The magical boutique hotel Arbiana is located in the center of the island of Rab.
It’s a beautiful venue made for creating the most breathtaking weddings.
The Wedding location – Rab island
- The Island of Rab was called the happy island by the old Romans.
- One of the sunniest and greenest islands in Croatia.
- It’s also a “hidden gem” in terms of weddings.
I fins it almost unbelievable this isn’t a hot spot for destination weddings.
But this fact was one of the reasons our bride and groom decided to get hitched here.
From day one they wanted an unconventional wedding, meaning all the popular Croatian places to do it, weren’t considered.
I’m personally familiar with the island and hotel Arbiana for years now, and I always wondered why isn’t this more popular? Why aren’t we doing a ton of weddings here?
So, you can imagine the euphoria when I saw Marlena’s inquiry for her wedding on the island.
The island is fairly small and it’s so easy to walk from one place to another. With many, many amazing beaches, cute restaurants and bars, there’s one hotel in the heart of the island that’s simply breathtaking.
The venue – Hotel Arbiana
Hotel Arbiana is located in the centre of the island.
When you walk in its garden, you feel at peace right away.
From Arbianas’s garden, you have a grand view of the city garden that’s equally as amazing. Just a few steps from the hotel and you are at the island’s peer and looking at the sea.
Once you walk into this historic boutique hotel, you get amazed by the interior that is a perfect mix of modern and vintage to complement the hotel’s history.
I always had a feeling hotel Arbiana is built to promote pure hedonism.
From the amazing food made from local Croatian produce, the wine that’s beyond this world, friendly staff and the overall atmosphere there’s no way you’ll walk out Arbiana and not feel happy and relaxed.
Bride & Groom – hotel Arbiana
Our clients, in this case, are a modern couple from New York.
They are easy-going, with amazing taste in food, wine, and details.
Our bride has an amazing eye for aesthetics, she made sure that her wedding tells a story of all the things that represent them as a couple. The story was told through numerous details that we created together.
She envisioned a modern wedding, with a 70s vibe and just a hint of Wes Anderson.
Our groom and some of their friends are professional chefs.
So yeah, the pressure was on when it came to food. It didn’t worry as much since we were familiar with the food before this wedding, but it was also one of the reasons our clients choose the venue.
Both the girls and the guys were getting ready at suits in the hotel.
This is super convenient and a lot more stress-free. The guests weren’t pressured and were enjoying their day in a carefree fashion.
We started with hair and make up a little earlier so everyone can relax and have some fun before the wedding.
Since everything was in one place, the official photos where taken on the spot so no one would feel uncomfortable walking in the heat in their formal attire.
Because hotel Arbiana’s interior is wonderful, there where plenty of spots to take the perfect photos.
The ceremony – hotel Arbiana
I have to admit, the ceremony was one of my favorite parts.
We used the hotel Arbiana’s garden for the ceremony site.
The bride walked down the aisle while Little wing by Jimmy Hendrix was playing, which is totally in her fashion.
This is an unconventional choice, but it made the whole thing even sweeter.
The ceremony was symbolic, it was led by a mutual friend of the bride and groom.
The ceremony speech told us a story of Marlena and Cruz in the most darling and funny way, there where a lot of laughs and happy tears across the garden.
Filip and I didn’t resist sharing a tear ether.
There’s nothing better than a close friend or family member that is brave enough to act as a celebrant. They know the couple and their story, and they share an emotional connection with them. That’s something that can’t be bought and it’s always so personal and sweet that I feel like crying just writing this.
Cocktail hour/ couple’s photoshoot and reception set-up
This was all happening at the same time after the ceremony.
The guests went across the street to hotel Arbiana’s wine bar for some refreshments.
While they were enjoying the finger food, and an amazing acoustic trio playing in the background, the bride and groom went on a couple’s photoshoot.
Like we mentioned, Rab is fairly small so they didn’t need to walk a lot. Also, Rab is so photogenic that every corner of it can be a perfect set.
Our photographer Marina from Matija Kljunak weddings did a fabulous job capturing the couple’s essence.
Meanwhile, our team was working hard to transform the garden from a ceremony site to a reception site.
Even though florals were minimal, they were colorful and fitted the theme perfectly.
There were no classic table numbers and name cards. We created 70s inspired tarot cards, with the symbols close to the couple, that was an alternative to the classic numbers.
Every guest got one of the cards with their name and table symbol so they knew where they were seated.
This is one of many clever ways to personalize your wedding in a unique fashion.
The reception started with the bride and groom entering and dancing their first dance.
It was an amazing moment seeing them in Arbiana’s garden dancing among the trees, and fairy lights.
After the romantic dance, it was time for dinner (which was extremely delicious).
During dinner, there was a set of emotional speeches, that once again made everyone smile and cry at the same time.
When the time for dessert came, the guests were delighted to see an ice cream cart appear at the dinner site.
Our bride and groom made an excellent decision not to have a wedding cake, but apple strudel with ice cream. Both were homemade in Rab and it tasted beyond this world.
Since it was a fairly hot day, the ice cream was an amazing surprise for the guests.
The rest of the night was all about having fun, partying and love. Thanks to our DJ the crowd was quickly on the dance floor, having the time of their lives.
Even though our bride and groom, undeniably have amazing taste and great ideas, the essence of this wedding was that they were relaxed and joyful. Their guests felt welcome and like this isn’t just another wedding, but like it’s a celebration of love + a nice vacation in Croatia.
Marlena and Cruz made everyone feel like they are a part of the family, from friends and their partners to vendors that worked on this wedding. And we all had a ton of fun in the beautiful summer night in hotel Arbiana’s magical garden.
If you can’t get enough of this wedding, check out the video of the event here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSrmWxTraqw
Special thanks to the amazing crew that helped us make this special night event better:
Videography: Ivan & Luka https://www.facebook.com/pg/goodgateproduction/about/
Photography: Marina https://www.matijakljunakweddings.com/
Music: DJ Dadoo https://urbanieventi.com/
Venue: Hotel Arbiana https://arbianahotel.com/en/
Makeup: Kasandra https://www.facebook.com/KasandraArtMakeUp
Cape: Matea https://www.facebook.com/msbymateastubicar/
Planning, stationery & floral – Tie the knot Croatia
And if you’ll like us to help you plan your wedding, fill out our form here: https://www.croatiaweddingplanner.com/contact/