It was rush week 2005 at the University of Hartford, when Lisa Friedrich and Justin Rattner first met. Required to rack up a certain amount of library hours while pledging for their sorority and fraternity, Justin consistently pursued Lisa by asking her to play checkers with him. Feeling bad about repeatedly beating the “undefeated champion,” Lisa agreed to go on a date. “I thought he was absolutely hysterical,” says Lisa. “He constantly made me laugh, and I immediately loved that about him.”
One Friday in December of 2012, Lisa took the day off from work to enjoy some pampering time with her girlfriends, unaware that it was simply a diversion while Justin planned a surprise proposal. When she returned home after a day of spa treatments and lunching, the entire lobby of their building was covered in rose petals. “Aww,” she thought, “I bet a girl is getting engaged.”
A DRAMATIC, CHIC AND MODERN WEDDING
Once she stepped out of the elevator, however, she felt her stomach drop when she saw the entire hallway lined with rose petals, leading to their doorway. Inside, the apartment was covered in candles, more petals, a bouquet, and a framed letter that read, “Dear Lisa: A car will be waiting for you at the entrance of our apartment building at 7:00pm. Please put on something nice and don’t be late. Love, Justin.”
As Lisa admits, “One of the things I loved about Justin was his sense of humor, so I was trying not to get my hopes up, thinking he could just be messing with me.” Dressed and riding in a limo, she pulled up to Amanda’s, their favorite Hoboken restaurant. Once she saw Justin, he got down on one knee, explained that he wanted to give her one of her holiday gifts early, and popped the question–to which, of course, she responded “Yes!
Set in New York, their wedding was held at Oheka Castle. Having envisioned a dramatic, chic and modern setting, the ceremony featured custom lighting, a customized runner, and a beautiful custom-designed chuppah. Friends and family enjoyed socializing, drinking, and dining during the cocktail hour, while a pianist played in the background.
The reception that followed was a stunning display of textured table linens, custom menus, crystal and floral chair accents, and a white dance floor. The room was dimly lit, with an amber glow from dozens of candles on each table, and exquisite centerpieces made of hydrangeas, roses, orchids, and crystals.
The wedding cake was white and textured to tie in with the texture of the linens. There was also a dessert café with cake, golden eggs, cream puffs, pies, and more in order to give guests a final sugar rush to finish the night on the dance floor. Guests were given special favor boxes as well, filled with custom truffles and a letter thanking them for attending, and explaining a donation made in their honor to the PWS foundation–a cause near and dear to the couple’s hearts.
Grateful to everyone who shared in their celebration, the couple says, “To hear all our closest family and friends cheering for us, it was like nothing we had ever experienced.”
After the wedding, Lisa and Justin traveled to Thailand for their honeymoon.
Location and Cake: Oheka Castle, Huntington, NY; Planner: A Piece of Cake Events, Inc., New Haven, CT; Floral Design: Candi’s Floral Creations, North Branford, CT; Linen: The Finishing Touch, Hicksville, NY; Lighting and Entertainment: LI Sound, Bohemia, NY; Stationery: CECI New York, New York, NY; Aisle Runner: The Original Runner Company, Montclair, NJ; Wedding Dress: Ines Di Santo; Bridal Salon and Veil: Bridal Reflections, New York, NY
Groom’s Tuxedo: Armani