Ciao Bella 

Capturing the Beauty in Every Occasion

Recognized for providing the best photography services in Warrenton for the fifth consecutive year, Ciao Bella Celebrations has reasons of its own to celebrate. Owners Mona and Dan McLinden have created a one-stop venue for those special moments and milestones by opening a café at 18 Ashby Street in Old Town, which also serves as home for Ciao Bella Photography.

The expansion offers “Celebrations Packages” that round out their award-winning photography services. Included in these packages is the use of the café, celebration rooms for small weddings and parties, as well as a ride in Ciao’s custom trolley. “We’ve finally reached a point where we can truly be a full-service business,” Mona says of the company’s growth and ability to remain successful in such a highly saturated industry. “We’re constantly adding services and evolving that way. And having an active studio, where photography is at the core of everything we do, really helps.”

Launched in 2003, Ciao Bella has provided first-rate photography services to dozens of local businesses, thousands of families, and over 400 weddings. Whether it’s birthday parties, high school graduations, personal portraits, corporate headshots, or commercial properties, Mona and Dan’s photo shoots include more time, attention, and preparation than the standard mini-sessions of larger photography companies. Yet weddings remain Ciao’s specialty and the bulk of its business, especially the more intimate and impromptu ceremonies for couples who prefer a sweet and simple celebration.

“We found that we really love small weddings, because we can spend a lot of time taking pictures in a way that’s very relaxed,” Mona explains. “We don’t just photograph the couple and the bridal party; we include family and extended family. We want to consider all the generations, as they all seem to have a slightly different idea of what they want as far as pictures. People tell us they really like the way we covered so many aspects of their wedding”

This inclusive approach and personal touch distinguishes Ciao’s wedding services.  For instance, couples go right to the studio, or prearranged spot, for a simple ceremony and a romantic photo session right after they have obtained their marriage license from the neighboring courthouse. Mona and Dan can even help with extras such as flowers, dinner, cake cutting, overnight arrangements, and more. For couples seeking an even quicker and easier way to say “I do,” Ciao also offers an Express Wedding and Elopement package, in which the owners sort out all the paperwork and send the newlyweds a certified copy of their marriage license.

“We’re working to bring something unique and special to our community,” continues Mona. “We’ve changed our services to be as flexible as possible, and we offer our customers many options between working in our studio and the environment of their choice.” This diversity and adaptability have helped Ciao remain competitive in a tough market. Ciao Bella has sustained  its reputation as a preeminent company that has drawn repeat business and has served multiple generations of families through its reputation and functionality. And that’s worth celebrating—beautifully.

For more information about Ciao Bella Celebrations, please call 540-349-0035 or visit their website.

Maria Massaro
About Maria Massaro 12 Articles
Maria Massaro is a Warrenton resident and freelance writer who has worked as a community counselor in Fauquier County since 2008. She is the founder of Aegis Counseling and Consulting and an advocate for individuals and families affected by mental illness. For more information, please visit or call 540-316-8557.

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