After breakfast we walked up the street looking in around a few shops. I found an adorable children's clothing store for gifts for friends as well as a unique chocolatier for other gifts. It was close to noon so we headed back to the hotel and Greg went off on his own while 4 of us met with the hairdresser. The hairdresser felt she needed more space than the rooms provided so Valerie offered us the breakfast lounge. I really can't express our gratitude to Valerie and the Tourisme Avenue Hotel enough.
During our time in the "Salon" we were lucky that my dad went and purchased lunch for us. Even Valeri would stop in and see how we are doing, asked if we needed anything, etc. At the last minute it was decided we should get a small bouquet for the bride to carry. Greg was up! Even though there was a language barrier Greg and Fleurs d'Auteuil did an amazing job of creating a bridal bouquet.
Our guests were scheduled to meet at our hotel for 6:00 shuttle ride to the wedding destination of Yachts de Paris. We were told by our drivers that there was a concert, demonstration, and LGBTQ parade all happening at once during our scheduled time. With the suggestion to leave early we rushed around to finish getting ready, and contacted all the guests to rearrange the schedule. As you can imagine this became rather hectic. I literally got dressed in 5 minutes, helped my sister finish getting ready, brought Greg the thank you gifts for the yacht, and tried to gather everything else we needed.
Thankfully Greg and a few others helped usher the guests into the shuttles as they appeared. My aunt and uncle and I were the last shuttle to leave with my parents and sister in a sedan behind us.
Apparently all of the traffic was in getting to our hotel and not getting to the dock. We arrived very early and had to wait alongside the dock for a bit. The staff of Yachts de Paris were gracious in letting us on board a little early even though they were still setting up.
At 7:00 pm I helped bring my sister up onto the top deck of the yacht and watched her walk down the aisle to her future husband. Immediately after the ceremony we enjoyed cocktail hour with champagne, an open bar, and hor d' oeurves. We then watched as the couple had stunning photographs taken of them before taking group photos. It was incredible that we had perfect weather, a perfect sunset, and perfect views for the ceremony and photographs.
At 8:30 pm we went down into the dining room for a 4 course meal. Our starter was an Antipasti with Buffalo Mozzarella (Foie Gras for those with a dairy allergy). Our entree was Veal vegetables (Hake for dairy allergy). Next was a Cheese Course. For dessert we enjoyed the Power of Chocolate (Fruit Salad for dairy allergy). The food was elegantly presented, beautifully seasoned, and perfect portions. Guests raved about the food especially the veal.
In between the courses we enjoyed several speeches (even one from me which I'm petrified to do), a couple of special dances, and finally the incredible cake ceremony. The chef brought out the cake, turned down the lights, and had sparklers flaring. The talented singer sang Dream a little Dream in french (requested by the bride) while the couple cut the cake.
After dinner it was time to dance! We enjoyed music from a DJ as well as a female singer. The evening was truly magical! As a thank you for the staff I prepared a gratuity but also a thank you bag. I brought some gifts from Massachusetts that I hoped they would like. The first item was Maple Syrup, the 2nd was caramels, and the 3rd was sea salt.
At Midnight we disembarked the yacht and made our way over to the shuttles. When we arrived back at our hotel I helped the bride out of her gown and showed the groom what to do the next day for more photographs.
A group of us then made our way over to Le Zinc for a final get together! A perfect end to a wonderful week!