Couples Tribute: Katie + Phil

t30_12169073Katie and Phil’s love story began set against the iconic landscape of NYC. When the time came to commit to their forever, they found it only fitting to hold this special day in a corner of their beloved island, tucked away from the hustle and bustle but still central enough that guests could partake of the city’s treasures.

large_39957378f_G-1256BW7_3961When the couple first visited Celebrate Snug Harbor, they knew they had found their perfect place. They were instantly enamored with the endless grounds, finding the White Garden an ethereal setting to host their outdoor ceremony and bridal portraits, and the newly renovated Tented Pavilion an elegant reception location to slow down and savor the precious moments of their lives becoming one.

large_869d45f11_G-1704BW8_8800When the day of their picturesque June ceremony arrived, milky white rose petals lined the aisle leading to an exquisitely fashioned chuppah, a creation of the NY Flower Project.  Standing beneath was one of Phil’s closest friends and groomsmen, who would also serve as officiant, making it a truly personal affair.




After the ceremony, the newlyweds cherished their first moments as husband and wife while wandering the gardens of Snug Harbor, stopping only to allow Funico Studios, a preferred photography vendor, to capture their portraits amongst the lush florals and greenery. Friends and family spent this time experiencing the charms of the Chinese Scholar Garden, enjoying music, specially crafted cocktails and delicious bites.

large_265ea1d84_G-1189BW7_3921When time came for the reception festivities to begin, guests seamlessly moved the cocktail hour celebration into the Tented Pavilion, which had been superbly transformed with the ideal balance of rustic and boho chic elements. The banquet-style tables displayed verdant centerpieces replete with blossoms, flora and warmly flickering candles, their glow casting an inviting and truly intimate mood throughout the scene.

Wedding guests were treated to an extra special surprise, a choreographed first dance that began slowly with Katie and Phil’s DJ playing, “Say You Won’t Let Go” by James Arthur, before bursting happily into a much faster tune by Macklemore.


The contagious pleasure shared by this newly joined pair was relished by all, both during the dance and after as guests discovered their competitive sides while playing corn hole, ring toss and flip cup. To the delight of the crowd, Katie had flown in a beer from her college town of Chico, California for the merriment, igniting memories all around.

large_f3470e181_G-1786BW8_8899The party was in full swing when Phil was finally ready to reveal the moment he had been secretly planning since first asking Katie for her hand. He cued the DJ to stop as his piano suddenly overtook the dance floor, a single chair placed next to it for Katie. Friends and family looked on with love as Phil serenaded his new bride with her favorite Coldplay melody. Katie later recalled this precious event as her favorite memory of the evening.


large_31d9254fd_G-2047BW8_9161Soon after the cake was cut and the final few dances shared, the time had come for the lovebirds to depart.

large_b416c624c_G-1998BW8_9112.jpgAmid brightly shining sparklers held by guests, Katie and Phil took their first steps into their happily ever after.large_f1f09411f_G-2204BW8_9328

large_2d05fff22_G-2153BW8_9277.jpgWhen asked what advice they would like to share with other couples planning their big day, Katie and Phil stated: “Try not to get too stressed about wedding planning and be flexible if something doesn’t go your way. Everyone says this, but it’s absolutely true, make sure you really soak in every minute of the wedding day because it goes by so fast.”large_5242c8b46_G-2167BW8_9291.jpgWe are so lucky to have charming couples like Katie and Phil to work with at Celebrate Snug Harbor. A huge thanks to Funico Photography for sharing these gorgeous, fun photos with us!


Photo/Video- Funico Studios

DJ- Empire Sound

Florist- NY Flower Project

Couples Tribute – Laura + Giovanni

Snug Harbor Wedding PhotosFrom the first moment they arrived on the handsomely manicured grounds of Celebrate Snug Harbor, Laura and Giovanni knew they had found the ideal setting for their June 2nd, 2019 wedding. The lush, secret-garden atmosphere boasted the type of divine magic that would send them off to a lifetime of happiness.

