The Wedding of ...
Heather Cohen & Jason Kra
Ceremony & Reception: W Hotel Fort Lauderdale
Gown: Pronovias; Custom Skirt
Bridal Gown Salon: Seng Couture, Fanwood NJ
Tux: Emporio Armani, from Bloomingdale’s
Photographer & Cinematographer: Dana Lynn Photography, Dana Lynn & Melanie Diaz
Makeup: Rachel’s Brides, Rachel Shapiro
Hair: Phairis Luxury, Rebecca Mousseau
Florist: Daniel Events
Cake: Earth and Sugar Bakery
Band: Gypsy Lane Band of Tropics Entertainment
Favors: Phenomenom Cookie
Event Planner: Daniel Events, Benny Ofer
Day of Coordinator: Your Special Day by Joni Scalzo
Violinist: Master Musicians Inc., Julie Nissa Bloch
“Weekend Wedding Vibes”
Jason and I met online and had our first date on the rooftop of the Peninsula Hotel. We had a lot in common. We’re both in manufacturing; he’s in clothing manufacturing and I’m in footwear design. He’d thrown me off enough that I had no idea the proposal was coming, but when he got down on one knee at our country club, it was a wonderful moment.
We always wanted a destination wedding with a smaller, more intimate crowd. I loved the idea of a beach wedding and having all our friends and family together at the hotel, getting the whole weekend-wedding vibe. We found the W Hotel Fort Lauderdale. We’d been there before and knew the service was impeccable and what our guests would experience. The recently remodeled hotel features modern, bright white walls in the ballroom, the perfect lobby bar for hanging out all weekend, and they were very accommodating when organizing a room block.
I worked with Taylor Cantrell, event manager, and Arlene Espino, senior catering sales executive, and the event team, putting together the room design and flow of the evening. Their flexibility allowed us to tailor everything to our taste, particularly with the food! Steven Starr, an American celebrity chef, is the head of catering. The style of food surpassed every expectation. Planning from NY, I found a lot of my vendors through social media. Our band, photographer, and florist were all wonderful choices and were super easy to work with, even with most of the planning being done by phone and email.
At our ceremony, Jason’s sons, who are both musicians, surprised us by performing songs as I walked down the aisle. The band helped them pull off their surprise beautifully. We originally planned an outdoor rooftop ceremony, but the weather didn’t cooperate and the hotel and Benny, from our florist Daniel Events, handled everything while I spent the day with my bridal party. We had our contingency plan and everything turned out perfectly. We walked down the aisle in the bright space of the ballroom, our parents and grandmothers walked down as well, and the entire ceremony was really special.
For cocktail hour, we had passed hors d’oeuvres along with a sushi station, shrimp cocktail station, and more. Lamb chops, burger sliders, and mini grilled cheeses were some of our favorites. Of course, we had to have pigs in blankets and The W was kind enough to accommodate that special request. Our sons played music at the cocktail hour as well, and we had Julie from Master Musicians playing electric violin. It was so impressive, some of our international guests thought it was the reception!
The reception doors opened to music playing and a gorgeously set room. Everything was above and beyond! We kept our decor simple yet elegant with big white flowers and candles. Through discussion, our florist was able to show me pictures and decorate the room exactly to my style. Benny has such a good eye and it was a dream come true.
The food was excellent. Our sit-down dinner started with a lobster roll sans mayo, since Jason isn’t a mayo fan. We then had a burrata salad followed by a steak and salmon duo plate with truffle mashed potato and grilled asparagus. The chef worked with us to tweak everything to our liking. Our beautifully designed naked cake, custom designed from photos I had saved, was the best I’ve ever had!
For music, we had The Gypsy Lane Band with two of the original members of the Village People and one of the members of KC and the Sunshine Band. Karina, the band leader, had them follow our song list and use their expertise to create an awesome, totally fun party. When Karina invited Jason’s kids to the stage and joined them to perform, the crowd went crazy. All our guests partied and cheered along. They played through dinner so there was no lull in the party and it was an awesome performance. Our after-party and brunch the next morning were both at the hotel and went off wonderfully. We really achieved the weekend wedding we dreamed of!
We’d love to thank Taylor and Arlene from W Fort Lauderdale for working with us to create the night of our lives. Benny and his team curated our florals to perfection and made planning from afar easy. He recommended my makeup artist, who was also a dream to work with. She did all my bridesmaids’ makeup and was so talented. Thanks to The Gypsy Lane Band for rocking our party and thank you to all our guests for joining us for an amazing weekend!