Archive: January 2011

Lauren and Michael’s Diplomat Country Club Wedding

Posted on January 31, 2011

What a great couple! I had a fabulous time photographing Lauren and Michael’s recent Diplomat Country Club Jewish wedding. Their enthusiasm before, during and after the event has been unparalleled. You will see in these photos, some of the beauty that I captured that day.

As a South Florida wedding photographer, I work in many different venues, but quite often I photograph magnificent Diplomat Country Club weddings. Mostly, I photograph South Florida Jewish weddings at this resort. That’s just the way it seems to work out. I do love shooting Jewish weddings, as they are rich with tradition – including everything from the breaking of the glass during the ceremony to the festive hora at the reception.

For Lauren and Michael, it was important that they find a venue that would feel intimate for a wedding of 200 plus people – as well as find a venue that was somewhere on the water, as many of the guests would be coming from down to South Florida from the Midwest and the Northeast (in the middle of winter!) They found the Diplomat Country Club to be the perfect solution. The venue offered a warm, more intimate feel while affording guests the luxury of staying across the street at the Diplomat Resort Hotel. It was simply perfect.

According to Lauren, their South Florida wedding didn’t really have a “theme,” rather they just wanted it to feel warm, romantic and fun and they did their best to add some personal and unique touches to it. For instance, they wrote their own vows to each other that we read during the ceremony – even with some humor interspersed. They also wrote a personal note inside each couple’s place card, which the guests just loved. Miniature ice cream cones were passed out at the end of night to guests on the dance floor and there was a candy buffet with bags that read “Sweet Dreams” for guests to fill on their way out at the end of the evening. These small, but memorable touches are just a few reasons this wedding was so magical. Another fun element was the photobooth – guests had a great time with this as well.

Raffi of Petal Productions created the amazing décor for the event, as is represented in this post. Higher Ground provided the music for the evening and had guests on the dance floor non-stop! Lauren looked stunning in her Reem Acra dress and Stuart Weitzman shoes. For a sentimental touch, she wore her late grandmother’s earrings and kept a hanky of hers close to her heart.

I would like to thank Lauren, Michael and their families for allowing me to be part of their very special day. For this South Florida wedding photographer, working with such enthusiastic and all around fun people makes my job incredibly rewarding. Thanks so much!

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Ravi & Azadeh’s Destination Wedding in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic at the Majestic Elegance Resort

Posted on January 11, 2011

What a spectacular wedding week for Ravi and Azadeh! As they live year-round in Toronto, Canada, selecting a warm tropical paradise setting for their wedding was a no brainer. Their wedding planner extraordinaire, Jamica Andani of Weddings in the Tropics, said that when the bride and groom came in for a consultation they indicated that they were looking for an intimate venue, silky sand beach and a more contemporary resort that would provide an extraordinary experience for their guests. They were also looking for a totally unique venue, and they found just that thanks to Jamica’s help.

The Majestic Elegance Resort's spectacular upper and lower lobby areas.

The Majestic's striking front desk.

With Jamica’s vast experience conducting Caribbean destination weddings, she had just the place in mind – the fabulous Majestic Elegance Resort in the lush paradise of Punta Cana, Domincan Republic. As far as exotic destination weddings go, Punta Cana is truly one of the most amazing spots in the Caribbean for such an occasion. It’s never-ending greenery, magnificent beaches, warm tropical weather and friendly locals render it a perfect paradise for a destination wedding getaway! The resort is breathtaking – with a pool that simply never ends. It snakes through the entire resort and finally comes to an end right at the edge of the beach. We’ve seen nothing like this anywhere! The immense open-air lobby is grandiose to say the least, with a huge chandelier and seating just about everywhere for guests to congregate. A gorgeous staircase leads down to a lobby bar from two sides. If you don’t want to descend too quickly – there is another lobby bar on the main level as well. No shortage of places to get a nice, cold drink. As we checked in, we were pleasantly greeted and given the most delicious drink – it was a frosty and refreshing concoction with mango and I don’t know what else – some sort of alcohol. All I can say is YUMMY! It was called, appropriately, the “Majestic.”

