san francisco wedding photography

The Bently Reserve Wedding Photography – David and Jordan – Real Weddings

The real wedding of Jordan and David at the Bently Reserve in San Francisco.  It was a beautiful summer day in San Francisco.  The fog, like it always does, had coated the city in the morning, clearing when the sun rises.  Jordan and David’s big day had arrived.  They had both dreamed of this day for a very long time.  Jordan had looked through 400 wedding photographers, the Bently Reserve wedding photography preferred list, and the “Best Of” San Francisco list of photographers, and we’re honored she chose us to capture her special day.  If you think the photos are good, just wait till you read their story!


mark zunino custom wedding dress

Jordan gets ready in her custom Mark Zunino wedding dress.


wedding day champagne spray

Wedding day champagne spray!


First look wedding

Jordan walks up to David for the first look.


wedding first look

David sees Jordan for the first time.


san francisco trolleys

Jordan and David rented San Francisco Trolleys to take their guests from the hotel to the wedding venue.


bently reserve wedding ceremony

The Bently Reserve wedding ceremony setup.


wedding welcome table

Check out this beautiful welcome table


bently reserve wedding ceremony

The Bently Reserve wedding ceremony.


bently reserve wedding

Jordan and David walk down the aisle after they say “I do!”


bride and groom

Our lovely couple smile as they see their guests from the car on their wedding day.


Chrissy fields wedding photography

Jordan and David shoot their portraits at Chrissy Fields in San Francisco


bently reserve weddings

Jordan and David shoot a few photos outside the Bently Reserve on their wedding day.


black and white wedding photography

The Bently Reserve wedding photography.


The Bently Reserve wedding photography.

The Bently Reserve wedding photography.


Jordan and David’s real wedding portraits from their Bently Reserve wedding.


Jordan’s beautiful wedding portraits

beautiful San Francisco wedding photography

Jordan and David’s beautiful San Francisco wedding photography.


beautiful escort card table

Check out this beautiful escort card table!


bently reserve wedding reception

The Bently Reserve wedding reception from Jordan and David’s wedding.


The Bently Reserve wedding reception.


jewish wedding bently reserve

Jordan and David’s Hora from their Bently Reserve wedding.


san francisco wedding photography

Last call! Jordan and David wanted their last kiss to be a genuine San Francisco wedding photo.


Wedding ceremony Site: The Bently Reserve

Wedding reception Site: The Bently Reserve

Photographer: Clane Gessel Photography

Wedding Planner: F. Duncan Reyes Events by Design

Florist: Tanjeeryn Designs

Linens: Napa Valley Linens

Rentals: Classic Party Rentals

Lighting: Got Light?

Invitations: Paper on Pine

Wedding Day Stationery: Mercurio Brothers

Caterer: Jane Hammond Events

Cake/Cupcakes: Sweet Lauren Cakes, Cake Coquette

Ceremony Entertainment: Golden Gate Strings

Reception Entertainment: Dick Bright Orchestra; Jason Mitchell Gatsby Entertainment

Videographer: David Ethridge AVR Films

Limo/Transportation: Carl Payne

Gown Designer: Mark Zunino

Bridal Salon/Gown Store: Mark Zunino Couture Beverly Hills (custom made wedding dress)

Jordan’s Jewelry: Family heirloom and Douglass Jeweler

Bridal Shoes: Manolo Blahnik and Jimmy Choo

Groomsmen’s Formalwear: Hugo Boss

Bridesmaid Dresses: Monique Luhillier

Engagement Rings: Douglas Jeweler

Wedding Rings: Douglas Jeweler

Gift Registries: Bloomingdale’s, Tiffany & Company, Sur La Table, Crate & Barrel, Macy’s

Wedding Night Hotel: Pakistani Suite Fairmont Hotel SF

Honeymoon Destination: Los Cabos, Mexico

Honeymoon Hotels: The Resort at Pedegral

Travel Agency: Planet Hoppers

Other Vendors:
Cynthia Glinka- First Dance
Riley and Grey- Wedding Website

View even more photos from this beautiful Bently Reserve wedding here.

How and when did the couple meet?

The couple met in Chicago in 2010. The groom was a professional golfer at the time and the bride was pursuing medical school. On May 5, 2010, David’s 25th birthday, he convinced Jordan to meet with him on a first “official” date. Although Jordan paid the tab (David always has to point out ‘it was his birthday!’  Clearly, it was love at first sight. and their relationship blossomed despite career changes, long distance, and attending different medical schools.

