May 9, 2023

Genevieve and Eric: Le Belvédère Wedding

First wedding of 2023, at Le Belvédère, and it was one hell of a day! I hadn’t actually met Genevieve and Eric until the day of but our final consult was via facetime and just from our brief call, I knew we would get along so well… And I was right.

I started my day driving in some decently rude rain hoping that it would go away at least for the ceremony because I knew that Gen really, REALLY wanted it outside. I mean, that’s totally one of the reasons you book Le Belvédère, for that picturesque view. With a hope and a prayer, I walked into the Garden house to find Gen, smiling and finishing her vows. The place was busy with all the ladies, food and even a few cute kiddos. The rain damped (see what I did there) no one’s day, just pure joy and excitement filled the air.

When I saw Gen’s dress, my jaw dropped. The details in the train, the sleeves, the neck line, ughhhh, so beautiful. And then the rings. Don’t even get me started on their rings. I literally have no words, just look at the photos. They are so stunning, Jay Gatsby would be envious. Everything gave off a cool, classic, vintage Hollywood vibe and I was so here for it. Once her vows were complete, Gen put on the rings bearer’s boutonnières and helped finish up her flower girls look by tying her bow and putting on her amazing gloves. A true little princess. And of course, it was time to get our Queen, Genevieve, in her dress. Helped by both her mum and Eric’s mum, Gen got all her finishing touches on while her bridesmaids looked on in awe. She was finally a bride, and she looked freaking amazing at that.

Wedding Details Ottawa Wedding Photographer Samantha Danis Photography Genevieve Gen Spring Wedding
Making my way over to the guesthouse, I was met with Eric’s dad who immediately I knew would be so much fun all day. I yelled up the stairs; ‘’Is my groom up there?’’ and I was met with a loud ‘’HI SAM, UP HERE’’. I could hear the happiness in his voice and so I made my way up the stairs. Eric greeted me like an old friend, giving me a big hug. You could just feel all the joy pouring out of him, on this rainy day, he truly was a ray of sunshine. His guys were all in the room with him, getting their finishing touches on and just overall having a good time.

Time for the first look was approaching quickly so Martin stepped in to help his son with his tie and his best man, Christian came it to help him with ever so classy white and black jacket. I helped the guys with their boutonnières, Eric fixed up his groomsman’s hair (what a nice friend haha) and took our groom for a couple solo portraits before we made our way back over to the garden house for the ever important first look between Genevieve and Eric.

Eric’s mom guided him into the space while his eyes were closed, where he was placed back to back with Genevieve as her bridesmaids and moms watched from a close distance. Genevieve and Eric held hands, Eric starting to cry and them both laughing until the very moment they turned. The biggest smile came across both of their faces as they just looked at each other up and then, holding back tears and diving right in for a big hug and kiss. The ladies were all off to the side, crying as they got to watch their friends in such a special moment. I’m not sure Eric could believe his eyes as he spun his soon to be wife a few times. I mean, look at her, she was, and is, stunning. As they wiped away their tears and laughed, we let them have their moment as we all got ready to head up to the main space to get this party started.

Guests were indoors, getting drinks and keeping warm (did I mention it was also cold and windy?) as the wedding party made their way over, keeping our bride and groom hidden. The rain had started coming down much heavier in the time of the first look but it seemed to be slowing down. We were all unsure of where the ceremony would be held because Grant, the co-ordinator, knew how much Gen wanted it to be outside. But as things were being confirmed with our couple, Chris announced that the ceremony would be held indoors and to head down to the lower level to get seated. So on their way they went. Ten minutes later, it was confirmed that rain or no rain, the ceremony would be held outside at the actual Belvedere area. Hesitant at first and slowly making their way outside, the guests embraced the moment, bundled up, grabbed umbrellas and did what they had to do to make this day the dream.

We did end up having a wee bit of a delay on get the procession started so guests made their own fun and laughter could be heard all around. Their officiant and close friend, Kira, greeted the guests and asked everyone to stand because everyone in that party deserved it. First, Eric walked arm in arm with both his mum and his dad. All three walked out full smiles with Martin and Danielle even throwing their arms in the air in triumph. After all, their baby boy was about to be married. They were followed by all the beautiful wedding party and finally our bride. She was joined by her step-dad at first where she was met by her mom and she finally met with her dad while he walked her down the final stretch of the aisle.

Eric held back tears as Gen greeted him with a big smile, nothing could stop them now. Kira did a wonderful job officiating this important moment between her friends. Both Genevieve and Eric were smiles the entire ceremony all while delicately sharing sweet touches. I turned to look at the parents and there was both mum’s, smiling through the tears as they watched their babies exchange vows. This ceremony was also filled with lots of laughter had by everyone, no one cared about the rain and wind anymore. They had a document to sign that made me giggle. It was silly promises they made to each other and they, and their witnesses, had to sign it, it was clearly a legal document that must be filed. And so, with the vows said, the rings exchanged, and the documents signed, we cheered for Mr. and Mrs. Auclair, finally husband and wife.

