AN ANCIENT CHAPEL ON AN ISLAND IN TEXAS?
Bella Donna isn't that old- we opened our doors in 2010. We are a replica of a 16th century chapel located in Split, Croatia, built with some imported elements dating back to that time. Adriatica is the village we are located within, and is named after the Adriatic Sea of which the beautiful Dalmatian coastline of Croatia is located.
WHAT IS ADRIATICA?
Adriatica is the village where Bella Donna Chapel is located. It's based on the old-world village of Split, Croatia and is home to shops, restaurants, residences and lots of green space. There is lots to see from the moment you drive onto the cobblestone streets, and although the village is still growing, it is already full of life. Enjoy brunch at Starwood Cafe, sushi at Umai, wine and live music at Zin Zen, dinner overlooking the water at Waterfront Grill, a walk through the vineyard, coffee at Starbucks, shopping and more.. It's a great place to spend a day, so give yourself time to explore!
WHERE DO PEOPLE PARK FOR WEDDINGS?
Parking is available to the public in a multi level garage adjacent to the chapel. An elevator will bring you to the ground floor exit near the chapel.
HOW MANY PEOPLE CAN THE CHAPEL HOLD?
We can accommodate a maximum of 200 for a wedding. Please consider that 15-20 of those will be standing in the Bridal Party. Seated capacity is 180.
DO YOU PROVIDE ANY DECOR?
The chapel is beautiful on its own and does not need any additional decor. We provide candles for our large candelabras and wall sconces, as well as brass candle sticks on the altar (candle sticks can also be used to hold Unity Candles if you like). If you do choose to add anything, please see our contract for guidance.
DO YOU OFFER OUTDOOR CEREMONIES?
Outdoor ceremonies involving chairs and other furniture are prohibited in Adriatica's public green spaces. We do own the Bell Tower, which has a lovely terrace and restroom access. This can be rented for small parties, but there is no covering from rain/unfavorable weather.
CAN YOU DO A CEREMONY AND RECEPTION HERE?
Bella Donna is a chapel and doesn't have space for receptions. We can accommodate small outdoor gatherings at our Bell Tower. There is no protection from rain/ bad weather. For larger parties, we have two great options within sight of the chapel. The Sanctuary Events is a venue within Adriatica and is similar in aesthetic to the chapel. Stonebridge Ranch Country Club is across the street from Adriatica and offers great views of the property from their second floor events space. Both venues are featured on our Vendor Page. For more options, consider the charming Historic Downtown McKinney. With venues like The Grand Hotel & Ballroom, Gather, The Augustus, and more, downtown is a great spot for a "destination wedding" experience right here at home. Be sure to check out our B&B's too! The Neathery Estate is AMAZING.
DO YOU PROVIDE A WEDDING COORDINATOR?
Yes! Our wedding coordinator will work with you to create an order of events for your ceremony and will run your rehearsal and ceremony accordingly. We have an excellent, experienced team and always strive to make your day as stress free as possible.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN A BOOKING?
Every booking includes a Chapel Coordinator, Prelude Music, Candles, Easels for your photos/signs. NOT included: Minister, Photographer, Ceremony Music
WHAT ABOUT MUSIC?
Prelude music (what plays as guests arrive, before the processional begins) is provided. This is our own mix of classical and instrumental covers of contemporary songs. For Ceremony Music, you have the option to either hire a musician of your choice to play (see our Vendor Page for recommendations) or add Ceremony Music to your booking, in which case we will play your selected songs for the Processional, Mid-Ceremony Traditions, and Recessional. Up to 5 songs are allowed, but less it more. *Ceremony music may be secular, but must adhere to the sanctity and reverence befitting a church setting.*
CAN WE BRING OUR PET?
Pets are not allowed on Chapel premises. Certified Service Animals are permitted. Paperwork may be required at staff discretion.
HOW EARLY CAN WE ARRIVE?
Booking times are outlined on our website and in our contracts. If the time frame says 3-6, you have the chapel from exactly 3-6.
DO YOU HAVE MULTIPLE EVENTS IN A DAY?
Yes- We have time blocks to accommodate any size group and are able to host multiple events in a day without overlap.
CAN WE BRING IN FOOD AND BEVERAGES?
No- We are a church, and so church rules apply. We provide water as needed outside of the sanctuary.
ARE WE ALLOWED TO BRING IN ALCOHOL?
No- Because we are a church, we have a strict policy regarding alcohol. Articles of communion are acceptable. Anyone visibly intoxicated or seen with alcohol may be asked to leave. Fines apply for any alcoholic beverages found during event or cleanup.
CAN WE SERVE WATER OR SNACKS OUTSIDE?
Water will be provided to your guests on request. If you'd like to offer more options, you may open a tab at Waterfront Grill, just in front of the chapel, and pre-order snacks and drinks for your guests to enjoy before or after the wedding. ZinZen is a great option also, a 3 minute drive within Adriatica.
WHERE CAN THE BRIDE GET READY?
Our Tower Bridal Suite is a great option for up to 6 ladies (plus stylists, moms, photographer). The cost is only $300 and you are overlooking the chapel from our iconic Adriatica Bell Tower- gorgeous!! (Sorry guys, you're on your own!) Another option: The Sanctuary (reception on site) has bride and groom suites!
WHO CAN OFFICIATE AT BELLA DONNA?
Ordained Ministers can officiate at the chapel. This does NOT include "internet certificates". The State of Texas does not require a license to officiate weddings, and any online certification (Such as "Universal Live Church", which is not actually a church- just a business) is not accepted at Bella Donna Chapel. We know that Marriage is a Covenant, and we must respect it accordingly.
CAN WE DO A (INSERT COMIC/MOVIE HERE) THEME?
If you are considering a theme to your wedding, we are probably not a good fit. We understand this is a celebratory occasion, but also that marriage is a covenant not to be entered into lightly. For that reason, we ask that the sanctity of this covenant be taken into consideration when choosing attire, music, and other elements.