A Weekend Wedding In Paradise

Special To The Voice-Tribune

It was virtually love at first sight for Frank Poschinger and Lisa Pantoja. A year after meeting, the couple made their dreams a life-long reality in a touching ceremony on a beach in Jamaica.

Just three months prior to the wedding, the two were enjoying dinner at Buck’s restaurant in Louisville when Frank surprised Lisa with a specially-orchestrated proposal, made on bended knee and complete with presentation of the ring as dessert under a silver platter, further encased within a silver keepsake box.

Seeing no reason to delay the happiest day of their lives, Frank and Lisa set the wedding date with just enough time to arrange the perfect ceremony, which would take place in the tiny paradise of Negril. Perched on the western tip of Jamaica, the spot offers an exotic mix of miles of white, soft-sand beaches and stunning cliff views, and the wedding  party savored it all during the wedding celebration for Frank and Lisa on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2012.

The couple and guests stayed at the five-star Riu Palace resort on Tropical Bay in Negril, which rests on a three-mile crescent of tranquil beach. The party dined at the Palace’s signature restaurant, Fusion, on Thursday night, and  on Friday ventured to the nearby cliffs at the Catcha Falling Star Resort for drinks and the sunset, followed by a stop at the renowned Rockhouse Restaurant for the rehearsal dinner. Noted local photographer Sam Hunter accompanied the group and handled all photography for the weekend.

The beautiful wedding ceremony was held on the beach the next afternoon. Luckily, the weather was perfect! The sand aisle was lined with coral conch shells, tropical foliage and torches, which led to an ivory-draped, four-cornered arch, accented with small coral tropical flower arrangements.

After the guests were seated, the groom made his way to the arch as Jamaican reggae music the couple had selected played. He was dressed in a custom-tailored coral shirt and a tan linen vest and pants by Island Importers. He walked barefoot in the sand to stand next to the minister, the Most Reverend Donald R. Wellingham.

The bride then appeared wearing a silk, sleeveless, ivory gown,  handmade in Bali by Island Importers. The gown was embroidered with sea shells and pearls around the neck, front and waist, and featured a small train. She also wore matching ivory foot jewelry by Elegantz as she walked barefoot in the sand to her waiting groom.

Following the service, the wedding party quickly changed into swimsuits for a sunset cruise on a chartered catamaran to the cliffs. They stopped by Rick’s Café to watch the famous cliff divers – and to dive in themselves, too! The party on the boat was highlighted by a brilliant red Jamaican sunset and an Appleton rum toast to the newlyweds by the ship’s Captain.

After the romantic evening cruise, the group headed to the Riu resort’s prime steak restaurant for a delicious wedding dinner. A toast was given to the couple by the groom’s son, Jason Poschinger, and the newlyweds were pleasantly surprised by two gorgeous floral arrangements, specially prepared for them by the hotel.

The couple continued their honeymoon on the beach for a few more days, then ventured on to the nearby cliffs, staying in a villa at the Catcha Falling Star Resort. Frank and Lisa took in stunning, open ocean vista views and densely flowered, manicured gardens. The idyllic setting was completed by the almost daily appearance of wild dolphins to serenade them.

Once they arrived back in Louisville, Lisa and Frank hosted a reception at their home on Douglass Boulevard on Dec. 12 for over 60 family and friends who weren’t able to attend the destination wedding ceremony. The reception was hosted by the bride’s sister, Carmen Evans, who presented hand-wrapped favors to all guests, and by the groom’s sister, Robin Wickham. The special occasion was catered by Claudia Herrick.

The new Mrs. Poschinger, a native of Seymour, Ind., is the daughter of Rae Pantoja and the late Mario Pantoja. Lisa is a graduate of Jeffersontown High School and obtained her degree after studying at both the University of Colorado and the University of Louisville. She is employed as an extended dental assistant at a practice in Madison, Ind.

Mr. Poschinger, who is from Louisville, is the son of the late Wanda Poschinger and the late Frank Poschinger Jr. Frank graduated from Trinity High School and obtained both his undergraduate and MBA degrees from the University of Louisville. He serves as CEO of Poschinger & Associates, which provides financial consulting to businesses. He also owns Poschinger Group, which invests in real estate.

The happy newlyweds plan to continue to live in Louisville.

Photos By Sam Hunter