Being that I am located in Orange County has afforded me some terrific locations and venues in which to shoot wedding photography at. But what makes it even better is when I get the chance to shoot a wedding outside of OC. Sometimes it’s in Los Angeles County and sometimes it is the surrounding areas outside of LA and OC. Recently I had the opportunity to shoot a wedding at the beautiful Embassy Suites Mandalay Resort in Oxnard, which is about 30 miles south of Santa Barbara. This resort is the only all-suite resort that is located on the beach itself and it is truly amazing.
What made this experience even more unique was that I was shooting the wedding of a longtime friend dating back to our high school days. The bride, Angie, graduated a year ahead of me, but we’ve kept in touch via Facebook over the years. Angie and Kyle met through a car club called SoCal3G, and their engines have been revving up for each other ever since. Kyle is an awesome guy and I am thrilled that he makes her so happy!
Thank you, Angie and Kyle, for allowing us to be part of your Embassy Suites Mandalay Beach Wedding!
Here is their Love Story. I hope you enjoy it, and their photos, as much as I do.
Q: How did you both meet and who liked who first?
A: We met through a car club called SoCal3G and Kyle liked me first.
Q: Tell us about your first date. What did you guys do and who was more nervous?
A: Kyle planned the date. He took me to a Sushi restaurant in Costa Mesa. The place had a beautiful garden outside with a waterfall. I remember sitting at a table that was next to a floor-to-ceiling window that looked out to the garden. Kyle also bought a bottle of wine for us to share. It was a lovely evening of eating, talking, and getting to know each other better. As far as who was more nervous, that is hard to say, we were probably equally nervous, but if we have to pick one of us, it was me.
Q: What’s the proposal story? Give us the details and who cried first?
A: It’s evident that Kyle is the planner between the two of us. I thought we were just going on a mini-vacation to celebrate our dating anniversary late and celebrating me (Angie) turning 30. I had no idea what he was planning. We traveled up the coast to Santa Cruz, checking out the sites and few breweries we like. Then it is was off to Ben Lomond and Big Basin Redwoods State Park. We love to be outdoors, so we went for a hike in the State Park. As we were walking along a trail, we came across a tree called the Chimney Tree. It was a tree that had burned continuously for 14 months but still lived. We thought it was an amazing tree, the center of which was hollowed out by fire so you could stand inside and look all the way up into the sky. Kyle told me to go stand in front of the tree so he could line up the camera to take a picture of us. Little did I know that he was getting ready to propose. As I had my back turned to him, he got everything set up, he walked over and told me to turn around. As I turned around, I find him getting down on one knee. I am sure he said something sweet and romantic, but all I know is that he said, “Angelina, I love you, will you marry me?” At this point, I was in shock and crying. I of course said yes. Kyle got the whole thing on video. You can’t hear anything, but you can see and tell what is happening. As for who cried first, oh, for sure me. (Angie)
Q: As you approach the wedding day, what have you both enjoyed most about the wedding planning process?
A: Planning the wedding has been exciting and stressful. I have enjoyed getting to know our style and the type of wedding we both wanted. We have learned to communicate better. We are definitely getting to know each other better.
Q: What has been the hardest part about planning your wedding?
A: The hardest part of planning the wedding is knowing that Kyle’s mom will not be able to share in our day. She passed away suddenly in November. It has been very hard on both of us.
Q: Why did you choose your particular wedding and reception venue?
A: We fell in love with pictures of the venue and once we toured this place it just felt like a convenient and magical place for us to get married. It’s a plus that we can have the best of both worlds, the ceremony outside near the beach and the reception inside.
Q: Where did you draw some of your inspiration from for your wedding day?
A: I spent hours on Pinterest looking at pictures. Kyle and I spent several nights talking about what we wanted the wedding to look and feel like. We are both easygoing. We have incorporated different elements of craft beer. It is something we both love and what brought us closer together. The main color of the wedding is purple. It is one of my favorite colors, so I knew that I wanted it part of my wedding. Now it means even more to me since it was Kyle’s mom’s favorite color as well.
Q: Where are you two going for your honeymoon and how did you choose that destination?
A: Maui, Hawaii. We are very excited and are looking forward to getting away, relaxing, and enjoying being together as husband and wife. We chose Maui because we went to the Big Island over the summer with the family and we wanted to go back to explore and enjoy another island.
Vendors that Kyle and Angie used for their beautiful Embassy Suites Mandalay Beach Wedding ceremony and reception include:
Embassy Suites by Hilton Mandalay Beach Resort
WEDDING COORDINATOR: One Sweet Day, Weddings & Events LLC
FLORIST: Conroy’s Flowers Simi Valley
DRESS: Kay’s Bridal
HAIR: Mane Tribe Salon
MAKE-UP: Katherine Fleming
GROOMS SUIT: Men’s Warehouse
CAKE: Sweet Arleens
PHOTOGRAPHY: Three16 Photography
DJ: In The Mix
Loved Angie and Kyle’s Embassy Suites Mandalay Beach Wedding? Show them some love by liking and commenting below! Also, check out another one of our recent blog posts: Jerome and Lesley’s NOOR Pasadena Wedding!