Snug Harbor Wedding Photos

The day of the nuptials was forecast to blend Laura and Giovanni’s classic and modern personalities into a perfectly balanced, complimentary union.

Snug Harbor Wedding PhotosSnug Harbor Wedding Photos


When the skies gave way to rain, no sentiment was hindered. With the quick care of the Celebrate Snug Harbor team, the ceremony was seamlessly moved indoors to the Upper Great Hall, this timeless couple not a bit worried over the change. The embracing gray overtones and gentle sound of rain seemed to cast an even more romantic spell as the couple said, “I do,” under the arch Giovanni and his brother lovingly crafted for the celebration.


As soon as the ceremony ended, the skies parted and the sun’s golden light sparkled down on the rich greenery of the Tuscan Garden, gracefully consenting to a series of stunning outdoor wedding portraits captured by Laura and Giovanni’s photographer, Le Image.

Snug Harbor Wedding Photos

The reception followed in the Tented Pavilion. The Bride had opted for modern décor, with a minimalist feel, allowing the natural beauty of their surroundings to play a supporting role in the jubilee.


Against the soft backdrop of glowing candlelight and overflowing emerald foliage, Laura and Giovanni laughed and kissed, their love for one another radiating all night.

Every detail of the wedding was eloquently selected by the couple and their families. We are grateful to have such wonderful pairings like Laura and Giovanni to work with at Celebrate Snug Harbor.

A special thank you to Le Image for sharing these gorgeous photos with us!

Cake: Palermos Bakery

DJ: beatsbyricky

Wedding Dress: calla blanche (Tatum)

Photographer and Videography : leimage

Couples Tribute: Christina + Josh

Christina and Josh’s wedding day in the Tuscan Garden at Celebrate Snug Harbor transported their guests straight to Italy. The elegant, romantic atmosphere, cast in complimentary hues of cream, gold, and pink, was further punctuated with emerald foliage and sophisticated details around every corner.


D85A3877The couple wanted a relaxed environment on their big day, but with a hint of glamour, something that would showcase their fun-loving personalities in a majestic tone. The planning team at Celebrate Snug Harbor was there to support them at every decision, helping transform this celebration into a regal affair.

When Christina and Josh saw the Tuscan Garden, they knew for certain the Snug Harbor would give their guests the truly unique experience they were searching for, while still staying true to the vision they had of how their forever would begin.


It held all the elements their families would cherish. The lush vegetation reminded Josh of his grandfather, a passionate and successful florist who also happened to be blind. For Christina, the thoughtful design was reminiscent of Italy, her family’s origin. Getting married in this spot was truly meant to be.Christina&JoshWeddingEdit-0651Christina’s walk down the aisle was the true showstopper of this enchanted wedding ceremony. Her Hayley Paige gown, a gentle shade of blush with stunning floral details cascading down, was highlighted perfectly by the rich tones of the Tuscan Garden.D85A4585She paired the dress with simple accessories and a cathedral length veil with matching floral details, the quintessential version of Old Hollywood glamour.veil shotWicked Florist infused classic sophistication into their designs for both the Tuscan Garden and the Upper Great Hall where the reception was held. Utilizing a soft palette of blooms and flora, they added a burst of colorful magic that flawlessly complimented the chic atmosphere.Christina&JoshWeddingEdit-0916ceremony shot 2

D85A4705The evening continued with a dinner reception in The Upper Great Hall. D85A4767.jpgD85A4732They shared their first dance to “Sunshine of my life” by Stevie Wonder.  Their band, Jesse and Forever had also performed this song the night Josh proposed to Christina on their Manhattan rooftop. When she stepped off the elevator, “Sunshine of my life” filled the air. Hearing it again, this time for the first time as husband and wife, surrounded by their loved ones, created a heartfelt, tender moment that all who witnessed will never forget.


