A Red and White Wedding at the Four Seasons in St. Louis, Missouri

Nicole Shen (28 and an internal medicine resident physician) and Dan Mills (31 and a director of new business) met through a common friend on the July 4, and it was obvious pretty quickly that there was a connecdtion. Dan had just moved from Cincinnati to St. Louis, and Nicole was home for the summer before her first year of medical school. Not surprisingly, July 4 had a special meaning in their relationship. So when they got engaged, a wedding on the holiday seemed like a natural choice. The couple got married at St. Anselm Parish in St. Louis, Missouri, the church of Nicole’s youth and where her parents were married. “The design is stunning,” Dan says. After the ceremony, guests were shuttled to the Four Seasons in St. Louis—so guests could enjoy a fireworks show from a balcony overlooking the St. Louis Arch, complete with a private terrace. “The hotel is spectacular,” Nicole says. Guests gathered in the foyer of the ballroom for the red signature drink, the Mills Masterpiece (rum, sweet and sour, grenadine, triple sec and cherry garnish), then moved to the ballroom—complete with elaborate centerpieces of red roses, a custom red dance floor, red lighting—for a three-course meal, including a seven-tier cake, and dancing. At the end of the evening, the wedding planner surprised Nicole and Dan with sparklers, and the couple surprised guests with a fireworks display. Nicole recommends that couples unwind with a massage before the wedding day, then on the day, spend time taking it all in. “There is a lot of love all around you that day,” she says. —Chrissy Sorenson