A St. Louis wedding with all the makings of a fairytale.
Love at first sight, a surprise proposal, trolleys and Ted Drewes—Genevieve Gamble and Nader Nassif had all the makings of an unforgettable St. Louis wedding.
The bride never really considered herself a risk taker, but after striking up a conversation with a tall, handsome stranger in her apartment’s elevator and letting him walk away, the ever-cautious Genevieve was convinced the relationship was over before it began. As she watched him make his way to his apartment, her heart sank, and she knew she had to take matters into her own hands. A Post-It left on his door was reciprocated with a phone number left on hers—followed a week later by a first date. Things progressed, and before they knew it, families were making cross-country trips, introductions were made and their fates were sealed.
One Saturday afternoon last May, Nader took Genevieve on a picnic lunch in Forest Park. The pair was soaking in one of their favorite locations in the city when Nader dropped to one knee. Genevieve shouted a definitive “yes,” and was surprised with flowers, champagne and cupcakes from her parents and best girl friends. After celebrating with the people closest to them, the couple retreated to the solace of their favorite restaurant, Niche, with a table for two.
The minute they became engaged, Genevieve and Nader knew that St. Francis Xavier College Church would be the site of their nuptials. The couple already attended weekly services there together, and they loved the Jesuit influence, as well as the diverse and vibrant congregation. In short, it was the perfect reflection of their lives together. When the only ceremony time available turned out to be in the morning, the couple gleefully accepted. At 11am, Genevieve walked down the aisle toward the man of her dreams, clasping a gorgeous bouquet, wrapped in a silk headpiece worn by her grandmother on her wedding day and a broach from her mother adorning the sash of her gown. Following their morning ceremony, the wedding party boarded an open-air trolley and wasted no time getting the party started. After a trip to Ted Drewes and some dancing in the street, the couple returned to the scene of their May proposal for some final bridal portraits.
Between the trolley party and reception, the couple was able to steal an hour to themselves. They returned to their hotel suite at the Renaissance Grand Hotel, traded gown and tuxedo for sweats, and soaked in all that had taken place thus far. The quiet time together allowed them to reflect on their dream day and recharge for the wild evening ahead, which turned out to be one of their favorite parts of the fairytale day.
Cocktails & Cakes
Guests were greeted in the atrium of the Renaissance’s Crystal Ballroom by passed appetizers and a signature cocktail, affectionately named “Gen and Juice” for its combination of gin, Ruby Red grapefruit juice and St. Germaine Elderberry Liqueur. Once guests made their way to the ballroom,they were blown away by the couple’s creative take on a cake. Individual cheesecakes, dressed in fondant and garnished with florals, rested atop glass cylinders, creating an eye-catching focal point of the couple’s wedding colors: deep purple and green.
After dinner, Belly Dance Mirage took the floor for a 30-minute performance that wowed the crowd. In addition to entertaining guests, the dancers paid homage to Nader’s Egyptian heritage (belly dancers are an integral part of Egyptian celebrations). Using scarves, fans and swords, the ladies brought guests to their feet and urged the newlyweds onto the dance floor. As they took center stage, Genevieve and Nader, surrounded by friends and family, danced their way into happily ever after.
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The Couple: Genevieve Gamble, 27, Financial Analyst & Nader Nassif, 32, Orthopedic Surgeon
Photo credit: Photos by Heather Roth Photography