Olivia Buckley International

Destination Wedding at Ballynahich Castle in Ireland


Step into the enchanting world of Brandy Dallas and Michael Hession’s destination wedding, impeccably designed and meticulously executed by the renowned wedding planner, Olivia Buckley International. Nestled in the romantic and remote Ballynahinch Castle, one of the most luxurious wedding venues amidst the captivating moorlands of Connemara, Ireland, this extraordinary celebration is a testament to the timeless beauty and romance that defines weddings in Ireland. Join us as we explore the exquisite details of this unforgettable day, set against the backdrop of Ireland’s stunning castles and landscapes, masterfully brought to life by Olivia Buckley International. Brandy and Michael’s wedding is a celebration of love, beauty, and the magic that graces Ireland’s most exquisite weddings.


Brandy Dallas, the visionary behind the international sustainable label Sans Faff, and Michael Hession, a pioneering figure in renewable energy, began their cosmic love story in the modern world of online dating. Their first date, set against the backdrop of an Italian restaurant on the eve of Valentine’s Day in 2016, felt like kismet from the start. Dallas playfully recalls the evening, which she humorously confesses she arrived late to, as an enchanting revelation: “He had hints of an Irish accent, which resonated with my heritage, as my family also has Irish roots. The moment I heard him speak, he felt like home.” Another lunch near her workplace and a bouquet of a dozen roses later, they were inseparable.

Three years down the road, the couple found themselves on a transformative journey to India—a place of profound significance for Dallas, who had spent over eight years living and working there before relocating to Singapore. In the serene beauty of Dharamsala, nestled in the snow-capped Himalayan mountains, Hession seized the opportunity to turn their meaningful trip into an unforgettable proposal. With the blessing and presence of His Holiness, the Dalai Lama, he proposed to Dallas in a modest closet within the spiritual leader’s private residence, presenting her with the very first ring he had ever given her: a Cartier love band.

Olivia Amato and Daniel Waldron wedding portraits during the wedding celebration at Adare Manor planned by wedding planner Olivia Buckley International


Brandy and Michael’s engagement celebrations led the blissful pair to Ireland, embarking on a road trip that ultimately led them to discover their dream wedding venue: Ballynahinch Castle. Dallas fondly recollects the magical moment when Ballynahinch found them, “We were on the Wild Atlantic Way, a breathtaking coastal route along the Atlantic Ocean when we realised we hadn’t booked any accommodations for the night. Michael started searching online for options, and this beautiful hotel popped up. Once we arrived, we decided to move all our other reservations to stay there for the week.” Ballynahinch had worked its enchanting charm on them, setting the stage for their extraordinary love story to continue in the heart of Connemara, Ireland.

Nestled amidst the pristine landscapes of Connemara, Ballynahinch Castle is a testament to Irish charm and timeless beauty. This luxurious wedding venue is steeped in history and surrounded by nature’s enchantment, providing a perfect setting for romantic celebrations. The castle’s classic architecture and the stunning Connemara wilderness serve as a breathtaking backdrop for exchanging vows. Ballynahinch Castle is renowned for its rich history and outdoor activities, including fly fishing on the Ballynahinch River and exploring the Connemara National Park. Every aspect of a wedding at Ballynahinch Castle is thoughtfully designed, reflecting opulence and sophistication. From elegant reception spaces to impeccable service and culinary delights, guests are enveloped in an extraordinary experience. Love stories are woven into the very essence of this magnificent estate, ensuring that every celebration becomes an unforgettable memory. For those seeking a luxurious and idyllic wedding venue, Ballynahinch Castle stands ready to create a cherished wedding experience that exceeds all expectations.

Luxury wedding venue Adare Manor Ireland


The wedding design blended soft romanticism with modern sophistication. The colour palette featured delicate whites, fresh greens, and subtle hints of black, creating a timeless and elegant ambiance. Pristine white florals graced both the church and the castle, forging a harmonious connection between the two. The overall design transformed the event into a realm of enchantment, with walls adorned with flowers and abundant floral displays, bathed in the soft, warm glow of candlelight.


Brandy and Michael embarked on an artistic journey to curate a stationery suite that would seamlessly align with their elegant, stylish, and contemporary wedding design. From the sophisticated save-the-dates to the exquisite invitations, the stationery spoke volumes about the beauty of simplicity. It embraced elegant calligraphy, black ink, and pristine white paper, all designed to complement rather than compete with the overall aesthetic of their celebration.

This deliberate simplicity created a striking contrast to the old world charm of the venue, adding depth and dimension to the overall experience, as it allowed the venue’s authenticity to shine while preserving the modern, clean lines that defined the couple’s unique style. In this harmonious interplay of elements, the stationery and venue wove a narrative that celebrated both tradition and contemporary design.

