By Emily Rochotte
Photography by Fiander Foto
Alec and Joanna Cohen first met when he interviewed her for a job. Keeping it professional, the two did not begin dating until after Joanna left the company, and the rest was history.
Three years after they first met, Joanna and Alec were planning a wedding centered around their family, focusing on the importance of having their relatives in attendance. The happy couple chose Bermuda for their wedding because it was a special location to them and not far from New York City, where they currently reside.
“The first place he ever took me for my birthday was Bermuda,” Joanna recalls. “It was our first trip. He had been to Bermuda a few times as a child and always loved it, and his parents even honeymooned there. We thought it would be the perfect place.”
The festivities kicked off with a rehearsal barbecue bonfire under the stars, where guests were serenaded by steel pan player Paul Smith.
As the wedding day began, Bermuda lived up to the couple’s hopes for perfection. The weather did not disappoint, and the sun shone all day except for a two-minute drizzle before the ceremony. Guests were able to enjoy the warm weather with a swim in the ocean before the wedding.
Joanna and Alec chose Elbow Beach as their wedding venue. A lot of planning went into creating such a gorgeous wedding, held at the resort’s Bird of Paradise enclave, which had never before hosted an event. This meant-to-be location, which overlooks spectacular pink sand beaches, captivated Joanna and her mother during a visit to Elbow Beach months before the wedding.
The happy couple welcomed 75 family and friends to join them in beautiful Bermuda. Everyone looked on as Joanna and Alec exchanged vows during a ceremony that combined both families’ traditions.
“One of the things that was really important to us was our family,” Joanna describes. “We had a chuppah, but the chuppah had a tallit, or prayer scarf, from each of our grandparents. My father’s family is from India, so my Indian grandma’s shawl lining the top of the chuppah was special.”
Before walking down the aisle, Alec and Joanna laid eyes on each other for the first time that morning during a first look photoshoot to capture their sweet reactions to seeing each other all dressed up and ready for their wedding. The couple then headed to the ceremony with their wedding party. Joanna had her two best friends as bridesmaids, and Alec’s groomsmen were his brother and his cousin.
The staff at Elbow Beach helped with the wedding décor, venue set-up, and even specialty personalized cuisine to accommodate all guests in attendance. It was the perfect location for accommodating the needs and accessibility of Alec and Joanna’s family and friends.
“Music was essential,” Joanna shares. “We really wanted everybody to love it and dance.”
Guests danced the night away and had the time of their lives as they celebrated Alec and Joanna as husband and wife.