Julius Moni and Dr Natasha Wan Yu Luk may look like your average petroleum engineer and obstetrician/gynaecologist power duo. But take a look at photographs of this urbane couple on their wedding day, and see glimpses of a debonair James Bond loving pair, licensed to thrill.
Not many have the panache to pull off a wedding with lashings of inspiration borrowed from MI6 superspy James Bond. But Julius Moni and Natasha Wan Yu Luk are not your ordinary newlyweds. For one thing, the couple had a rabbit as best man, with many aspects of their spring wedding at Summerlees in Sutton Forest (recently renamed Somerley House) inspired by the super sexy secret agent.
‘I am an Alfa Romeo lover and a huge James Bond fan,’ says Julius, ‘so we included as many Bond aspects as possible in our wedding day.
‘We had wedding photos taken with one of our cars, an Alfa 159, which is a model used in Quantum of Solace. We played various theme songs from the films throughout the day, one of which was Nobody Does It Better for our entrance to the reception. I wore a bespoke suit, as Bond only wore bespoke suits in the film, and we drank Bollinger, as does Bond.’
Julius and Tash, who live at Little Bay in Sydney, met and fell in love while living in a share house while at university.
‘Tash says that I came across as kind and romantic,’ says Julius. ‘For me it was a funny feeling I got when Tash was around, which she had at the same time. Her personality and spontaneity also attracted me.’
When it came to getting married, the two had very definite ideas, perhaps unsurprising given their affection for Queen and Country’s most uncompromising hero.
‘We wanted a garden wedding, no churches or temples,’ says Julius. ‘We also wanted to get our guests out of the big smoke, and to have the wedding and the reception at the same venue so people could enjoy themselves more. We spent a huge amount of time visiting various venues all over the Sydney region before we came down to the Highlands, and we quickly found the Highlands, and Summerlees, fulfilled our criteria. It had heart and soul. Old buildings, tall trees, lovely hosts.’
When it came to additional wedding party players, none were required. Apart from the rabbit, Mr Kennedy Moni, that is.
‘We decided not to have bridesmaids or groomsmen because we really wanted the day to be all about us, but my rabbit Mr Kennedy had two big roles in our romance,’ says Julius.
‘He held the ring in his paws and gave it to Tash when I proposed to her, and he was also my best man on the wedding day. He did need some help from my brother, who carried him at the wedding. Our rings were kept on his collar.’
Other personal touches included the wedding arch made by Julius from the timber of a house the couple were demolishing at the time. It was decorated with bougainvilleas taken from the fence of Long Bay prison, home to Her Majesty’s guests, near where the couple live. Tables were decorated with plants not flowers, some of which were edible. With Hungarian and Chinese heritage, the wedding party of 60 was a glamorous multicultural affair with guests sure to feel at home on any international film set.
‘The enjoyment, comfort and entertainment of our guests were foremost to us,’ says Julius. ‘Everything at the wedding had to have purpose and meaning. Heart, soul and personality were all very important.’
And how do aficionados of such a celluloid icon top off a wedding like that?
With the h007neymoon of course.
‘Northern Italy for three weeks. Venice (Bond was there in Moon Raker and Casino Royale), Milan (the Alfa Romeo Museum is there), Tuscany (Quantum of Solace), Rome (Spectre), Cinque Terre, Pisa, Lake Garda (Bond chase sequence from Quantum of Solace).’
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