The Wedding of ...
Diana Tawfik & Ramy Eid
Ceremony & Reception: Birchwood Manor,
Gown: Sophia Tolli
Photographer: Photography by Seth David
Makeup: Eileen Tabana
Hair: Jamal Tadros
Florist: Avenue Flowers & Gifts
Cake: Birchwood Manor
DJ: Pharaohs Entertainment
Elegant Cultural Wedding
I knew Ramy for many years since our parents are lifelong friends. Growing up, I would see him at family events and at holiday celebrations. Years later, our paths intersected again, this time professionally. I began a job in risk management and my career brought me to Jersey City, where Ramy serves as a municipal court judge. Since we already knew each other for years, the transition into a romantic relationship was seamless. After six months of dating, Ramy asked my parents for permission to marry me. During a picnic on the beach at Pier Village in Long Branch, Ramy proposed!
Over the next few months, we began venue shopping. We visited numerous places and when we saw Birchwood Manor, we had no hesitation in choosing it. The warmth of the friendly staff, expansive ballrooms, and gorgeous greenery in the gardens made it the perfect venue for our rustic and elegant wedding. Michael Marino III, banquet manager, Farrell Holleran, assistant banquet manager, and the Birchwood staff were very attentive, accommodating, and organized, while at the same time able to ease all our concerns throughout the process. They went out of their way to add personal touches to every detail. By taking the time to get to know us and our families, they created a day that perfectly fit our style, cultural traditions, and personalities.
Our ceremony was held a week before our wedding reception. It was a close and intimate religious ceremony at my parents’ house with our immediate family. At the reception the week after, our cocktail hour was in Birchwood’s West Lounge and Greenery Room. Butlers passed hors d’oeuvres such as potato pancakes with cinnamon applesauce, Cantonese egg rolls, lobster ravioli, and more. We also had several food stations including a carving station with herb-roasted turkey and at our special request, a rack of lamb, and a spectacular seafood boat ice carving with shrimp, clams, oysters, and lobster tails. Everything was terrific! We loved how Birchwood provided a sampling of the cocktail hour foods in an upstairs suite for Ramy and I to enjoy before our grand entrance.
Ramy loves Star Wars, so we incorporated little touches of Star Wars into the night. We even entered the ballroom to the Star Wars theme song! For our rustic ballroom décor, we included natural light tones of yellows and pinks. The centerpieces were simple vases filled with white tree branches and white lights. Dinner started with a mesclun salad in balsamic vinaigrette and a lemon sorbet intermezzo. For the entrée, guests could choose from prime rib of beef au jus, chicken marsala, or grilled salmon with orange ginger glaze. Each dish was accompanied with a grilled mashed potato tower with caramelized onions.
Our DJ played a combination of traditional Egyptian and American music, keeping our 250 guests dancing all night! For dessert, Birchwood Manor’s own bakery created our white vanilla tiered wedding cake with cannoli filling, decorated with sugar flowers. We had the Star Wars “I love you, I know” quote made into a cake topper. There were also other treats available, such as chocolate ganache, vanilla ice cream, and chocolate-covered strawberries.
Thank you to our parents, friends, and family for making this incredible day possible. Thank you to Michael, Farrell, and the Birchwood Manor staff for making our wedding spectacular and unforgettable from start to finish. We loved visiting Birchwood again for our one year anniversary and hope to make it an annual event, celebrating the beginning of our amazing journey together!