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Laura Hunt

Princess for a Day

Which little girl doesn't dream about marrying a prince one day! Princes are quite rare these days, so how about a castle, where you celebrate your wedding? In Europe they come in all sizes and prices. When I was a student, we used to barbecue and party in one of the old castle ruins close to my home town. That might be not such a great place for a wedding. However, there are enough large and small, renovated castles in Europe that now are transformed into first-class hotels, or even into bed & breakfast inns.

During my last trip to Europe, I went to Salzburg to meet Barbara Donabauer, a wedding and event coordinator in Salzburg. A travel agent by trade, she was asked to organize weddings in this beautiful Austrian city and now is so busy that she only works with wedding clients. Barbara will not only organize your wedding and accommodations for your guests, she also will help you with the marriage license and all the paperwork you need. Portfolios in her office show pictures of many splendid or rustic venues, flower designs, voluptuous buffets, and old carriages.

Together we visited the magnificent Marble Hall in Schloss Mirabell (the Mirabell Palace) which is said to be the most beautiful hall for a wedding ceremony. It dates back to 1606, and after a fire destroyed the palace, is now rebuilt in baroque style. The hall got its name from the red, black, white, and light brown marble design on the floor. The walls are embellished with intricate gold and silver decoration. The daylight floods through large floor-to-ceiling windows. At night large crystal chandeliers are aglitter with hundreds of lights.

Salzburg, the city of Mozart and world renown for its summer music festival, has much to offer. Available for events is the Archbishop's Residence with its splendidly decorated rooms where the young Mozart entertained the guests. In 1615 Archbishop Markus Sitticus built his summer residence, the castle Hellbrunn. He already had irrigated the park by sprinkler system. Some of the pipes ended in stone stools that surrounded a large stone table where festive dinners were served. When the archbishop wanted his guests to leave, he just had the sprinklers turned on.

The oldest castle is the fortress, Hohensalzburg, overlooking the city. The magnificent historic rooms and the attractive courtyard can accommodate up to 200 guests. The smallest castle, the Hoyos-Schloessl, is a garden pavilion for up to 30 guests. These are just a few samples of many that are offered in the Salzburg area. There are smaller and larger castles turned into hotels, such as the Hotel Schloss Fuschl or the Hotel Schloss Moenchstein, that are available for rent.

There are many choices for a bride who wants to lead the life a princess, at least for a day.

Barbara Donabauer
Wedding and Event Coordination


Important: Allow 4 to 6 months for the processing of your application for a marriage license!

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