Real Weddings

Amanda and Michael at the Estate at Florentine Gardens


How They Met: Amanda and Michael met as 10-year-olds growing up on the same street in Park Ridge, where their families were close friends. The couple became more friendly in high school and he took her to his senior prom. They began dating after graduation and have been together ever since. “We looked at each other a little differently that night,” Amanda says of prom night.



Their Story: The couple, now both 26, grew into adulthood together. “As the years went on, the love was always there, and it just got more and more unconditional,” Amanda says. “I knew he was the one.”


Will You Marry Me?: Michael popped the question on a beautiful April afternoon in 2014 at the Estate at Florentine Gardens, where she is the assistant general manager and her father is the owner. Lured outside by her sister, Amanda found Michael waiting for her in the gazebo. As a harpist played, a path decorated with scattered rose petals and flickering candles led her to him. “It was the longest walk of my life,” Amanda recalls. “I just wanted to run to him.”


amanda-and-michael-real-wedding29Details of the Day: They were married at Our Lady of Mercy in Park Ridge on September 12, 2015, and welcomed 300 guests back to the Estate at Florentine Gardens. The event was whimsical, ethereal and romantic, with lots for their guests to take in. “We wanted to give them the traditional Florentine experience with added surprises,” she says. “Every room, from the lobby to the patio to the cocktail room to the ballroom created a different vibe and kept our guests guessing.” The grand ballroom featured alternating oversized centerpieces of orchids and hydrangeas and dramatic lighting. Another standout: the towering five-foot-tall cake.



amanda-and-michael-real-wedding10Favorite Detail: The “flower wall” that greeted guests as they entered the lobby. Against a backdrop of greens, the flowers cascaded down the staircase. “It was breathtaking,” Amanda says. Their guests thought so too, and posed in front of the floral display.



Favorite Moment: The surreal moment when they left the church as Mr. and Mrs. She remembers thinking, “Oh, my God, we’re married. We did it.”

wedding details

Ceremony Location

The Estate
 at Florentine Gardens

Reception Location

The Estate 
at Florentine Gardens


Milton Gil Photographers

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