How did the proposal take place?

Jordan’s golden birthday was February 27, 2014. David had been planning to propose since October and had ample time to create the perfect engagement. On February 28, 2014, he had arranged for his family to fly out to Chicago where they were living together at the time to celebrate the proposal with them. David proposed by giving Jordan three gifts the day after her birthday.   He claimed that some gifts were “delayed by the mail.”

A pillowcase with the phrase “Mr.” embroidered on the front, followed by “Mrs.” and then the ring in multiple boxes that Jordan had to unwrap. The ring itself was symbolic – David designed it to sit atop the letter “M,” the first initial of his last name. After the proposal David told Jordan that there were more surprises- family had flown in to celebrate. We all spent the weekend together at some of the couples favorite Chicago eateries.

What was your fondest wedding moment from your Bently Reserve Wedding?

From the groom:

Besides holding Jordan’s hands as we stood across from each other throughout the ceremony and saying ‘I do’ (of course), my favorite moment of the day was our first dance, to ‘The Way You Look Tonight,’ by Frank Sinatra. We didn’t have a choreographed dance, per se, but we did take a lesson, and it was something I was both excited for and nervous about. Walking through the crowd, onto the dance floor, and moving (relatively) gracefully with Jordan with all of our guests’ eyes on us gave me an energy that I do not foresee duplicating anytime soon.

From the bride:

It is easiest for me to think of our wedding in segments: getting ready, ceremony, and reception. For each of those I have a favorite memory. In the beginning of the day I was most excited to see my groom – we had a romantic first look that took place on the top of the staircase that afterwards led us down the stars to our wedding party and close family and friends. Our ceremony music and décor we had thought about extensively. Our aisle was lit by candles, the strings were playing “At Last” and the double doors opened as my parents and I walked down the aisle.

For the reception David and I had left to take our post- ceremony photos and when we returned the room had been “flipped” for dinner. We walked into the room and I was speechless – all the meetings, Pinterest boards, countless hours scouring the internet, and numerous e-mails actually brought what I had in my mind to reality. David and I were given a sampling of appetizers (we had not eaten all day – BRIDES PLEASE EAT!) and walked up the stairs to take a birds eye view of the room before everyone was welcomed into dinner. This moment was also our brief alone time, and the first private moments we shared as husband and wife admiring our wedding reception layout.

Interesting facts about you and your spouse that you would like to share.

David and I are both medical students across the country.  We knew planning a wedding several time zones away was going to be challenging. Additionally, I’m a personality type “AAA” so I knew I wanted to be as involved as I could in the wedding planning process. I also wanted to have someone on my team that I could entrust with all other details when my wedding could not be prioritized. As a thorough individual, I wanted to do my due diligence in researching a wedding planner who would protect my vision.  In the end I made a spreadsheet of 46 wedding planners – spoke to most of them over the phone and eventually landed on Duncan Reyes.

Duncan was truly the brains behind our wedding!  He’s a genius when it comes to knowing who’s who in the Bay Area wedding scene. In the end Duncan did so much more than plan our wedding; he introduced us to vendors that I never would have found, answered thousands of e-mails, and kept meticulous records of budgets, payments, and meetings. Those of you weighing whether or not to have a wedding planner.  It was an absolute must for us and really allowed us to enjoy the wedding planning process and most importantly our wedding day.

What your overall vision was for your wedding day/why?

My personal style is simple, classic, but always a little bit of sparkle.  I knew from the beginning I wanted a black tie wedding.  We imagined the overall design was clean, refined, romantic and had a timeless elegance.  I was never really a girl who dreamed of her wedding looking a particular way.  We really entrusted the vendors I worked with to help me in the design process and bring this description to life.

Since the Bently Reserve wedding ceremony and reception locations are in the same spot, we needed to make sure there was a reasonable turn around time between the ceremony and dinner seating. With this in mind, we also wanted a ceremony that matched the rest of our wedding. I loved the idea of a candle-lined aisle and statement florals. It was hard for me to think about having elaborate ceremony decor. Especially for a ceremony that would run under 30 minutes.

Ceremony vision

Therefore, many things in our ceremony were repurposed for later in the evening.  The centerpieces were a combination of tall (repurposed from the ceremony) and low arrangements that were sophisticated and elegant.  The stage used for the band, the cake sat under the chuppah, and the 120 floating candles lined the staircase for our grand entrance.  I love the romantic glow of candlelight and was sure to incorporate it our escort card table arrangement that was a statement piece.  It was fairly architectural but softened with flowers and candlelight. 

