Jennie Bellisario and Christopher Bryant met through mutual friends and, immediately, they knew they had met “the one.” Later on, Chris would tell Jennie that he felt butterflies from the beginning, and she would admit to feeling that she had met her future husband.
“Having lived in Detroit all our lives, we have witnessed the resurgence the city has made in recent years,” Jennie describes. “As a result, we have our favorite spots for dinner and holiday-type activities. So, when Chris said we were going downtown for dinner, I didn’t think anything was up. Boy, was I in for a surprise!
“IT WAS MAGICAL – YOU KNOW, LIKE ONE OF THOSE HALLMARK CHRISTMAS MOVIES.”
After a relaxing, delicious dinner at PARC, we took a stroll to Campus Martus Park. The big Christmas tree was lit with what looked like a million little bright lights. There were horse-drawn carriages everywhere, and holiday music in the background helping downtown visitors enjoy the holiday season. As we approached the Christmas tree, Chris got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.
It felt like the entire world stopped spinning and we were the only two people in front of that huge, beautifully lit Christmas tree. Of course, I said ‘Yes!’ He had a horse-drawn carriage waiting to take us around the city. It was magical – you know, like one of those Hallmark Christmas movies.”
Having grown up in the wedding industry, Jennie was no stranger to the wedding planning process and found the whole experience to be “quite simple.” Her grandfather founded Bellisario Florist more than 60 years ago with the sole purpose of providing couples with the most memorable wedding moments. Ever since she was a baby, Jennie was surrounded by brides, wedding flowers, and beautiful venues; and her only challenge was coming up with a unique wedding vision. Fortunately, her uncle – who she refers to as “her silver bullet” – helped to devise a plan and aesthetic that was both elegant and “tropically festive.” Together, they brought Jennie’s dream of an elegant and vibrant wedding to life.
“On the wedding day itself, both Chris and I were nervous,” the bride recalls. “We were anxious, hoping everything was going to go as planned. The reception was overall amazing! We planned to have two separate rooms. Our goal was to leave our guests breathless when they walked into the dinner portion of the venue. Drama-creating room draping, flowers, candles, chandeliers, and mirrors were everywhere. It was very elegant, and no detail was spared! The adjoining room was the ‘dance’ part of the wedding.
Our theme there was tropical palm trees and vibrant orchids flown in from Hawaii – hot tropical fun! At the heart of our planning was my grandfather’s memory. We incorporated many of his signature touches to the wedding day – my bouquet was a special design he used to make, the arches behind the head table were some of the same ones he used back in the day, and the final touch was his signature dessert table!”
Location: Villa Penna Sterling Heights, MI; Floral Design: Bellisario Florist Birmingham, MI; Wedding Dresses: Limor Ben Yosef; Bridal Salon: Roma Sposa Birmingham, MI