Ceremony & Reception: The Rockleigh,
Gown: Maggie Sottero from RK Bridal
Tux: Jos. A. Bank
Photographer & Cinematographer: Abbey Creative Photography
Makeup: Professional Makeup by Hanna Braun,
Hair: Hair Rage Beauty Salon & Nail Spa
Florist: Amaryllis Event Décor
Cake: A Little Cake Bakery
Band & DJ: Craig Scott Orchestra & Craig Scott Entertainment,
Event Planner: Elegant Occasions by JoAnn Gregoli
Stationary: Make An Impression
Claudio is the chef of a Continental restaurant and bar that I have been dining at for years. Little did I know, he had noticed me for a while and one day he finally introduced himself. We enjoyed some drinks at his restaurant that night and had our first date later that week at a restaurant upstate on the Hudson River. Three years later, on a vacation at Virginia Beach, Claudio took me to a fine dining restaurant with live music. A string quartet came over to us, and he got down on one knee and proposed!
I am a catering director at The Rockleigh and knowing what we do on a daily basis to make wedding couples’ dreams come true, I would not have trusted anyone else to do the job. It was an incredible experience to be on the receiving end of the quality service our team provides. Rockni Ghorishi and Mel Zalcman, both directors of events and sales, delivered exactly what we expected and more.
Being traditionalists, we incorporated both our cultures into our ceremony, held in the Georgian chapel room. I am a Jewish American-Russian and Claudio is a Catholic Ecuadorian. For my heritage, we broke the glass and were married under a chuppah. For Claudio’s heritage, we did a special lasso and coin exchange tradition to symbolize our eternal bond. We also included our English bulldog Tankito by having him escort Claudio down the aisle.
We incorporated every cuisine you could imagine into our cocktail hour! Butlers served our guests various signature cocktails, ceviche of rock shrimp, cumin coconut chicken, potato pancakes with apple sauce, and more. Our food stations ranged from a kosher deli carving station and a rack of lamb station to a seafood and sushi bar to a Tuscan tasting table and a Latin station which featured a whole roasted pig, and the list goes on. Everyone also loved the tequila and vodka luges and the surprise ice sculpture of our English bulldog!
Our ballroom was candlelight galore! We had a New Year’s Eve wedding with an elegant Old World theme. Our décor included black velvet tablecloths and high centerpieces of red roses, amaryllis, and orchids. Our 12-piece orchestra played a bit of everything to keep the party going. We had a tribute Sinatra singer during dinner, modern dance music, Latin music, and oldies. We made sure to include the traditional hora and Ecuadorian dances too.
At each table, we served family-style appetizers of pappardelle with wild mushroom ragout and fried parmesan cheese. In addition, guests had a first course of sea scallops and butlers passed out sorbet lollipops. For the entrée, guests could choose between roasted rack of veal with orange, prime filet mignon in a Madiera wine sauce, crispy skin red snapper, roast duck in a cherry sauce, or wild mushroom and sweet pea risotto. We also created a customized children’s menu of individual cheese pizzas, chicken fingers, French fries, and onion rings. Later, we served our wedding cake and butlered assortments of dessert shooters!
A DJ played at our after-party in the Rockleigh’s Jazz and Blues Club. This part of the night also had every type of sweet and savory treat you could imagine. We had a hot dog and slider station, a pizzetta station, a Belgian waffle station, an ice cream sundae bar, a cigar and cognac/scotch bar, and more. It was unseasonably warm for New Year’s Eve, so we had fire pits going outside with heaters so guests could enjoy the indoors and outdoors.
First and foremost, thank you to The Puccio family, Rockni, Mel, the executive chefs and kitchen team, and everyone at the Rockleigh for giving me the best day we could imagine. Thank you to every single one of our vendors for understanding my vision and making the day perfect. Thank you to our parents, family, and friends for sharing this day with us!