid of honour and best man all giving heartfelt speeches which had their guests in throes of emotion, from tears to joyous laughter. “For our final salute, several members of Corey’s family – his uncle, aunt and two cousins, performed a rousing rendition of The Parting Glass complete with a whiskey cheers.

“This has become something of a tradition for Corey’s dad’s side of the family, with his uncle preparing unique lyrics for each couple he performs for. We felt so lucky that all our speakers, and singers, put in so much effort to their preparation and we were so touched by each of their deliveries.” They offer the following wedding planning advice, “Always remember that weddings are meant to be fun, and that this day is about you as a couple!

“There will be stress and there will be arguments, either between you or your family about what you should and shouldn’t do, but throughout any of the not great stuff, try to remember that this is (hopefully) a once in a lifetime event. The day will go by so quickly, and once it’s done you’ll feel a little wistful given all the energy and time you put into planning it – so don’t waste the moment feeling upset that something didn’t go exactly the way you pictured in your head (the truth is, nobody but you noticed, we promise!) Enjoy the ride and love every second you can.”

They had a dazzling surprise for their guests, as they had planned a sparkling fireworks display after dinner. “This was the first fireworks display the Palace had done as part of a wedding, so the staff were pretty excited to see it too. When the fireworks started we could hear the ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ of all our guests around us. Fireworks are not common for American weddings, so this was really memorable for them. It was a wonderful display and it was magical to see the Rock of Cashel lit up from the glow each firework cast as it exploded in the sky.”

For their first dance they chose a romantic song laced with sweet symbolism, Unforgettable by Nat King Cole. “We knew that would be our wedding song long before we got engaged. The choice for this song stems from one of the most romantic stories we have as a couple. When we were still in school and hadn’t been dating for very long (maybe three months) Corey told Sally he wanted to put on a song that made him think of her, and Unforgettable was the song he played.”

“Bar the fact that it made Sally burst out crying, it is such an intimate and happy song that it had to be our first dance.” The high energy wedding band Playlist kept the party going all night. “This one goes without saying, but Playlist absolutely killed it as our band and DJ. Our guests swarmed the dancefloor as they played hit after hit. Some of our favourite photos from the wedding are from these few hours, it’s a testament to Kathy’s skills as a photographer how fun and hilarious these pictures are. Jigs, conga lines and limbo skills were plentiful.”

The couple chose Italy for their honeymoon. They jetted off on an incredible nine-day adventure visiting Stresa on Lake Maggiore, La Salle in the Aosta Valley near Mont Blanc and Turin. “You feel such a high after your wedding day, that it would’ve been really tough to turn around and go straight back home to return to work and the real world. Knowing we had this amazing trip in front of us helped us cope with the fact that our wedding was over.”

“We spent the majority of our holiday relaxing in pools or hot tubs, strolling around gorgeous small towns, eating absolutely delicious food, and reminiscing about all the memories from our wedding day over bottles of wine. Some of our favourite memories from the trip were taking a private sunset cruise around Lake Maggiore in an elegant boat from the 1920s/30s, and ascending to the snow covered top of Mont Blanc to see the world below. We absolutely recommend it to any couple!”

A huge thank you to Sally, Corey and Kathy Silke Photography for sharing this dreamy Cashel Palace wedding with One Fab Day! You can see even more gorgeous pictures in the gallery below.

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