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What An Education

Sugar Beach Wedding Club 1 Comment »

Aloha y’all,

Yvette and Chef LeeWell, well, well….this has been a couple of crazy months here. Great, but crazy. As most of you know, I am planning my wedding as well. I’m shocked at how quickly the time has passed. It’s two months away!! When I created Sugar Beach Events, I knew my strengths and weaknesses. I knew to surround myself with extremely talented people that would make us the premiere spot on Maui for weddings and events. I know how to run a business, prepare amazing food and present beautiful food. What I don’t know is how to design a wedding with all of the creative detail that a knowledgeable and talented coordinator can design.

Moving through my own planning process, Yvette has been right there with the ideas to make my vision come to life. I guess I have a more “interesting” vision for my big day. Yes, the word “interesting” has been used to describe some of my ideas. The best thing is Yvette listened to everything and looked at all of my Pintrest photos and then thought on it to see how to make it all come together.  Imagine, if you will, Tuscany, French Riviera and zebra print. Yep, zebra print. I found these great mini lamp shades and I just had to use them. I don’t care how crazy it sounds, they must be a part of my wedding. Wait until you see the photos of how we incorporate them and how we make Tuscany and zebra work together.

tuscany, zebra, french riviera

For me, it’s exciting to be going through the same things as our brides. I was talking to our bride Erin yesterday and it was fun to be able to share ideas and see how it’s coming together for her. I love, love, love the kitchen and that will always be my favorite spot, but I also love getting to know our clients and NOW really being able to understand what they need and works best for each and every one.

It’s all definitely a dream come true.

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Intimate Maui Wedding Celebration for Kathie and Lance

Maui Weddings No Comments »

Cheers to Kathie and Lance Maui Wedding

On This Day We Two Shall Wed…
On February 22nd, 2014 we celebrated the marriage of Kathie and Lance

The location was beautiful, the setting breath-taking with large gorgeous bouquets of flowers which adorned every table. The mono-chromatic theme of the decor added a wonderful touch of elegance in the table settings and serving pieces. This was an off-location wedding celebration. We did the catering for Kathie and Lance at the beautiful Hale Ko’olani venue. We would like to thank Lumiere Photography for capturing the elegance of the night and for allowing us to share the photos here with you.

Kathie and Lance’s wedding celebration was coordinated by Erica of Couture Events. The evening flowed perfectly and love and laughter filled the beautiful Maui night as guests enjoyed the ambience, the food, the drink and each others’ company.

close up of table setting

table setting for kathie and lance

beautiful mono-chromatic wedding table setting

The table was perfect with a more monochromatic look. We provided the chargers and all of our serving pieces. It was very elegant. There were big, beautiful vases of flowers.

bouquets of flowes on every table

gorgeous table setting with island flowers

When guests arrived we served them our special “mocktail” which is pineapple upside down cake with an exotic blend of grenadine, pineapple juice, vanilla simple syrup and vanilla vodka.

mocktails were served when the wedding guests arrived

We prepared a lovely assortment of appetizers for the guests.

  • Beef Satay
    marinated filet mignon, sweet plum sauce
  • Macadamia Nut Prawns
    with papaya chili sauce
  • Endive Spears
    with sweet potato, bacon, chives, crème fraiche
  • Mini Greek salad skewer
    with herbed feta cheese

Mini Greek salad skewer by Sugar Beach Events Maui

Beef Satay marinated filet mignon, sweet plum sauce

After tempting the appetite, we served the guests a fresh crisp Upcountry salad with pistachios, bleu cheese stuffed lychee and white truffle honey vinaigrette. Onward to the main courses…

  • Sesame crusted catch in a ginger lime beurre blanc and gremelata.
  • Asian style braised short ribs with purple potato puree, brocolini and baby carrots

Kathie and Lance's wedding cake

After dinner, we presented our dessert platter to make a perfect ending to the meal. We served Thai tapioca, likikoi creme brûlée and fresh fruit. Very light and satisfying.

romantic candle light

My favorite moment of the night was when the bride’s dad told us his wife doesn’t eat meat, but she had to make an exception since the short ribs were so good.

After dinner and dessert and cake, the night came alive with a fire knife dancer who performed at the end of the night. Everyone really enjoyed him since he was really pretty amazing. But my most favorite part of the night was when the father commented several times how the food and service exceeded his expectations.

We wish all the best to Kathie and Lance. Special thanks again to Lumiere Photography for the amazing photos!

