As a leader in the hospitality industry, Josh knew that choosing the perfect location for their wedding was critical; whatever venue they selected would have to combine the soul and beauty of a place along with memorable design and service. After briefly considering venues in London and the Caribbean, the couple quickly concluded that Solage, Calistoga was the perfect choice. “We had the fortune to discover Solage during a trip to California to visit friends. We instantly fell in love with the relaxed vibe and stunning landscape of the hotel and surrounding vineyards—not to mention the amazing pool and spa!” Solage provided the exact look and feel of the couple’s dream wedding and they could readily imagine it as the site of a week-long celebration with all of their friends and family. They also loved the fact that they could have the wedding outside on the lawn that represented the perfect mix of sophistication, natural beauty, and organic “healthiness.”
Josh and Louisa planned their event in partnership with Scott Corridan Design. They knew they wanted a warm, intimate wedding with an emphasis on great food, wine, and décor. “Our vision for the event was something relaxed, warm, informal yet stylish and elegant,” says Louisa. Integrating a color story of white, blush, pink, gold, and early Autumn green, the couple selected mainly local flowers and foliage, including end-of-harvest roses, Japanese anemones, and ranunculus, along with olive and oak foliage. They incorporated vintage farm and cottage lanterns in woods and metals with wood signage.
They kicked off the event with a Thursday night rehearsal at Solage to run through the ceremony with a dinner afterward in a private room at Cindy’s Backstreet Kitchen in nearby St. Helena. On Friday, friends joined the couple for a pool party at Solage to enjoy the California sun and splendor. Later that night, they hosted a cocktail party at Spectera, one of the resort’s smaller event spaces. “Hilariously, we also organized group workout sessions on Friday and Saturday for the wedding party,” says Josh. “It perfectly represented our active friends who work hard, play hard, and spa hard!” For her wedding-day attire, the bride selected a 2012 Inbal Dror gown for the ceremony and paired it with shoes by British designer Freya Rose.
For the reception, Louisa chose a 2012 Dennis Basso dress with Badgley Mischka shoes. For the ceremony, the groom wore a 2013 Tom Ford midnight blue tuxedo (as worn by Daniel Craig in Skyfall) with Harry’s of London shoes (where Josh is friends with the CEO).
At the ceremony, Louisa fondly remembers walking down the rose petal–scattered aisle under a brilliant blue sky with the sun shining and the mountains in the distance. “It was picture perfect,” she says. The ceremony concluded with a surprise for the guests: the release of a dozen white doves.
As lovers of food and wine, the reception dinner was something the couple planned with great zeal. “We are inspired by wine,” says Louisa. “Josh is from Marin County, near Napa. He has lived in Chile, Madrid, and Provence, and travelled to every major wine region in South Africa, Australia, France, Italy, and Spain—so we live and love wines.” Over the course of the evening, guests were treated to wines chosen to reflect the stages of a relationship: flirty (Rose by Gary Farrell), breezy (Sauvignon Blanc by Pont de Chevalier), then a bit more serious, deep, nuanced, mysterious, and rare (Voignier by Terre Rouge; Pinot Noir by Meiomi; Charbono, by Shypoke). The evening concluded with a wedding cake by Perfect Endings and a late-night s’mores bar.
Looking back on a celebration of love shared with their closest friends, the couple carries forward wonderful memories as they embark upon married life. “It could not have been a more magical week,” says Louisa.