Karen Kwok & Joshua Chien
March 25, 2017 in Santa Susana, California
Karen Kwok and Joshua Chien were both studying at UC Berkeley when they met at a party during the Fall of 2008. “Josh won’t admit it to his buddies, but he took the opportunity to walk me home that night because he knew I was the one the moment we met,” says Karen. “The next day, Josh offered to take me and my friends to Costco. And that is how our love story began.”
After eight years together – many, which were spent dating long-distance – Karen had finally moved back to the Bay Area, and Josh knew it was the perfect time to plan a proposal. He decided the right moment would take place after strolling through the gardens at Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild in the South of France. After leading Karen to a balcony area overlooking the French Riviera, Josh was trying to be coy, telling her to look out over the water as he set up his GoPro.
“I turned around upon his instructions,” Karen recalls, “and time simply froze, and words began to blur as he got down on one knee and presented the most stunning ring a girl could dream of – a ring which Josh designed himself with the help of his jeweler, Neil Dahl. The proposal was extra special because the days leading up to that moment were particularly stressful. Just days before, we had lost our luggage and our car broke down on a busy street in Genoa, Italy, where we were stranded for a whole day. Fortunately, we were saved by an Italian supermodel; but that’s a story for another day.”
Upon returning from Europe, the wedding planning process began with a call to Josh’s cousin Michelle, who is a wedding planner at Aquafuzion. With their busy careers, Josh and Karen knew Michelle would be an essential part of orchestrating the perfect wedding. “With the help of Michelle and Aquafuzion, we looked at a handful of venues and vendors before finding the perfect team,” Karen adds. “The process was never overwhelming though because Michelle kept us well-organized and on track.”
A year and a half later, the wedding day arrived. Despite a rainy forecast, the weather couldn’t have been more idyllic for the celebration. To resemble where their engagement took place, the bride and groom envisioned a classy and intimate wedding with a French garden feel. An outdoor ceremony was held, with two trees framing the altar and tall floral arrangements lining the aisles. The following reception took place in a picturesque tent with white drapery and florals hanging from the ceiling, where the newlyweds and their guests could escape to a completely different atmosphere.
“We couldn’t have done it without all our amazing vendors, who perfectly executed the vision we had,” says the bride. “The wedding day went by so quickly, but it was definitely a celebration that we will talk about and remember for years to come.”
>Written by: Lauren Malamala