Le Belvédère Spring wedding in the rain Samantha Danis Photography Genevieve and Eric: Le Belvédère wedding Spring Rain Samantha Danis Photography Gen and Eric Le Belvédère wedding
With the ceremony starting later then anticipated, our portrait time got cut a little short. And let’s just say, folks were not fans of going outside again in the cold and the rain. Which made us go to plan B and do all the family photos indoors followed by the wedding party photos. I clearly had to include the kiddos because they did such a good job during the ceremony and simply because, they’re adorable. I’ve started doing what I call the ‘’Vogue’’ shot with wedding parties because it’s just so fun to see what people think is Vogue worthy in their posing. This crew knew how to do it and gave me *Snap, snap snap* VOGUE baby.

We decided to take some photos outside in the rain because, you don’t get married at le Belvédère and not get photos with a view. First up, we had the guys. Chris or, P’tit Criss, as his family and friends so lovingly call him, came up to me to inform me that his jacket button was broken. And of course, it had to be the top button which is the one you use. Speaking of, little side note, does anyone know WHY men are to only button up the top button on a double button jacket??? 12 years of doing weddings and it’s something I still don’t know haha.

The weather was good to us as it was only drizzling. The guys had no problems at all (well except for buttons) and the girls, well they were cold. So we did all the photos pretty quickly to get them warm inside eating some food. As for me, Gen and Eric? We stayed outside and embraced the weather as Eric held Genevieve in the rain to keep her warm.

Vogue Ottawa GQ wedding Mariage Québec Ottawa Spring Wedding rain luxury wedding au Belvédère
They walked down the cliffside and took in the view as I photographed them. Eric made his wife laugh so much, it was a joy to capture it and witness it in person. We decided to go back to the guest house to do a few photos indoors and it was a great idea in the end. We used the light available to us to create a beautiful, dreamy vibe, making this Old Hollywood Glam come to life even further. Just like that, it was time to enjoy some cocktails and make our way to our seats for the reception.

Samantha Danis Photography Ottawa Wedding Photographer Groom Eric and Bride Geneviéve at le Belvédère Samantha Danis Photography Ottawa Bride and Groom Spring Wedding Wakefield Québec mariage Ottawa Wedding Romantic couple le belvédère Samantha Danis Photography
The reception space fit the wedding vibes so perfectly. Honestly, I wish more people did black tie theme with gold. It just makes my heart flutter with how beautiful and elegant it is. Each table had greenery centerpieces with the long tables have gold columns, swoon. The charger plates, menus and cutlery all matched the themes and made me think about buying gold cutlery for my own house! And their cake, adorable with a centerpiece with the newly married couples last name fitting that old Hollywood Glam. The wedding party entry took a bit of a turn when the music wasn’t working but they still walked into the room owning the place and hyping everyone up for our happy couple, and they did a hell of a job at it. Genevieve and Eric made their entry into the space with all of their guests on their feet and cheering them on.

Our evening started off with Genevieve and Eric’s speech where they faced each person, they thanked to really give them the attention they deserve, the thank they deserve. When they faced their parents, they too were almost brought to tears by their words. Throughout the evening, which was MC’d by one of the groomsmen, speeches were given by the parents, best man, maid of honour, a good friend of the groom and the bridesmaids. These speeches were great as I got to learn some more about our couple and the funny stories were hilarious! For example, that time Gen pierced Mitch’s (the MC) ear with a needle and apple but after much struggle and the needle only going halfway through, they abandoned their efforts… But continued the process the next day and succeeded. Or the time Eric sprayed and elderly woman with a fire extinguisher while in high school. These two were apparently quite the rebels in their youth. How thankful everyone was that they reconnected after Eric moved to Alberta. Because this relationship was one you could tell EVERYONE was proud to be a part of. My favourite part, when Eric’s mom, Danielle walked up to her son and sang a French song she used to sing for her son when he was younger. It was beautiful when those who knew the song jumped in and sang along with her, bringing Eric to tears.

Genevieve had a special surprise for Eric and her guests once the speeches were done, a DRESS CHANGE! Eric’s reaction when he saw her was so cute and he couldn’t help but pull her in for a kiss and a giggle. To open the dancefloor, Genevieve and Eric grabbed her parents, starting with her stepfather and her mom. The couple danced on the floor at the same time, partway through switching in Gen’s dad to end the dance. They followed that up by dancing with Eric’s parents simultaneously while guests blew bubbles onto the dancefloor adding a magical feel to the moment. Finally, we were graced by Genevieve and Eric’s first dance as husband and wife.

Guests continued to blow bubbles as they lost themselves in the song and melted into each others’ arms. They ended the dance with a nice bow to the crowd and opened the dance floor with some oldies tunes to get the night going. As per usual, I ended my night on the dance floor with the guests were having a great time. One gentleman as you can see in the photos, may or may not have lost part of his shirt along the way? I can tell that their night was going to be a good one and that they were in good hands.

In 2022, none of my weddings had rain, 2023 opened with the opposite weather and it worked out for the best. I don’t think I could have asked for a better couple to go with the flow of what they day threw at them. Gen and Eric, I hope you had an amazing rest of your night and that the days since them have been nothing but joy and bliss. Welcome to the Married life my friends, it truly was an honour capturing your day xox

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