With just five months to plan, and 500 guests to accommodate, the wedding of Elizabeth Rubin and Aryeh Ribak required a lot of swift decision-making – not the least of which was on a venue that would meet the needs of the event. “The ceremony and all other aspects of the wedding were planned with cultural traditions in mind,” affirms the bride, who shares an Orthodox Jewish heritage with her groom. When the pair saw the breathtaking outdoor venue offered by a luxury resort with extensive experience in handling Jewish weddings, they were able to cross a major decision off their list without a moment’s hesitation.
The wedding began with a traditional kabbalat panim, an opening reception in which the bride and groom separately welcome their guests. While loved ones gathered with Elizabeth in one area, male friends and family members joined Aryeh in another as he completed and signed the marriage documents. Both groups enjoyed hors d’oeuvres before Aryeh was joyfully escorted to greet his bride and personally position her wedding veil. “We followed the custom of not seeing each other for seven days before the wedding, so it was the first time I’d laid eyes on Aryeh in a week,” shares Elizabeth. “It was a pretty emotional moment.” After the couple received blessings from their fathers and grandfathers, the groom was led away, and guests convened for the ceremony.
Lofty trees, manicured lawns, and a romantic waterfall served as the backdrop for the nuptials. An arbor adorned with hundreds of pale roses and garlands of snowy blossoms framed the entryway to the aisle. The chuppah was bedecked in roses and gauzy fabric; curtains of fresh orchids swept gracefully from the symbolic poles of the structure to the ground. An elegant white sofa was placed inside to accommodate loved ones who accompanied the bride and groom during their vows. Rows of guest seating were decorated with cylindrical vases that held bountiful arrangements of frothy roses. Elizabeth, resplendent in a lacy long-sleeved gown, held a dazzling crimson bouquet that struck a perfect contrast with the décor. Each bridesmaid was dressed in the navy-blue gown of her choice and carried a creamy bouquet of roses.
The subtle neutrals that enhanced the ceremony were sustained throughout the reception décor. Roses, ranunculus blossoms, lilies, and orchids in varying degrees of white composed beautiful arrangements that were diverse in height and style. Shimmering chargers looked lovely against crème brûlée linens with ribbon embellishments, and chairs cushioned in ivory ensured that every guest was comfortable. "I wanted everyone to walk into the room and feel transported to a magical place," describes Elizabeth. An incredible floral backdrop added a special touch of whimsy that the bride adored. “It was unique and perfectly transformed the room into something spectacular,” she adds.
As per Orthodox custom, the groom sang the hymn "Women of Valor" at one point during the celebration; however, he expanded his performance into an unexpected production. "He sang a custom version of the original, added a second song, and performed a choreographed dance in between," says the bride of the ultimate serenade. "All of the guests were clapping and cheering!"
A loved one recommended to Elizabeth that she pause at one point to take everything in. “It was a beautiful moment when I realized I was married to the man I love and enjoying the best night of my life while surrounded by people whose love and good wishes were genuine,” confides Elizabeth. The groom adds simply his view of the day: “Our wedding was flawless in my opinion. The love, the dedication… it was unparalleled.”