Melissa “Missy” Bisbee Weil, a luxury travel consultant with The Local Foreigner, and Kirk Daniel Fauser were introduced at Los Feliz in the Lower East Side by her friend Laura Van Ingen, right before Missy moved into her nearby apartment. It’s strange the two hadn’t run into each other sooner, as they’re both from a very small town north of North Salem in New York. “I used to play soccer with his sister, and we briefly went to the same elementary school one year apart,” she explains. “But I moved away to Marblehead, Massachusetts when I was in high school, and we just kept missing each other until that night.”
After five years together, Kirk proposed in a glacial valley in Iceland. She was scouting the location for a client and brought Kirk because the destination was on his bucket list. While they were super-jeeping through the snowy tundra of Thörsmork, he found a snowy inlet, and she turned around to find him on one knee. How did the two celebrate? They hiked a glacier, of course, and then flew to Paris the next day.
Once engaged, the two started planning for their destination wedding on May 30, 2020 in Italy. “We love the Amalfi Coast and think it’s impossible to go there and have a bad time,” Missy says. However, as the pandemic continued, the two postponed their nuptials to July 24, 2021. Once they had their new date, Li Ward and Jill Delevan stepped in to create a beautiful invitation suite and wedding stationery.
Being in the travel industry, the bride-to-be had seen a lot of great venues, but she always had Casa Privata—locally called “Ca P’a”—in the back of her mind. The private retreat is between Amalfi and Positano in Praiano and feels like you’re just discovering it for the first time—an attribute of all the best travel spots. Missy wanted the whole weekend to feel like an intimate dinner party with lots of dancing, beautiful views, and great food.
For her wedding weekend wardrobe, Missy turned to her talented cousin and bridal stylist Cynthia Cook Clements to help choose each ensemble. As the bride-to-be tends to “go heavy into floral, romantic looks,” it was fun to do something different. Cynthia chose a short red Johanna Ortiz dress for the rehearsal dinner, and for Missy’s wedding gown, they contacted Laura Vassar of Brock Collection.
“Wearing Brock had always been a dream of mine, as I am such a fan of Laura and Kris and love their romantic creations,” Missy says. Laura and Cynthia helped the bride create her dream design—a gorgeous tiered lace gown.
On the day-of, Missy got ready with Beauty Livery, and bridesmaids were asked to wear dresses they loved and were excited about, while Missy’s sister and maid of honor wore Markarian. The groom chose a Paul Stuart suit and Belgian Shoes. “Funnily enough, he likes shopping too and had a great time picking out his outfits that weekend,” Missy adds.
At Parrocchia Di San Gennaro at the center of town, a small group of family and friends gathered for the ceremony. “After years of planning and replanning, I felt so thankful for our families and friends, who flew across the world to be with us in this special place, and I just couldn’t believe it was finally coming to fruition,” Missy reflects.
Once officially married, the newlyweds and their guests walked down 200 stairs to the villa and took a much needed breather with negronis, Aperol spritzes, and canapés before dinner. Then everyone took their seats at one long table, with florals by Rosalinda Flowers Wedding Lab, and under sparkling chandeliers and a full moon. Missy and Kirk picked out their wedding table linens in India, while they were on a scouting trip a few months after their engagement and enjoyed incorporating their love of travel even more into the celebration.
On the dance floor, the new mister and missus had their first dance to “Caravan” by Van Morrison. And after the formal reception, espresso martinis and dancing took over the night, while the couple’s friend Clark Winter deejayed. “We all thought this was one of the best parts of the night—dancing to disco under a full moon,” Missy says. “It made for an unforgettable evening—we all had so much fun.” We certainly can’t think of a better way to end a wedding day in Italy.
Videographer: Kristopher Brock