D85A4835Keeping with their extraordinary theme, in lieu of a traditional wedding cake Christina and Josh chose a delicious donut tower. The guests loved it!Christina&JoshWeddingEdit-1731D85A5070

Christina&JoshWeddingEdit-1291.jpgPhilip Siciliano unobtrusively photographed every intimate detail, from Christina’s stunning entrance, to the fully bloomed Cherry Blossom trees that covered the Tuscan Garden.


We are so lucky to have wonderful couples like Christina and Josh to work with at Celebrate Snug Harbor, and photographers like Philip Siciliano to immortalize their memories!


Band – Jesse and Forever (ceremony and cocktail hour)

DJ – Beat Train Productions

Florist – Wicked

Photography – Philip Siciliano

Video – FT Cinematography

Wedding Dress – Hayley Paige

Tux – The Black Tux

Bridesmaids – Amaze



Couples Tribute: Diana + Shaun

Bride and Groom .jpgDiana and Shaun’s chic garden wedding at Celebrate Snug Harbor was an ethereal dream brought to life! The couple embraced the venue’s rustic surroundings, adding only minimal decorations, all of which were elegantly captured by Miho Grant Photography.

CEREMONY_11Diana’s sister first suggested Snug Harbor as a unique location for the lovebirds to host their union.  After doing some research online, Diana and Shaun made an appointment to visit and fell in love instantly with the Tuscan Garden. When they saw the stunning, high ceilings and windows of the Great Hall they knew they had found their perfect venue.

FAMILYFORMATS_42Before the ceremony, Diana and Shaun had a private “first look” session, an opportunity to unveil their wedding day couture to one another.

Miho Grant Photography unobtrusively recorded these incredibly sweet, adoring first glances of the betrothed.

FIRSTLOOK_44The impeccably curated details chosen by the Bride and Groom were intertwined with the lovely arrangements of soft pink, green and creamy ivory hues fashioned by florist Sam Gregorio, to stitch a ceremony full of warmth and love.

CEREMONY_73Diana floated down the aisle to “Pure Imagination” from Willie Wonka, enhancing the transcendent tone.

“Married Life” the recessional song from the movie Up, was a fitting ending to the beautiful words spoken during the ceremony.


FAMILYFORMATS_95.jpgIt was finally time for an evening of celebration, filled with close friends and family, sumptuous food and live music by Skyline Drive Orchestra.

UGH RECEPTION_12.jpgRather than choose a specific theme for their reception, Diana and Shaun focused on weaving an intimate atmosphere in the Upper Great Hall, filling it with exceptional details that truly made their family and friends feel special.

The tables were memorably set with place cards comprised of photos of Diana and Shaun with each of their guests. Everyone was able to take home a frame with their photo.


Diana and Shaun also decided to have charity donation favors. Each guest received a token to place in a box for one of the four charities chosen by the bridal party. After the wedding, donations to the charities were made based on the number of tokens in each box.


The festivities continued all night with a packed dance floor, with Diana and Shaun at the center having a blast amidst a sea of joyous faces.



Though Diana and Shaun did not have a wedding planner, they created a most romantic, personal and memorable wedding day with the help of the entire Celebrate Team.

bride and groom CSG.jpg“They held our hands throughout the process, made us feel so comfortable, were endlessly patient with us and our parents, and made wedding planning FUN.  They are some of our favorite people ever, and there is no way that our day would have been the same without them.”

FAMILYFORMATS_127When asked what advice they would like to share with other couples planning their big day Diana and Shaun stated:

“Take a few minutes during the day with your new spouse.  Be alone.  Take it in.  Feel giddy. It’s so special to have that time away from everyone else.”

FAMILYFORMATS_129.jpgWe are so lucky to have delightful couples like Diana and Shaun to work with at Celebrate Snug Harbor. A huge thanks to Miho Grant Photography for sharing these gorgeous photos with us.


