If you've ever been to Napa Valley's Auberge du Soleil, you know just how romantic it is. A luxe Mediterranean fantasy cascading down the California hillsides with views of vino land. That was the setting that State Rep. Ana Hernandez and Greg Luna chose for their destination wedding.
The rolling hillsides and lush vineyards served as backdrop for the late afternoon ceremony attended by a who's who of Houston political powerhouses. Count among guests Harris County Commissioner Sylvia Garcia, State Sen. John Whitemire and State Representatives Jessica Farrar, Armando Walle and Carol Alvarado. Greenberg Traurig shareholder Roland Garcia and wife Karen were among close friends that included Marisol Rodriguez, Claudia and Eric Rodas, Diana Perez Gomez and District Judge Michael Gomez.
At the World Cup
Houston Port Commissioner Kase Lawal and Eileen Lawal have taken up residence in their second home — in Johannesburg, South Africa — for the World Cup madness and they are having a ball. Even if they are deafened by the locust roar of the vuvuzelas. The home is eight blocks from the main stadium and Eileen reports that you can easily hear them from that distance.
Eileen e-mailed from Johannesburg her take on the festivities: "If you combine the Carnival in Rio with the Super Bowl, that's the spirit at these World Cup games."
She also reports that the scene all over the city is "futbol" madness. "Victoria & Alfred Mall looks like the United Nations when all the heads of state are in New York. Spanish, German, Dutch, English and Italian are all being spoken simultaneously. 'Go Italia!' 'Go Brazil!'" she e-mailed. "These are the words being shouted in the mall."
Nadine Moon and her staff at Who Made the Cake are cranking into high gear with such a bounty of upcoming parties that Moon has had to turn away business for this weekend. She has four major cakes for delivery in two days.
First on her agenda is an 8-foot-tall confection for a party at the Corinthian celebrating the seventh wedding anniversary of a Green Bay Packer and his wife. The couple ordered a seven-layer cake (one layer for each year of their marriage) with sugar flowers and a three-dimensional Cinderella coach on top.
Next up is a 7-foot cake with a 30-inch wide base, this one headed to Austin for a wedding that is being orchestrated by famed party planned Colin Cowie. Moon says that she has been working with Cowie and the bride on the cake design since January. For this one, she is creating unique, over-sized ruffly flowers that echo detailing on the bride's dress.
Also on her drawing board is a wedding cake filled with tiers of sugar paste flowers for a bride whose wedding had to be moved from San Antonio to Houston. Wedding planner JoAnn Woodward of Schwartz & Woodward is working on this one. Add another massive wedding cake to the list, a sweet treat covered in sugar paste flowers and a groom's cake that follows an over-the-top Russian theme.
"It is a weekend of amazing cakes," Moon e-mailed, "requiring my entire staff's complete attention to get these done perfectly."
Just think of the gazillion calories flowing out of her shop in the next few days.
Engineering a b'day bash
Who said engineers were a no-fun bunch with penchants for pocket savers and slide rulers? Wrong. Just look at the party at that Klotz Associates threw at Stella Sola celebrating that engineering firm's 25 years in business.
Mark one up for president and engineering bigwig Wayne Klotz and wife Karen.
Joining the feast of sliders, pasta, seafood, milk shakes and a special Klotz "blue" drink to match the firm's logo were City Council members Melissa Noriega, C.O. Bradford and Wanda Adams, Missouri City Mayor Allen Owen, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison's regional director Jason Fuller, Metro board member Allen Watson, Alex Martinez, Roland Garcia, Cindy Clifford and Miya Shay.
Aspen rocking with Houstonians
We know that half of that Rocky Mountain playground is populated with Houstonians in the summer and the news of their adventures is beginning to trickle in. The French hot spot Brexie Brasserie was the place to be the other night when the Houston crowd included Betsy and Tod Eason, Jennifer and Lance Gilliam, Lisa and Michael Holthouse, Ashley Wehrly and Jared Kearney.
Spotted later was Catalan chef Chris Shepherd chatting up famed chef Rick Bayless at the Little Nell Hotel.