The Wedding of ...
Lisa Hou & Joshua Chen
Ceremony & Reception: Faculty House at Columbia University,
Gown: Mofiel (Shanghai, China)
Tux: JLiu Designs (Shanghai, China)
Photographer: Pierre T. Lambert Photography
Makeup & Hair: Manavi Integral Artistry
Florist: City Iris
Cake: Ron Ben-Israel Cakes
DJ: Privé DJ Entertainment
Some would say fate brought us together, 7,000 miles away from home. Josh and I both grew up in the US and were relocated to Shanghai, China for work. He is in merchandising and I work in finance. Our mutual friends introduced us and for our first date, we went to my favorite Chinese restaurant. It was casual, simple, and exactly what I wanted.
Two and a half years later, while we were back in NYC for the Chinese New Year holiday and a reunion with friends, Josh rented out a room at a quaint French restaurant called Le Philosophe. He had the room decorated with candles and flowers and even arranged for one of the waiters to serenade me! Then Josh proposed to me in front of all our closest friends.
We had two wedding receptions, one in Shanghai and one in NYC. For the NYC reception, picking the venue was very simple. Faculty House holds special significance in our family, as it has been the wedding reception site for three consecutive generations in my family: my grandparents, my parents, and now us.
Because we were living in Shanghai while planning our New York wedding, we were worried the planning process would be difficult. However, the staff members at Faculty House were extremely accommodating and helpful. In the limited periods of time we visited the US, they made every minute count, including food tastings, menu settings, and planning floral and cake arrangements. We worked mainly with Leslie Robinson, the catering and events manager, during the planning stages. On the day of our wedding, she and David Martin, the general manager, were extremely hands-on to ensure everything was taken care of and ran smoothly. The staff also helped us incorporate our Chinese traditions into every aspect of the wedding.
We had a traditional Chinese tea ceremony, where we offer tea to our parents to officially introduce us as family members. Our cocktail hour was held on a gorgeous spring day on the outside terrace, which has wonderful skyline views of Manhattan. One of our favorite dishes was the roast suckling pig, an important traditional Chinese wedding dish. We also had an Asian station and several passed hors d’oeuvres including mini chicken tacos, smoked duck with cherry and chives, caprese skewers, and more. Our guests raved about all the food.
Candles covered our ballroom to create an elegant romantic ambiance. The centerpieces were made of pastel flowers, including my mother’s favorite, lilacs, and each centerpiece was complete with greenery and hints of gold. Our florist was very accommodating and would teleconference with us and send us samples so we could pick our flowers while in Shanghai.
For dinner, guests were able to customize and pre-order their meals beforehand. We offered filet mignon with cognac peppercorn sauce and seared salmon with lemon caper sauce. All entrées were served with a side of garlic roasted Brussels sprouts and orzo with confetti vegetables. Faculty House also gave guests the flexibility to change their selections during service if they wished. Our DJ did a fantastic job of getting our guests out on the dance floor with a wide selection of music for all generations to enjoy. He also made sure to incorporate all our specific song requests.
Thank you to Leslie and David at Faculty House and to all our vendors for making this day so special and memorable. And of course, thank you to our friends and family for sharing in this special day with us.