Lord set up the business a decade ago. “I’d just got married in Tuscany,” he explains. “It took six trips to Italy and a year of planning. I figured there must be an easier way to organise an overseas wedding.”
He started up the business from his backroom, investing £10,000 in getting Love and Lord off the ground. “My friend specialised in branding and design so he set up my website in return for a few drinks in the pub. On the day we went live, I had two enquiries.”
After three years of running the company, Lord decided to rebrand. Instead of being the “Ryanair” of weddings (high volume, low prices), he’d target high net-worth individuals looking for luxury weddings in Italy, France, Spain, Cyprus, Malta or Morocco. “For the first time ever, I started turning business away,” he says.
Lord’s “typical” customers today are aged between 25-40 years old, work in the City (he cites Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs) and are looking for “something different to meringue dresses, chicken breast and 17,000 bridesmaids”. Love and Lord specialises in boutique venues serving local food. Clients must have budgets of £20,000 plus. “The cheapest wedding we’ve done cost £25,000. The most expensive was £0.5m,” says Lord.
His customers include England rugby union player Simon Shaw and former English international football striker Gary Linekar, who married model Danielle Bux earlier this year in a luxury clifftop hotel in Ravello, Italy. “Danielle had read about us in Red magazine – and the hotel recommended us directly,” explains Lord.
Today the business employs eight people (“I’m the only man!” he jokes) and turns over £2m a year, with 50 per cent of business coming through word of mouth.
Lord himself visits Italy every two weeks to source new venues and is keeping an eye on new markets. He expects to see a boom in weddings in Provence (France) and Andalucia (Spain) in the next few years.
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