Band: Skyline Drive Orchestra

Cake: Bruno’s Bakery

Flowers: Sam Gregorio’s Florist

Photographer: Miho Grant Photography

Videographer: Live Picture Studios






Couples Tribute: Gerrianna + Jason


GJ121518-S0569-SAM04008Once upon a time in New York City, a Harry Potter devote met a Game of Thrones devote and an epic love story began.  Gerrianna and Jason set a date of December 15th, 2018 and the search for the perfect wedding venue began.

As devoted Harry Potter and Game of Thrones fans Gerrianna and Jason wanted a wedding venue that looked and felt as close to a castle as possible. They selected Snug Harbor because the Great Hal” was the space of their “dreams”.

GJ121518-M1232-BW300545Gerrianna and Jason knew as soon as they walked in, that “this was it.”  Everything about The Great Hall spoke to them; the wood finishes, vaulted ceiling and stone floors created the perfect backdrop for their sci-fi/fairytale wedding.

Gerrianna and Jason were married at the Unitarian Church of Staten Island which they said was a gem of a find and is less than a one-minute walk from Celebrate at Snug Harbor.

GJ121518-M1195-BW300443The reverend Emily DeTar Birt, was very accommodating of their nontraditional ceremony requests. Everything from their vows to their readings were composed of Disney, Harry Potter, and Game of Thrones quotes.  As they left the church, the bridal party waved the happy couple off using wands, a playful nod to Harry Potter.

GJ121518-M1209-BW300484The wedding’s creative DIY elements were a joint effort between Gerrianna, Jason, family members and friends, along with the Snug Harbor team.  Gerrianna created the day of plan to resemble the “Daily Prophet” from Harry Potter. The “Profit” featured a crossword with fun facts about Jason and Gerrianna, pictures, a vendor list, and everything their wedding guests would need to be “in-the- know” about for the celebration.

GJ121518-S0639-SAM04199Gerrianna’s bouquet was breathtaking. Her grandmother passed away when she was in her teens and she inherited her Grandmothers brooches.  To honor her Grandmothers memory, Gerrianna handmade her bouquet using the beloved broaches.

The bridesmaid’s bouquets were handmade entirely out of paper.  Each bridesmaid picked a book they loved and Gerrianna designed the accent flowers to have quotes from their favorite books.

The boutonnières for the groomsmen were also made from paper. They had a marvel theme and the Jason’s had a Game of Thrones House stark theme.

GJ121518-S0011-850_9076The evening continued with a dinner reception in The Upper Great Hall. GJ121518-M1549-BW300686The over sized windows, barrel ceiling and historic charm of the space was a great compliment to their wedding reception.

GJ121518-S0811-SAM04625The reception was filled with Game of Thrones and Harry Potter touches enhancing the natural charm of the venue.

The tabletop decor was a low, linear design of simple fresh greenery spanning the entire length of the table accented by lanterns.  They achieved the exact “feast” look they wanted and purchased many of the elements themselves at Hobby Lobby.

Gerrianna being very talented herself wrote and recorded the songs she danced to with Jason for her first dance and for her parents dance with her mom and dad.

She wanted it to be personal and something that matched the relationships with these amazing people in her life. Tina Kenny helped orchestrate the songs Gerrianna wrote and brought them to life.

No Game of Thrones wedding would be complete without a themed cake such as this fantastic design from Palermo’s Bakery.

GJ121518-SP0035-BW3_2041The bakers at Palermo’s were super excited to be a part of the creative process and results tasted as good as they looked.

Jason collects vinyl pop figures and these figures became the inspiration for the cake topper.  Gerrianna hand painted the toppers to match their outfits and added accessories the themed accessories to match.

GJ121518-S1249-SAM05237Dash of Class kept the dance floor packed all night. They even accommodated Gerrianna and Jason’s wish to have Game of Thrones and Harry Potter music played during dinner.

GJ121518-S1039-SAM05064As a surprise for their families and guests Mr. Met made an appearance at their wedding.


He came and spent an hour dancing and they said it was a dream come true since they are big Met’s fans.  It didn’t quite match their GOH/Harry Potter theme, but they didn’t care because it was indeed Mr. Met!

