Naomi Gadinsky and Gabriel Cruz were both attending the University of Pennsylvania when a mutual friend asked Gabriel to invite Naomi to a fraternity date party.
“I thought this would be a great chance to bring a cute blonde to a party,” says Gabe. “Little did I know how fun and smart she was!”
Working towards the same major, the two had classes together and were good friends before developing a serious relationship. Naomi shares that she would draw “stupid doodles” for Gabe in class, which became an inside joke between them.
“I can still remember how funny those doodles were,” Gabe shares. “I had a feeling then that this was someone who definitely shared my sense of humor.”
The proposal took place over Thanksgiving in Dallas, at Gabe’s family home. Naomi’s family had flown in from Miami as well, so everyone was able to celebrate the engagement together.
Naomi’s mother was “the wedding planning extraordinaire” during the wedding planning process, as Naomi and Gabe were living in New Orleans for med school at the time – so planning a wedding in Florida required some assistance. The couple’s main priority was to have a DJ, open bar, and a ceremony by the beach. With Naomi being a Miami Beach native, she also envisioned a fun Miami Beach wedding and party where people could relax, dance, and simply enjoy themselves.
For their wedding venue, the couple chose The 1 Hotel in South Beach to host their nuptials. When they first visited the hotel, they were wearing hard hats and visiting a construction site – that is, The 1 Hotel wasn’t even fully built by the time the wedding day arrived. But Naomi and Gabe had their heart set on the location and, thanks to some clever décor tricks, it turned out to be a beautiful event space.
The morning of the wedding was met with some momentary stress, as the bride was craving some alone time and the groomsmen’s suits all required some emergency tailoring. Fortunately, the mood had lightened up in time for the ceremony.
“During our vows, a little plane with the sign ‘Kinko De Mayo’ flew by – it gave our vows a nice kinky touch,” jokes the groom.
At the reception, guests were treated to great food and a DJ who kept everyone dancing throughout the night. The reception space featured a green wall, which served as the perfect contrast to large bouquets of orchids on the tabletops, creating a vibrant Miami ambiance.
“While the setup for the wedding certainly came down to the wire, once we stepped onto our wedding terrace we knew the big day was going to be incredible,” Gabe says. “The feeling at the end of the wedding day was one of true relief – relief that we were finally married, but more than anything, that all the hard work put in by everyone resulted in something amazing. To this day, our friends tell us how it will be extremely difficult to top the venue and party we threw!”
>Written By: Lauren Malamala
Location: 1 Hotel South Beach Miami Beach, FL; Planner: Melissa Davis Designs Miami, FL; Floral and Event Design: Blooming Events International Miami, FL; Lighting: Sarz Entertainment Fort Lauderdale, FL; Wedding dress: Inbal Dror; Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo; Photography: Ambrosio Photography Miami Beach, FL