College is not only a place to learn, it often leads to not so chance meetings of soul mates, which is exactly the case with Christina Montero & Hans Reichstetter while attending Georgetown University. As life would have it, even though our couple shared a class freshman year, it wasnt until senior year, with a few more shared classes that Hans finally broke the ice! Han’s proposal was completely adorable, incorporating Jake, their cat! ”We were at our minuscule studio apartment on the Upper West Side in Manhattan, it was about 9am on a Saturday and I had just woken up. As I was walking to the bathroom, I passed our cat Jake and he was wearing a T-shirt. Yes a T-shirt and it said something along the lines of “Congrats on the Ring”. I freaked out, woke up Hans, who told me to continue on to the bathroom where I was faced with a HUGE collage of photos that spelled out “Will You Marry Me? “. All of the photos were photos of just us over the past 8 years. In the soap dish was the ring, and the tub was filled with roses. Hans got down on one knee and the rest was history. It was amazing! He then whisked me off to a weekend getaway in the Catskill Mountains where we could relax and enjoy our engagement bliss.”
Keeping with offbeat awesomeness, Christina & Hans choose the ever stunning Vizcaya Museum and Gardens keeping to a vintage glam Hollywood meets shabby chic feel, yet adding touches that kept things light & fun for all the guests. One such act of whimsy was La Hora Loca, which was inspired by Christina’s close friend’s wedding in Costa Rica at which when the clock struck 11pm, tons of “marti gras” type costumes were handed out to all the guests, one can only imagine the craziness that ensued! We love this dual personality wedding, from the mega glam elements to the innovative ways of keeping it filled with joy, laughter, & love!
Novella of the Bride…
The number one goal was to have fun! So with everything we did, we tried to infuse a bit of fun and care-free attitude. Most of our friends and family weren’t from Miami so the setting, warmth and easy-breezy way of life was a critical to our wedding vibe. I think it’s very easy to get sucked into the formalities of the wedding, especially at a place like Vizcaya, and so whenever possible, both Hans and I kept things light. If I had to define a broader design theme to the wedding, I would say vintage glam Hollywood meets shabby chic with Miami/Latin flare. There were touched that took me back to the 1930’s but then there were other things that were from Etsy that kept things playful and easy. Some special touches included birdcage table decour, cootie-catcher ceremony programs, a plentiful candy bar, mini cupcakes, and “Hora Loca” costume props. When the clock struck 11pm, we had a ton of “marti gras” type costumes handed out to all the guests, a bongo drummer joined the DJ’s ensemble and with this, the energy level went up 200%. The costumes, masks, props, etc. were nothing fancy (ordered through orientaltrading.com) but they let people dress up in ridiculous things and be goofy. The photos that stemmed from the time (yes, we even had antlers) are some of the best.
My mom, dad and our wedding planner Vanessa were the back-bone of my wedding. Honestly, I would say managing all of the little details from afar wasn’t easy but my wedding planner Vanessa was amazing and kept everything on track, all with a stress-free attitude. I also had my parents on the ground (they live in coconut grove), which was super helpful since they both know how to get things done. What got a bit draining was having to squeeze in a lot of wedding to-dos whenever I visited Miami. When I wasn’t there, I was constantly in touch with Vanessa and my mom but all in all, it was worth every minute. I also want to give a shout out to Janet McDonald from Bill Hansen Catering. She was super helpful from day one and not only gave great advice on my catering options, but she is chock-full of info about wedding vendors/possible site options in Miami. She helped me find Vanessa which I’m so grateful for.
Since we are from the NYC area, we wanted a place that was a mini-destination for most of our guests. I also have very close family from Peru, so Miami was an easier place to travel to that somewhere in New England. Lastly, my parents live in Miami so it made it really nice to have someone on the ground.
Vizcaya was one of those magical places that I thought would be the most amazing place to get married, but I never thought that would become a reality. I had my parents running around town considering loft spaces, hotels, museums, beach fronts, and even parking garages but because our wedding was going to be at the end of March, we finally decided a place that could showcase the beauty of Miami would be ideal. My family and Hans decided there was nothing like Vizcaya: It suited our vision, had different spaces around the property we could use, and it’s open until 1am (which is rare for an outside venue!), so we booked it. In the end, the venue was beyond what we ever imagined and I would recommend it to any bride – remember, you don’t need to go overboard with decorations! The place is already beautiful.
I can’t pin-point one favorite memory. It was honeslty one of the best days/weekends of our lives and was one very happy blur (thank god for photos!). You have the people you love the most surrounding you, you are commiting to support your best friend forever, you get to eat great food, and have a super fun dance party. We loved everything from “The first look”, to primiping with my bridesmaids, to planning and executing an awesome ceremony onThe Mound (within Vizcaya), to posing in the photo-booth, to wearing crazy costumes, to playing drums with our drummer Chi-Chi!
Ceremony & Reception Venue: Vizcaya Museum and Gardens | Wedding Dress: Jenny Packham “Eden” | Shoes: Badgley Mischka “Lacie” | Veil: Brenda Bridal Veils – Tulle Wedge Birdcage in Ivory | Hair & Make-Up: Susana Betancourt | Ceremony Musicians: Master Musicians | DJ: RockWithU | Florist: Karma Goddness | Caterer: Bill Hansen Catering | Baker: Filled & Frosted | Furniture Rental: Ronen Rental | Wedding Programs: AlchemyHourDesigns | Lighting: Uplyte | Photo Booth: Peekaboo Photo Booth | Wedding/Event Planner: Karma Goddness | Photographer: Adagion Studio