Luxe Florida Wedding With a Cool, Lounge Vibe
A relaxed, lounge-style reception made this Floria country club wedding a total hit among guests.
There's so much for love about this Floria affair photographed by Jacqui Cole, but my favorite element is all about the party atmosphere. When it came time for the reception, they opted for an ultra cool lounge vibe with awesome seating setups for guests to casually mix and mingle. Not to mention the yummy food stations! Tracie Domino Events planned this chic, fuss-free celebration and we can't get enough.
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From the Bride... Mike and I met through mutual friends after I decided to crash the group’s Sunday night tradition of dinner followed by the TV show Game of Thrones. I was planning on leaving after dinner but decided to stay and learn more about the show and the handsome guy in the room. Mike and I talked for a little bit that night but had an opportunity to get to know each other better when he arranged a group outing to the movies later that week. We were inseparable from that night on.

Mike insisted on exchanging Christmas gifts early. His family had already agreed to have a practical Christmas, so I somewhat jokingly asked for new underwear to keep with the theme. On the night of the proposal, I opened a Victoria’s Secret box full of different types of underwear. You can imagine my confusion to find a pair of my underwear along with a pair of Mike’s boxers in the mix, but it all made sense once I read the checklist at the bottom of the box – something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue. Mike dropped to one knee and proposed in our living room. I immediately said yes!

Mike has two extraordinary children from his first marriage, Drew and Gabby. For our wedding, it was important to include them in our festivities. We envisioned a small, intimate wedding with our family and dearest friends in attendance followed by a big party with the rest of our guests. In lieu of a bridal party, we asked Mike’s sister, JoAnna, and my brother, John, to stand by our sides. Drew and Gabby served as our ring bearer and flower girl. We realized very quickly that due to our busy personal and professional lives we really needed the help of a wedding planner. Immediately after meeting with Tracie Domino with Tracie Domino Events, we felt exceedingly confident that she would be able to make our wedding everything we hoped for and more. She introduced us to some of the most talented vendors in the business who would help us bring our vision to life.

Within a few weeks of our initial meeting we had a venue, band, photographer and décor company booked. She made the process incredibly easy for us and alleviated much of the stress that accompanies planning an event of this size. January in Tampa is all about Pirates, so, when we chose our wedding date a couple of weeks before the Gasparilla parade and events, we knew we had to incorporate some Tampa-inspired elements into our event design and décor.

Our graphic designer was inspired by a vintage cigar box label for our stationary suite. We had custom throw beads made as party favors for our guests. We really gravitated toward bold colors and incorporated navy and marsala into our color palette. Palma Ceia Golf & Country Club was the perfect backdrop for our wedding, so we decided to have our ceremony on the golf course and our cocktail hour and reception in the clubhouse. MMD Events completely transformed the ballroom by creating a warm and inviting lounge atmosphere. I loved that our guests could take a break from dancing by relaxing on the comfortable furniture surrounding the dance floor. The layout really encouraged our guests to mix and mingle. We set up food stations with “his” and “her” favorites. Our guests enjoyed comparing menus served at each station.

At the end of the night, we surprised our guests with sliders and French fries. Knowing our friends and family, a stocked bar and great band were important for the celebration we wanted to share with our guests. Our band, The Headliners, kept our guests (young and old) on the dance floor the entire night. By the end of the reception, the crowd migrated toward the stage for what felt like a private concert. They were fantastic! One of our fondest memories of our wedding was our personal and heartfelt ceremony.

Prior to our wedding, Mike and I were asked by our officiant to answer some questions about our relationship, which he used to tell our “love story”. The heartfelt story shared by our officiant brought the entire crowd to tears and we loved sharing our story with those people who were instrumental in the growth and nurturing of our relationship.

We are so happy we decided on a first look! Jacqui Cole shared our enthusiasm with our decision because she knew the light would be perfect for our wedding portraits. It also gave us some time to enjoy a private moment together in the middle of a busy day. We feel like her amazing photos vindicate our decision to do a first look. We still find ourselves admiring Jacqui’s beautiful photographs. Her vision and talent perfectly captured the joy and love that we felt surrounding and embracing us that day.