Major League Baseball’s Hunter Pence and his bride, vlogger Alexis Cozombolidis, dreamed of a fantasy wedding. The fantasy combined three themes – Mamma Mia, designed specifically to celebrate Alexis’ Greek culture, Harry Potter, and Game of Thrones, both of which the adventurous couple adore. Given that challenge, we merged a Greek theme with magical fantasy that would delight ABBA, Jon Snow and the wizards of Gryffindor House.

The fun-loving couple wanted their guest to have a true experience. So to make this adventuresome wedding even more of an experience for them, guests were told that it was an “unplugged wedding” – no cell phones would be allowed, and no clues were provided for the location of the ceremony or receptions in advance. Guests were instructed to gather in front of Hotel Vitale where they were greeted by our staff, who tagged and bagged their cellphones for safekeeping. After boarding the transportation to both the church and reception, pre-recorded videos of Hunter and Alexis dropped clues to where they were going. 

To begin the celebrations, the ceremony venue was held at Ascension Greek Orthodox Cathedral, with an aisle lined with Gardenias and Texas Smilax garlands (Hunter is a Texan), large brass glass candle lanterns and eight – six foot wide wrought iron chandeliers flanked the ceremony from above. Garden roses and peonies adorned the altar. After the ceremony, guests enjoyed an all-Greek cocktail reception on the Cathedral Platia in a 60’x100′ tent, complete with a 20-foot blue and white windmill representing the iconic Mykonos windmills of the Greek island. A Mykonos-blue color palette, yellow lemons, olive trees, fuchsia bougainvillea potted plants and cocktail table arrangements accented an all-white décor, added a festive vibrancy of the Mediterranean. For two hours, an eight-piece Greek band and 30 Greek dancers entertained the 250 guests. To continue the fun, the bride and groom slipped on matching Converse All Stars and showed off the results of private dancing lessons as they led everyone in their Mamma Mia celebration!  

Once guests arrived at Epic Steak, they entered the worlds of Harry Potter and Game of Thrones. Servings of lamb lollipops and lamb chops were threaded throughout the menus to transition from the Mamma Mia theme into the other magical themes represented by a whole roasted lamb

The entry tent brought out the Game of Thrones royal purple in the lounge furniture and pipe and drape. Medieval copper chandeliers draped with green garlands hung from the ceiling where guests sipped a Pensive Signature cocktail, noshed on bite-sized wood oven pizza, steak bites, and enjoyed three live musicians – one a ukulele player the bride loves, who later sang “Honestly” for their first dance. Guests plucked their purple escort cards inscribed with their names from a tree. With their RSVP, guests sent in self-portraits before the wedding and a spirit animal reader analyzed each attendee. Everyone’s unique result was revealed on their escort cards and the description was denoted on each guest’s personalized menu as a tie-in to Harry Potter. 

As guests crossed through a connecting tent, decorated predominantly in purple velvet drape and furniture with flourishes of metal containers holding greenery, they entered the dimly lit dinner/dance tent to discover several hundred floating candles individually hung with clear filament over six massive 40-foot long kings table and a 24-foot long head table. The candles varied in height from eight inches to a foot long. The head table featured two gold ornate thrones lined in black velvet much like those seen in Game of Thrones. A mixture of greenery, including moss, and touches of purple on a silver draped background dominated throughout the space. Above the head table on a 28-foot moss wall, hung the couple’s custom-designed, embroidered family crest featuring their spirit animals; the deer is the spirit animal of the Alexis; the goat is Hunter’s spirit animal. We incorporated elements of their Greek and Texas heritage into their custom family crest banner – lemons, olives, an oil rig, corn and of course their spirit animals. Banners are commonly used in both fantasy stories, and this was a special addition to the celebration.

For the dinner tables, we elected not to use table linen, as we wanted the wood tables to reflect the Harry Potter/Games of Throne medieval feel. Moss runners with everything imaginable from Dumbledore’s office – stars, purple potion vials, compasses, magnifying glasses, and votives encased in gold terrariums – glowed in the candlelight. The tables were named after sets of Magic: The Gathering, a trading card game that Hunter and Alexis loves to play. In Game of Thrones royal court style – place settings included white china on copper chargers, copper flatware; taupe hem-stitched napkins; gold-rimmed crystal stemware and a pewter water goblet. 

A three-course dinner was topped off with an enchanting three-tiered wedding cake decorated with sugar fresh cranberries and fresh rosemary sprigs and flowers on a table dripping moss, and numerous dessert stations. Enthralled guests joined the couple on the dance floor complete with the A&H Monogram gobo. Towards the end of the evening, guests viewed a final video of the bride and groom, 60 years in the future aged with hair and makeup, reflecting on their wedding day. One of their friends from Saturday Night Live wrote the script! 

Guests sent the bride and groom off in style with a tower of sparklers, waiving and cheering the happy couple as they drove off to the Fairmont San Francisco Penthouse.

“You hear people say their wedding was the best day of their life, but you don’t understand it until going through it yourself.” – Hunter and Alexis

Thank you Hunter and Alexis for allowing us to make your wedding dreams come true! Cheers!

  

 

 

 

Special thanks to all of the wedding professionals who worked together to make this a dream wedding for Hunter and Alexis. You are all superstars.

Pre-Wedding Preparation & After-Party: Fairmont San Francisco | Ceremony Venue: Ascension Greek Orthodox Cathedral  Reception Venue & Catering: Epic Steak | Design & Planning: Morgan Events | Photography: Mel Barlow & Co. Florals: Revel Floral  | Videography: Kevin Chin Photography + Cinema | Tent & Tabletop: Hensley Event Resources | Lighting: Got Light. | Furniture: Blueprint Studios | Cake: Sweet on Cake | Invitations & Calligraphy: Cheree Berry Paper | Ceremony Music: Anna Counelis | Greek Band: Helios Greek Band | Greek Dancers: Danny Staveris | Reception Music: Melvin Sings | DJ: DJ Cams | Video Booth: The Slow Motion Booth | Transportation: Shaw Transportation Management | Favors: Greenway Coffee | Wedding Party Stylist: Dhstyle Inc. | Bridal Gown & Accessories: Monique Lhuillier | Hair/Makeup: Style Bee | Groom’s Attire: Banana Republic