Photography by
Catherine Hall Studios


Leslie Tam & Brandon Valenzuela

September 7, 2019. Truckee, CA


Location: Martis Camp Lodge Truckee, CA; Planning & Event Design: Audere Events Reno, NV; Floral Design: Stems by Diana Lake Tahoe, CA; Rentals: Celebrations Reno, NV; Linens: LA Tavola Napa, CA; Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier; Bridal Salon: Bridal Galleria San Francisco, CA; Groom's Attire: Hugo Boss

For years, Leslie Tam and Brandon Valenzuela were living parallel, separate lives. They grew up in neighboring towns, they both moved to Los Angeles for college, and they even lived across the street from each other in San Francisco. But fate didn’t bring the two together until they connected online through a dating app.

After that, the rest was history.

When it came to finding a venue for their September wedding, the couple knew exactly where to go: Martis Camp, a leafy, 2177-acre site in the Truckee Valley that had become a beloved place for the couple, who share a love of fitness. Dur-ing their courtship, Brandon, who works in finance, got Leslie, a dentist, back into skiing. Every ski season, the two would make the trip to Martis Camp to hit the slopes.

“It’s a special place to us,” the couple says.

Envisioning a romantic autumn wedding set against spectacular views, the two worked closely with florist Diana Thale and wedding planner Kyleigh Stewart of Audere Events to bring their vision to life. Naturally, the verdant setting of Martis Camp served as a source of inspiration for their nuptials. From there, the couple chose deep jewel colors to enhance the emerald green of the outdoors. Breath-taking floral arrangements in bursts of white, peach, and burgundy rivaled the scenery.

In front of their nearest and dearest, under a bright blue sky surrounded by hun-dreds of pine trees, Brandon and Leslie were pronounced husband and wife.

Leslie donned a stunning Monique Lhullier A-line gown with an elegant bow back, paired with Christian Louboutin heels. Brandon cut a handsome figure in a sharp navy suit by Hugo Boss. Seeing each other for the first time on their big day was an unforgettable moment for the two.

“It was so romantic, emotional, and comforting to be with each other in those short moments,” the couple recalls. “We will never forget that!”

The celebration carried on long after sunset, illuminated by the glow of flickering candlelight, a roaring fire, and lights strung on trees like a scene from a fairy tale book. Friends and family danced under twinkling stars and roasted marshmal-lows at the fire pit, a playful nod to the lodge setting. Guests were also gifted freshly baked chocolate chip cookies as a sweet favor.

With so many fond memories to look back on, Leslie and Brandon shared an im-portant piece of advice to other couples: “Try your hardest to be present. It's so important to remember the way you feel during every moment of your special day. And make sure to catch the laughter, smiles, and emotion on your guests' faces, it makes all of the stress of wedding planning melt away.”