Roma and Umar gave off royal-wedding vibes posing for a portrait among their majestic florals. Photo by Caroline Ghetes
IT ALL BEGAN at Disco: That’s where Roma Hmoud and Umar Khan first met through mutual friends (years later, Roma would have her bridal shower there as a nod to that first night, but a lot would happen in between). In 2019, Umar got down on one knee at the Millennium Park ice rink, celebrating his love for her and her love for the holidays.
The couple rescheduled their nuptials not once or twice, but four times throughout the pandemic. “Stay patient and remember that you’re still marrying the person you love—it’s just taking a little longer than anticipated,” Roma advises other brides. They officially said “I do” in August 2020, opting for an intimate outdoor ceremony on the steps of Wilmette’s Bahá’í House of Worship—but for their 300-person reception October 8, 2021, they pulled out all the stops.
Since she was young, Roma had dreamed of getting married at The Drake. “It’s quintessential Chicago,” she says. “And we have a slight obsession with the royals, so knowing Princess Diana stayed there sealed the deal.” The couple pulled up in a Ferrari 250 GT Spyder—a Ferris Bueller replica and another homage to Chicago—and entered the ballroom, beautifully bedecked in extravagant, deep-purple and pink florals. The fete featured a Middle Eastern dance performance by a zaffa group—complete with swords—and nods to the couple’s Arabic heritage, like traditional knafeh for dessert. And just as their relationship began with dancing, so did their life as newlyweds: Guests partied until late into the night in joyful and long-awaited celebration.
After a canceled event in 2020, the couple was finally able to have a party at their dream location, The Drake. Photo by Caroline Ghetes
The newlyweds cruised through the streets of Chicago in a red Ferrari 250 GT Spyder. Photo by Caroline Ghetes
The couple at their ceremony at Bahá’í House of Worship a year prior. Photob by Isra Kamal
Deeppurple and red florals made up extravagant arrangements. Photo by Caroline Ghetes
Middle Eastern traditions like the katb el-kitab ceremony and a zaffa group at the reception were incorporated into their wedding. Photo by Caroline Ghetes
Venue& Catering The Drake, thedrakehotel.com
Wedding Planner Erica Vanco, Estera Events, esteraevents.com
Bride’s Shoes Jimmy Choo, jimmychoo.com
Groom’s Tux custom Ralph Lauren Purple Label, ralphlauren.com
Groom’s Shoes Prada, prada.com
Groom’s Watch Rolex, rolex.com
Florals Top That Table, topthattable.com
Invitations Kaleigh Wiese, kaleighwiese.com
Cake CAKE, cakechicago.com
Sweets Al-Bawadi, albawadigrill.com
Photo Booth Snapbooth Chicago, snapboothchicago.com
Videographer Rush Productions, rushphotovideo.com
Photographer Caroline Ghetes, carolineghetes.com
Photography by: Photographed by Caroline Ghetes and Isra Kamel