The Cilento Coast remains an off-the beaten-track secret destination wedding retreat that is filled with medieval villages, pristine beaches, and historical myths that date back to ancient Greek mariners. Considered the wild, undeveloped alternate to the nearby Amalfi Coast, Cilento enchants all who visit. Stretching along the Tyrrhenian Sea, with Punta Licosa on one end and the Amalfi Coast on the distant other, the romantic beach hamlet of Santa Maria di Castellabate is quickly becoming a haven for destination weddings. Only about a two hour drive south from Naples, the sleepy beachside resort falls within the Unesco protected Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park, cradle of the Mediterranean diet, and home to the descendants of shipwrecked Greek sailors.
This styled shoot photographed by Johanna Jacobson of Ambientimage Photography and expertly styled by stylist and planner Rosie Meleady was inspired by the Greek mythology of the Sirens, beautiful female creatures who sang their “Siren song” and lured sailors with their enchanting voices and melodies to the cliffs and rocky coastline. According to the myths surrounding the area, sailors would fall in love with their music causing shipwrecks and tragedy for a number of lovestruck Greek sailors and fisherman. Nestled between the nearby Greek temples of Paestum dedicated to the god Poseidon and ancient Greek city of Velia, this breathtaking village was likely visited by Ulysses himself.
Using Santa Maria di Castellabate’s pristine beach as a backdrop, our model could be mistaken for one of the ancient Sirens with her stunning dress by Sara Foy and jewelry inspired by the pearls of the sea. With a message in a bottle washed ashore containing a love letter and driftwood collected along the beach, the simple beauty of the location casts a dramatic spell. Using local flowers which grow along the rocky coastline, decorating duo LuSy created a simple but vibrant tablescape that reflects the subtle beauty of this lovely seaside hamlet.
Amongst the evocative stone arches of the ancient port and the backdrop of the historical Torre Perrotti, the archaeological sites, castles and villas attest to the hamlet’s rich history of myth and lore. Later in the afternoon, the styled session continues with a more sophisticated evening wardrobe change and reception on the terrace of the Torre Perrotti, immortalized in the background of the morning session. The tower’s stunning terrace overlooks the main beach. Nestled at the end of town, the property remains in the hands of the noble Baron Perrotti family dynasty and its terrace is available for civil and symbolic wedding ceremonies.
Vintage china plates and silverware from the family’s collection beautifully accent the sea-inspired watercolor menu’s, place cards and wedding invitation suite by Smitten on Paper. The custom headpiece designed by The Feathered Head compliments the handmade silk “cake” and matching fan designed by LuSy. As the sun sets, our model’s outline against the sea melds with the elements and becomes part of the enduring Siren myth of the sea. If you close your eyes you may hear her now.
Photographer: Johanna Erin Jacobson
Stylist and Planner: Rosie Meleady
Dresses (beach & tower): Sarah Foy
Model: Chiara Ianni Decor
Fabric bouquet: Silk Cake
Location Manager: Just Lusy
Stationary: Smitten On Paper
Feather Headpiece & Pearl Ring: The Feathered Head
Pearl Headpiece: Nayna Jewelry
Beachfront Location: Le Gatte Restaurant
Tower: Torre Perrotti
Hair Stylist: Angelo Incagliato, Evolution Hair Fashion
Make up Artist: Costabile Pascale