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This Three-Day Wedding at Chileno Bay Resort Was The Dreamscape of an Interior Designer Bride

By Elle Cashin | Photography by 

MC Weddings

|Planning by 

Lily & Leigh

In early 2020, interior designer Morgan Coonce had plans to take a design job in New York City until the pandemic changed everything. But, in her case, there was a silver lining: Instead of taking the job, she moved back to Oklahoma City—and it was there she met AJ Lunardi. “AJ had lived in Oklahoma City for three years after moving from Southern California. We met at a bar and immediately knew we would be getting married,” she says. They dated for a short 13 months before he proposed with a three-stone ring featuring one of Morgan’s grandmother’s diamonds. “When you know, you know!”

The couple was immediately set on Cabo—a longtime vacation spot for Morgan—and booked a venue site unseen. Well, sort of: Morgan’s mother saw it. “My mom went to Chileno Bay for lunch one day and called me and said, ‘This is it! This is your place. You’re going to love it,’” Morgan recalls. “We booked Chileno immediately, and I didn’t visit for two months after that! I really trusted her opinion, and I have to say, she couldn’t have picked a better spot.”

The design aesthetic came naturally. “Being a designer, I had a very specific vision and knew exactly what I wanted,” Morgan says. And, once again, her mother’s input was paramount: Morgan’s mom has owned a stationery shop, The Inviting Place in Tulsa, Oklahoma, for 15 years. “She jokes that I am her hardest client—[but it’s] because I knew what we were capable of creating together, and it all turned out to be a true work of art,” Morgan says. The couple’s save the date was a four-by-four-inch lucite box etched with the details on each side and an orchid inside; their invitation was a hinged box with “I love you more” engraved in Morgan’s handwriting and letterpressed cards inside. There was an escort board with acrylic cocktail shaker name cards, a laser-cut acrylic menu, coasters, bar signage, custom drink stirrers, and more.

Indeed, Morgan and her mother had lots of together-time to brainstorm all the beauty—yet another silver lining Morgan found. “Ten months before the wedding, I was diagnosed with stage two blood cancer,” she shares. “I continued to work full time and plan this wedding, all the while undergoing both chemotherapy and radiation. Every two weeks, my mom would stay with me on treatment days, and we would sit around my kitchen table to design and dream about the wedding. I wore my 30-degree cold caps to save my hair, which she had to change every 20 minutes for nine hours, and we designed all the little details at the same time. No memory throughout treatment is more special to me than this one.”

While Morgan and her mother worked out the design details, a team of vendors was hard at work, too: The couple pegged Lily & Leigh as planner and MC Weddings to photograph.

When it came to fashion, Morgan’s vision was equally as bold. “I was really opposed to wearing white to every single bridal event; I don’t think I wore any white except for my wedding dress,” she says. “I wanted at least one event that screamed ‘Cabo’ and the welcome party was it. Avari Bridal created my dream welcome party dress; it couldn’t have fit the vibe any better.” The welcome event was an explosion of color, with on-theme music from Mariachi Cabo.

The next day, Morgan donned an Over The Moon x La Vie Style House dress in blush pink. “All our guests came in white, so I stood out as the bride,” she says. AJ wore a custom cream linen suit. “We ended up jumping in the pool that night in our outfits, so he probably won’t be wearing it again!”

The next day, after hair and makeup with Olga Bustos Moreno of Los Cabos Makeup, Morgan finally put on something white: a voluminous Gracy Accad dress with a custom cream silk bow at the back. “The subtle pattern on my dress was incorporated into our wedding invitations and all of our wedding day-of goods,” the bride shares. “We letter-pressed the design into every item we could.” She kept her jewelry understated, donning diamond studs gifted from the groom and a custom diamond bangle she had made for herself and her mother.

“AJ wore a custom light blue Suitsupply suit with a navy Hermès tie and the engraved watch I gifted him that day,” Morgan adds. The wedding party was all in cream: Bridesmaids wore silk shifts from Bec + Bridge, and groomsmen purchased suits from SuitShop.

When Morgan’s dad walked her down the aisle on April 15, 2023, he was a ball of tears. But Morgan “was not the least bit nervous,” she says. “I was so excited for AJ to see my dress! Because it’s not a legal marriage in Cabo, we had eloped a month before in Vegas; I think already being married calmed our nerves.” They exchanged vows on a white stage floor erected over the sand by Stage Pro Cabo, and gave the bride’s uncle free rein to write a funny ceremony and officiate his own way. “He had all our guests dying laughing, and everyone said it was so us.” Meanwhile, guests sipped margaritas in monogrammed glassware. “I wanted it to be fun.”

At the reception, bursts of white florals by Pina Cate topped bare wood tables (Warehouse Rentals provided furniture and rentals). Acrylic and vellum menus designed by Morgan and her mom were displayed with monogrammed linen napkins and accented with ecru details. Following a four–course meal, speeches from the bride and groom’s fathers, and a stop at the espresso martini bar, guests moved into a separate space for dancing. “Our band, Tim & Taylor, have played for us for years and have become family; it only made sense for them to play during our weekend,” Morgan says. “They played during the rehearsal dinner, ceremony, and reception and sang our first dance songs. Then, we upped the energy with a local Cabo DJ, Alex DJ Cabo Events.”

Late night, the party moved into a hidden speakeasy on the resort’s grounds. “We filled the space with glow-in-the-dark party decorations,” says Morgan, who changed into a custom ruffled red dress to dance the night away. After a full weekend of celebrating, the newlyweds were ready for some relaxation. For their honeymoon, they opted not to travel too far. “We continued the Cabo trip and moved to the Four Seasons at Costa Palmas. We were so exhausted after the three-day party!”