Omni Grove Park Inn went from a vacation spot to the start of a lifetime together for Bryce and Ehsan, after he surprised her with a proposal there. Both of them work in the medical industry and since the beginning, Asheville was always their choice destination for an escape from reality.
“Asheville has always been our happy place,” says Bryce, a pediatric nurse practitioner. “The proposal was simple and intimate. It was exactly what I envisioned.”
The couple originally met at Duke Medical Center where Ehsan, now a vascular surgeon, was a surgical intern.
“I was skeptical of dating someone from work but after seeing how attentive Ehsan was to my patients, I decided to take a chance,” Bryce says. “Our wedding was more amazing than we ever imagined, and I’ve been trying to relive it every day since.”
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Surrounded by 150 guests during their ceremony that took place prior to COVID-19, the couple tied the knot at the idyllic Old Lystra Inn in Chapel Hill. There was one essential canine guest present, their ‘dog-of-honor,’ Moo.
“Moo has been with me for 12 years,” Bryce says. “He’s an integral part of our family and getting married without him was never an option.”
Since Ehsan’s family is from Iran, it was important to the couple to incorporate those traditions and culture into their wedding day.
“Prior to dinner, Ehsan’s mother and aunts led us and our guests through a traditional Persian ceremony called Sofreh-ye Aghd,” Bryce says. “It was important for us to have a wedding that was uniquely us, represented all of the local things we love, including local microbrews, and to put on an amazing party.
“Our wedding day went by so quickly. It was a whirlwind of emotions and people and events. Rather than one specific event, what we remember most about our wedding day are the feelings it provoked: how incredibly happy, fulfilled, and content we were being married, celebrating our relationship, surrounded by all of our favorite people,” she says. “It was the most fun we have ever had.”
Reflecting on her wedding, Bryce had three pieces of advice for future brides. First, she encourages them to not stress about the small details.
“In the end no one is going to remember your place settings, tablecloths, or whether you chose the roses or peonies,” she says. “Plus, on the day of your wedding you’ll be too busy being happy and having fun to think about them.”
Her next piece of guidance is for brides to be decisive.
“If you find a vendor you love and connect with, commit to them and move on,” Bryce says. “Don’t continue to interview people ‘just in case’ there’s someone better, because this will only confuse you and add extra unneeded stress.”
Finally, she shares the importance of making the wedding day personal and unique.
“From the very beginning, we wanted our wedding to be a party for all of the most important people in our lives to come together and celebrate. We decided against many of the traditional wedding activities because we didn’t want to partake in a traditional activity if it didn’t have a personal meaning to us,” Bryce says. We ended up having so much fun and with zero regrets.”
ABOUT THE COUPLE
Number of guests: 150
Venue: Old Lystra Inn in Chapel Hill, N.C.
Colors: Merlot, Antique rose, and Ivory
Theme: Simple, elegant garden style with bohemian undertones
Favors: Reusable coffee sleeves by Ubuntu Life in Kenya, special ordered by Whole Foods
First Dance Song: “Forever Like That” by Ben Rector
Florist: Tre Bella
Caterer: Fords Fluent N’ Food Catering
Hair: Candace Stamper from Bohemian Stylehouse
Makeup: Theresa Burden
Dress designer: Willowby by Watters
Wedding dress boutique: J. Major’s Bridal Boutique
Bridesmaids’ dresses: BHLDN
Photographer/videographer: Urban Bloom Photography
Planner: Paisley and Pearl
Cupcakes/cake: Love Cake
Officiant: Brad Collins
Rings: Fink’s Jewelers
Bartenders: Tipsy Gypsy Caravan & Mobile Bar
Reception band: The Finns, Sam Hill Entertainment
Ceremony music: Save the Date Music
Event rentals: American Party Rentals