It was a windy day in Jersey City when we arrived at Sam & Mike’s hotel on the morning of their wedding. With views overlooking an unseasonably chilly Hudson River, Sam readied herself with some of her favorite people in the world. She was in high spirits that morning, demonstrated by her amazing flossing skills (the dancing kind, not the dental kind) which would put most of the 10 year-old demographic to shame :). In good Sam & Mike fashion, their indoor wedding ceremony inside the Maritime Parc was one of the funniest I’d documented in years, as well as the most endearing, as they read some of the vows they had written themselves. Throw in a portable basketball arcade (genius), great music and drinks all night long – it was certainly a night to remember!

Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Maritime Parc wedding in Jersey City, NJ - captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau.

Venue: Maritime Parc // Ceremony/Officiant: Christopher Shelly // Hair: Carly Guyette // Make-up: Angelica Alberti // Dress: Pronovias Drens @ Park Avenue Bridal // Shoes: Stewart Weitzman // Groom’s attire: Label Custom Clothing // Floral/Décor: Blooming Brides // Entertainment: Posh DJs // Stationery: Minted // Cinematography: Montclair Studio

Several weeks before Alyssa & Russ’ engagement session, we were still debating among several different options as far as locations were concerned. One of those locations, somewhere in the mountains of Upstate NY, involved a giant lake with a gorgeous backdrop of lush, green foliage. I jokingly suggested that she could take a dip in the water, if she felt so inclined (because let’s face it, those “Lady of the Lake” sort of photos can be pretty spectacular). She politely declined – but as luck would have it, these two ended up getting wet anyway during their engagement session at NJ Botanical Garden. Thankfully, I just happened to have a clear umbrella in my trunk which was just begging to be used on a special day like this :).

NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. NJ Botanical Garden engagement session in the rain, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau.

While brainstorming for locations for their engagement session, we’d considered a vast sunflower field in the middle of Jersey’s countryside (yes, we have those) – but shooting an engagement session in their current hometown of Hoboken just seemed like the most obvious choice. With summer still lingering in the air, the weather was still perfect for their fun afternoon engagement session, right here in their own backyard!

Hoboken engagement session captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Hoboken engagement session captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Hoboken engagement session captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Hoboken engagement session captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Hoboken engagement session captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Hoboken engagement session captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Hoboken engagement session captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Hoboken engagement session captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau.

I vividly remember receiving Regine’s email while I was still on my (working) vacation, and thinking to myself: “You’re getting married….in three weeks? WHAT?!” Having been in this line of work for the better part of the decade, I knew I would now be witness to one of the most amazing wedding planning miracles this world had ever seen. In between stuffing my face silly with ravioli and Italian wine, I quickly threw together a contract and the rest was history. So what was their secret? Keeping it simple. By keeping their guest-list super intimate, with a ceremony at NYC’s marriage bureau and an intimate weeknight dinner reception at the 3 West Club, these lovebirds not only made it happen, but made it appear so effortless! Not even a little bit of rain on their wedding day was going to put a damper on this celebration, and we’re just so thrilled to have been part of such a wonderful occasion in their lives.

3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau. 3 West Club wedding in New York City, captured by NYC wedding photographer Ben Lau.

It’s not every weekend we are treated with a 30 minute unscripted dance solo, compliments of the groom – but that’s probably because we’re not photographing Catherine & Sean’s wedding every weekend :). This was certainly a festive celebration, in one of the most gorgeous wedding venues up here in Northern New Jersey. This fairy tale wedding was over a decade in the making, which meant they left no stone unturned, and no detail un-thought of (which is a word I think I just pretty much made up right now). Their day started in one of the many spacious suites at the Pleasantdale Chateau, with the girls in robes and the guys in suspenders. Sounds like a pretty good start for me!

Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau. Pleasantdale Chateau wedding in North Jersey, captured by North Jersey wedding photographer Ben Lau.

Venue & Catering: Pleasantdale Chateau // Ceremony/Officiant: Our Lady of the Magnificat Catholic Church // Hair: Jess Ferrara – Beyoutiful Bride // Make-up: Lauren D’Amelio (Bride); Lindsay Jayne (Bridesmaids, Mother of Bride & Mother of Groom) // Dress: Custom by Leigh Price for Stephen Yearick; Kleinfeld // Shoes: Jimmy Choo // Groom’s and Groomsmen attire: Ralph Lauren // Bridesmaids attire: Hayley Paige // Jewelry: Tiffany and Co.; Ilie’s Eternally Flawless (Rings) // Floral/Décor: Crest Florist // Entertainment: Platinum Entertainment // Lighting: Adam Hall North America // Stationery: Minted // Custom Graphics: Kelly Shami // Cinematography: Live Picture Studios // Planner/Coordinator: Kimberly Paige Events