GJ121518-S1205-850_9964Gerrianna and Jason gifted each guest with wedding Legos and wrapped them to look like Harry Potter packages. These were super adorable and affordable.

GJ121518-SP0016-BW105025Every detail of Gerrianna and Jason’s wedding was exceptionally and thoughtfully crafted by the couple and their vision for GOT/Harry Potter wedding came true.

GJ121518-S0830-SAM04691When asked what advice they would like to share with other couples planning their big day Gerrianna and Jason stated:

“Never hold back on your vision, especially if it’s outside the box. Vendors love creativity and when you give them the chance to dream along with you the possibilities are endless”

GJ121518-SP0036-BW3_2069-EditThank you, Gerrianna and Jason, for inviting us to share these spectacular wedding moments, and Studio 27 for these gorgeous photographs.


Wedding Vendor Team

Bride’s Dress, Bridesmaids and the flower girl dress – Always a Bridesmaid

Cake – Palermo’s Bakery:

DJ- Dash of Class:

Limo- Family Limo:

Photographer and Video – Studio 27:

Tuxedos- tuxedo world:

DIY Items – Hobby Lobby:




Veil Styles

Adding a veil or headpiece is a great finishing touch to the bridal look. There are so many gorgeous styles that whether you choose a bird cage, cathedral, tiara or fascinator, you can’t go wrong! We’re highlighting some of our favorite veils from our Celebrate Snug Harbor Brides!

The layers of this veil blend beautifully with the layers in the gown.

Photo: Studio A Images


Show off the delicate lace of your veil in the Allee of Snug Harbor!

Photo: Philip Siciliano


We love the lace trim on this veil and how it stands out in the Bamboo Garden of Snug Harbor. Perfect for a reveal!

Photo: Chris Palladino

1st look shot

A cathedral veil is just stunning in this Tuscan Garden ceremony.

Photo: Stephanie Parsley Photography

SPP TG Bridal Veil

Another cathedral veil favorite in our Bridal Suite.

Photo: Philip Siciliano

Philip Siciliano 4

This headpiece and detachable cape/veil combo is everything we hoped it would be. Breath-taking!

Photo: The Oluwaseye


One of our all time favorites, this beautiful pink and white headpiece!

Photo: 1314 Studio


Like we said, you really can’t go wrong with the finishing touches to your bridal look. Just make sure you have a gorgeous backdrop to flaunt it in!

Upcoming Snug Harbor Events

Revel in the lush beauty of Spring at Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Gardens by taking a class, strolling through the craft and farmers markets, or walking the impeccable landscapes and gardens. Filled with the possibility for family fun, these stunning grounds are also home to Celebrate Snug Harbor!

Balancing Yin & Yang: The Place of Chinese Philosophy in Garden Construction

What are the principles behind traditional Chinese garden design? Why do the ponds possess such a distinct jade hue? Do the bat-shaped door fittings hold secret meanings and messages? In this talk, we’ll explore how the classic Chinese worldview and ancient wisdom of yin and yang, The Book of Changes and the Dao De Jing, are embodied and brought to life within the garden walls.



Plant Sale: Snug Members Only

Make your garden the envy of the block by procuring hard-to-find annuals and hardy perennials at the Plant Sale. Snug Harbor horticulturalists will be available to help with plant selections, offer professional advice, and answer questions about the myriad of herbaceous peonies, iris species, cultivars and many other outdoor-suited flowering plants for sale. The NYC Compost Project will also be onsite to give away 15-pound bags of compost, while supplies last. All Plant Sale purchases will help fund Snug Harbor’s horticulture program and maintenance of the beautiful botanical garden. This event is rain or shine.



Orchid Show & Sale:

Each year Staten Island’s Orchid Society offers the Orchid Show & Sale, featuring a wide selection of in-flower orchids for sale, expert advice and takeaway fact sheets for ensuring robust orchid growth at home. This year’s Orchid Show and Sale also offers members of the S.I.O.S and Deep Cut Orchid Society the option to create beautiful displays with their own blooming orchids. Bring friends, family and anyone interested in learning more about these lovely flowers, everyone is welcome! Remember, Mother’s Day is just a week after the sale.