A green and white stationery suite for wedding celebration at Adare Manor hosted by Olivia Buckley International


Upon first encountering Christ Church in Clifden, our team was immediately struck by its unique and promising qualities. The interplay of natural light against the raw stone surfaces presented an inspiring canvas with untapped potential. Despite the presence of the clashing blue carpet and red chairs, we recognised the latent beauty.

Determined to realise our client’s vision of elegance, we collaborated closely with the church, working diligently to implement the necessary changes. We introduced natural wood benches, green and white florals, and an ivory runner, effectively softening the environment. The installation of ivory carpet extending up to the altar added a sense of continuity and grace.

Lighting played a pivotal role in our transformation, with the introduction of abundant candlelight and strategic uplighting at the rear, fostering a warm and inviting atmosphere.

White floral arrangement for wedding ceremony in Adare planned by wedding planner Olivia Buckley International


Designing the wedding dining room layout was a pivotal part of our planning process. As the venue typically operated as a restaurant, our mission was to adapt it into a space where guests could comfortably enjoy an extended event, fostering interaction and a smooth flow throughout.

Our journey commenced with addressing fundamental questions, such as the strategic placement of the couple’s seats and the establishment of a central focal point. The spatial design was a significant undertaking, entailing a thoughtful arrangement of guest seating. We explored a versatile mix of square, rectangular, and circular tables to meet the event’s needs while optimising space usage.

The chosen color scheme featured a primary tone of white, accentuated by secondary shades of green and subtle metallic gold accents. To bring our client’s vision to life, we created 3D renderings, considering both design aesthetics and operational practicality to ensure we designed the perfect dining space. 

In addition to the spatial design, we adorned this dining space with luxurious linens, an array of gold candlesticks in varying heights cradling black candles, all harmonising with the chosen colour palette. We added gold and glass vessels filled with florals to enhance the overall ambiance of the space.

Custom floral installations by wedding planner in Ireland, Olivia Buckley International


In a grand celebration spanning a weekend at the picturesque Ballyanhinch Castle, guests were treated to an unforgettable wedding experience.


The celebration commenced with a spirited welcome party held exclusively at Ballynahinch Castle. The evening began with a delightful serenade by a traditional Irish band, filling the air with the melodious charm of Irish tunes. This captivating prelude set the stage for an exquisite buffet at the Owenmore Restaurant, where guests indulged in a delectable spread. As the night unfolded, the atmosphere grew livelier with a high-energy performance by the renowned Irish band. Their spirited tunes and infectious energy kept everyone on their feet, ensuring a night of unforgettable entertainment.


The wedding ceremony unfolded in the enchanting Christ Church, nestled in Clifden, a picturesque seaside village just a 15-minute drive from the hotel. This choice was deeply significant to both the bride and groom, as it resonated with their shared commitment to traditional values, encapsulating the authenticity they held dear. The historic Clifden Church provided the perfect setting for their vows, encapsulating the rich tradition that had woven itself into every decision they made.

Brandy made a grand entrance in a vintage Bentley car, adding an element of timeless elegance to the proceedings. As she ascended the aisle, she walked arm in arm with her mother, a poignant and heart-warming moment. The hauntingly beautiful strains of ‘Ag Chrois An Seol,’ an Irish poem later set to music and transformed into a hymn, were played by a skilled uilleann piper, providing the soundtrack to her journey toward Michael.

Amidst the hushed anticipation, their beloved friends, family, and their cherished son, Séagh, watched with hearts full of joy as Brandy and Michael exchanged their vows in a profoundly moving religious ceremony. It was a moment of unadulterated love and tradition, a true testament to their commitment to each other and their shared values.

Olivia Amato wedding ceremony in Holy Trinity Church, Adare planned Ireland wedding planner Olivia Buckley International


The picturesque terrace, nestled high above the Owenmore River, provided a captivating setting for the drinks reception. Our team crafted a bespoke bar on the Ballynahinch Castle’s terrace, allowing guests to savor their drinks while admiring the breathtaking river view. The addition of this bar offered a comfortable spot for guests to relax and appreciate the incredible scenery.

As the tranquil river meandered below and the melodious notes of music filled the air, the drinks reception evolved into a serene outdoor oasis, where guests could unwind and relish the enchanting surroundings.

Luxury wedding venue Adare Manor on the banks of the River Maigue


The guests gathered at the Owenmore Restaurant, a charming vantage point overlooking the serene river, setting the stage for a remarkable culinary journey. The evening unfolded with a sumptuous six-course banquet that skilfully combined the very best of Ireland’s culinary traditions and gastronomy. The meticulously crafted dishes celebrated Ireland’s renowned flavours and showcased the commitment to excellence in sourcing the finest ingredients.

