When Christine Dunkley and Kyle Dailey met in a finance class at Fairfield University in 2008 neither of them imagined they were meeting the person with whom they would spend the rest of their lives. They were simply fellow students looking forward to making it through the semester. Both quickly discovered, however, how well they got along. After several weeks of sitting next to one another in class and passing notes back and forth, the moment came when Kyle finally struck up the nerve to ask Christine out on their first date.
“We met at an Italian restaurant in our college town,” recalls Kyle. “I thought I was nervous, but it was nothing in comparison to Christine who accidentally spilled wine all over herself and the table we were dining at.”
“We had a good laugh about it,” he said. “It was the perfect first date.”
Fast-forward to graduation in June 2009. After the speeches were over, caps tossed and champagne toasted, Christine and Kyle said their goodbyes to one another.
“We spent that summer apart, Kyle in Vermont and I in Bermuda,” recalls Christine. “During that time, the highlight of my day was talking to him. I never wanted to say goodbye.” Kyle felt the same way: “It was that summer that I realised that she was the one. After we had been apart for several weeks, Christine travelled to Boston. I knew I wouldn’t be able to drive all the way from Vermont to visit her, so instead we each drove halfway and met in a small town in western Massachusetts. The whole visit lasted only an hour or so and when I hugged her as we said goodbye, I remember thinking: ‘I do not want to spend another minute apart from her for the rest of my life.’”
Four months later, Christine and Kyle packed up their respective lives and moved to Boston to be together. A year later, they were engaged. “One Friday in November 2011, Kyle came home early from work and suggested we go for a walk along the Charles River, our favourite running route,” remembers Christine. “He told me how much he loved me and got down on one knee. I was so shocked I forgot to even look at the ring!”
When it came time to start planning the wedding of their dreams, there was only one place they had in mind—Bermuda. “I always thought it was so cool that Christine was from Bermuda,” says Kyle. And Christine agrees: “Bermuda is a special place. We’re so lucky to have so many amazing views; there is no better place to tie the knot.”
On October 5, 2013, Christine and Kyle were married by Bishop Nicholas Dill at Holy Trinity Church in Bailey’s Bay, with an oceanfront reception on the lawn at Mid Ocean Club following the ceremony. With 200 guests in attendance, including 35 friends from the college at which they met, Christine and Kyle celebrated their newlywed status in style.
Michael Mello of Elements Bermuda successfully transformed the reception venue into an oceanfront oasis fit for the newlyweds and their guests. Mello, along with the couple’s wedding planner, Nikki Begg of Bermuda Bride, dressed the tent in white fabric to add an abundance of warmth and romance. Using the ocean backdrop as inspiration, the venue was accented in blue tones synonymous with the colours of Bermuda’s blue waters. Paper lanterns hung from the ceiling, hydrangeas centred each table setting, and white starfish accented table spreads and decorated the lapels of each groomsman.
Among the evening’s events, a few moments stood out. “Kyle’s speech was the highlight of the night,” insists Christine. “Even my dad, the politician, didn’t want to follow that act. It was truly the most heartfelt, well-spoken speech I’ve ever heard.” Another hit? The food. “We chose to do a buffet, because Mid Ocean Club do such a good one. We even had a macaroni and cheese bar where guests could add their own toppings to their individual portions, like lobster, bacon and chives. It was a huge hit!”
And as with any Bermuda wedding worthy of fond remembrance, the night ended with everyone on the dance floor. “We even taught the Americans how to palance!” laughs Christine.
After a year of marriage, Christine and Kyle remember their big day very fondly. Their advice to future brides and grooms is to appreciate the moment. “Take a step back, just the two of you at some point during the reception. Take several minutes to watch all of your guests dancing and having a good time. It is the only time that all of your family and friends will ever be in one place celebrating you.”