Designed and Produced by Colin Cowie Lifestyle
A GLAMOROUS WEDDING AT HÔTEL HERMITAGE MONTE-CARLO Designed and Produced by Colin Cowie Lifestyle
Colin Cowie Lifestyle designed and produced a spectacular wedding at the Hôtel Hermitage Monte-Carlo. The intimate event included only 37 guests but was a grand celebration nonetheless. The gorgeous bride and groom said “I do” against a translucent backdrop dripping in florals and crystals. The backdrop was designed to enhance the glamour of the couple’s big day and preserve the breathtaking oceanfront views. A live string quartet by Inspiration Live Music set the tone with instrumental music as the bride walked down the aisle.
The stunning bridal gown was paired with silver Yves Saint Laurent Tribute Sandal heels. Bridal makeup was done by celebrity makeup artist Patrick Ta, a favorite of Adriana Lima, Camila Cabello, Emily Ratajkowski, Eva Longoria, Gigi Hadid, Miranda Kerr, and more. Bridal hair was by Florido Basallo, who has worked with Anitta, Charli D’Amelio, Dixie D’Amelio, Julianne Hough, Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, Sydney Sweeny, and more.
Dinner featured one of the most glamorous tablescapes drenched in monochromatic florals and crystals. Crystal chandeliers and cream orchids made a statement, and custom-embroidered napkins added a personal touch.
Then, it was all red! The evening concluded with an epic dance party, featuring a vampy nightclub design with an abundance of red roses, plush velvet furniture, and disco balls suspended from the ceiling. A neon red heart with a bold ‘K & B’ celebrated the newlyweds. Entertainment included headliners JR Richards and DJ Meduza.
Congratulations to the glamorous newlyweds!
Karoline and Brenden's French Riviera love story began in the most quintessentially "South of France" way, when the two met at the Monaco Yacht Club. As far as first impressions go, Karoline recalls thinking Brenden was "very refined and very mysterious." Brenden, who spotted Karoline first at the yacht club, insists that he "fell in love straight away."
Whether it was love at first sight for one or both of them, the couple's whirlwind romance led to an engagement two months later. Brenden organized a beautiful excursion in Florence, which included wine tasting, truffle hunting, and a helicopter ride.
"We were in Florence with friends," Karoline shares. "They own a luxury lifestyle concierge agency in New York and they're very good friends with Colin Cowie. They were putting together this surprise proposal, without knowing I'm deathly afraid of helicopters."
"We ended up landing in a field," Brenden describes. "We had been dressed up in boots and things like that for walking in the forest. We were met by this truffle farmer and eventually told Karoline that we were going truffle hunting, and then lunch. I had already forwarded the engagement ring to a driver who gave it to the truffle cultivator to put it in a truffle and bury it in the ground, so we were searching for the truffle with a dog. When the dog found it, we just had to make sure we got to it fast enough, so he didn't eat the truffle with the ring inside."
The engagement ring was perfect, as the couple had already been speaking about tying the knot. Knowing how personal a ring is, Brenden made sure to ask Karoline which ring she wanted. Even so, by the time the proposal came around, it was still a surprise for the bride-to-be.
"I knew we were going to get engaged at some point, but I had no idea I'd have to dig in the ground for my own engagement ring," she laughs.
By late-June, the couple had decided to get married in October, which didn't leave them a lot of time for the wedding planning process. This also gave them an opportunity to enlist the help of world-renowned planner and designer extraordinaire, Colin Cowie, who would be able to create the most idyllic guest experience for their glamorous and intimate wedding in Monaco. After being introduced to Colin through their mutual friends, Karoline and Brenden knew they'd found their match.
"It was basically love at first sight," says Karoline. "The energy... everything just clicked."
"We were in a time crunch, and Colin and Valentina and the team really, really pulled it together and they managed to get everything organized," Brenden explains. "We were not controlling in any way – we had a goal with what we liked, and they had free reign. They've got this creative energy, and we followed their lead."
While there were several moving parts, the couple took a very calm, cool, and collected approach to planning their big day, with Karoline stating, "I refused to get stressed out over a wedding."
