Elva and Bobby were married on July 20 at Limoneira Ranch in Santa Paula, Calif. “My husband and I knew we wanted an outdoor, rustic venue that would capture our vision of having a whimsical, festive Mexican and Persian multicultural wedding,” Elva said. “Everything about the site was picture-perfect: its rich history, the lemon orchards, the bocce ball courts, the old buildings, the green hills, the windmills, the views, the list is endless! Being able to have a hot air balloon on site for our guests didn’t hurt either.” The traditional Persian ceremony was, for many of their guests, a first introduction to the other family’s customs, since it consisted of items that symbolized a happy marriage to them — sweets, pastries, mirrors, flowers, honey and Holy Quran. The Mexican reception decor was “bright, bold, and full of fun colors,” she said. “We incorporated papel picado, maracas, Mexican sweet bread, mini pinatas, and of course, lots of tequila in our signature drinks.”
1. What was the one thing about your venue that made you know it was the one?
Markus and I wanted a quiet, secluded, private venue for our wedding ceremony and reception. We also wanted our venue to serve as a hub where our families could meet, mingle, relax, bliss out, and get to know one another (they had not met before our wedding!) A private residence seemed to be the best fit for our needs, so we looked up homes on VRBO.com. After visiting several in Malibu, we settled on our original venue because of the exceptional attention to detail that the owners paid to the building of their home, which had just been completed, and because it was completely off the grid (solar and wind powered, and had its own septic system). And the VIEW. The view was 180 degrees of pure coastal beauty. It was everything we wanted and everything we never anticipated we would want.
After the fire, Markus and I scrambled to find a venue that would match in every way (we had built our wedding’s visual theme around that house’s unique Moroccan flair, and we had settled on a functional theme of green/eco-concious in regards to our vendors and decorations). But sadly, due to budgetary constraints, and the timing (a mere two months before our wedding date and at the peak of wedding season), we couldn’t find anything that came even close. We had a few kind offers from family and friends to have the wedding at their homes, but Markus and I said, “Why not just have it at ours? We love our apartment.” We love it so much we LIVE THERE. So we settled on having the ceremony in our little courtyard, and the reception at a favorite restaurant (Off Vine in Hollywood – a venue which, coincidentally, had also burned down – in 2008 – and was rebuilt and reopened a few years later).
Looking back at our choice, I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. We feel at peace and in our element at our home. We felt pride being able to host our own wedding in such a beautiful space with our closest family and friends.
2. Which three details from your wedding were your favorites?
1. I love that after everything we went through to plan and re-plan a wedding, we both agree that we wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. We grew together in the process and are still hearing how beautiful and intimate it was from our family and friends.
2. Having my father be able to walk me down the aisle. My father has no cartilage in his ankles, and at several points over the last year and a half I was afraid that he wouldn’t be able to walk with me, but this past year has been exceptionally kind to him, health-wise – his mobility and energy have improved immensely – so he was able to be right there with me (and my mom!) walking with me towards my future.
3. When I got the pictures back from Yair, we came across one of the groomsmen during the ceremony (as we were saying our vows) and not one…not two…but THREE were clearly emotional. Knowing that our family and friends were right there with us, feeling the gravity of the occasion is such a beautiful gift and definitely reflects how we felt that day.
3. Give us the one moment in your wedding day you can’t stop thinking about.
My husband’s vows. They were awesome. They inspired laughter and tears, and they were completely organic to our relationship.