Ravi and Azadeh’s story is great – they actually met at work. Ravi was Azadeh’s boss! They were each taken by each other almost from the get go and the rest is history. Their backgrounds are both rich with tradition. Ravi is Indian and Azadeh is Persian, so the wedding festivities included full ceremonies for both cultures. Jamica designed the Indian wedding in traditional vibrant colors of gold, bright pinks, oranges. India is the land of the Maharajas (kings) where they have extravagant weddings with rich fabrics, beads and jewel color stones – so Ravi wanted to be a 21st century Maharaja. He certainly was at this most colorful celebration that included a full Indian ceremony and party afterwards. Ravi wore a sherwani suit while Azadeh wore a magnificent wedding lengha.

The two families from different cultures brought a distinctive flair to both wedding ceremonies. The traditions were very much present and observed at the Indian ceremony with a Mandap and the Ballroom looked like an ancient Hindu Temple. You could feel how the décor reflected the sacredness of the ceremony les by Pandit Sharma, All the elements such as mango leaves, incense, milk, the nuptial rounds were around the fire by the bride and groom. Both Hindu and Persian wedding design, planning and coordination started 8 months prior in Toronto with Jamica. What an unbelievable job she did putting all this together! Most of the materials were flown in from Canada then had to be set up, broken down and shipped back. It was a monumental task that Jamica pulled off flawlessly. In addition to the two full wedding ceremonies, there were many other events during the week that required planning – a welcome dinner, beach party, goodbye dinner, and a formal wedding reception.

Party after the Indian wedding ceremony.

The grounds at the Majestic Elegance Resort. The pool seems to go on and on and on...


Ravi and his parents.

The Persian wedding was equally as elaborate as the Inidan wedding, with the traditional Sofreh (table facing the bride and groom) with a display of candles, sweets, flowers, honey and a mirror symbolizing fertility, happiness and prosperity. Nothing was left out – the table was filled! The Persian ceremony took place at the Majestic Elegance’s breathtaking gazebo. It was a Muslim ceremony, the Nikah, led by Ms. Fay. Azadeh was radiant in a spectacular traditional white wedding gown for this ceremony, while her bridesmaids wore gowns of sumptuous tropical green. Later in the day there was a formal dinner reception at one of the hotel’s many restaurants, followed by a beautifully decorated beach party.

In front of the Majestic Elegance Resort's gorgeous wedding gazebo.

This was an amazing Caribbean destination wedding for all! Guests attended from as far away Hawaii, Holland, New York and of course, Toronto where the bulk of the guests were from. I don’t think anyone could have anticipated that a Punta Cana wedding could be just so sublime. A most exotic location, Majestic Elegance Resort offered a unique tropical experience of true elegance as its name suggests and an unparalleled array of locations throughout that served as backdrops for the incredible photographs we were able to create. Many thanks to both Ravi and Azadeh for their cooperation and enthusiasm as we were taking all these photos (and video!!) Additional thanks goes to Jamica for a job well done and for being so pleasant to work with.

Wedding fun at the spa

A stunning couple at a most magnificent Punta Cana beach!

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Lauren and Brett’s South Florida Engagement Shoot

Posted on January 7, 2011

I had a great time photographing Lauren and Brett’s recent engagement shoot in Boca Raton. After being rained out on the first date, we caught amazing weather the second time around which was perfect. We started the shoot at the beach and then worked our way over to the boat inlet just a few blocks away.

Lauren and Brett were a lot of fun to work with and we had a great time getting the shots you’ll see here and much more! As a South Florida wedding photographer, I love photographing couples’ engagements shoots in various locations. I have recently discovered the area around the boat inlet and have since done several shoots there. In Boca Raton there is no shortage of picturesque areas to have a photo shoot!

I think you’ll notice from these shots that Lauren and Brett obviously had a great time as well creating these pictures. I am very much looking forward to photographing their upcoming wedding this December at the Ritz-Carlton Palm Beach.

Many thanks to Lauren and Brett for a great shoot!

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