Our Wedding Day
Ceremony & Reception: The Ashford Estate
Gown: Carolina Herrera
Bridesmaids: Coren Moore
Tux: Jos. A. Bank
Makeup & Hair: Sorelle Salon
Florist: Bouquets to Remember
Cake: Lulu's Palace
Photographer: John Arcara Photography
Videographer: Michael Simons
Band: The Rhythm Shop
A Magical Estate Wedding at The Ashford Estate
John-Austin and I both attended Quinnipiac University. We met at a school party when I was a freshman and he was a sophomore and we’ve been together ever since. Now I’m a special education teacher and John-Austin is a producer.
Eight years later, we traveled to Disney World to celebrate my birthday, our eighth anniversary, and Valentine's Day. There were no lines so we got to ride on Space Mountain three times in a row without waiting. Later that evening, we were sitting on a swing bench outside the hotel drinking our favorite wine. My nephew had just called to wish me a happy birthday when I turned back to John-Austin and he proposed. The ring was made by his great uncle and contained my grandmother’s diamond. It was so meaningful and beautiful. We immediately called our parents and sisters and spent the night celebrating.
As soon as we returned from Florida we got right to work. We spent a lot of time looking at venues all over New Jersey. We were stuck between Bonnet Island Estate and The Ashford Estate. My older sister had gotten married at Bonnet Island in 2007 so we chose The Ashford Estate because we wanted our own special place that no one had been to or seen before. It was beyond beautiful. Laura DeGennaro, sales consultant at Merri Makers, The Ashford Estate’s on-site catering company, and Ginny Connolly, property manager, were so accommodating whenever we called and had questions.
Everybody at The Ashford Estate went above and beyond to make our day perfect. We stopped in many times just to walk around, take pictures, get ideas, change ideas, show family members, and plan every last detail!
The morning before our ceremony the girls came over to get ready while John-Austin went surfing. We got married at The Ashford Estate in the chapel barn, which was covered in beautiful lilies and hydrangeas, with red and pink roses up and down the aisle. The cocktail hour was held in the Conservatory and on the outside porches and patio, so our guests could roam and see the beautiful Ashford grounds.
Our menu was designed exactly for us. For our cocktail hour we had all our favorite passed hors d’oeuvres and appetizer stations, including a personal station that we created called “The Boardwalk” which had sliders, cheesesteaks, French fries, sweet potato fries, and dipping sauces. The ballroom is gorgeous, with high windows, a fireplace, romantic lighting, and a great dance floor. We wanted all white décor so we covered the tables with white organza overlays, and our florist decorated the tables with high and low arrangements including white orchids, roses, and lilies. Our dinner menu started with a pear and gorgonzola salad, followed by a choice of filet mignon with a rock shrimp risotto cake or miso-glazed halibut accompanied by smoked gouda scalloped potatoes and asparagus. Everybody raved about the food.
We were very happy with everything. The day went so perfectly and we got everything we had hoped for. Our advice to any bride and groom is don’t rush the day. Give yourself plenty of time for everything you both want. The Ashford Estate was a perfect venue for us. Thank you to all who made our day magical and unforgettable.