couple with bubbles casa del mar wedding ceremony
Henry Chen

Henry Chen

Wedding At Casa Del Mar

Photos from Susan and Eugene’s wedding at Casa Del Mar, which began with the couple getting ready in separate suites. After photographing their romantic first look in the courtyard and portrait session at Santa Monica Beach, they said “I do” during a glamorous ceremony in the Grand Ballroom. This was followed by a sunset portrait session and fun-filled ballroom reception with their family and friends.

SUSAN & EUGENE

Locations:

  • Getting ready: Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica, CA (bride and groom)

 

Wedding photos at Casa Del Mar:

I heard from San Francisco-based couple Susan and Eugene around a year ago after they found me online through Yelp. Eugene told me that they loved my work and were interested in hiring me to capture their glamorous wedding at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica. After just a few emails, they decided to book me, something that’s always an honor and means a lot to me.

Susan and Eugene met through the dating app Coffee Meets Bagel and went on their first date to a Ramen shop in San Francisco. While Susan grew up in Taiwan, Eugene is actually from Los Angeles, which was why they were planning their special day in Southern California. He had organized a romantic, moonlit proposal on top of a volcano while on vacation in Hawaii but had to abort due to the freezing cold conditions. He managed to convince Susan to return to the volcano a few days later for sunset, giving him the opportunity to pop the question.

I first met up with Susan and Eugene a few months before their wedding when they came to my home studio. It was wonderful to hear about their love story and plans for their wedding day, with everything happening in one place at the gorgeous Casa Del Mar. They were putting a high priority on photography and scheduled in plenty of time for portraits, which is something I never take for granted!

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Susan and Eugene are showered with bubbles during their recessional walk in the Grand Ballroom of Casa Del Mar.

 

Getting ready photos at Casa Del Mar:

While my second photographer was with Eugene and the guys while they were getting ready in a downstairs conference room, I was with Susan and her bridesmaids in the beautifully-lit bridal suite upstairs. I captured up-close shots as Susan had the final touches applied to her makeup and shared in this special moment with her bridesmaids, as well as grabbing a photo as she admired her engagement ring with her two wedding dresses hanging behind.

Susan’s mom was there to assist in securing her earrings, as was her sister as she stepped into her wedding dress, before the bride gifted bags to her bridesmaids with their initials. Susan’s dad then arrived for what was an emotional father-daughter first look session, with both of them holding back tears as they embraced. I documented this special family moment as her mom and siblings gathered around before capturing some final portraits of Susan in her stunning wedding dress.

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A close-up photo of Susan having the finishing touches applied to her makeup in a suite at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan admires her engagement ring with her two wedding dresses hanging behind her at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan is embraced by her bridesmaids wearing pink dresses in a suite at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Capturing a special moment between Susan and her mom while her bridesmaids fluff her wedding dress.
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Susan’s bridesmaids adjust her wedding dress in the stunning bridal suite at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Susan’s mom helps to secure the bride’s earrings while getting ready in her elegant suite at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan’s maid-of-honor helps to secure the bride’s necklace in the gorgeous bridal suite at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan holds the hand of her mom and sister while her bridesmaids assist her into her wedding shoes.
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Susan gifts bags to her bridesmaids with their initials while getting ready for her wedding at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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A portrait of Susan in her stunning wedding dress standing in front of a naturally-lit window at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan’s dad walks towards her during their father-daughter first look in the bridal suite at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan and her dad embrace during their emotional father-daughter first look at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Susan and her dad both hold back tears during their emotional father-daughter first look at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan shares in a special moment with her family as they prepared for the wedding at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan is embraced by her mom while her sister watches on in the bridal suite at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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A portrait of Susan opening the curtains of her bridal suite window as she prepared for her wedding at Casa Del Mar.

 

Pre-ceremony portraits at Casa Del Mar:

It was then time for the couple’s first look session, which was being held in a garden courtyard adjacent to Casa Del Mar’s pool. I photographed Susan walking up behind Eugene and their reactions at seeing one another, with Eugene wearing a stylish blue velvet suit jacket.

We had plenty of time to capture portraits of the couple in this loved-up moment, utilizing the shaded courtyard and red brick architecture of Casa Del Mar before heading into the elegant lobby. I captured a low-angle portrait of them embracing beneath a colorful chandelier and seated on a white sofa, as well as a shot of Susan standing on the staircase holding her beautiful bouquet.

Susan and Eugene then paid respects to their parents during a short tea ceremony, kneeling in front of them and offering cups of tea. I captured candid photos as their parents sipped from the teacups during this Asian wedding tradition, as well as documenting the humble reactions of the bride and groom.

After some bridal party portraits at Casa Del Mar, we headed onto the sidewalk of Santa Monica Beach for some shots of the couple walking arm-in-arm with their bridesmaids and groomsmen. Although the sun was still quite bright, we found some shaded spots for couple portraits backed by the sands and palm trees, as well as incorporating the whitewashed architecture behind.