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Maui Wedding of Antonina and Beau

Maui Weddings 3 Comments »

Antonina and Beau get married on Maui

On This Day We Two Shall Wed…
On February 15th, 2013 we celebrated the marriage of Antonina and Beau

The wedding of Antonina and Beau was beautiful and intimate, reminding us that a wedding doesn’t need to have a big guest list to be special and fun. In fact, the intimacy of this celebration really allowed the bride and groom to spend time making long-lasting memories with each of their guests.

Antonina and Beau’s wedding focused on the importance of family and incorporated traditions that made their celebration personal. The Bride’s side of the family were all from Russia and didn’t speak English, so a translator was there to ensure nobody missed a thing. It was heartwarming to see the two families bonding over the love of Antonina and Beau, despite the language barriers. We thank Wailea Photography for providing us with the beautiful photos.

Maui Bride Antonina

Maui wedding ceremony on the beach

Special Maui Wedding Sand Ceremony

maui sand ceremony

The sand ceremony was a nice touch to symbolize their unity. I hope Antonina and Beau remember their wedding day, the bright colors of Maui, and the warm Sugar Beach sand between their toes whenever they see this keepsake.

Another special detail was the old Russian wedding tradition where the bride and groom both take a bite of a round loaf of bread at the same time. Whoever happens to take the largest bite will be the “Boss” or head of the family. The bread is a symbol of hospitality, good health, prosperity and long life. It is a special tradition that hopefully will be passed on to the next generation to come.

marriage bread

The Newlyweds Antonina and Beau

They also chose to cut their wedding cake immediately following the ceremony. Taking this tradition outdoors allowed them to have a little island scenery in their cake cutting photo. Chef Natalie made a 2-tier chocolate cake with a lilikoi cream filling and buttercream frosting. Fresh flowers added a pop of color to simple but delicious cake.

Antonina and Beau with the wedding cake

Cutting the wedding cake

After the formalities of the ceremony and cake cutting, Antonina and Beau were able to kick their shoes off and head down to the beach. All of their loved ones happily posed for some group shots and then the newlyweds were able to escape for a little alone time while their families mingled.

Antonina and Beau head for the beach after the ceremony

Antonina and Beau Maui Beach Wedding

Antonina, Beau and family on Sugar Beach after the ceremony

Appetizer Course: Baked Brie in Puff Pastry

Salad Course:Spinach and Kula greens with strawberries, hearts of palm, feta cheese, walnuts and poppy seed dressing

Entrée Course: Duo of Filet Mignon and Shrimp, Armagnac Reduction, Tangerine Buerre Blanc

Family Wedding Toast

For most of the night, an iPhone provided the tunes but it was really special to have live music played by the Bride’s family. Antonina’s sister, brother-in-law, and nephew brought and played their own instruments to play a song before dinner and for the first dance.

Speaking of the first dance, I also enjoyed watching Beau compete in three different games in order to be able to dance with his new wife.

Family plays music for Antonina and Beau

music played by Antonina's sister and brother-in-law

The First Dance for Antonina and Beau

We warmly wish a long life of love and happiness for Antonina and Beau. May they share many more special family-filled moments and may they always remember the start to their beautiful marriage here at Sugar Beach Events.

Thanks again to Wailea Photography for being here to capture the special wedding day!

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New Wedding Coordinator at Sugar Beach Events

Our Team 1 Comment »

Maui wedding Planner at Sugar Bech Events

I’d like to formally introduce you to wedding coordinator Jessica Clark, the newest addition to the Sugar Beach Events team. Jess loves every step of the wedding planning process and gets a thrill out of executing personalized, detailed events that will leave guests in awe. Being the perfectionist she is, Jess planned every aspect of her own rustic beachy chic wedding, which was featured on Modern Weddings Hawaii and The Bridal Detective.

You might be thinking, “Why does Sugar Beach Events need another event and wedding planner if they’re a venue?” Well, there are a couple of reasons. First off, yes, we are a venue but we also offer much more. My dream was always for SBE to be the complete package, a place in island paradise where guests could enjoy the best parties with the most amazing food, and service that would exceed every expectation. I’ve quickly learned that in order to execute these amazing parties, there needs to be someone in charge who is dedicated to ensuring everything is running perfectly to the bride’s (or guest of honor’s) specifications.

To me, event and wedding coordination encompasses more than simply booking vendors and running the show on the big day. A true wedding planner is also a great designer. They can take all the photos on your Pinterest and translate those into a cohesive wedding vision that tells your unique story as a couple. This design expertise becomes extremely valuable at Sugar Beach Events because the space was made to adapt to whatever theme, style, or layout you can think of.

