Where to get married? Against the background of aquarium with killer whales in Moskvarium? On the Panorama 360 observation deck or on the football field of Spartak Stadium? Not a problem! This year, starting from 4 May, couples are allowed to get married not only in a registry office, but also in 20 Moscow landmarks such as the mansion with majestic columns and ceiling moulding in Bolshoi Znamensky Pereulok, Ostankino TV Tower with its glass floor and an open observation deck, and the Ceremony Hall on Vorobyovskoye Motorway.
The first ceremonies took place on 4 May on the eve of Krasnaya Gorka, an Orthodox festive day. Mos.ru talked to three couples who had chosen unusual places for their wedding ceremony.
Victoria and Ilya Fomenko. They registered their marriage in Mercury Tower
Victoria: On 6 May, we will celebrate our anniversary, three years since our first meeting. By the way, we met here, in the Moscow-City Business Centre area. Our first photos as a couple were taken on the background of skyscrapers. We started to live together in a flat overlooking the skyscrapers. For us, this is a very symbolic location, and when we had a chance to register our marriage here, we did not hesitate. This is more than just a dream. This is our place.
We applied for a marriage certificate at an ordinary registry office, and two days later Ilya sent me a link to the news that the Moscow Government opens the venues for marriage registration in unusual locations. Then he called me and said: "Just imagine how cool it would be if we applied a couple of days later, we would get a chance to get married in one of these places." I replied: ''It means that we have no chance to''. The next day, a registry office employee called me with a proposal to arrange our marriage registration at one of the new venues. We immediately agreed. We went back to the office and filed another application with Mercury Tower indicated as the ceremony venue. The registry office employees showed us the photos of the Ceremony Hall in Mercury Tower with its red furnishing and a red carpet, a very beautiful place indeed.
Ilya: This place witnessed our first meeting, we used to watch sunsets and sunrises on the embankment, so we did not hesitate with choosing our marriage venue.
In the registry office, we were offered a choice of two towers: Federation Tower featuring an online wedding with bloggers participation who would broadcast the celebration in social networks, and Mercury Tower. We decided that we had already grown out of all those online broadcasts, and chose the second option, since we had planned a wedding in a narrow family circle: my mother, our child and two or three guests of mine and Victoria's.
Daria and Victor Lobanov. They got married at Spartak Stadium
Victor: I've been a fan of Spartak football club since my childhood, and I just could not lose such a rare chance to get married at the stadium!
Dasha does not care much about football, but our flat is decorated with red and white colours and flags, so she has no choice! Just joking. Seriously, she didn't really mind, quite the contrary. For her, as well as for me, it is amusing to register our marriage in such an unusual place. Moreover, she does not mind to watch football games with me.
We learned about the possibility to get married at one of the 20 venues in the registry office, when applying for a marriage certificate. When they mentioned the stadium, we immediately agreed. The registry office personnel asked us to share our impressions after the ceremony, because such events are unusual and new for Moscow.
Dasha and I have known each other for a long time, for almost five years. We were introduced to each other by our mutual friend, and it was love at first sight.
I had two dreams, to serve in the army in the airborne troops and visit the new stadium. No prizes for guessing, both can be considered fulfilled. And as for the stadium, I both visited it as a fan, and also got married there. It is so hard to believe, but it is real. That's great.
Yulia and Ivan Zhiltsov. Their wedding took place in the Spiridonov Mansion
Yulia: A month before our marriage date, we received an SMS message from a register office employee with a link to the news that new venues for marriage opened in Moscow. We browsed all the options and chose the Spiridonov Mansion, as we both admire old estates and their architecture. Initially we planned to register in the Chertanovsky registry office, and then celebrate our wedding day in a family circle outside the city, but with the choice of this venue our plans had also changed, so we made a reservation in a cafe in the centre of Moscow and invited our guests. We wanted to arrange our wedding in last July, but due to unforeseen circumstances we had to postpone it. Now I understand that everything was for the best.
Ivan: You ask why did we choose the most classical place. This mansion is very beautiful and just great for photo shooting. Besides, we register our marriage in the building built in the 19th century, and a week later we go on a honeymoon to visit similar places in Europe. First we fly to the Czech Republic, in Prague, and then we plan to go to Vienna and visit the castles of Bavaria.