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Susan walking towards Eugene during their romantic first look session outside Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Susan and Eugene get their first glimpse of one another during their garden courtyard first look at Casa Del Mar.
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Eugene admires his beautiful bride on their wedding day at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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A romantic portrait of the bride and groom at the courtyard pool of Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Eugene tenderly kisses Susan’s forehead during their garden wedding portrait session at Casa Del Mar.
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Eugene affectionately kisses Susan’s hand during their pre-ceremony wedding portrait session at Casa Del Mar.
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A portrait of Susan and Eugene holding hands in front of the red brick architecture of Santa Monica’s Casa Del Mar.
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Susan embraces Eugene and looks lovingly at him during their Casa Del Mar wedding portrait session.
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Susan and Eugene kiss on the elegant lobby staircase during their Casa Del Mar wedding portrait session.
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Susan and Eugene arrive to greet their parents during the traditional tea ceremony at Casa Del Mar.
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A candid photo of Susan and Eugene offering tea to the bride’s parents in a show of respect at Casa Del Mar.
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The couple pay respect to the bride’s parents during a traditional tea ceremony at Casa Del Mar.
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A candid photo of Susan and Eugene knelt in front of their parents during the Casa Del Mar tea ceremony.
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Eugene’s parents sip tea during the traditional tea ceremony at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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A portrait of Susan and Eugene seated on an elegant sofa at Casa Del Mar during their sophisticated Santa Monica wedding photo session.
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Susan and Eugene embrace beneath a colorful chandelier on a sweeping staircase at Casa Del Mar.
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A portrait of Susan holding her bouquet on an elegant staircase in the lobby of Santa Monica’s Casa Del Mar.
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A playful portrait of Susan with her bridesmaids covering their faces with their bouquets at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan and Eugene kiss on a staircase while their bridal party watches on at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Susan, Eugene and their bridal party walk through Santa Monica with their arms linked together.
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A portrait of Susan and Eugene kissing during their urban wedding photo session in Santa Monica.
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Susan and Eugene embrace, framed by the palm trees and sands of Santa Monica Beach.
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Eugene tenderly kisses Susan’s forehead during their urban wedding portrait session in Santa Monica.
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Capturing a playful moment between the bride and groom during their beach wedding portrait session in Santa Monica.
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Capturing a tender moment between the bride and groom on a busy sidewalk in Santa Monica.
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Susan and Eugene look lovingly into one another’s eyes while walking along a sidewalk in Santa Monica.
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Susan and Eugene kiss backed by the beach and amusement park at Santa Monica Beach.

 

Ceremony photos at Casa Del Mar:

Susan’s mom and dad escorted her down the aisle at the start of her wedding ceremony, which was being held in the Grand Ballroom of Casa Del Mar. I documented Eugene’s reaction as he watched his bride approach and the hand-off between him and Susan’s parents, then captured candid shots as they exchanged personalized vows.

In addition to close-up shots of the couple and the reactions of their parents, I also captured a wide-angle shot looking down the aisle of this glamorous Santa Monica wedding venue. After being pronounced “husband and wife”, Susan and Eugene sealed their marriage with a kiss and made their recessional walk as guests threw flower petals and blew bubbles.

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Susan’s parents wait to escort her down the aisle as she enters into the Grand Ballroom at Casa Del Mar for her wedding ceremony.
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Capturing Eugene’s reaction as he watched his bride walk down the aisle during their ballroom wedding ceremony at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan is escorted down the aisle by her parents during the glamorous ballroom wedding ceremony at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan’s parents give her away to Eugene at the start of their western ballroom wedding ceremony in Santa Monica.
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A candid photo of Susan embracing her mom at the start of her Casa Del Mar ballroom wedding ceremony.
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Eugene smiles while reading his vows to Susan during their ballroom wedding ceremony at Casa Del Mar.
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Eugene’s parents watch on as their son wed Susan in the Grand Ballroom of Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Susan holds back tears as Eugene reads his vows during their ballroom wedding ceremony at Casa Del Mar.
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Capturing the reactions of Susan’s parents during the ballroom ceremony at Casa Del Mar.
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A wide-angle photo looking down the aisle during Susan and Eugene’s wedding ceremony at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan reads her vows to Eugene during their western wedding ceremony at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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A candid photo of Eugene smiling as Susan reads her vows during their romantic wedding ceremony at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan places a wedding ring on Eugene’s finger during their glamorous ballroom ceremony at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan and Eugene kiss after being pronounced “husband and wife” during their ballroom wedding ceremony in Santa Monica.
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Wedding guests throw flower petals and blow bubbles during Susan and Eugene’s recessional walk at Casa Del Mar.
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Eugene kisses Susan on the cheek during their recessional walk down the aisle in the Grand Ballroom of Casa Del Mar.

 

Post-ceremony portraits at Casa Del Mar:

With sunset fast approaching, we made a dash down to the beach for a short portrait session of the newlyweds as they embraced in the golden light. We got creative with Susan’s veil in a few shots before heading back to Casa Del Mar where we snuck into their stunning ballroom reception venue. I captured photos of the couple kissing framed by their flower-decorated bridal arch, as well as some photos as they practiced their choreographed first dance one last time.

