Vows – At Last
Mario Waldron and Gisele Spalding’s love story reflects the typical puppy love chorus: high school sweethearts who were led to the altar by fate, and a bit of intervention by mutual friends. Vows makes its way up the aisle with Mr and Mrs Mario Waldron.
HOW THEY MET…
Mario, a sales executive at Bulb World Lighting, and Gisele Spalding – reservations/sales agent at Couples Resorts, were re-introduced over dinner with a group of friends at the BlueBeat Jazz & Martini Bar in Montego Bay. As Gisele recalls, “It was one night I won’t forget as it was in that moment that I knew that I wanted to be with him”.
This is how it began: “One Friday night while out with my girlfriends Janet and Janice, I saw someone who I recognised to be my high school crush, Mario Waldron. I remembered him instantly (he looked even more handsome than I remembered). I went over to introduce myself. He remembered my eldest brother Dahl perfectly, as they were friends back then, but vaguely remembered me. We grew up in the same church, Providence Methodist, where we sang on the young adults chorale. After a bit of conversation, his memory was back. Soon after we realised that we’d been living in Montego Bay around the same time and in close proximity to each other. Later that night, we went to a party, we danced, and it was fun. We exchanged numbers and kept in touch via WhatsApp.”
“The calls and WhatsApp messages became more frequent and there were a few movie dates in between. I enjoyed spending time with him and soon realised that I was falling in love. We would spend hours on the phone at night talking about nothing. Our bond grew stronger when we found out that our families knew each other. Our friendship evolved into a relationship, with God at the centre, and one built on trust and respect.
Mario went to Kingston on Friday to return Sunday evening. He returned earlier than expected, seemingly excited to share some news and led me over to the couch. As I sat, he got down on one knee with his hands behind his back. I certainly wasn’t expecting a proposal, but it was the most beautiful experience hearing him ask for my hand in marriage. Of course I said ‘yes’!
HERE COMES THE BRIDE…
The nuptials took place on Saturday, March 12, at the Caymanas Country Club where the Artistic Design & Events Planning team transformed the balcony into a tropical rustic space. The colours were coral and ivory with hints of chocolate offset by rustic elements such as natural wood furniture and mahogany-stained floral box arrangements that lined the aisle. As the sun set, and the rays hit the colours, there was no denying the magic of the moment.
Bridesmaid Aisha Mellish and matron of honour Dionne Garel-Simpson waltzed to the altar to John Legend’s All Of Me in peach Medon one-shoulder A-line chiffon dresses and carried bouquets of real touch silk ivory carnations. The men followed in sand-toned polyblend single-breasted three-piece suits, brown ties and tan shoes.
The bridegroom was dapper in a sand-toned suit as well, accessorised with a silk coral tie, matching pocket square, and a white rose boutonnière.
The strains of A Thousand Years by Christina Perri signalled Gisele’s arrival. She was stunning in a beautiful ivory A-line dress with a Queen Ann décolletage, lace straps and intricate pearl beading along the bust with rhinestones and fringe, and clutched a bouquet of real touch silk calla lilies.
After an exchange of vows and wedding rings under a bamboo canopy, the couple were united by the sand ceremony. Violinist Tariq Williams performed while the newly-weds completed the paperwork. Minutes later they were presented as husband and wife by Pastor Richard Keane. An elated Mr and Mrs Mario Waldron made their way down the aisle to lusty applause and much excitement.
The reception was the perfect end to a heartfelt ceremony that celebrated the love of family and friends. Mario and Gisele recall the reception as “the best first day of our lives as husband and wife”, thanks to the team at Artistic Design & Events Planning, who transformed the Caymanas Country Club into a getaway-themed “Tropical Bliss” with coral, ivory and chocolate hues.
Foremost on the agenda was the entrance of the bridal party to Sugar by Maroon 5. Mario and Gisele remained in place after their entrance and enjoyed their first dance as husband and wife to Etta James’s At Last. Mario’s father Clive Waldron then led with prayer ahead of the three-course dinner catered by Asia’s Café. Heartfelt toasts regaled guests with the story of Gisele and Mario. After the speeches, including the groom’s response, there followed a mother/son dance to Mama by Chris Martin.
Mario and Gisele cut the three-tiered Cake Studio traditional fruitcake ahead of the poolside after party.
The newly-weds enjoyed a week-long honeymoon at the Couples Negril and Couples Swept Away resorts.