Jane’s Walk: Snug Harbor Heritage Farm Tour

Take a behind-the-scenes peek at Snug Harbor’s Heritage Farm, a better-than-organic 2.5 acre sustainable urban farm, now in its eighth growing season. This expedition, brought to us care of the Jane’s Walk series in partnership with the Municipal Art Society, will explore our seeding area, learn about crop planning and discover our methods for nourishing the soil to ensure the best produce possible. This event is rain or shine.


Spring Flowers Walk:

Visit Snug Harbor at its most beautiful! Take a walk through the Perennial, White, and Pond gardens, led by Snug Harbor’s Director of Horticulture, Greg Lord, and professional horticulturalist, Wambui Ippolito. Explorers will enjoy the flowering bulbs while learning about their origins and significance. This event is rain or shine.


Tuscan Garden Party

Attend to a Tuscan-style garden party, to take place in the Tuscan Garden and Lemon House at Snug Harbor, hosted by Christina Mantz of Christina’s Day Trips. A light Italian repast, complete with refreshing beverages, will be served amid a backdrop of fun, party favors and raffles. All proceeds will support Snug Harbor’s botanical gardens and horticulture department. This event is rain or shine.



For more fun at Snug Harbor, check out their monthly calendar!

Personalizing Your Wedding Reception

Creating custom and memorable details for your wedding reception does not have to be a daunting task. Sit down with your special someone and think about some of your favorite things. Check out some of Celebrate’s most creative couples and how they customized their wedding receptions with adorable and unforgettable details!

These adorable Russian Doll cake toppers matched the custom icon on the coffee bag favors!

Photographer: Olya Vysotskaya
Screen Shot 2019-04-16 at 10.53.42 AMScreen Shot 2019-04-16 at 10.53.51 AM

These handmade paper crane place cards were made from recycled maps of the groom’s pilot routes!

Photographer: Minnow Park

This creative couple had Jenga games and markers ready for their guests to write love advice on them so they can look at them as they play in the future. Adorable!

Photographer: Olli Studio
Screen Shot 2019-04-16 at 10.54.10 AM Screen Shot 2019-04-16 at 10.54.18 AM

This stunning couple, after having their ceremony in the theater of Snug Harbor, got very creative and did a play on Playbills!

Photographer: Paul V Photography

Screen Shot 2019-04-16 at 10.54.33 AMScreen Shot 2019-04-16 at 10.54.39 AM

Have any cake you want! Check out this yummy crispy treat cake and adorable animal cake toppers!

Photographer: Stephanie Parsley Photography

Screen Shot 2019-04-16 at 10.54.49 AM

You can do just about anything when celebrating your wedding with Celebrate at Snug Harbor. For more inspiration on personalizing your wedding reception, check out our Pinterest page!


Table Setting Decor

Guests often remember the little things from a wedding that were carefully selected and well planned. Wow your guests by having a stunning table setting. It’ll set the tone for your guests to mingle as they await the grand entrance of the happy couple! We’re highlighting some of our favorite table setting ideas from our very own couples who hosted their weddings at Celebrate!

Have Food Out

It’s always nice for your guests to arrive at a table with their salad out and ready for them. It also makes the table look full and lavish.

Photo: Eryc Perez de Tagle



Have a Color Contrast

Perfect for a spring wedding, incorporate navy with light spring colors on each table with elevated floating candles of various heights.

Photo: With Love & Embers

Emily & Sean

Choose Copper

A copper charger plate creates the perfect look for a rustic, romantic, and high end table setting.

Photo: Lina Jang Photography


Compliment the windows

The Great Hall of Snug Harbor offers 40-foot palladian windows, perfect for tall centerpieces.


At Celebrate Snug Harbor, you can plan for any table setting decor for the wedding of your dreams! For more wedding inspiration, check out our Pinterest page!

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