The Wedding of…
Basma Nadal & Robbie Nashi
Ceremony & Reception: Birchwood Manor
Gown: Francesca Guzzo-Whyte, Jaclyn Whyte
Tux: Man About Town
Photographer & Cinematographer:
Florist: Nouri's Flowers
Cake: Birchwood Manor
Wedding Favors: Handmade by Riema Saria
“An Amazing Experience”
A mutual friend introduced us and later Robbie messaged me on Facebook. We would text every day and eventually would call and video chat. I told him I was a researcher and he said he was a CPA. We had many similar interests and a similar upbringing.
In December of that year Robbie flew to Toronto for a weekend to meet me. For our first date, we went to a museum, a comedy club, and a fancy dinner. Then I visited Robbie in New Jersey in March 2020. After that we didn’t see each other for a very long time due to the pandemic and the closure of the US-Canada border.
We made our long-distance relationship work. We watched shows together, played virtual games, and shared our lives with each other. Once the border opened, we were able to visit each other and that’s when we knew we were going to spend the rest of our lives together. I was visiting Robbie for a week in December 2020 and we decided we were ready to get married. Robbie called my parents and after he got their approval, we went out and got a beautiful ring and were officially engaged.
We didn’t start wedding planning until March of 2021 due to the pandemic. We knew we wanted to have our wedding in New Jersey. My mother-in-law did a lot of the planning while I was in Canada. She suggested Birchwood Manor because their family had been to the venue for previous events and absolutely loved everything about it. They did a video tour with me and I thought the venue was beautiful.
Michael Marino and the Birchwood team were very flexible and provided excellent input, covering every aspect of the design, food, cake, Covid safety, and music. They had a lot of design options that perfectly matched our theme. We wanted to make sure our guests didn’t feel confined, so Michael ensured the tables were large enough and spaced out to allow for social distancing and that our guests had access to the beautiful garden. We arranged for some custom menu items and the food and cake at our reception were delicious.
For cocktail hour, we had a variety of options. Our guests really enjoyed all the food, including Cantonese egg rolls, chicken quesadilla, chafing dishes with penne alla vodka, Swedish meatballs, sesame chicken, Italian sausage, and fantail shrimp. A lot of our guests were shocked to find out there was going to be more food during the reception! Our ballroom was decorated in our theme of pastel colors. The room was beautiful, the lighting was perfect, and the space looked elegant. The bride and groom table was on a platform centered with the dance floor and facing the DJ booth, just across the dance floor. We could see all our guests, which is what we wanted.
Dinner began with a champagne toast followed by a mesclun salad. A refreshing mango sorbet intermezzo was served to cleanse our palates before the main course. Our guests chose from garlic herb-crusted prime ribs of beef, chicken marsala, grilled salmon in a white wine cream sauce, or a vegetarian entrée.
Each entrée was served with a delicious garlic mashed potato tower with caramelized onions and a vegetable bouquetière. Guests told us their favorite dish was the grilled salmon with the white wine cream sauce. The garlic mashed potato tower side was also a win. We chose the “nearly naked” wedding cake with strawberry custard filling, which was served on a berry coulis painted plate with vanilla ice cream.
The experience was amazing. Everyone was so helpful, the coordinators who kept track of the timing, the waitstaff, and of course Michael. I want to thank our vendors, Riema Saria who made so many wedding favors in such a short period of time, our florist, and our photographers, who captured everything. I want to thank my mother-in-law who arranged everything on her own. And, of course, our families and guests, who made the day very special!
Birchwood Manor, Whippany, NJ