As the night continued, heartfelt speeches resonated through the restaurant, making the evening even more special. Notably, the groom took not one, but two opportunities to share his deep adoration for his beloved wife, adding a personal and touching element to the celebration. The Owenmore Restaurant, with its panoramic views and delectable cuisine, became the perfect backdrop for a night filled with love, laughter, and extraordinary Irish flavours.


Guided by the soft glow of flame pots, guests ventured into the walled gardens just outside. Here, under the vast expanse of the evening sky, the night came alive with a mesmerising performance by a talented troupe of Irish dancers who moved gracefully to the rhythms of traditional music. The stars above added a celestial touch to the atmosphere, and to everyone’s astonishment, the evening coincided with the magnificent September Harvest Moon. It was a touch of pure magic.

As guests arrived, they were warmly welcomed with shots of baby Guinness and glasses of champagne. To keep everyone comfortable on the brisk September night, cosy wraps were thoughtfully offered.

On a raised platform in the heart of the walled garden, traditional Irish dancers and musicians took centre stage. Their performance, a captivating blend of Irish music and dance, stirred the hearts of all in attendance. As their performance reached its peak, the night sky exploded with a dazzling fireworks display, painting the heavens with a vibrant cascade of colours and light.

Musicians and entertainment on stage at Adare Manor wedding planned by Olivia Buckley International


After the captivating walled garden celebration, guests were led back to the castle. Here, the east wing of the hotel underwent a sultry transformation, becoming a vibrant music space and a stylish bar. The energetic sounds of the band filled the air.

In the midst of the revelry, the couple took a moment to cut their exquisite cake, a masterpiece designed by Cove Cake Design. With the cake-cutting done, the dance floor beckoned, and the newlyweds and their guests danced the night away, making this late-night party a true celebration.



Brandy dons a stylish Roksanda midi dress paired with vintage Chanel earrings, while Michael elegantly sports a vintage velvet tuxedo by Brioni.

Wedding dress inspired by Mark Ingram Atelier with Ines di Santo bow


Michael added a vintage flair to his formal tuxedo with a heritage Ralph Lauren bow-tie, which had been gifted by a close friend.

Berta minidress shimmering with sparkle


Brandy Dallas adorned in a pre-loved Monique Lhuillier gown. 

Clio Peppiatt dress embroidered with the silhouette of her venue, Adare Manor


Brandy donning a custom evening dress designed by Maria Lucia Hohan for the post-hours celebration.


Each wedding is a cherished privilege, brimming with joy and honour as we embark on the enchanting journey of turning dreams into reality. As we look back on Brandy & Michael’s extraordinary celebration, several heart-warming memories stand out, capturing the true spirit of their special day.

1. One of the most cherished moments was witnessing Brandy and Michael wholeheartedly embrace the mesmerizing Irish landscape, venturing into the moorlands to capture their wedding portraits. Brandy’s fearlessness, traipsing through the terrain in her gown and bare feet, was truly remarkable, and Michael’s unwavering attentiveness to his bride spoke volumes.

2. Crafting a captivating Irish experience for Brandy, Michael, and their guests brought immense joy. We designed an enchanting walkway that brimmed with anticipation, and it was truly remarkable to witness Brandy and Michael leading their guests into the walled garden to the rhythmic beat of the bodhran. The event was a splendid showcase of Ireland, particularly in this iconic region steeped in Irish history and folklore. Celebrating this special place, one that holds a special place in Brandy and Michael’s hearts, was a true delight. Celtic Steps delivered an outstanding performance that added to the atmospheric ambiance, and it was heart-warming to see guests from around the world savouring the rich tapestry of Irish culture.

3. The remote location of Ballynahinch posed transport challenges for the guests, making it all the more rewarding to assist them in finding convenient and enjoyable transportation options. Ensuring that their journey through one of Ireland’s most captivating regions was smooth and memorable was a joyous task. To enhance the experience further, Brandy and Michael thoughtfully curated an emotional playlist for their guests, deepening the profound impact of their remote destination wedding. These are the moments that define the beauty of every wedding celebration.



Planning & Design | Olivia Buckley International

Venue | Ballynahinch Castle

Church Ceremony | Christ Church, Clifden

Floral Design | Patsie & Co

Bridal Gown | Monique Lhuillier

Photography | Petar Jurica

Videography | Dreamcatcher Films

Make Up | Zoe Koritsas

Hair Stylist | Niamh Lee Hair

Stationery | Appleberry Atelier

Drink Reception Music | Duet Justice

Entertainment | Celtic Steps

Entertainment | Midnight Revellers

Catering | Ballynahinch Castle

Sound | CAVS

Staging | Gorilla Design