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The couple, Jenny and Lee, were both strategic and romantic when they chose Kauai for their wedding. Tropical paradises are not uncommon venues for destination weddings, but the couple had very different reasons. Located, respectively, between their former and future homes of California and Australia and offering a decidedly laid-back vibe, the island provided the perfect geography and setting for close friends and family to gather.

Rather than subscribing to well-versed traditions, Jenny and Lee preferred to focus their attention on creating a relaxed and beautiful setting with great food and plenty of dancing. Moana Events executed their vision and chose the Na ‘Āina Kai Botanical Gardens to stage the event. Nestled in this tropical paradise, the wedding took place under a canopy of hardwoods. Wicker seating was situated in a semi-circular fashion to offer guests a clear vantage point and create an intimate environment. The couple appreciated the botanical diversity and the variety of scenery and backdrops that add a multi-sensory experience to their spectacular day.  The verdant backdrop was punctuated by exquisite floral designs from Mei Day. Comprised of a variety of local flora, including Proteas and Palms, the arrangements captured the grace and elegance of the surrounding beauty.

Jenny’s dress was a Rue de Seine design with a plunging neckline and full-embroidered skirt and generous train – just the right mix of tradition and Boho-chic. Stunning silver earrings from a Melbourne designer were a perfect finishing touch. Suede block-heeled sandals in ochre yellow by See Chloe complemented the ensemble.  Her hair and make-up, kept intentionally natural and unfussy, were done by Mia Moriguchi. Jenny did later make a costume change into a two-piece lace dress that was more conducive to dancing the night away à la Dirty Dancing! Music to bust a move was provided by Kustom Sounds Kauai.

Jenny savored some special moments, which she will cherish forever. Her husband surprised her with a look she will never forget. He longed to hold her hand throughout the ceremony -whether out of nerves or adoration remains their secret. Jenny was also moved by her father’s emotional response while escorting her down the aisle – “he never cries so it was really special.”

Jenny’s adorable two-year-old niece provided some memorable humor when she cried out “Noooo!,” as the ceremony was about to begin. Unsure as to what prompted the exclamation, guests were tickled and the entirety helped to calm nerves and keep things light and relaxed.

Moana Events fulfilled the couples vision of a relaxed and fun reception choosing to incorporate Lee’s love of surfing with Jenny’s adoration of all things vintage. In keeping with the informal flair, rather than a traditional sit down dinner, a variety of lounge areas were created with flowers, tropically themed tablecloths, rattan seating provided by Kawaii Designs Hawaii and relaxing sofas. Guests were able to nibble on some of the couple’s favorites like charcuterie, spit-roasted pork, poké bowls and Sriracha-fried chicken bites provided by Contemporary Flavors Catering

The vintage bamboo bar area was surrounded by surfboards and copper finished pineapple decor – a nod to the local vernacular. The Fresh Shave https://www.thefreshshave.com served up some of the most delicious and authentic Hawaiian shave ice and was an absolute highlight and runaway success with the guests, who clamored to have vintage styled photos captured in the VW van turned photo booth.  A message that can be gleaned from Jenny and Lee’s special day – stay true to yourself and jettison unnecessary traditions in favor of fun and friends.

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