LA Banquets Legacy Ballroom Wedding

Wedding at LA Banquets Legacy Ballroom

Nyia & Gloria are two of the sweetest souls, and the huge smiles they both wear show how clearly smitten they are with each other. Working with couples who have great chemistry as they do is one thing that makes my job oh so easy as an Orange County wedding photographer. N&G’s wedding day was planned by the talented ladies of Sweetest Love Events and these two were all smiles throughout the day. I couldn’t get over how dreamy their first dance was as fog cascaded across the ballroom floor, turning the dance floor into their own personal slice of heaven. The bridal party got ready at a beautiful nearby Airbnb, and shortly afterward we headed over to Arlington Gardens in Pasadena to take photos. The wedding ceremony and reception were held at the Legacy Ballroom at LA Banquets in the heart of Glendale and it was the perfect setting for their beautiful wedding in Glendale. Read on to see more of Nyia & Gloria’s wedding at LA Banquets Legacy Ballroom…

How the Bride & Groom met...

From the bride: I met Nyia through his cousin, Chee (the best man at our wedding), who I went to college with. My roommates and I threw an apartment-warming party during the summer of 2007 and Chee rolled up with the entire gang of childhood friends which included Nyia. Neither of us paid any special attention to each other during that time but all of us remained friends through drinks and BBQ. For the next 2 years, we spent most of our time together amongst a large group of friends. There was even a time that I sat in the backseat of a car with Nyia, drunk and crying about an ex-boyfriend. (HAHA!!) He was always a big jokester, storyteller, and instigator, so people liked being around him and everyone laughed it off when he use to drunk dial me to practice the cheesiest lines he could think of.

Nyia was born with an underdeveloped hand and even though we practically saw each other every weekend, hanging out, eating, and dancing, I never noticed it. I’ll admit, after someone told me about it I MySpace stalked his entire account and watched his every move but he was so good at subconsciously hiding it that I eventually just asked him to show me his hand. That was probably our first serious conversation and I’m sure it broke some sort of barrier he had up. I always knew him to be a fun, positive, and kind person but that particular conversation made me realize how the difficulties of his hand really shaped who he was and how he treated people. I admired his ability to overcome all the emotional, mental, and physical negativities, do so without any resentment and still be able to create such a positive space for everyone around him. That’s probably when I started paying more attention to him during our outings. Some of our friends caught on and started “coincidentally” taking last-minute rain checks on our group outings so Nyia and I would end up being the only ones meeting up. We transitioned from friends to bf/gf summer of 2009. Both of us come from very humble beginnings so although marriage was always the goal for being in a relationship, we wanted to accomplish certain things for ourselves before taking that step. That process took almost a decade!

From the groom: When I first saw Gloria I knew we were meant to be. She can’t deny my love.

How he proposed...

From the bride: Nyia proposed to me on the last night of our group trip to Cancun in September of 2017. The rest of our friends were in on the plan. After taking group photos the girls went to check the image and spent some time praising how great it turned out so I walked over to look. On the phone screen was a picture of the engagement ring. I couldn’t see Nyia in my peripheral view so I realized what was going on. I turned around and Nyia’s on his knees, red-faced, tears rolling down his cheeks. He took so long gathering his thoughts that I thought I completely missed the proposal.

What was the inspiration behind your wedding day?

We’re both ethnically Hmong so our cultural weddings mainly focus on family relations that are formed through the transaction that is marriage. Cultural weddings are labor intensive, political, and meals are cooked by the attending guests. The event isn’t formal since most of the guest are working the event. The bride and groom usually don’t have the power to make decisions for how they want the wedding to go since these decisions are reserved for the male clan leaders. I’ve gone to cultural weddings by obligation, worked the event, and go home without having a clue who got married.

We both wanted our wedding to be the opposite of our cultural wedding: intimate, modern, formal, fun, and memorable. Both our parents were refugees before coming to the U.S. so our wedding was a bit of a culture shock for our families. We made sure to incorporate just enough culturally relatable things in our wedding so our parents wouldn’t feel completely out of place.  

My mom also made a wish 12 years prior, right after she just threw a wedding for my sister. Exhausted and frustrated she said, “This is the last wedding I’m throwing! I just want to do my hair, do my makeup, walk in looking really cool, sit, eat, and enjoy the wedding!”  I laughed at her at that time and told her she didn’t need to worry about me, that I’ll make sure she got what she wished for.

How did you choose LA Banquets for your wedding venue?

From the bride: I wanted an indoor venue, mainly to avoid weather surprises and control sound. I’m the worst when it comes to decorating so I wanted a venue that was visually appealing and practical so I could spend less on decorative items. Our wedding venue, LA Banquets had the entire package of options from food, alcohol, lighting, and service. It allowed us to cut out the trouble of coordinating a bunch of vendors. The room at LA Banquets was beautiful, the food was delicious, and they were pretty lenient about the usage of the facility so we weren’t forced to settle for pre-fixed options.

From the groom: Honestly, the food and lighting. The food presentation wasn’t cafeteria-like, there was a huge variety of foods available, and they all tasted great. The lighting was amazing. It just elevated the whole space and transformed the room.

What was your favorite moment of your wedding day?

From the bride: I have a lot of favorite moments from our wedding day because the whole day was absolutely wonderful. We definitely had more than enough fun. Nyia and I had to hug out and congratulate each other a few times for a good job well done. But the one thing that stands out to me was that my mom got her hair done, got her makeup done, walked in looking really cool, sat, ate, and completely enjoyed the wedding.

From the groom: One memorable moment from the wedding was when Gloria and I snuck in to see the ballroom before the wedding reception started. I also loved when fog slowly filled the floor of the entire room for our first dance. Everything felt surreal and magical. I couldn’t believe that after all the saving and planning, we were able to throw this beautiful wedding and it turned out so wonderful. I also enjoyed our 90’s playlist during dinner, dancing in circles to cultural music and my grandpa getting low on the dance floor to “Uptown Funk”.

Do you have any advice for brides planning their wedding day?

From the bride: Document your wedding somehow, through photographs, video, or both if you can afford it. Thoroughly critique those vendors to make sure they are who you need and don’t get coerced into hiring one you’re not absolutely sure of just because they tell you they have limited availability. There are certain things that you can cut cost on, but hiring a wedding photographer should not be one. Also, get a wedding planner. There are plenty of things you need to do that day and coordinating vendors and guests should not be on that list. Focus on enjoying the company of your new husband, your guests, and your wedding. You may need to set boundaries, like excusing yourself from selfie sessions, cutting down your guest list to people you actually talk to on a regular basis, having an adults-only event, or removing traditions that don’t mean anything to you. Any reasonable wedding budget becomes a complete waste of money if you do not enjoy your wedding day.

From the groom: Plan ahead. Make sure you get a good sound system for whatever space you are using. Don’t cheap out on your wedding photographer and hire a wedding planner.

All photos captured by Orange County Wedding Photographer Lovisa Photo. If you liked this wedding at LA Banquets Legacy Ballroom, you may also be interested in this Intimate Wedding in Oahu as well as this romantic wedding at the Walnut Grove

Wedding Vendors:
Coordination: Sweetest Love Events
Photo: Lovisa Photo
Venue: Legacy Ballroom at LA Banquets
Hair & Makeup: Chiali Meng Artistry
Floral: Jenny B Floral Design
Dress: Pronovias from Pebbles Bridal
DJ: Vox DJs
Cake: Special Cakes LA