Many people say you meet your soulmate when you least expect it – which, perhaps, is why Alison George and Arnold Shokouhi found such a special connection. The two met at McCathern Law Firm in Dallas, Texas in August of 2010. It wasn’t love at first sight, but they spent years working together as friends until their relationship grew into something more meaningful.
One night, the couple was watching television when Arnold asked Alison what her dream wedding would be. Alison responded with the quintessential details little girls everywhere dream of – getting married in a beautiful church, in a big castle. Laughing, they began searching online for fairytale weddings until Chateau de Challain popped up. Coincidentally, the venue was everything Alison wanted.
“AN INTIMATE CEREMONY WAS HELD WITH 70 GUESTS IN ATTENDANCE, FOLLOWED BY A CHIC AND ROMANTIC RECEPTION.”
After months of anticipation, Arnold proposed on Thanksgiving of 2015, right before their families and friends sat down at the table. After dinner, everyone celebrated by going to watch the Dallas Cowboys football game. On the way home, Arnold turned to his new fiancé and said, “You remember that castle we looked at a few months ago? Let’s get married there and have our fairytale wedding.”
On the morning of the big day, the bride woke up in a daze. Peering out the window, she saw the expansive gardens and grounds of Chateau de Challain and couldn’t believe her dreams were coming true. A whirlwind of hair and makeup went by fast and, before she knew it, she was stepping into a horse-drawn carriage from the 1800s, set up to take her to the church.
“I was really nervous, but then I saw my husband at the end of the aisle and all my nerves were calmed,” describes the bride. “I felt as if I sprinted to get to him!”
An intimate ceremony was held with 70 guests in attendance, followed by a chic and romantic reception. David Kimmel flew from Dallas to tend to the wedding and reception décor, which sit perfectly against the castle background. Flowers were arranged in a color palette of purple, ivory, white and champagne.
Keeping with the couple’s wedding vision, the ambiance was whimsical and full of romance, but with a slightly modern touch. The owner of Chateau Challain, Cynthia Nicolson, and her staff also helped in taking care of each possible detail. And the entire celebration was perfectly captured by photographer, Flavio Badiera, who flew in from Milan.
“I like to think that my wedding was perfect in every way,” Alison says. “A little girl’s dream came true!”
Location: Chateau de Challain, Challain la Potherie, France: Floral and Event Design: David Kimmel Design, Dallas, TX