Candice Shallal & Peter Jankowski
November 2, 2019. Farmington Hills, MI
Ceremony Location: St. Thomas Chaldean Church West Bloomfield, MI; Reception Location: Studio Center Farmington Hills, MI; Planning, Event & Floral Design: Top That Table West Bloomfield, MI; Wedding Dresses: Monique Lhuillier & Ines di Santo; Bridal Salon: Roma Sposa; Cake: Batter Up Bellevue, MI; Caterer: Angel Food Catering Bellevue, MI; Hair: Artiste Salon Bloomfield, MI; Makeup: La Facciabella Troy, MI; Invitations: Carlson Craft
“Meeting Peter is a crazy story that still puts us in awe today,” says Candice Shallal, describing her first encounter with Peter Jankowski. “I was on a girls’ trip in Miami and Peter also happened to be in Miami visiting his cousins. He actually was supposed to be there a month earlier, but due to his grandmother’s passing, his trip was delayed. We both were at a waterfront restaurant/bar named Kiki on the River. His cousins invited my friends and I to hang out at their table where everyone was drinking and dancing. Peter and I started talking and realized we were not only both from Michigan, but went to the same college, at the same time, have many mutual friends and acquaintances, and that we live ten minutes apart!”
The engagement took place under the guise of a charity event at the Detroit Athletic Club, where Peter’s best friend Randy would be getting them in to the member’s only establishment. When they were all dressed up and headed downtown, Peter received a call from Randy who said he was running a bit behind and decided to take Candice to a nearby rooftop for a drink. In the elevator, Candice momentarily had butterflies from thinking a proposal was about to happen; but she knew Peter wouldn’t pop the question without his parents, and he even sent her a picture of his dad at their other home in Boca. Of course, Candice would soon find out that the picture was yet another ploy to throw her off.
“As I walked out of the elevator on to the rooftop, I heard Celine Dion’s ‘To Love You More’ being played by the electro pop violinist group, Nuclassica,” she shares. “Peter led me to a heart made of roses, where he got down on one knee and popped the question. Our parents and siblings watched the big moment behind us. I was truly taken aback and so full of surprise. After the proposal, Peter set up a party in one of our favorite restaurants. He reserved the back area where about 100 of our family and friends came to drink, dance, and celebrate our big moment.”
With Candice coming from a large Middle Eastern family, weddings with 500-600 guests are pretty standard. Still, she and Peter wanted their wedding to feel different from “the norm,” and focused on their vision of throwing a true party. After finding a movie studio that provided the perfect blank canvas for a wedding venue, their talented team of wedding vendors were able to transform the studio into the perfect celebration space.
“On the actual wedding day, I woke up a little nervous of how the day would go,” recalls the bride. “Just ten days before, my mother’s brother died of lung cancer. We were all very shocked, sad, and heart broken, especially my mom. We thought he had more time. I wasn’t sure how she would feel that day since it was going to be such a bittersweet moment for her; watching her daughter get married but feeling the loss of her brother. Everyone did reassure me that they we going to be happy and celebrate because it was still my special day. As the morning went on, I felt more relaxed and excited to for the big day. To my surprise there were no sad tears, only happy ones.”
The wedding turned out to be an absolute dream, with the reception giving off a magical, modern, and sexy vibe. Details such as boxed floral arrangements, modern table rentals, floral swings, CO2 blasters, a suspended cake, and music by Nuclassica all served to create the most incredible ambiance. As the evening progressed, other special moments included the bride and groom’s outfit changes, gyros for a midnight snack, and a cappuccino bar.
“Our honeymoon was certainly a trip to remember,” says Candice. “We spent 17 days in Southeast Asia, starting off in Bangkok, then Chiang Mai, then Phuket, then Singapore, then two cities in Bali (Ubud and Seminyak). The most memorable part of all was the festival we attended in Chiang Mai called Yi Peng. They have this festival every year in November, so I made sure to plan our honeymoon so we did not miss it. I am sure you have seen those incredible photos of thousands of brightly lit lanterns rising into the night sky over the city. It was truly a magical moment for us, and we are so grateful we were able to experience it during our honeymoon as we started our new life together.”
>Written By: Lauren Malamala