For us Jersey folk, Montauk might as well be at the end of the Earth. Depending on the day of the week, the journey could take a few hours or half a day, but when the destination is Gurney’s Inn and the event is the wedding of Sabrina and Matt, no amount of traffic could stop us from saying yes to photographing their stunning beach wedding at the furthest corner of Long Island.
This was my second pilgrimage to Gurney’s Inn and the place was just as stunning. Endless glass walls peer over a deep blue ocean with waves creep up on you when you least expect it, bungalows are scattered throughout the shoreline and crab and lobster rolls are within arms reach, no matter where you are. Sabrina and Matt couldn’t have picked a more magical place to hold one of the most important events of their lives. The last time I was at Gurney’s was on the eve of Hurricane Irene and things weren’t exactly calm. This time the weather couldn’t have been more perfect.
After a quick pit stop at the Lobster Roll Restaurant for the best lobster roll I’ve ever had in my life, Allison and I made our way over the rolling hills of Montauk and found our way to the beach. Sabrina and her lovely ladies were finishing up their spa session and getting dressed with smiles all around. The day was overcast, perfect for a first look on the beachfront. As the waves crashed upon the shore, Matt saw his soon-to-be wife for the first time and gave her a huge whirl and kiss and told her that he loved her. It’s these quiet moments that make my job so worth it.
The private ceremony was held on the beach as friends and family made their way across the sand and took their seats as the sea salty breeze gently swept through their hair. Sabrina looked simply radiant as she came down the long Gurney Inn stairs towards her waiting groom with her joyous mother at her side. The two spoke their personal vows with the sound of waves and seagulls serving as the soundtrack to their nuptials.
“Matt, I love you more than you can ever imagine,” Sabrina spoke through tearful eyes. “You’ve been my soul mate and my best friend since we were just teenagers. You have supported me through so much. I promise to support an encourage you through the rest of our lives together.”
“Sabrina, you are the most amazing, beautiful, kind and loving woman I’ve ever come to know,” Matt responded. “Ever since the day I met you, I knew we were meant to be together. As we move forward, I promise to love and protect you. To encourage and support you. To love every animal that you bring home and continue to be your best friend, and now husband, for the rest of our lives. I love you.” With a kiss, we were off to party the night away.
The reception was an absolute blast. I rarely see so many people actually dance during the party. Most guests at weddings just shuffle back and forth, nodding their heads, but this wasn’t one of those weddings. Dance offs took place every hour, couples dipped and dived around each other, and there was a general energy that wouldn’t die off, even as the night dwindled down. A little before midnight, Sabrina and Matt greeted their friends and family on the secluded beach, bathed in the glow of a roaring bonfire, and thanked everyone for coming to this destination wedding. It was then that I realized that Montauk might be a long trip for Allison and me, but most of the guests had come from hundreds of miles to share such a magical day with Matt and Sabrina. That really made me realize just how important friends and family are, and I am so happy to have been a part of it.
Gurney’s Inn Bakery
Diamond Cut Productions
Gurney’s Inn Salon and Spa
Wedding Gown Designer
Dix Hills, NY
Pastor Steve Howarth
First Presbyterian Church