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Meagan + John's tropical cool wedding at the Eden Roc Hotel was equally beautiful and sentimental. Palm leaf and hydrangea floral arrangements adorned the guest tables, and a custom-designed white and gold dance floor featured the bride + groom's initials. Yet, there were touches of heart as well - the couple's wedding party consisted of just their siblings, and Meagan's cousin officiated the wedding. 

Originally from New Jersey, it took a by chance vacation encounter to bring the two together. Traveling more than 1,500 miles from home, the pair met serendipitously while on separate holidays with friends at The Atlantis in the Bahamas.

 

Their Miami destination wedding welcomed more than 250 guests from the Northeast. In a desire to escape the chilly climate of the north, Meagan + John chose Miami was their warm wedding refuge. Yet, ironically, when tropical rain threatened to move their outdoor ceremony indoors, the pair decided to roll with the punches and not let it spoil their fun. Positive vibes prevailed and the rain held off long enough for the ceremony and cocktail hour.

 

The wedding took place on the poolside lawn at the Eden Roc hotel, where the couple exchanged self-written vows. Meagan spoke of how enchanted she was with John's gentle manner, willingness to help those in need, and good looks. John referenced Megan's compassion and kind and loving nature as what attracted him to her. 

After the I do's, the party moved into the ballroom for the reception. My favorite joke of the evening came via the Best Man's speech. When referencing his older brother's tan disposition and charm with the ladies, he quipped, "Everyone always asked me why I was so white as a kid - in comparison to my big brother John. Then, they'd laugh at me and say, ''It must be because you're always walking around in his shadow!" 

 

Kicking off the party was a 10-piece band who rocked the night, but the entertainer who really brought down the house was Meagan's 86-year old grandfather. Taking the stage to sing 3 Frank Sinatra songs, the entire 250 person crowd was on their feet and roaring loudly by the time he finished.  

 

Weddings are all about special touches and actions that sing to who you are as a couple - and they make your evening truly unforgettable. People might forget the food or the DJ, but no one will ever forget your 86-year old grandfather belting out a few Rat Pack classics. 

However, for as fairy tale as their big day was, not all love stories come without loss. While dating, Meagan lost her brother, Stev, to Cancer of an Unknown Primary (CUP). John was by Meagan's side throughout this difficult time, and on their wedding day, the pair referenced their brother in many subtle ways: from blue banded bracelets engraved with his name to asking for donations to his namesake charity in lieu of wedding gifts.   

 

Stev's wish was to raise awareness about this rare form of cancer. To donate please head to: https://www.stevswish.org/

There are many reasons why I love being a wedding photographer. I'm renewed by seeing two people in love, and I often learn from witnessing and interacting with my clients on their wedding day. Meagan and John reminded me of the power of positivity and the beauty of everlasting love. Be it for your partner, your brother or otherwise - real love endures all. 

Coordination + Florals: Panache Style | Venue: Eden Roc Hotel | Videography: Mel's Films | Band: Libido / Tropics Entertainment | Bride's Hair + Makeup: Christine Lametta | Bridal Party Makeup + Hair: Carolyn Jones |  Dress: Monique Lhuillier | Second Photographer: Alee Gleiberman | Film: Film Supply Club | Scans: Richard Photo Lab