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Eugene holds up Susan’s dress as they walk down to Santa Monica Beach for a sunset wedding portrait session.
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Capturing a tender moment between the newlyweds during their sunset wedding portrait session on Santa Monica Beach.
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A creative sunset portrait of Susan and Eugene with the bride’s veil flying behind on Santa Monica Beach.
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Capturing a warm embrace between the newlyweds during their beach wedding portrait session in Santa Monica.
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Susan and Eugene kiss backed by the coming and going of people on Santa Monica Beach.
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A creative portrait of the newlyweds incorporating Susan’s veil during their beach wedding photo session at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan and Eugene hold hands inside their ballroom reception wedding venue at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan and Eugene kiss in front of their beautifully decorated bridal arch at Casa Del Mar.
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Eugene dips Susan as they practice their first dance in the glamorous ballroom at Casa Del Mar.
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Eugene twirls his bride inside the gorgeous Grand Ballroom reception venue at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Capturing an intimate moment between the bride and groom on the ballroom dance floor at Casa Del Mar.

 

Reception photos at Casa Del Mar:

Susan and Eugene danced their way into the ballroom reception at Casa Del Mar, then launched straight into what was a really impressive first dance. I captured action shots of their synchronized moves and the groom twirling his bride, as well as the final dip at the end.

This was followed by speeches and toasts from their best man and maid-of-honor as Susan and Eugene listened in from their sweetheart table. The bride then disappeared for an outfit change before returning in an elegant evening gown for her playful cake-cutting ceremony with Eugene.

After a group photo of the couple and their wedding party on the dance floor, Susan and Eugene made their grand exit from the Casa Del Mar ballroom as their guests held giant balloon bubbles. We ended the night with a few romantic portraits of the couple embracing on the sands of Santa Monica Beach with the amusement park illuminated behind, as well as some shots on the interior staircase of Casa Del Mar and in front of their giant LOVE sign.

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Susan and Eugene make a playful grand entrance into their ballroom wedding reception at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan and Eugene perform a fun, choreographed first dance during their ballroom reception at Casa Del Mar.
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An action shot of Susan and Eugene performing their first dance during the Casa Del Mar wedding reception.
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Eugene lifts and twirls Susan during their choreographed first dance at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Susan and Eugene perform their first dance in front of their cake-cutting table in Casa Del Mar’s Grand Ballroom.
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Eugene leads Susan across the dance floor during their first dance performance at Casa Del Mar.
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Eugene dips Susan as part of their impressive first dance in the ballroom of Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Susan and Eugene raise their champagne glasses to toast the best man during their Casa Del Mar reception.
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The bride and groom share a laugh at their sweetheart table during speeches and toasts at their Casa Del Mar wedding.
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A candid photo of Susan’s maid-of-honor making a wedding reception speech in the ballroom of Casa Del Mar.
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Susan and Eugene hold hands while listening to speeches and toasts at their Casa Del Mar wedding reception.
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Susan re-enters her ballroom wedding reception at Casa Del Mar in a glamorous evening dress.
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Susan and Eugene dabbing with their wedding guests on the ballroom dance floor at Casa Del Mar.
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A playful photo of Eugene biting into a piece of wedding cake while Susan laughs beside him during their cake-cutting ceremony.
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Susan and Eugene link arms to drink champagne during their glamorous wedding reception at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan and Eugene kiss in front of their flower-decorated bridal arch in the Grand Ballroom of Casa Del Mar.
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The newlyweds make a thank you speech for their wedding guests during the Casa Del Mar ballroom reception.
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A group photo of Susan and Eugene with their wedding party on the ballroom dance floor at Casa Del Mar.
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Susan and Eugene make their grand reception exit with balloon bubbles in the ballroom of Casa Del Mar.
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Eugene dips and kisses Susan during their grand reception exit from the Grand Ballroom at Casa Del Mar.
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Eugene carries his bride out of their glamorous ballroom wedding reception at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Capturing an intimate moment between the couple during their nighttime beach wedding portrait session in Santa Monica.
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Susan and Eugene embrace outside Casa Del Mar during their nighttime wedding portrait session in Santa Monica.
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Eugene lifts Susan during their nighttime wedding portrait session, backed by the illuminated amusement park of Santa Monica.
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The newlyweds kiss, backed by the colorfully illuminated rides of Santa Monica Beach.
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A sophisticated portrait of Susan and Eugene on a sweeping staircase at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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A romantic portrait of the bride and groom on a staircase outside Casa Del Mar during their nighttime wedding photo session.
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Eugene tenderly kisses Susan’s hand on a sweeping staircase at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.
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Susan and Eugene kiss with their giant love sign and balloon bubbles at Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica.

 

Wedding photos at Casa Del Mar:

It was such an honor to be the photographer for Susan and Eugene’s wedding at Casa Del Mar and I really appreciate the high priority they put on photography throughout their special day. I hope they love these photos and wish them all the best in their newly married life together.

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