The Hague, Netherlands micro wedding

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The Old City Hall in The Hague (Oude Stadhuis) is a historic building located on the Groenmarkt square. It is one of the city’s most iconic landmarks, rich in history and architectural beauty. The facade of the Old City Hall is adorned with intricate carvings, statues, and decorative elements typical of the Renaissance period. The most notable feature is the tower with a clock and carillon. The Old City Hall of The Hague stands as a testament to the city’s rich history and architectural beauty, continuing to play a significant role in the cultural and civic life of The Hague.

An incredibly beautiful place to get married!

From Dalibora, the photographer: It all began in the late spring last year, when Sling stumbled upon my blog post while in search of a photographer to capture her and Ian’s moments in The Hague. Even though I am based in Croatia, ever since my best friends moved to The Hague I visit them at least twice a year and often I do small sessions there or weddings.

Everything aligned. Some might call it serendipity. We set up our session for my next visit during the summer, we met and not only did we create some beautiful memories together, but we became friends.

Fast forward to December 2023. Sling and Ian decided to have a micro wedding and they wanted me as their photographer. The old city hall in The Hague, an architectural masterpiece, served as the backdrop for their wedding. It was majestic. I can highly recommend this beautiful location to those seeking an intimate, elegant, stylish wedding or elopement in the Netherlands.

How did you choose the location?

From Sling, the bride: I have always been very particular about aesthetics. I have a background in architecture and naturally I lean towards buildings that tell a story. I also wanted it to be timeless and classic. What is more ‘classic’ than the old town hall? The building itself is a work of art. It houses so much history and it is so well kept plus the location is so central. It makes it so easy for friends and family to stop by and congratulate us in person – which is a MUST for such an occasion.

do you require any special permits to get married here?

From Sling, the bride: No, but you need to reserve it way in advance (at least 3 months, I believe) with the municipality. They make it so easy as it is all online. I think they offer free appointments on Mondays, but they are usually booked up 8 months to a year prior. For the free appointments, I think it is only like a 15 minute slot. I would recommend booking and paying for the longer appointments (45 minutes). This way, you can fully be present and enjoy every second of your special day and have your very amazing photographer take their time with the pictures. 

Can you have a legal ceremony here, or just symbolic?

You can only do a legal ceremony here!

How easy is the location to access? Is it suitable for all ages and abilities?

Very central, with very few steps. I would say that it’s suitable for all ages and you really have privacy inside as well. It’s a very intimate location inside.

What are your top tips for planning an elopement or micro wedding in this area?

From Sling, the bride: Plan it in advance. This particular town hall gets booked up quite quickly, especially if during the summer months and weekends. Prices vary depending on the day.

I would say the summer months are the best time of year, as the weather in the Netherlands is notoriously unpredictable. However, I feel that we really lucked out for our winter civil wedding and caught the most glorious day. I actually loved how cold and sunny it was. It really made it extra special for us! That being said, you really just need an experienced professional photographer and I am sure it will turn out great! 

How did the couple meet?

From the bride, Sling: We met the good ol fashioned way – on Tinder! in Singapore! We really got to know one another through exploring Southeast Asia together as we were both living in different countries at the time. Travelling and being in foreign places together fostered trust between us and that really is foundational to any lasting relationships. Not only were we exploring new places together, we also got to explore what our relationship could be like. We took our time in getting to know one another, and during our time together, we were completely focused on one another. Our strong bond really helped us navigate the next year of doing long distance before finally moving in together in 2019.

Why a micro wedding?

From Sling, the bride: When you have a partner that is literally from the opposite side of the world, having all your friends and family in one place becomes an impossible task. Up until the moment, our families have still never met. Given we have always had to travel back and forth to Malaysia and the US to be with family, we really wanted to prioritize us on our special day. We knew from the beginning we wanted an intimate affair for the civil wedding so we can have our parents meet for the first time in a place where we call home. The level of intimacy we had made our special day all the more special as we were able to be fully present with one another.

What made you choose Europe?

From Sling, the bride: We have since moved to The Netherlands and made a home for ourselves here. The Netherlands is where we moved in together and created a life together for the past 5 years. It’s the first time we could live out our ‘real’ lives together, which is why it is a no brainer for us to officially tie the knot here. Wherever we go from here, we will always have a special connection to The Hague. It’s where our dreams turned into reality.

Any other advice or tips you’d like to share based on your experience?

From Sling, the bride: Don’t go for a place just because. You want a connection to the place where you will say your I Do’s and see each other as your legal partner. Find a place that really represents you as a couple, and a photographer that can capture that essence and the finer details. You’d want to remember every detail of the day!

The vendors:

Photography: Dalibora Bijelic

the photos:

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