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Although their families were old friends, Juliana and Spencer’s paths did not cross until Spencer moved to Oklahoma City. The pair hit it off and a courtship began. Then, on a warm Saturday in August, Spencer surprised Juliana with a ring, a marriage proposal and a carriage ride! The ride led to Juliana’s parents’ home, Dr. and Mrs. E.N. Scott Samara, where balloons were released upon the couple’s arrival, and a celebration ensued.

The wedding weekend kicked off with a bridesmaids’ luncheon hosted by Juliana’s maternal grandmother, Dolores Homsey, and her aunts at the Coach House. The groom’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Najeeb Simon, hosted the rehearsal dinner at The History Center. After a lot of planning and preparation, Juliana Lea Samara married Spencer Najeeb Simon on February 22, 2014 at St. Elijah Orthodox Christian Church. Reverend Father John Salem and Father Jeremy Davis officiated the ceremony with Father Constantine Nasr assisting.

At the church, the bride walked in through a beautiful arch of lilies, roses, hydrangeas and greenery. She walked on a custom-made aisle cloth that featured the bride and groom’s monogram. Each pew was adorned with bouquets of flowers and cascading greenery. Large gold urns of white hydrangeas, roses and greenery flanked the altar doors and were the backdrop of the ceremony. The Saint Elijah Choir, directed by Al Mamary, provided music during the ceremony by singing traditional Orthodox hymns.

Juliana was escorted down the aisle by her father in a beautiful gown designed by Carolina Herrera. The dress featured a strapless, sweetheart neckline and a full, ball gown skirt that flowed into an extended chapel-length train. Delicate embellishments made of hand-cut silk taffeta flowers, leaves, scrollwork and a lattice grid came together to form floral bouquets on the tulle skirt, as well as the bodice. The gown was highlighted with pearls and glass caviar beads. To complete her ensemble, Juliana wore a family heirloom veil of Alencon re-embroidered lace, which framed her face and flowed beyond her train.

Rachel Samara Bolen and Elizabeth Samara Haggard served as the matrons of honor. The bridesmaids wore matching pearl pink strapless dresses and carried bouquets similar to the bride’s. Floyd Simon III served as best man. The men wore black tuxedos with black bow ties. Claire Elizabeth Samara and Madison Denise Simon made darling flower girls in matching white tea-length dresses. George Leslie Bolen, Ralph Leslie Bolen and Scott Esber Samara, served as a trio of ring bearers in tiny black suits, bow ties and white pocket hankies.

After the priest pronounced Juliana and Spencer husband and wife, they rang the bell in the church courtyard. The guests then moved to the Oklahoma City Golf and Country Club for the reception and were met with a very romantic entry. Hundreds of candles created a walled-in courtyard, which surrounded an antique water fountain dripping with fresh flowers. As guests arrived, they were greeted with a glass of rose champagne infused with 24-carat gold shavings.

Flowered crystal and gold candelabras decorated the ballroom. The main centerpiece of the great hall was the cake table, which was covered with thousands of white hydrangeas, orchids and roses. Heavy, gold baroque mirrors covered in flowers enhanced the venue. A canopy of these frames hung over the gold-mirrored dance floor. The Dr. Larry “T-Byrd” Gordon and The Music People Love Orchestra/Show Band provided the music. Middle Eastern sweets and specialties were served. The wedding cake, created by Mishelle Handy Cakes, was displayed on a table adorned with thousands of hydrangeas and orchids. The blush-colored icing on the cake and the metallic gold accents followed the overall theme of the wedding.

At the end of the reception, the band played “Oh When The Saints” as guests escorted Juliana and Spencer out to their getaway car, a 20-year-old Mercedes convertible that the family owns for sentimental reasons. The newlyweds retreated to their honeymoon in Antigua. The couple currently resides in Oklahoma City.