Hartley Botanica garden

Somis

Dream happens here. Enter the Paradise in hidden garden in Somis, California.  We're more than thrilled to share this intimate wedding of a very special of our own, the unity of Richie Chace (Actor/Director and Desiree Anderson (Fashion Model/Public Figure). This day, they're called Mr. and Mrs. Chance. 

Here is their love story...

How/when/where did the proposal happen? After 7 years of dating, Richie and I got engaged on the marina at the Redondo Beach yacht club, surrounded by a small group of friends on New Years Eve of 2013.  

How many guests? With a guest list of just under 100 people, it was the perfect amount of friends and family to make it an intimate celebration with our favorite people.  

Why did you choose your wedding venue?After venue searching for almost two years, we were beginning to lose hope of finding the perfect place to host our wedding, within a reasonable distance from Los Angeles.  Originally, our plan was to have a destination wedding in Tulum.  However, upon visiting, we were rained out every single day and unfortunately witnessed a wedding get completely ruined.  That experience ended our desire to have a wedding in a destination with such bipolar weather.  About 6 months later my fiancé was in Morocco filming his latest movie when I heard about Hartley Botanica.  When I had called Hartley, they informed me that there were only a few more dates available for the rest of 2016 (our desired calendar year to be married).  My girlfriend and I decided to go and check it out, despite the fact that Richie was still out of the country.  After touring the grounds with Richie, via FaceTime (gotta love technology), we both knew it was meant to be our venue.  Richie will tell you that he knew because he'd never seen me smile so big.  He was definitely right about my smile; I was overwhelmed with adoration for the lush, tropical garden, surrounded by orchards and rolling hills.  It reminded me of something out of The Secret Garden, one of my favorite childhood movies.     


Describe the ceremony, what made it unique/special A great deal of thought and consideration went into planning the ceremony, after all, our family and friends had been anxiously awaiting this moment for over a decade.  My father would not be in attendance and I had another mother figure in my life that we really wanted to honor by including in the processional. 

Music choice was important to us as well.  I walked down the aisle to "Sound and Color" by Alabama Shakes.  That song just resonated with us so strongly.  I had decided to walk alone, but halfway up the aisle, I paused.  The crowd, already on their feet, literally gasped simultaneously and all previous chatter was now radio silence.  The fervent energy in the air was so thick you could slice it with a knife.  A beat later, Richie left the 'alter' and confidently walked towards me.  As we came face to face in the middle of aisle, we shared a moment in each other's gaze, and then he proudly offered his own arm to escort me the rest of the way. Once again you could hear the 'audience', this time letting out the breath they'd been holding onto with an emphatic sigh.  It was very symbolic of our relationship - it signified how Richie has truly always been the man in my life & by my side since I was a young girl of only 18, it illustrated how we've always approached our relationship from a "meet you halfway" standpoint, and most distinctly, it symbolized that we will continue to by each other's side as we enter the future together.  The ceremony has been described by our guests as an unforgettable experience.        


Describe the reception, what made it unique/special Grace (Charis Events) and Dana (Designer Dana) brought our wildest dreams to life!  It was such a beautiful reception that I could only begin to describe as romantic, whimsical and dreamy.  They did an incredible job pulling bits of inspiration from Richie and I.  There was an effortless sultriness to the theme and decor that perfectly encompassed the nature of who we are, from the beautifully  orchestrated wildflowers and moss that almost seemed like natural features, to the delicious blue and gold accents, juicy succulents and romantic twinkling lights.  The deeper you looked, the more exquisite details would appear.  It was like an enchanting evening from something out of Game of Thrones; An intimate feast fit for royalty.  It would be impossible to pick our favorite part of the reception, we truly loved it all.  

What was your inspiration for your choice in décor?Our choice of decor was really a collaborative effort from Grace (our planner), Richie, and I.  We are a very eclectic, easy going couple and luckily Grace knew exactly which elements to integrate to make it a glamorous yet understated event.  One of the main design elements we incorporated throughout the wedding were the dreamcatchers.  It was the basis of our overall theme, as it represents our bohemian attitude, our constant quest for spiritual cleanliness and relentless pursuit of our dreams.  The gorgeous blue and white table runners from Luxe Linen displayed our favorite colors as well as a Moroccan style pattern, a country we have both traveled to on multiple occasions (and love).  Luckily the garden was quite impressive on its own, so all we had to do was accessorize.  It was important to us that our guests felt our presence in the design, color palate, music selection, cuisine and surroundings.  I'd say our mission was absolutely accomplished.  

Describe the favors for guests Our guests were treated to mini dream catchers that were handmade by Richie, myself and some of our bridesmaids.  It took us weeks to finish them but seeing how thrilled our friends and family were to receive them made it all worthwhile.  We felt like it was something a little more special than your average favor because each and every one of them were meticulously made with love and pure intentions.  Even weeks after the event, we had guests calling to ask if there were any extra dreamcatchers leftover that they could take off our hands.  

Photo Courtesy The Argus Image