Just married: Ciara and Mark Cromie
Mark Cromie and Ciara Burke fell in love when they were students at the University of Ulster.
Mark (34), an architectural technologist from Newtownabbey, met Ciara (35), a human resources business partner from Bagnalstown, Co Carlow, back in 1996 at the old Jordanstown Inn in Whiteabbey.
“We met during the second semester of uni at the bar and I had to do all the chasing,” Mark said.
“Ciara was in Belfast and I was at home and then, in 2001, we moved to Dublin and have been living together ever since.”
Mark then arranged a romantic proposal last New Year’s Day during a skiing trip to Italy.
“It was the last run of the day,” he explained. “We got the last lift to the top of the mountain and I got down on one knee and proposed.
“Our friends had some wine with them, so we had a toast and the snow patrol let us ski down at our leisure. It was great.”
The couple married on September 9 at Maiori town hall on the Amalfi Coast, Italy, followed by a reception for 14 in Torre Normana Restaurant on the coast.
“The view looking over the sea was amazing,” Mark added. “Our service, meal and everything was wonderful. Our first dance was That's Amore, by Dean Martin.”
The newlyweds then embarked on a small tour of Italy for their honeymoon, spending time in Rome, Sienna and Florence.
Mark said both he and Ciara are enjoying married life together, but as the couple have been in love for more than 15 years, that it's no big adjustment for them.
“It's brilliant. There has been no real change to the way to the way it was before.
“We are still the same as we ever were, but it is great to be married and it was lovely to have our family with us.
“We hadn't been on a big family holiday together as a whole group.
“Ciara and I are incredibly happy and looking forward to our future together.”