“Michael is an anesthesiologist and I am a gastroenterologist and yes, it’s a little cliched, but we are two doctors who met at work in the hospital!”
Joann recalls the particular day she and Michael connected for the first time, after almost a year of seeing one another here and there. “I remember seeing him for the first time and thinking he was so handsome, but we are not in the same department so my interactions with him were always a bit random.” However, one fateful Friday, Michael and Joann were paired to work together for the entire day. It was a slow day of work, so the two had a chance to chat and get to know each other. “I just remember laughing a lot and enjoying the day,” recalls Joann, “Shortly after that he asked me out and I was so excited to spend more time with him outside of work.”
They laughed so hard and talked so naturally on their first date out to Japanese food, neither of them even realized when the restaurant was starting to close. “I don’t think it took us long after that to realize that we were meant for each other,” says Joann, “Michael has always felt like home to me. He makes me feel so comfortable to be myself. I feel like I’ve known him all my life. I feel very lucky to have found him!”
When it came down to planning, neither Michael nor Joann had a set idea for what kind of wedding they wanted. “All we knew was that we wanted to plan an event for our close friends and family that was filled with lots of warmth and love and wanted it to be a memorable night for everyone, not just us.” The couple began by compiling a list of vendors and venues that interested them based on research and reviews, and then set up a series of meetings. When we asked Joanna about the process of finding the right venue and vendors, the in-person meetings were crucial to determining what they wanted and who they trusted. “The meetings were probably the most important part of our planning process because as great as reviews can be, the in-person meeting or site visit really helped us realize what we wanted in the end of it all,” she explains, “This was especially important for our vendors – if we were trusting them with one of the most important days of our lives, we needed to know that we would connect with them to trust them completely.”
Plus, taking the time to find vendors they trusted only led to more connections. “Once we established relationships with vendors, we also found them to be a rich resource for referrals to other vendors, because who better to ask for advice and referrals then from vendors who you already trust!”
“After we secured our venue, we began to look at flowers to figure out our plan. When we saw pictures of bright, jewel-toned flowers, it was undeniable that it evoked the emotions consistent with what we wanted for our wedding, as opposed to whites or pastels,” explains Joann. “When we spoke with Rachel about this, she took our ideas and put together the most stunning arrangements.”
Joann carried a one-of-a-kind bouquet of eggplant calla lilies, plum ranunculus, purple and fuchsia roses, and burgundy anemones. Tall arrangements in similar tones with raspberry spray roses and purple hydrangeas stood at the aisle entrance and the altar with votive candles clustered at the base, creating a mesmerizing, romantic ceremony.
Jewel-toned blooms carried into the ceremony, with a card table arrangement of manzanita branches dotted with iridescent purples and pinks.
Centerpieces ranged from soaring sprays of Hawaiian orchids to low, lush collections of hydrangeas and roses.
In the glow of candlelight, these stunning, rich colors transformed The Mandarin Oriental into a fantastic, welcoming wonderland that was completely unique. “The rich colors of the flowers were so beautiful and expressive, they brought warmth to the wedding and I could not stop smiling, I felt like it perfectly brought out the mood of the night.”
We asked Joann her advice for letting go and enjoying the big day. “We both made sure to take moments to soak it all in. Our guests had a blast, the venue was amazing and the flowers and lighting were beyond words….we felt so grateful for it all. We wanted to get married again the following weekend!”
Congratulations, Joann and Michael!
Venue: Mandarin Oriental New York
Planned by: Jessica Jordan Events
Photography: The Brenizers
Videography: Love in Progress
Cake: Madison Lee’s Cakes
Bride’s Gown: Vera Wang
Bride’s Shoes: Kate Spade
Groom’s Tux + Shoes: Giorgio Armani
Rings: Tiffany & Co.
Beauty: JAC Beauty
Ceremony/Cocktail Hour Music: Juilliard Musicians
Reception Music: DJ David Medina
Photobooth : Sweet Booths