The Wedding of ...
Giselle Abustan & Michael Alcorn
Ceremony & Reception: Hilton Pearl River,
Gown: Galia Lahav & Gucci
Bridesmaids: Adrianna Papell
Photographer: Sachi Villarreal Photography
Cinematographer: Knotty Arts Studio
Makeup: Joel Adrianov & D. Anthony’s Hair Studio
Hair: Oscar Duenas & D. Anthony’s Hair Studio
Florist: Tess Florist, by Tess Lim
Cake: A Little Cake & Celebration Cakes by Irma Yu
DJ: Key Music Group
Signs: Teal Elephant Creations
Stationary: Paper Princess by Melissa
Mike and I met at a mutual friends’ wedding but our first date was not until three years later, when Mike took me to a Chinese restaurant at Palisades Center Mall. Mike is a physical therapist and I am a store manager for Gucci. After five and a half years of dating, Mike planned a day at the New York Botanical Garden followed by what I thought was a surprise dinner for Mike’s best friend, Jay, who was visiting from California.
When I arrived at the garden, Mike led us to the Hester Bridge, overlooking the Bronx River. The next thing I knew, he was on one knee and asked me to marry him! Jay and Jay’s cousin were nearby periscoping the whole proposal, so our friends and family got to see the proposal live. Later I learned our dinner for Jay was actually an engagement party for us!
I had my Sweet Sixteen at Hilton Pearl River and decided to check out the since-renovated venue for our wedding. Mike and I were impressed by the grounds and the French chateau style look. We reserved a 40-room block for our guests and turned it into a wedding weekend! Gerry Burns, director of catering, addressed every concern we had and assured us that whatever we wanted or needed, they would do for us. At our wedding, Derek Rubino, our maître d’, and Samantha, my bridal escort, made sure we received the most attentive service all night. Gerry and the Hilton Pearl River team really wowed us.
We personalized our ceremony with special touches and cultural traditions. Perhaps most special was the gorgeous gazebo my father hand-crafted for us to get married under. Mike’s groomsman, Martin Pincar III, officiated and we wrote our own vows. Our ceremony included the Filipino wedding tradition of the coins, veil, cord, and candles to represent the unity of our marriage, as well as our primary sponsors.
Food is one of the most important aspects of a wedding to my family. My brother, who is a chef, helped us customize the best selections for our cocktail hour, which included a seafood bar, a sushi bar, a slider and hot dog station, and the fan-favorite, the caviar and vodka station. The focal point was the traditional suckling pig, another Filipino wedding tradition. Our guests loved that there was never a line for drinks with the room’s six bars!
The ballroom was lit with orange and red tones for an autumn theme. Our tables were decorated with tall vase centerpieces filled with white flowers and greenery and draped with votives and crystals. We also had selfie sticks at each table! My father built a stage and platform for our sweetheart table. The back of our chairs had “Mr.” and “Mrs.” signs and white curtains behind us had our initials lit on them. Dinner started with a beet and goat cheese salad. For the entrée, guests had an option of French-cut chicken breast, chateaubriand, or Chilean sea bass. Everything was phenomenal. We had a Viennese tower as well as two wedding cakes, a black and white cake with cannoli cream filling and buttercream frosting, and a “Gucci” apple walnut cake for the fall season.
Our DJ kept everyone dancing the whole night. He played Latin music, modern top 40’s, hip hop, and even ballroom dancing songs. Our music package also included a live percussionist and a photo booth. Our cinematographer also did a six-minute same-day edit video to premier that night for us and our guests!
Thank you to Gerry, Derek, Samantha, and the Hilton Pearl River staff for their impeccable service. Thank you to our incredible vendors and a special shout out to our cinematographers, Hector and Grace Almazan, for capturing the day’s most beautiful moments. Thank you to both our parents for all their love and support. And thank you to our bridal party, friends, and family for being part of our day.