How/why did you decide on a Bently Reserve wedding?

I knew I wanted to get married in San Francisco, and we quickly realized that the challenging part was finding a venue that would accommodate a wedding potentially over 200 people! My sister-in-law was actually the one who saw Bently Reserve wedding pictures online through a quick google search of “San Francisco Wedding Venues” and we planned a trip back to California for a site visit. Once we got there it was clear we wanted a Bently Reserve wedding.  One look at the space and we knew this was the venue for us.  The Bently wedding team was great to work with and of course absolutely stunning. We wanted a classic wedding with some personal touches – the Bently was the perfect backdrop and allowed us to really transform the space into our own.  

Tell me about the process of selecting your wedding dress. What was your original vision for your bridal look, how many dresses did you try on, what was the experience like, how did you know it was the one, etc?

The wedding dress search was an arduous process. I first starting looking for dresses in the prior March and did not end up picking mine until October, 10 months before the wedding.  I probably tried on over 200 dresses, and my search took me all over the country: Chicago, San Francisco Bay Area, Manhattan, Virginia, Maryland, Washington DC,  and finally Los Angeles. The one request my husband had was that he wanted something with straps. This is actually very hard to find as I knew I wanted more of a fitted silhouette. The issue that I ran into was that the more mermaid styles tended to not have straps, I felt many of them looked like two pieces (different fabrics for the bodice and skirt), and I was hesitant to alter a dress that was not intended to have certain elements to begin with.

Returning dresses

I actually ended up buying a dress early on and returning it for this very reason. When I was in Manhattan on one of my (four) trips there to find a dress I ended up meeting Mark Zunino while I was trying on one of his dresses at a trunk show. I was very close to buying this dress but again encountered the problem of wanting to create a new dress out of an existing one (altering to have straps and ivory fabric). He patiently listened to my concerns and proposed going the custom route. At this point, I was really worried I wasn’t going to find “the dress” and as soon as he sketched something right in front of me I knew he was the right person to work with.  It was a v-neckline, illusion strap, the flowed nicely from bodice to skirt with just the perfect amount of sparkle.

Mark Zunino and his team were incredible – it was so much fun to watch my dress come to life and be involved in the design process! He and his team truly made me feel like such a special bride. 

How did you select your accessories?

When I was little I never got my ears pierced, and I knew that the only time I would actually bite the bullet would be for my wedding. I decided not only to pierce my ears but I also wore my late grandmother’s diamond chandelier earrings which was especially meaningful. My friends in the back row said they could even see them sparkle!

I see you and your husband did a first look – what made you decide to do that?

After our wedding planner set us (what seemed like a 75 page) timeline we realized that fitting in a first look would really hard.  We really wanted it though, it’s one of the few moments alone we would have together.  Additionally, we knew with a first look we would be able to accomplish some other things.  This would help us not take time out of cocktail hour such as family photos. 

What were your wedding gifts to each other??

My groom gave me a personalized gold bar necklace with our wedding date on the front and “San Francisco” on the back. Although I did not wear it wedding day I wear it all the time now!  I got him a watch.

Where do you reside and what are your occupations?

Jordan currently lives in Washington D.C., David lives in Philadelphia, so this was a San Francisco destination wedding for both of us.

Who were your favorite wedding vendors?

It was crucial to have vendors that I trusted and could be myself with. The wedding planning and photography were two areas that I really cared about – and I am thrilled that throughout the planning and the wedding I really feel like both the photographer and planner are true friends. On the actual wedding, it was great to see the dance floor packed and people inhaled their appetizers and dinner.  Clearly a major applause must go to the entertainment (strings, band and DJ) along with the catering team. The Bently Reserve wedding team was amazing.  What left me the most speechless were our florals, they are absolutely breathtaking and completely magical. David is most excited about seeing our wedding video, we’ve been so lucky with our vendors!

What advice do you have for future brides?

I received a great piece of advice from my now brother-in-law: pick a time during your wedding weekend where you are going to “let go.” There is only so much you can control up to a certain point. For me, I knew that my rehearsal dinner was that point. Everything after that had been decided, scheduled, planned, etc. so it was nice for me to let go and focus on the very special and once in a lifetime moments of our rehearsal dinner and wedding day.


If you’re thinking about a Bently Reserve wedding, we’d recommend reaching out to them today.

Article by Clane Gessel Photography