“We first met when we were nine years old in elementary school,” says Deidre Behar of her sweetheart Max Wellman. “At the age when most boys like to tease girls, Max had a heart of gold and always treated me with kindness and respect.” The two remained close friends through high school and college, until eventually they found themselves both living in Los Angeles again. “Max convinced me to go out on a date, and we've been together ever since,” she smiles. “Deidre had this gorgeous head of curly black hair, which made her stand out in a crowd,” describes Max. “Even at a young age, her charismatic personality was infectious, and I always thought we would mesh perfectly.” Several years later, Max – along with help from Deidre’s sister, Siara – crafted a surprise proposal followed by an engagement party at a luxurious hotel in their hometown of Westlake Village.
While the couple initially considered a wedding in Southern California, they quickly agreed that Wailea, on the Hawaiian island of Maui was more their style. “Growing up in Los Angeles, we both traveled there frequently with our families and made wonderful memories,” tells Deidre. “We’ve always subscribed to the philosophy that everything is better when you’re on vacation, so why not spend a week in a tropical destination with our closest family and friends?”
With planning in full swing, Deidre and Max concentrated on making their wedding week especially fun for everyone in attendance – from welcome cocktails to the farewell brunch. They thought it was smart to hire talented local event professionals not only for their creativity, but also because they know the Wailea area and climate best. To help with decisions back home, the bride relied on Max and her immediate family. “In my humble opinion, my mom, dad, sister, and now-husband have impeccable taste, and they were all essential in helping with every selection,” affirms the bride of her special team.
The couple and their parents hosted an elegant black-tie affair on the grounds of a posh hotel surrounded by the ocean, a colorful sunset, and 100 of their loved ones. “We wanted our wedding to feel sleek, chic, and modern, so we stayed true to an all-white theme with minimal hints of greenery for dimension along with chrome accents,” illustrates the bride. A glossy aisle decorated with lanterns and pillar candles featuring small floral bunches led to the “halo” structured chuppah, which was completely covered in vanilla orchids, roses, and hydrangeas. Attendees took their seats in gilt chairs covered in elegant knit covers by Chameleon Chair Collection.
Deidre made her grand entrance on the arms of her parents. She was resplendent in a timeless lace gown with a feminine bustier bodice. The Jewish ceremony was officiated by the couple’s dear friend, Elan Bloch, whom they selected not only for being an articulate speaker with a natural ability to captivate those around him, but also because he knew their love story so well. “It provided a very personal touch that someone special pronounced us as husband and wife,” shares the bride.
With flowers as one of the most important details of décor for the celebration, the couple worked closely with their designers to conceptualize a dreamscape that would perfectly capture what they desired. “Nothing says romance to me quite like lush, showstopping flowers,” admits Deidre. The entryway to the custom open-air canopy draped with luscious velvet fabric and glistening chandeliers suspended overhead was heavily embellished with fresh florals. Inspired by the sophistication and glitz of Beverly Hills coupled with her appreciation of the natural beauty of the island, Deidre successfully created a dreamy ballroom-style space on the manicured lawn of the property. “Our vision of taking in the sea breeze and glowing sunset during dinner and dancing under the stars, all while still feeling like we were in an enclosed space with lots of glamour, was executed to perfection,” emphasizes the bride.
Their good friend, Grammy-nominated singer Leslie Grace sang live for the couple’s first dance. “It was a seriously epic and emotional moment,” confides the groom, who says there wasn’t a dry eye in the room. The evening ended with dancing to the beats of a saxophonist and percussionist performing alongside a DJ who played ’90s favorites, rap, EDM, and reggaeton – as a nod to the bride’s Cuban roots. “It made everything interactive and exciting,” adds Max of the musicians. As revelers shifted indoors for the after-party, the newlyweds felt nothing but happiness when reflecting on their big day. “Every moment was magical,” confirms Deidre.