This wedding took place at one of the most elegant wedding venues in Fort Lauderdale.
Bianca and Izhak decided to get married at a venue that offers the ultimate in Broward county luxury weddings. There are many hotel chains in South Florida however, who has not heard of the Ritz-Carlton? When someone hears Ritz-Carlton high end luxury always comes to mind.
As a Fort Lauderdale wedding photographer, I love to learn as much as I can about my clients backgrounds and details about their wedding and why they planned they way they did. Many thanks to Bianca and Izhak for providing me with these great details about themselves and their unbelievable South Florida Jewish wedding!
Bianca & Izhak had their first date on Lincoln Road in Miami Beach in 2012, both dog lovers. One day Izhak told Bianca that it was important that his dog like her dog, because he is very grumpy. During their second snorkeling date all of their belongings were stolen! PHONES, KEYS, WALLET, EVERYTHING!!! . So they spent the rest of the date getting locksmiths to let them into their respective apartments and cancelling all credit cards. Luckily their belongings were eventually found and returned. It was from that day on they realized that in such high stress situation neither them would have tolerated 99% of other people. Since they knew how to deal with the situation and still get along, they figured it must be love. They both had their guards up and that day brought them even closer together.
Izhak proposed on Valentines Day of 2015. It was just one week after they had returned from a vacation in Israel, where Bianca met all of Izhak’s family for the first time. They took their boat to small island off the shore of downtown Miami and he popped the question! Later she found out that Izhak had spoken to her father, who told him ‘welcome to the family’.
Very few of their family and friends actually reside in Miami. Biancas extended family is all in Brazil and Izhak’s family is all in Israel. The both decided on a Destination wedding at the Ritz-Carlton Fort Lauderdale. They set their wedding date over a year in advance to give their guests a chance to make travel arrangements and plan their trip to South Florida
They chose the Ritz-Carlton in Fort Lauderdale because of the location and the resort itself. With so many people coming from abroad, they wanted to give them a hotel that offered everything, including restaurants, spa, beach, pool etc, but one that also was located in an area with a lot of activities. The service quality was also very important to them. The Ritz helped them welcome each guest with welcome bags that they had printed and stuffed with snacks, water, and of course a schedule of the festivities.
The Ritz-Carlton Fort Lauderdale was the central location for all of the destination wedding activities. Thursday they had a joint bachelor-bachelorette party, where all of their siblings, cousins, and closest friends could kick off the wedding weekend and start getting to know each other. Biancas brother organized a party bus that was so much fun. Imagine a bus full of people from ages 21 to 35 from all over the world that had come just to celebrate their South Florida destination wedding.
Friday they had a shabbat dinner for close friends and family. Izhak’s extended family that could not come from Israel sent a really sweet and happy lip-synched video. Biancas dad sang and played Over the Rainbow’ on his guitar while a slideshow of pictures of the two of them played in the background. It was a very special and memorable night for everyone. Izhak and Bianca parted ways on Friday night, and would only see each other the next day at the first look!
Fast forward…After the first look and taking pictures around the hotel,
they stepped out of the ballrooms into the corridor which is lined by windows overlooking the Atlantic ocean. THERE WAS AN ACTUAL RAINBOW arched across the whole ocean. They were able to take pictures outside on the balcony literally, under the rainbow… just like the song Biancas dad had sang the night before in the shabbat dinner. It felt like the day had been truly blessed.
They had a somewhat traditional Jewish ceremony with the Rabbi singing and praying in Hebrew and English so their traditions could be understood and shared with all our guests. They also provided kippahs with their names and a program with a brief explanation of the meaning behind elements of the ceremony. The ceremony began and they stood in the chuppah with our nuclear families.
The chuppah was one of the most important elements of the wedding ceremony and the reception. They wanted a chuppah that matched the feeling and decoration of the reception, but that was also mobile so it could be placed in the ballroom after the ceremony. The chuppah was placed in the back of the ballroom, and the beautiful wedding cake was placed underneath. All South Florida Jewish weddings include a chuppah, but Bianca and Izhaks was truly magnificent.
The wedding colors were white, gold, with touches of lavender. Cocktail hour started at 7 and was located in the beautiful corridor outside of the ballrooms with floor to ceiling windows, overlooking the ocean (one of the main reasons They chose the Ritz Carlton over other options in Miami beach). They had an open bar but also served a signature cocktail to introduce the wedding colors which was a blueberry infused prosecco drink.
They entered the ballroom to ‘Love Generation’ by Bob Sinclair, and all of the wedding guests were surrounding the dance floor. The DJ played the first dance song ‘Never my Love’ by the Association. They had tried to choreograph something simple, but decided to just slow dance, because it felt more natural. In the middle of the dance, everyone joined in to the slow dance. After that, the DJ kicked off the party with ‘Kuduro’.
They really spread the dinner courses out to insure that their guests would stay until the end of the evening. While guests had their salads and entrees they had the father of the bride toast, in which Biancas dad welcomed our loved ones from all over the world: US, Brazil, Israel, Turkey, Colombia, and Mexico. He spoke in English, Portuguese, and actually prepared a small paragraph in Hebrew that surprised everyone.
Then they had the father daughter dance to ‘I Hope You Dance’ by Leanne Womack. When Bianca was in high school her dad gave her a little book with the lyrics to the song. She was very shy then and he wanted her to really get out there and enjoy life. This was her little way of telling him she had finally taken his advice. Izhak’s mother is very shy but they wanted to honor her as well so she danced with her son to ‘Wind Beneath my Wings’ by Bette Midler. After those slow dances the rest of the night was all about dancing. They still had about 20 people around 4am when they finally had to turn off the music! This was truly a South Florida Jewish wedding to remember! As a Fort Lauderdale wedding photographer, I can truly say that I enjoyed photographing Bianca and Izhaks wedding immensely!
Wedding Planner: Joni Scalzo- Your Special Day by Joni
Hair & Make Up: Jenna Marie- Kiss this Makeup
Photographer & Videographer: Jeff Kolodny Photography
Flowers, Chuppah, Decoration, Lighting: Lane from Dalsimer Bridal
Venue: Ritz Carlton Fort Lauderdale
Event Coordinator from the Ritz: Beth McCullar
Catering: Ritz Carlton
Cake: Sweeter Days (Key Lime with Coconut & Nutella Chocolate were served to the guests and we cut a dulce de leche cake)
Brazilian Sweets: Vanessa’s Fine Pastries
DJ: Serge Ramirez and Live Musician components
String Trio for Ceremony provided by Serge
Photo Booth: Kiki Booth
Invitations: Jaffa Printing
Dress: Bijou Bridal, Miracle Mile Coral Gables
Groom’s suit: Calvin Klien
Bride’s Engagement Ring: Blue Nile
Bride’s Earrings: Coliseu (Brazilian Jewelry designer)