"As crazy as it may sound, I really believe there is something so special about the energy in Ojai," Amanda Crown says of the idyllic California enclave where she celebrated her wedding to David Krauss this past spring. It's also a place of personal meaning: her family owns the storied Ojai Valley Inn, a favored retreat for A-listers in search of calm, wellness, and a little woo woo magic.
Over a long weekend in May, the couple—who first met as undergrads at Vanderbilt but didn't start dating until a serendipitous encounter in Montauk years later—hosted more than 300 friends and family at the property. On the itinerary: an Italian-themed welcome dinner, in homage to one of Amanda and David's favorite destinations, a traditional Jewish ceremony, a reception with a steakhouse-inspired menu which incorporated the hotel's famous Parker House rolls, and a farewell brunch. All the details below.
"We knew we wanted a destination wedding where most of our guests could stay at the venue so the weekend felt easy and cohesive," Amanda says. "I guess ultimately what we wanted was it to feel like adult sleepaway camp. When we looked Ojai, we knew it was perfect."
The Welcome Party
Amanda and David found a way to bring one of their favorite destinations—Italy—to southern California by hosting a welcome dinner with Amalfi Coast vibes for their 300 guests.
The bride wore a Monique Lhuillier gown. Her bracelet, which belonged to her grandmother, counted as her "something old" and her earrings her "something borrowed." As for her "something blue"? "The weather ended up being pretty cold, so we all joked that by the time I got down the aisle I was my own something blue," Amanda says.
The groom wore custom Zegna.
Among the couple's most memorable moments of the day? "Reading our vows to each other," Amanda says. "We both felt very strongly about writing our own vows and were so nervous going in. It was such a powerful experience."
The First Dance
The newlyweds did their first dance to "Precious Love" by James Morrison. "It reminded us so much of when we first started dating," Amanda says. "We also loved that it was a little more upbeat than traditional first dance songs."
The Butter End in Los Angeles created the couple's cake, which was half red velvet and half almond cherry with a cream cheese buttercream frosting. And it was designed to match the bride's gown.
After the weekend, Amanda and David went on a mini-moon to Anguilla. A proper honeymoon in Japan is in the works.
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