Weddings That Inspire

Giulius and Zarah - Finding Love in the Pandemic

‘With all these uncertainties, love is the only certain thing’

Is it possible to find love during a pandemic, when face to face interactions are limited? This couple is proof that love does win and can’t be stopped. Yes, even falling in love and not just making it to the altar.

Giulius Ceazar Iapino replied to Sarah Patricia Tolentino’s Instagram story when the lockdown began in March 2020 and their online relationship soon progressed to love offline. “We started talking and we never stopped talking since,” says Zarah. On October 21, 2021, the couple had their intimate wedding at Las Casas Quezon City.

Below, Zarah shares how their love story grew in the midst of the pandemic and how they planned their beautiful and safe wedding in the city:

You met during the pandemic! Tell us about your love story.

We found love in the pandemic. When coronavirus first hit in March, I decided to go home to my hometown In Laguna. I did several things to keep me sane during lockdown such as play piano, watch live concert videos on Youtube, posting random stuff and my interest online and etc.

And then sometime in April, I posted my favorite song “Sara” by Starship on Instagram story with a caption “To my future husband, please sing this song to me on our wedding day. Then he replied, “What song is this?” and that’s it. We started talking and we never stopped talking since. Our conversation and connection deepened every day. I felt his sincerity and kindness even though we haven’t met in person yet.

What happened when you met each other in person for the first time?

Weeks passed and after countless sleepless nights of talking to each other, our family decided to go back to Manila. So Giulius and I decided to go on a date. When Giulius picked me up at my condo, I saw him waiting outside of his car. I hugged him, as if we were lovers who weren’t able to see each other for a long time. I was surprised with my gesture as well, so I acted cool. And he didn’t hug me back, because he didn’t want me to think that he was taking advantage.

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He took me to his restaurant at Mamma Mia Uptown Mall where we had such a good food, beautiful conversation, and where we exchanged “I love you”. It just became serious very quickly. It was a sweet and short love story. Love at first sight is true after all. We are just in a one year and five months relationship when he proposed to me on July 21, 2021 and now we are happily married. Covid has been universally a challenging season of our lives, that is the understatement of the entire pandemic, but if we got one good thing out of it, we got each other.

Did you have a theme or motif for your wedding?

We both decided to have an European-inspired wedding (Italian to be exact, since Giulius is half-Italian). We wanted neutral colors, subtle but elegant. We trusted the majestic hands and magical mind of Gideon Hermosa.

Was this the original wedding plan? If no, what was the original plan?

No, we wanted to have a church wedding but due to several lockdown and uncertainties we decided to push through with the quicker preparation which was the civil wedding on October 10, 2021 and just move our church wedding to next year.

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What were the challenges encountered during the wedding preparation?

The challenges were the booking of our final date and venue. Since the courtrooms in NCR were physically closed due to the surge of COVID 19. God made a way.

How did you handle the challenges?

Of course, like everyone else we were also distressed because we cannot do anything but to follow the guidelines. Despite the rollercoaster ride, we’ve overcome the challenges together by sitting down and realizing what is more important for us, marriage.

How did you feel during the wedding?

Seeing the outcome of our simple and intimate civil wedding together with our immediate family with a total of 12 pax enjoying the moment was truly magical, it was an unexplainable feeling. Especially to be married to the man of my dreams.

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What were your most memorable moments from your wedding?

The moment our souls connected and our hearts became one, surrounded by our love ones, ugly cried when we were exchanging our vows in a flowy dress, at the magical archways, surrounded by lovely flowers. It was truly a night to remember.

What’s your advice for other couples who are planning their safe wedding celebration?

With all these uncertainties, love is the only certain thing. Giulius and I are beyond grateful that we chose love through pandemic. Choose to have a pandemic-approved celebration than to risk the health of our loved ones. A wedding during this pandemic may be different, but a happy couple will still end up being married.

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The Dream Team

Venue: Las Casas Quezon City | Event styling by Gideon Hermosa | Photography by Niceprint Photography | Cake by Honey Glaze Cakes | Bouquet and boutonniere by Te Amo Floristeria | Souvenirs by Gruppo Dolci | Bridal gown by Frannie Wei Haute Couture | Hair and makeup by Dennis Santos