“Matthew and I knew from the very beginning we wanted to write our own vows. We wanted to be able to tell our story and speak to each other from the heart. Our vows truly encompassed who we are including a shout-out to our dogs, inside jokes from the night we met, and a vow to each other that brought our guests to tears,” the bride shared. “There were a lot of little things we did that were special to just us. We had a secret cake in the back that had a funny picture of us, we walked into the reception to a song played by Matthew's old band, and he even played the guitar to our first dance song.”
A draped wooden arch adorned with burgundy, white, and pink roses and greenery created a romantic setting for the couple's February wedding.
“We loved the industrial look with softness added in, and it offered such a contrast in the feel of the wedding itself. We chose a lot of florals with eucalyptus greenery to add those romantic touches,” the bride explained. “The bridesmaids wore burgundy, and the groomsmen were in navy blue suits with burgundy ties! We added these colors throughout the wedding, adding in lots of whites and greenery with gold accents.”
The Safety Harbor couple selected NOVA 535 for their 145 guest wedding. The historic building and private courtyard complemented their design aesthetic while offering a stress-free planning experience.
“We did not want a traditional beach or barn wedding. We were looking for something with a fun, modern, and romantic atmosphere,” the bride explained, “NOVA 535 offered the look and feel we were going for with our wedding theme, and the space is beautiful. Their service was exceptional! We had monthly Zoom meetings leading up to the wedding, where we would plan everything down to the layout of every table. They made the day of my dreams by setting everything up for us and making sure everything ran on schedule.”
While reminiscing on their wedding day, the bride recalled the moment she and her groom surprised their guests with a first dance and musical performance.
“Music has always been a part of Matthew’s life and we knew we wanted that to be a part of our day somehow. We decided that Matthew would play the guitar during our first dance! Only a handful of people in the wedding party knew, so it was a surprise for all guests including our parents,” Courtney reminisced. “A groomsman walked out halfway through our first dance and presented him with the guitar! Matthew killed his solo, and we finished our dance with the guitar on his back. It is a memory we will truly never forget.”
Where did you host your bachelorette party?
We went to Asheville, North Carolina! We rented a beautiful 3-story cabin and the theme was “Flannel Fling Before the Ring.” We chose this location because it is where Matthew and I got engaged.
The proposal took place in Asheville, North Carolina. It was our first day of vacation, and we had planned a beer tour at Sierra Nevada Brewery. The views and scenery could not have been more beautiful. We were out by the fire pits in two rocking chairs when Matthew said he had a surprise for me. I didn’t have much time to think what it could have been, but I can say a ring never crossed my mind. Seconds later Matthew was down on one knee asking me to spend the rest of my life with him. I couldn’t say yes fast enough, so fast that I didn’t even let him finish what he was saying! I cried only for a short seven hours after as we celebrated our way through the brewery tour and dinner! The weekend was perfect, and Asheville will forever be a part of our story!
What did you look for in a wedding venue?
Matthew and I knew we did not want a traditional beach or barn wedding. We were looking for something with a fun, modern, and romantic atmosphere.
NOVA 535 offered the look and feel we were going for with our wedding theme, and the space is beautiful. Their service was exceptional. We had monthly Zoom meetings leading up to the wedding where we would plan everything down to the layout of every table. They made the day of my dreams by setting everything up for us and making sure everything ran on schedule.
Where did you spend your honeymoon?
We were originally planning to go to Ireland and had a 7-day trip completely planned when COVID-19 hit. We changed our plans to cross off a bucket list item and headed to Arizona to see the Grand Canyon. We stayed three nights in beautiful Sedona and did our fair share of hiking, ATVing, and eating. The other three days, we stayed in Flagstaff, making day trips to Walnut Canyon and the Grand Canyon. Our favorite part of the trip was the helicopter tour we took over the North and South Rim. It provided views unlike any other!
How would you describe your theme/wedding design inspiration?
We loved the industrial look with softness added in, and it offered such a contrast in the feel of the wedding itself. We chose a lot of florals with eucalyptus greenery to add those romantic touches.
What were your colors?
The bridesmaids wore burgundy, and the groomsmen were in navy blue suits with burgundy ties. We added these colors throughout the wedding, adding in lots of whites and greenery with gold accents.
What advice would you give to other Tampa Bay couples?
When planning a wedding there will be hurdles, whether it be budgets, family opinions, vendors falling through, or even a pandemic. Moving forward together over these hurdles is what is important, and on the day of when things go wrong, no one, and I mean no one, will notice!
Ceremony, Reception Venue, and Rentals: NOVA 535 *Marry Me Tampa Bay Preferred Wedding Venue
Photographer: Melissa Galovic Photography
Videographer: Trinity Wedding Cinema
Florist: Ling's Moment
Caterer: Billy's Stone Crab Restaurant
Food Truck: Rene's Mexican Kitchen, Ibbi's Q, Mediterranean Corner
Linens: US Tent Rental
DJ: Frank Lebano & Co. DJs
Officiant: Family friend
Invitations: MagnetStreet, Minted
Transportation: Alpha Limousine
Quotes have been lightly edited for clarity and brevity.
*Preferred Marry Me Tampa Bay Wedding Pros are highly respected by our local wedding community and have been personally vetted by our editor.