Erica and Matthew’s Philadelphia wedding was elegantly beautiful and has us totally smitten! Cescaphe’s Downtown Club was the perfect venue for this special occasion with its stunning architecture and modern style. The space was draped in white florals designed by Beautiful Blooms, which befittingly set the timeless mood. With most of the details inspired by the bride’s gorgeous Inbal Dror gown, this couple’s dreams became a reality. All of the beautiful imagery that brings this whole day to life was captured by Anastasia Romanova Photography, so keep scrolling for more loveliness below.
From the Photographer, Anastasia Romanova Photography: Erica and Matthew’s Downtown Club Philadelphia wedding was perfect in every way. These two people have the most genuine, kindest and loving personalities and everything they created for their big day was a true representation of who they are. Erica’s bridal look was simply out of this world. She looked like a queen without any sort of exaggeration. Ashley from Philly Hair and Robin from Robin Lynette simply outdid themselves with hair and makeup. The bride’s Inbal Dror wedding gown was flawlessly paired with a long cathedral veil and BHLDN jewelry. The bridesmaids’ stunning pastel dresses were beautifully combined with white bouquets designed by incredible Beautiful Blooms. The Down Town Club served as a perfect backdrop for both the wedding ceremony and reception.
Erica and Matt started their morning of preparations at the Kimpton Hotel Monaco with the First Look following on the balcony of the Nineteen Restaurant at the Bellevue. Afterward, we stopped by at the Philadelphia City Hall for a few creative photographs and headed to the Downtown Club for family and bridal party formals.
The wedding ceremony was held at Downtown Club ballroom, which was afterward converted to the wedding reception setting during the cocktail hour.
Erica and Matthew wowed their guests first with a beautifully performed first dance and a rose petal canon in the end. The reception was filled with warm speeches, unforgettable parent dances, and a wild dance floor. At the end of the wedding reception, we went outside for some additional nighttime portraits of the bride and groom just in front of the Downtown Club. It was an incredible final accord.
How They Met
“Matt and I began dating when I was a senior in high school, and he was a sophomore in college. My best friend at the time was dating one of his friends, Ryan, who had a viral youtube channel. One day Victoria & I were hanging out and watching his videos when I saw Matt in the background. I made her pause the video and told her I needed to meet him. For me, I guess you could say it was love at first sight. Millennial style. I reached out to him online & from there we had our first — very awkward date! Even after what seemed like the worst date ever, surprise to me, Matt said he had a good time & I was intrigued. For our second date, Matt brought me to a Philadelphia Flyer’s game & even with our $15 nose-bleed tickets he stole my heart that night. It was the first time anyone had ever taken me out to do something so fun & original and when he sang (horribly) in the car on our ride home – I knew he was someone I could fall in love with.”
“As I grew to know Matt more I found he was the sweetest, most kind-spirited person I’d ever met. I did not expect to fall madly in love so young, but I did! As we started to grow, we realized we needed time apart to rediscover who we were. We took a long break during my year abroad in college. While abroad, I visited Rome and made a wish in the Trevi Fountain that Matt and I would find our way back to each other one day and return to Italy together. Those wishes came true and so much more. When in Florence, Matt literally took my breath away with the most romantic proposal ever. I feel incredibly lucky to not only be engaged to the man of my dreams, but also to recapture the incredible feeling I had on that bridge every time I look at a view of the Ponte Vecchio.”
“Planning the wedding was amazing once we decided to get married in Philadelphia all of the details just fell into place. I’m a home decor buyer for Anthropologie so working on the decor was the most exciting part for me. I spent a lot of time with our florist Beautiful Blooms to achieve an original design that ended up being exactly what I envisioned.”
“We chose to hold our wedding with the Cescaphe Group because they are simply the best. They offer so much and make the wedding planning process a breeze. We specifically chose the Downtown Club because I loved its modern classical vibe. The brightness that poured in from the floor to ceiling windows for the wedding ceremony and the incredible view of Old City that includes Independence Hall and the Ben Franklin Bridge.”
“The inspiration was Florence where we got engaged with an enchanted whimsical twist that was inspired by my stunning Inbal Dror Blush wedding gown. The idea was the entire wedding would be neutral with hints of gray/gold and greenery and my blush Inbal Dror gown would stand out against the bright white walls of the Downtown Club. We wanted our florals to be neutral but dripping with greenery and our cocktail was named ‘The Florence’ and featured a floating sage leaf in a small martini glass. The cocktail hour was decorated with photos from our engagement in Florence and our engagement shoot in Philadelphia featuring the stunning architecture of both cities we love. Our favors were envelopes with hand-drawn gold calligraphy that said ‘May They Bring You Magic’ inside there were euro coins and instructions to make two wishes 1) to return to or one day visit la citta di Roma, the city of eternal love and 2) a special wish of their choice. We shared with our guests that we felt the coins would bring them the same magic they brought us.”
Wedding Planning Advice
“Take time to enjoy the moment and enjoy being engaged. Matt and I had been dating for seven years when we got engaged, and we still had a 2-year engagement. It gave us time to enjoy the new phase in our life and really think about when and where we wanted to get married. I was able to take about six months before I had to make any real decisions. It was wonderful, and I would highly recommend to other brides and grooms!”
“There were endless perfect moments on our wedding day, but my favorite was our first dance. Matt was convinced we needed to take dance lessons and choreograph a dance where I felt like I wanted to live in the moment and not feel anxious about remembering steps. We ended up compromising skipping the lessons but creating our own choreographed dance a few weeks before the wedding that felt like us vs. a stiff box-step. We spent days laughing and practicing and on the wedding day everything else disappeared, and all I saw was Matt when we danced. It was so special and something we will never forget!”
“My experience working with my vendors was wonderful! Everyone worked as a true team to ensure the day went perfectly. Our photographer Anastasia Romanova and videographer Grace Steel worked seamlessly together despite never meeting before the wedding day to exceed our expectations and capture our wedding day beautifully. We received endless compliments on the beautiful photos and video, and we really feel like our day wouldn’t have been the same without Anastasia, Vladimir, and Grace. Our florist Beautiful Blooms was my right hand through the wedding planning process and worked with us through months of decisions/changes to achieve our vision, and on our wedding day the flowers were so stunning I was in awe.”