Jennifer Lustig loved Pinkberry frozen yogurt almost as much as she loved her boyfriend, Michael Gardner… but she was surprised when a limousine covered in large Pinkmarry logos pulled up in front of her condo. Engagement rings and bow ties replaced the usual fruits in the logo’s illustration, and a sign read Jennifer Ann Lustig, will you marry me? “I think I kind of went into shock,” the bride admits of her reaction to the proposal. “All I could mutter was, ‘What is that? What is Pinkmarry?’” Once Jennifer pulled herself together and happily accepted, Michael surprised her again with a private dinner where both of their families were in attendance.
To help them plan an extraordinary celebration, the couple promptly enlisted famed wedding consultant Mindy Weiss, as well as floral-design mastermind Preston Bailey. “My sister had gotten married before me, so I really knew what to expect,” explains Jennifer. “Getting a wedding planner is the best investment you can make.” Jennifer’s mother also lent her creative ideas. “My mom pretty much ran the show along with the planners – she is brilliantly creative,” says the bride. The first task to be completed was to find a hotel in Los Angeles that was large enough to accommodate 575 guests; provided a generous dance floor; and did not permit ballroom access to other hotel guests. The Century Plaza met all the criteria, and could provide outstanding accommodations for out-of-town guests.
The couple’s ceremony décor introduced the evening’s muted palette of cream and white hues blended with subtle gold and silver accents. Guests’ chairs were edged with orchids and roses, while delicate white trees trimmed with snowy blooms and sparkling crystals lined the aisle. Bridesmaids dressed to match the monochromatic color scheme wore long white evening gowns and carried stunning bouquets of orchids and roses dotted with jewels. Jennifer made her entrance in a full, layered gown by Monique Lhuillier, and held a cascading arrangement that reflected the bridesmaids’ flowers. “There was nothing better than that moment,” Michael recalls of seeing his bride for the first time. “As she came through the doors I had to fight back tears – and fight hard!” Traditional Jewish vows were exchanged beneath a crystal chuppah lined with thousands of fresh orchids and roses. Inside, an intricate crystal chandelier cast a magical glow as singers Katharine McPhee and Cody Karey performed during the service.
After enjoying cocktails in a garden-inspired room, guests shifted to an elaborate reception in the Los Angeles Ballroom of the Century Plaza. Tables in various sizes showcased alternating arrangements of white parasols strung with orchids; swan-shaped centerpieces fashioned from white flowers; and low-standing vases filled exclusively with orchids. “It was absolutely gorgeous!” exclaims the bride of the all-white floral design. The table that hosted the bridal party had an extra-special centerpiece: the couple’s magnificent Sylvia Weinstock wedding cake covered in the designer’s signature sugar flowers.
Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds serenaded the newlyweds with “Every Time I Close My Eyes” for their first dance as man and wife. “It was spectacular,” affirms Michael. Guests quickly joined the couple on the dance floor as two bands from West Coast Music alternated with an orchestra throughout the night. At 2AM, an 80s-era band revived the crowd with lively renditions of past favorites. “I think having the bar situated on the dance floor was a valuable decision,” Michael says. “It kept the party there the entire night – everyone danced until 4:30 in the morning!” Overall, Jennifer and Michael felt their wedding conveyed exactly what they wanted: “It truly reflected our love of great times, family, and friends.”