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A Black Tie Soirée at a Historic Club in Manhattan

By Meredith Bragg | Photography by 

Brian Hatton

Alea Sciarrone, the global merchandising manager of Club Monaco, and Matt Rix, a manager at Price Waterhouse Cooper, have a love story that was “many years in the making,” as Alea’s mother likes to say. The pair grew up in Rye, New York, attended middle and high school together, and oddly enough, both lived abroad in Hong Kong with their family, albeit at different times. And yet, despite their shared background, the couple didn’t formally meet until Alea visited Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC as a prospective student.

Fast-forward to Alea’s junior year in college and the pair found themselves in Charleston for fall break with friends. “He kissed me at a dingy dive bar and that was that,” says Alea. “We’ve barely spent a day apart since.” The couple then dated for six years before Matt proposed during a two-week jaunt in the Amalfi coast. “Every night we were there, I dressed up in my very best and put on a full face of makeup for dinner thinking tonight is the night! But it wasn’t until day fourteen that he actually proposed,” she remembers. “We were watching the sunset on the shore below Chiesa del Soccorso, an 18th century church known to have the best sunset in the Mediterranean. It was worth the wait.”

When it came to the big day, Matt let Alea take the reins. “I always knew I wanted a Manhattan wedding that felt different than the suburban country club weddings I’d grown up attending,” she explains. “New York Athletic Club was an easy choice of venue. The historic club, which just celebrated its 150th anniversary, fit my vision of old New York glamour, but also had sentimental significance as I grew up going to NYAC with my family.” Alea organized the event on her own and tapped Joanna of The Day of Company to assist with logistics and extensive candle set up on the big day.

A black-tie soiree fit the ornate nature of both the NYAC reception and ceremony held at Christ Church on 60th Street and Park Avenue. Alea donned a Marchesa dress, which she describes as: “The very opposite of everything else I tried on. Clean, classic and structured with an oversized bow in the back.” Her something borrowed were jewels from the women in her family: a pair of diamond drop earrings from her mom and a vintage pearl cuff with ruby and sapphire clasps from her grandmother. Satin Manolo Blahnik Hangisi Pumps doubled as her “something blue,” and a nod to the ultimate New York City gal, Carrie Bradshaw. Matt wore a classic shawl collar tuxedo from MySuit, with velvet smoking slippers by Italian brand Del Toro and sans socks for a more modern look.

Following the ceremony, guests enjoyed cocktails and hors d’oeuvres while listening to a jazz quartet and taking in the Central Park scenery. The couple opted for a seated dinner despite their larger guest count of 250 and paid homage to the bride’s Italian roots by incorporating hearty-Italian flare to the menu. Guests enjoyed an appetizer of mushroom ravioli in sage cream sauce followed by a poached pear salad and a choice of filet mignon of Chilean sea bass for the entrée. Cannolis were served in lieu of a traditional wedding cake.

For their first dance, Alea and Matt chose Van Morrison’s classic, “Tupelo Honey.” “We just soaked up every moment of the dance, like no one else was in the room,” she remembers. But even so, that wasn’t the favorite part of their reception. “Having all of our loved ones in the same room, celebrating with us was truly the best feeling in the world,” she adds. “A close second though, would be all the dancing! My family breeds very confident dancers and luckily Matt’s family and the rest of our guests had no trouble keeping up.”

After the reception, Matt and Alea were so exhausted from the day’s festivities that they ditched their own after-party. The rest of the guests who still had energy enjoyed drinks and dancing in a nearby bar, while the newlyweds quietly retired to their hotel room and enjoyed some leftover cannolis. “It was the perfect way to end such a whirlwind day. We just relaxed and looked back on how magical the day had been. It really allowed us to soak it up,” Alea says. The next day, the couple departed for their two-week honeymoon, mixing adventure (a safari in Tanzania) with some R&R on Zanzibar’s luxurious beaches.