Even if you don’t need help with the design of your Maui wedding, a day-of coordinator is a must! While Jess was excited to plan all the details of her own wedding, she admits she wouldn’t have been able to enjoy the day as a bride if she didn’t have someone there making sure everything was going according to plan. The last thing I want is to have my bride working on her wedding day when she should be getting prettified. Whether you work with Yvette and Jess from Sugar Beach Events or choose one of the wedding coordinators from our preferred vendor list, remember that your wedding is a once-in-a-lifetime event and your memories from that day will be priceless.

To well-planned events,
Chef Lee

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Happy Valentine’s Day

Sugar Beach Wedding Club No Comments »

valentines day angels

Ahh, sweet Valentine’s Day… one of the most romantic days of the year for lovers. February 14th has long been celebrated as a day of love. But where exactly did this holiday come from?

The History of St. Valentine’s Day

with love and devotionThe exact origin of Valentine’s Day is a little hazy. The Catholic Church recognizes at least three different martyred saints named Valentine or Valentinus that the holiday could be named after. One legend portrays Valentine as a priest who performed secret marriage ceremonies in third century Rome. Emperor Claudius II believed single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families and thus, banned his soldiers from getting married. Valentine wore a purple amethyst ring engraved with an image of Cupid. Soldiers recognized this ring as one customarily worn by Christian bishops and asked Valentine to officiate their forbidden marriages. Valentine performed these marriages and presented soldiers with hearts cut from parchment to remind them of their wedding vows. This legend is said to have helped amethyst become February’s birthstone and connected Valentine’s Day with its widespread use of hearts.

Saint ValentineAnother story says Valentine was sentenced to death for helping persecuted Christians. Before his execution, he miraculously healed Julia, the blind daughter of his jailer Asterius and wrote her a letter signed “From your Valentine,” creating the expression that is still used today.

Emperor Claudius II executed two different men named Valentine on February 14 on separate years in the 3rd century, but some believe the mid-February date may have been chosen to counteract Lupercalia, a pagan fertility festival celebrated by the ancient Romans from February 13-15. To start the festival, priests would sacrifice a goat to symbolize fertility and a dog for purification. The goat’s hide would then be cut into strips, dipped in the blood, and used to gently slap or whip (depending on the source) crops and women. Roman women believed this goat’s hide would make them more fertile and lined up for their turn. The festival also included a matchmaking ceremony where all the young women placed their names in a big urn for the city’s bachelors to draw from. This coupling would last for the duration of the festival or an entire year (again, depending on the source) and would often result in marriage if the match was successful.

With all my love

Pope Gilasius declared February 14th as the feast of St. Valentine in 498 A.D., but the holiday did not become popular right away. According to History. com, “Valentine greetings were popular as far back as the Middle Ages, though written Valentine’s didn’t begin to appear until after 1400. The oldest known valentine still in existence today was a poem written in 1415 by Charles, Duke of Orleans, to his wife while he was imprisoned in the Tower of London following his capture at the Battle of Agincourt. (The greeting is now part of the manuscript collection of the British Library in London, England.) Several years later, it is believed that King Henry V hired a writer named John Lydgate to compose a valentine note to Catherine of Valois.”

twig heartBoth Geoffrey Chaucer and Shakespeare romanticized Valentine’s Day in their writing, spurring growth in Europe, but Ester Howland is credited for popularizing Valentine’s Day cards in America. In the 1840s, inspired by a valentine was received from England, Howland began producing fancy cards embellished with real lace, ribbons, and colorful pictures. Hallmark Cards started printing Valentine’s greetings in 1913 and these ready-made valentines, along with reduced postage rates, allowed senders to express their feelings easily and sometimes anonymously.

Poets and writers have always tried to capture love with words. Here are some most beloved quotes through the centuries:

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.- Lao Tzu

Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two bodies.- Aristotle

My bounty is as boundless as the sea, My love as deep; the more I give to thee, The more I have, for both are infinite.- William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet

Love has no desire but to fulfill itself. But if you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires; To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night. To know the pain of too much tenderness. To be wounded by your own understanding of love; And to bleed willingly and joyfully.- Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet

Love is life. All, everything that I understand, I understand only because I love. Everything is, everything exists, only because I love.- Leo Tolstoy

I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where. I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride; so I love you because I know no other way than this: where I does not exist nor you, so close that your hand on my chest is my hand, so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep.- Pablo Neruda, “Love Sonnet XVII”

Love is so hard to describe or put into words, but the expression of love can be through so many different means… through beautiful, touching words that touch upon your heart strings, to giving your love a beautiful bouquet of red roses which symbolizes deep, romantic love, to a beautiful song, a box of chocolates, etc. May your Valetine’s Day be filled with love, laughter and romantic surprise. Ohh, and good food, of course!

amor in chocolate on strawberries

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