They decided to kick off their three-day wedding weekend with a welcome dinner at Sass Café, which is one of Monaco's most exclusive restaurants. Brenden notes that Sass Café is "very noir, very red, and very opulent," which provided inspiration for the décor theme of their wedding dance party – an all-red celebration that closed out the evening.
"For the wedding ceremony and dinner," says Karoline, "everything was outside, and we wanted something that would blend with Monaco's background. We wanted it to be elegant without being too flashy."
Although the bride and groom are Monaco locals, their 38 guests traveled in from all over the world. In order to account for time differences and jetlag, guests were mostly left to explore the area on their own terms before the wedding, rather than having to adhere to a tightly scheduled wedding itinerary.
"I had just gotten home from the US myself," says Karoline, "so I was pretty jetlagged. I think I drank three coffees the morning of the wedding and an energy drink while having hair and makeup done by my talented friends, Patrick Ta and Florido Basallo, and listening to Y2K hits. The night before the wedding, two of our friends slept over, so the four of us were basically having a slumber party, drinking wine, and just laughing on the carpet of our TV room.”
"We really wanted to take advantage of spending time with our friends, so we kind of burnt the candle at both ends," Brenden adds.
The wedding took place at the iconic Hotel Hermitage; and just as anyone would expect with a Colin Cowie celebration, it was a spectacular and intimate wedding in Monaco that offered guests the most beautiful ambiance for celebrating love. With the historic hotel being located above shops like Valentino and Hermes, there was a fair number of rules to abide by, including noise restrictions. For that reason, it made sense for the couple to keep their guest list on the smaller side, which allowed Colin and his team to create an environment that was luxurious and sophisticated, yet warm and cozy at the same time.
Since it was a more intimate wedding, Karoline also decided to keep her bridal party small. I had one maid of honor," she explains, "because if I were to pick bridesmaids, I would have chosen all my female friends, because all are important to us. For such a small wedding, I didn't see the need. So I just picked one – my sister."
The ceremony was chic and glamorous, with Colin and his team designing a translucent backdrop with flowers and crystals that emphasized the beauty of their Monte-Carlo surroundings, without taking away from the terrace views of the harbor. Live string players performed during the ceremony, and the priest performed a blessing over the bride and groom as violins played in the background. For the cocktail hour they welcomed J.R. Richards, the original singer and songwriter of the rock band Dishwalla.
For dinner, guests were seated around a stunning all-white tablescape dripping in white florals. Every carefully curated detail – the crystal chandeliers, the fountain, the lighting – served to create the most immaculate setting that made everyone feel as if they were celebrating in a world of their own.
The all-red dance party wound down shortly after midnight with guests dancing to MEDUZA, and the wedding weekend concluded with brunch the next day. Having enjoyed such an incredible few days with their closest loved ones, the newlyweds were elated with how seamless everything turned out but were excited to finally have a chance to rest and catch up on sleep.
"It just went by so fast," Brenden reflects. "It was such a big hustle and bustle, and we wanted our guests to feel as special as they are to us. In between preparing for our event, we were happily coordinating with Colin's team to make sure the ladies had hair and makeup lined up.”
For that whole weekend the bride and groom had the help of fashion stylist Tabata Harmon of LalaLuxe Los Angeles. In charge of guest transportation for the weekend was Alem Prestige limousine service.
Right after the wedding, the newlyweds jetted off for a luxury honeymoon getaway at the 5-star Velaa Private Island in the Maldives.
>Written By: Lauren Malamala
Location, Caterer & Cake: Hôtel Hermitage Monte-Carlo; Planner & Event Design: Colin Cowie Lifestyle; Floral Design: Roni Fleurs; Scenic & Rentals: Deco Flamme; Sound & Lighting: Media Com; Linen: BBJ La Tavola; Entertainment: The Green Room; Invitations: Paper By The Bay; Calligraphy: Desert Plume Calligraphy; Travel Agent: Roman and Erica; Photography: Travis Magee for Calen Rose