The Wedding of…
Marie Blanchard & David Bradley
Ceremony & Reception: OHEKA CASTLE
Gown: 1st: Galia Lahav; 2nd: Leah da Gloria
3rd: Edwin D’Angelo; at Bridal Reflections, NYC
Bridesmaids: Portia & Scarlett, NY Dress
Photographer: Adam Opris, Opris Photography
Cinematographer: Andrey Solo Films
Makeup: Lyzadora Beauty of Tokini Benibo
Hair: Ana'Hella Bridal
Cake: Dan Andreotti Cakes
DJ: Finer Touch Entertainment
Event Planner: Karyn Michaels Events, Karyn LoCicero
David and I met while I was out with a girlfriend in Pittsburgh. The bartender gave me a drink sent from him, and after a while I called him over. We started talking and when he learned I was a bikini body builder, he asked if I could train him. We exchanged numbers, but I wasn’t sure if I took him seriously yet. I sent him the assessment form I send all potential clients, and from there a beautiful relationship began as coach and client.
I lived in Pittsburgh at the time, and David would often travel for work and come to see me. We always had so much fun, both loving traveling and nights out. We understood and accepted each other and after a while he said he was going to get me to move to New York with him. I said he was crazy. Yet, when I inevitably found myself living in New York, it was absolutely blissful. David is so much fun, he’d worked so hard training with me, and our time together is always filled with excitement. Within a week of making the move we went to the Hamptons, where David proposed at one of my favorite restaurants, Nick and Tony’s, in front of everyone. It was very beautiful and incredibly special.
We considered a wedding in France, but decided to look closer to home. When I found OHEKA CASTLE, we knew we had to have it for our wedding day. Being a little over 100 years old, it is authentic in a luxurious way. The gorgeous ballroom with vast ceilings, arched windows showcasing manicured lawns, and ornate millwork is just the beginning of what OHEKA has to offer.
Gary Melius, owner, and Kelly Melius, director of sales, were helpful and kind, and absolutely amazing to work with. We became very close with them and look forward to spending evenings at OHEKA in the future. We met Karyn, our wedding planner and owner of Karyn Michael Events, and she helped us put the whole day together. We couldn’t ask for a better group of people to help with our wedding planning.
Our ceremony was outside on a beautiful day. It was a very special moment, and though we wished travel restrictions would’ve allowed our overseas family to be there, the ceremony was perfect. Our cocktail hour was decadent and gorgeous. All the food was delicately displayed and gave our guests a taste of what was to come. Coconut shrimp, crab cakes with chipotle aioli, baby lamb chops, and butternut squash bisque shooters, were just a few of the favorites.
David and I had our first dance together to begin the reception. We took dance classes to have a choreographed routine, but due to Covid it was a very long time since we’d actually taken the lessons. This, and the fact that we’d never completed the dance with my ballgown on, led to a hilarious tumble during the first dance. David was embarrassed, but I was laughing and knew this little blooper would be a moment we’d never forget. I changed into my second dress and the rest of the evening followed with a heartfelt speech from David, fireworks, and one hell of a dance party!
The staff at OHEKA treated us like royalty. At any moment they were there to provide us with water, snacks, to hold my phone — they did everything and anything to make our day as special as possible.
Dinner was delicious, with a baby arugula and endive salad as an appetizer, and entrée options of grilled sterling silver filet mignon, all-natural pan-seared French-cut chicken breast, and pan-seared Chilean sea bass. Our wedding cake was magnificent, with five tiers of vanilla and chocolate cake. When the reception ended, I changed into my third dress and the night continued with an after-party in OHEKA’s speakeasy lounge. Everyone was able to wind down, have some drinks, and get to know each other.
Our goal was to make our wedding day as enjoyable for our guests as it was for us. We thank our planner, Karyn, and everyone at OHEKA for making our vision possible. Without our planning team we couldn’t have achieved our vision so perfectly. I’d like to thank my maid of honor, Latoi Gentilcore, who is a true best friend. She went above and beyond to rectify a bridesmaid dress-debacle and without her incredible energy and love our bridal party wouldn’t have been the stunning sight they were. Thank you to all our bridal party for being there with us from the beginning, and thank you to everyone for joining in our beautiful wedding night!
OHEKA CASTLE, Huntington, NY