Mina and Matt’s wedding at the Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe, was amazing in every way – from beach portraits at the Hyatt in Incline Village to the packed dance floor; literally every person in the room was dancing (and I climbed on top of the extra tall speaker to get shots of the crowd!). Mina is Persian, and so they held a traditional ceremony in addition to the American one. Of course I loved the details! This wedding had it all.
How did you and Matt first meet?
We met in the halls at business school. We’d been checking each other out for months, which we both claim was because we looked familiar to one another. One day, I finally went right up to him and asked if I knew him from somewhere. Yes, it sounds like a total pickup line, but he really did look familiar 😉 We had a great first conversation and it’s been great ever since.
Who was the dress designer, and where did your stunning necklace and ring come from?
The dress is Vera Wang’s Ethel. I fell in love with it because it was form-fitting and at the same time, super comfortable, light and easy to move (and most importantly, dance) in. The material she uses for this dress is stretchier than you’d think, which was amazing for busting moves on the dance floor! Matt and I designed my ring with Tom Hunt at Thomas Hunt Designs in San Francisco. It was such a fun process. I attended the first meeting where based on what we said we liked, Tom sketched a bunch of ideas. Matt and Tom then worked together to design the final product, which turned out better than I could have ever imagined. Tom let me borrow the pearl and diamond necklace and earrings. They were stunning!
How did your color palette and flowers come together?
At first I had a completely different color palette in mind, but when I went bridesmaid dress shopping with my bridesmaids, we saw the clover green color on a dress and fell in love with it. The dress and the color looked great on all the girls and it just felt appropriate for an outdoor Tahoe wedding. Matt and I were also in the process of choosing our wedding invitations and when our favorite ended up being a green “Two Pine Tree” design, everything came together. With the flowers, we felt cream and green colors were classy, clean and elegant and the branches really tied in the natural Tahoe element of our wedding. Martha did a beautiful job!
How did you choose the Ritz, and tell us about the importance of the beach portraits?
We really wanted a venue where if our guest were having fun, we wouldn’t have to tell them to leave because the venue was closing. So a late curfew was essential. Also, Matt and I started dating soon after we met in the Winter of 2009 and we immediately started doing trips up to Tahoe to do what we both love most… skiing/boarding! He even proposed on the top of our favorite mountain in Tahoe! So getting married on the mountain was significant to us. But, we also really loved the beauty of the lake. We looked at a ton of Tahoe venues, and most of them had too early a curfew. As soon as we visited the Ritz, we were sold. Their customer service is impeccable, their food is mouth-watering, the venue was very classy and their curfew and flexibility was perfect! We weren’t ready to forgo pictures by the lake though, and Nina was amazing in making it happen before the wedding.
Please tell us about how Matt surprised you with saying vows in Farsi, and a bit about the Persian ceremony.
I was absolutely floored when Matt started his vows in Farsi. It meant a lot that he’d taken the effort to do that for me, especially because Farsi is such a difficult language. Neither Matt nor I are religious, but my Persian culture definitely contributes to who I am and it meant a lot to me and my family that Matt wanted to have the Persian ceremony called “Aghd” as well. Each item on the table arrangement symbolized some aspect of the brides and groom’s lives together (i.e. sugar to sweeten their lives, eggs for fertility, gold coins for wealth and prosperity, etc.).
Your dance floor was completely packed even before dinner, is this tradition?
I’m not sure if it’s a Persian tradition to dance before dinner, but Persians do tend to eat much later in the evening and LOVE to dance, so dancing is the only reasonable activity to fill the time. This way, people are also not too full and sleepy to dance.
Which is your favorite photo, and why?
We love the photo where we’re cracking up during the speeches. We absolutely loved all the speeches. They were hilarious!
What was your most memorable moment?
The day was full of memorable moments, but we both agree that sharing our vows with one another was the most memorable. It felt like time had stopped and it was just him and I sharing all our love and promises for the future.
The BEST day of our lives! We were surrounded by the people we love most in this world, the weather was perfect, everything exceeded our expectations… our vendors, the food, music and everyone’s energy. We never expected most of our guests to last on the dance floor to almost 2am! We LOVED it!
event planning: Summit Soiree · ceremony, catering and reception: The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe · floral design: Martha Bernyk · make-up artist: Jennifer Ergut · hair stylist: Laura Seegmiller · videography: Jason Chesebrough · Videoquest Productions · Photobooth: Reno Photobooth Company · DJ: Ramin Mehrabani