Though Ryan Salts first met Katy San Miguel at Central Catholic High School’s Military Ball in 2007, it wasn’t until a month later when the pair bumped into each other again that sparks flew. Katy was a freshman at Incarnate Word High School while Ryan was a sophomore in ROTC. “He made me laugh the whole time and asked for my number,” Katy recalls. They started dating two weeks later and the high school sweethearts have been inseparable ever since.
After nearly a decade of dating, Ryan planned the perfect proposal at the couple’s favorite high school date spot at Huebner Oaks. “We watched ‘Hail, Caesar,’ and then he led me to a park bench where he got down on one knee and proposed to me under the stars,” Katy says. “It was quiet and romantic, with just the two of us like I had always wanted.”
Katy was a laid-back bride-to-be. “Planning was easy because I had so many family members willing to help me—and because I’m not very picky,” she explains. “It was easy to make decisions, but the hardest part was making appointments that fit my schedule.”
The couple chose to plan the wedding themselves, and as soon as they walked into Éilan Hotel & Spa, they knew it was their wedding venue. “Éilan was gorgeous and the staff were all very accommodating and helpful,” Katy says. “We felt like they would take care of us there.”
Completely surpassing the couple’s expectations, the Éilan hotel staff went above and beyond answering questions and making the entire process less intimidating for the husband- and wife-to-be. “I knew everything would turn out beautifully, but the staff really made our day unforgettable. Everyone, including staff, waiters, valets, spa, and so on, made us feel at home.”
Finding a wedding photographer can be a daunting task, but Katy and Ryan knew the minute they met with Rocelyn from Ara Photography that she would capture every precious moment of their special day. “Rocelyn was everything we wanted in a wedding photographer,” says Katy. “She captured all the little moments people might miss and was great at working with the whole wedding party, especially the flower girls.” Making the couple comfortable, keeping them laughing during photo sessions, and going above and beyond to get every shot possible, Rocelyn was the perfect dose of personality and energy the bride and groom had dreamed of finding. “I fell in love with Rocelyn’s attention to detail and her creativity,” Katy says. “She’s an extremely talented photographer.”
KEEPING WITH TRADITION
When February 25 arrived, Katy and her maids were treated to photo-ready makeup and updos by The Spa at Éilan before the bride slipped into her ivory, A-line gown with lace appliques and her hand-beaded, cathedral-length veil with Swarovski crystals, pearls, and beads. Katy’s maids wore gold heels with their flowing green chiffon dresses in varying silhouettes, ensembles that perfectly complemented the wedding day’s color palette of emerald and gold.
For the ceremony, the breathtaking St. Anthony Mary Claret church was a beautiful setting, perched atop a hill with large windows for viewing the Hill Country scenery. Katy and Ryan shared a traditional Catholic mass with a church choir and pianist, the symbolic lasso, and a presentation of flowers to the Virgin Mary.
THE EMERALD CITY
After the long awaited nuptials, guests entered the elegant Éilan Hotel & Spa for a cocktail hour and open bar while the newlyweds and wedding party had photos taken. The reception area was embellished with ivory, gold glitter, and emerald green accents. “The theme I was alluding to was The Emerald City from The Wizard of Oz,” Katy explains.
Centerpieces of various shapes and sizes adorned tables with blooming mocha dahlias, pink roses, and lush greenery. Every table where a child was seated had a surprise toy at the place setting to keep them entertained. And the room was breathtaking with a display of desserts, from a green-themed sweet bar to a three-tiered naked cake with cascading flowers and 200 chocolate-covered strawberries. “The groom picked the actual wedding cake, so the bride got her strawberries,” Katy laughs.
The new husband and wife shared in a traditional reception with dinner and a mariachi band and then first dances, champagne toasting, cake cutting, the “dollar dance,” and the bouquet and garter toss. “The dollar dance was fun because we got to have one-on-one time dancing with our guests,” Katy says. “You can’t save a dance for every guest during the night, but the dollar dance makes it possible.”
Looking back, Katy’s favorite memory from the day was seeing Ryan waiting for her at the end of the aisle—a moment she’d been dreaming of for 10 years. “Everything went exactly like we wanted it to, but even if it hadn’t, the only important thing was that we were both there,” the bride says. “It was incredible to see everything we envisioned come together and to have the whole day to celebrate finally marrying my high school sweetheart.”
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