Arianna Swafford and Richard Robinov’s wedding story began with a destination engagement in Amsterdam, when Richard proposed during a progressive dinner aboard a beautiful private canal boat. Afterwards, the couple enlisted the help of Andrea Eppolito – the top wedding planner in Las Vegas – to orchestrate the wedding planning process.
“I immediately fell in love with Arianna and Richard from the first moment we met,” Andrea recalls. “They have such a beautiful energy with one another. The groom is so funny and quick witted, and the bride just looks at him with such adoration. The bride is in fashion and has a stunning eye for detail, and together they have built such a beautiful life. When it came to the wedding, they were deeply committed to the idea of being transformative in their space, and they wanted to really treat their guests to an extraordinary evening of food, wine, and service.”
“They have such a beautiful energy with one another.“
Arianna knew she wanted to have a luxe wedding with a fairytale vibe and came up with the idea of a modern “Beauty and the Beast” theme. Andrea lent her expertise by taking that concept and interpreting it in a clean and less literal way in terms of the color palette. A combination of white and ivory allowed them to play with textures, and gold accents added warmth to the space along with ample candlelight, creating a sense of romance.
Even before the pandemic, the couple had their hearts set on an intimate Las Vegas wedding. They wanted every guest to feel incredibly special, knowing they had been personally invited because they were part of the couple’s past, present, and future. From the food and wine, to the entertainment, their guests were to have the absolute best of everything. They especially worked closely with the chefs from Cut & Taste to design a menu that showcased their favorite foods. Specialty wines and champagne were brought in as well.
“Every wedding that I design is incredibly unique, because I am telling the couple’s love story through my lens,” Andrea shares. “What was so wonderful about this opportunity is that Arianna and Richard live in Las Vegas, which allowed me to have a tremendous amount of access to them. We were able to spend so much time together, and I understood how they live and move through the world. I was able to take that information and use it as design inspiration.
For example, Richard loves to send Arianna flowers for every reason and no reason. On their wedding day, it was only fitting that they both be surrounded by blooms. As a fashionista, Arianna cared deeply about what she wore. We were able to set up a stunning dressing room and put both of the gowns on their own forms for a photo shoot. The menus were beautifully designed geometric pieces, that echo a lot of the pieces that they have in their home. It was all wonderfully personal and everything we put into the space told you something about this couple specifically.”
The bride and groom’s modern “Beauty and the Beast” fairytale came to life exquisitely, with a rose-covered staircase being Andrea’s favorite part of the décor. It was the first thing that guests saw when they entered the venue, which made a dramatic statement and set the tone for the rest of the evening. The roses were romantic and timeless, but the entire staircase design was so over-the-top that it perfectly reflected the love between the bride and groom.
“Listening to and watching your couple is the best thing you can do in order to design a wedding that feels like them,” Andrea adds. “And working in a nontraditional space inspired me to look at the architecture of a room in a new and dynamic way.”
There was another special moment right before the bride and groom’s first look, that Andrea will never forget; and it’s a wonderful example of how the chemistry between a couple and their wedding planner makes all the difference in how a wedding unfolds.
“After over two years of working together, Arianna was not just a client, but a friend,” says Andrea. “The one thing she couldn’t quite figure out, were the earrings she wanted to wear down the aisle. Right before she did her first look, I presented her with the earrings I wore on my own wedding day. They were her something borrowed, and I just loved that she was able to carry the energy of a happy marriage down the aisle with her. And I’m very glad that they were not lost!”
> Written by Lauren Malamala
Planner & Design: Andrea Eppolito Events Las Vegas, NV; Floral Design: Javier Valentino Las Vegas, NV; Ceremony Dress: Galia Lahav; Reception Dress: Ines Di Santo; Photography: Stephen Salazar Las Vegas, NV