NEW YORK, Feb. 13, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Empire State Building (ESB) and ColinCowieWeddings.com (CCW) today announced winners of the annual Valentine's Day Weddings Event, held at the iconic landmark on Tuesday, February 14th. For the 18th edition of the contest, ESB partnered with ColinCowieWeddings.com—a revolutionary new planning site for the stylish online couple. Four lucky couples will say "I do" when they receive their own private, personalized, lavish wedding ceremonies created by celebrity event planner Colin Cowie at ESB on Valentine's Day, the only time couples are able to marry at the building.
Couples from across the country submitted videos describing their love stories and why they should be chosen to marry or renew their vows at ESB. After 16 semi-finalists were selected by a panel of experts from CCW, ESB, Kleinfeld and Christian Oth Studio, the public voted for their favorite couples at www.Facebook.com/ColinCowieWeddings. The winning couples who will share the most memorable day of their lives with their family, friends and the world at the iconic landmark are:
- Stephanie Figarelle and Lela McArthur (Anchorage, AK) This couple first met in Anatomy and Physiology class and have been a team ever since. Now, the first-time visitors to NYC look forward to celebrating their love in one of the most recent states to pass marriage equality legislation.
- Phil Fung and Shawn Klein (New York, NY) The self-described "best friends" have been committed for over 18 years and will be the first same-sex couple from New York State to marry at ESB. On the 14th they will be surrounded by their friends and loving families, with some hailing from Shawn's home state of North Dakota!
- Angela Vega and Lubin Masibay (San Francisco, CA) After many movie nights spent watching Sleepless in Seattle, these two fun-loving nurses are thrilled to be getting married in the building made famous in the romantic film.
- Paula Cubero and Enrique Catter (Greenwich, CT) The couple, originally from Mexico and Peru respectively, met in NYC and planned a wedding in Mexico which was canceled due to a swine flu scare. Now expecting their first child, they are thrilled to wed in front of family and friends in the city where they fell in love at first sight.
"For 80 years, the Empire State Building has been an iconic destination for lovers from around the world...this is the ideal backdrop to celebrate the most romantic day of the year," says Melanie Maasch, Director of Brand Development and Public Relations at ESB. "With Colin Cowie's expertise, we are making dreams come true by creating stylishly elegant weddings for our winning couples."
Earlier today, to kick-off the weddings event the following day, actress Holly Robinson Peete and her husband, NFL star Rodney Peete, pulled a giant switch to light ESB red, pink and white in honor of Valentine's Day. After the lighting, the couple will renew their vows tonight at ESB in a stunning ceremony designed by Cowie, who also created their romantic wedding design 17 years ago.
"I am thrilled to be partnering with the Empire State Building to bring these four incredible couples the wedding of their dreams," exclaims Colin Cowie. "Each wedding will be completely unique and customized for each couple, highlighting the top bridal trends from ColinCowieWeddings.com for 2012. I'm especially touched to create a romantic vow renewal for my friends Holly and Rodney 17 years after the wedding I designed for them. Their love story is truly an inspiration."
Colin Cowie is one of the world's foremost authorities in lifestyle and wedding planning. During his 25-year career, Cowie has created and produced events for numerous high-profile and celebrity clients including Oprah Winfrey, Tom Cruise, Jennifer Lopez and Kim Kardashian. By personally curating every detail of the private ceremonies for the four winning couples, Colin will transform recently renovated spaces at ESB into glamorous events complementing the building's Art Deco heritage and grandeur.
As part of the prize package, each couple will exchange De Beers rings. Each bride will receive a designer gown from Kleinfeld, shoes from Nina Shoes. Makeup will be provided by Estee Lauder. The grooms will be outfitted by Men's Wearhouse. The couples will enjoy a two-night stay in Manhattan's exclusive Pierre Hotel, where the ColinCowieWeddings.com team of editors, stylists and photographer Christian Oth will prepare them for their special day. Couples will celebrate with private ceremonies and receptions with four unique looks featuring Dom Perignon and Godiva Chocolatier. Some of Cowie's favorite vendors, including Mary Giuliani Catering & Events; Swarovski; Cake Opera; Resource One, Inc.; Luxury Linens; Grymes Cannon Designs; Troy Curtis, Inc.; Classic Party Rentals; Red Bliss; and Levy Lighting, will create an unforgettable experience.
One Grand Prize couple will have the chance to win a $100,000 cash prize to kick off their married life in style. Following the February 14th ceremonies, albums and video from each wedding, shot by Christian Oth Studio, will be posted online for the public to view and then vote for their favorite wedding. The couple with the most votes will return to New York City to pick one of 15 envelopes, with the chance to win $100,000 among other fabulous prizes.
About the Empire State Building
Soaring 1,454 feet (from base to antenna) above Midtown Manhattan, the Empire State Building is the "World's Most Famous Office Building." With new investments in infrastructure, public areas and amenities, the Empire State Building has attracted first-rate tenants in a diverse array of industries from around the world. The skyscraper's robust broadcasting technology supports all major television and FM radio stations in the New York metropolitan market. The Empire State Building was named America's favorite building in a poll conducted by the American Institute of Architects. The Empire State Building Observatory is one of the world's most beloved attractions and is the region's #1 tourist destination. For more information on the Empire State Building, please visit www.esbnyc.com, www.facebook.com/EmpireStateBuilding or @ESBObservatory.
ColinCowieWeddings.com is the most compelling place online to reach the modern wedding-bound couple. Engaging the engaged with a dynamic fresh look, exclusive original content and a proprietary social network, the site delivers cutting edge fashion, beauty, wedding planning, ideas, travel, service and shopping in an accessible and attainable format for brides and grooms on all budgets. A maverick team of technologists, creatives and editors with authority, track-record and perspective in the current digital landscape, compliment Colin Cowie's 25 years of ground-breaking milestones in the wedding space, which have made him a coveted authority and resource when planning the biggest event of one's life. For more information on Colin Cowie Weddings, please visit www.colincowieweddings.com.
For Empire State Building- Blair Jacobs, Edelman
(212) 704-4494, Blair.Jacobs@edelman.com
For ColinCowieWeddings.com- Katie Clifford, Keri Levitt Communications
(212) 754-1400, firstname.lastname@example.org
SOURCE Empire State Building