Khaleelah Shabazz and Tony Monroe are the definition of authenticity and real love. Fate led me to this couple just in the nick of time. I unexpectedly met the bride-to-be at San Francisco City Hall while she was applying for a marriage license. This happened one month prior to Khaleelah and Tony’s San Francisco City Hall wedding ceremony. Lucky enough for me, they still needed a wedding photographer to document the occasion.
“I guess it was fate because I couldn’t have been placed in better hands on my special day,” says Khaleelah. “Alicia was amazing! Very detailed, knowledgeable, aware and patient.”
More couples are choosing courthouses and city halls over traditional wedding chapels and banquet halls in light of the pandemic. It’s easy to understand this trend. Elopement ceremonies and microweddings are safer, less stressful, more affordable and sometimes, more romantic! I love small- and large-scale weddings equally. What matters most to me as a photographer is that couples genuinely get to enjoy their wedding and stay true to their love story/style.
Khaleelah and Tony’s wedding party was intimate. Their group only included immediate family members and close friends. While big wedding parties can be fun and festive, small wedding parties definitely have their benefits too. For one thing, it lets the couple really focus on each other and the reason for the day. Smaller wedding parties are easier for couples to coordinate and accommodate. Also, having less wedding party members allows the couple to share more meaningful moments with their forever family.
Khaleelah and Tony were first introduced to each other through a mutual friend in August of 2018. The couple dined at a seafood restaurant in Fremont, California for their first date. Khaleelah knew that Tony was a man she could spend the rest of her life with after just a few months of dating. She describes her groom as gentle, kind-hearted and selfless. The relationship that Tony shares with his mother won Khaleelah’s heart over. Together, this couple share many values and characteristics.
In 2021, Tony proposed to Khaleelah in a unique way. He popped the question old-fashion-style while they were at his mother’s house. Khaleelah was surprised, but not taken aback because she knew her future husband had a particular way of communicating.
“I wasn’t really asked, I was told that we were getting married,” laughs Khaleelah. “It’s a joke, but kind of true. The groom said “We’re getting married in March of 2022 , pick a date!””
She chose Friday March 25, 2022 and the rest is history. Keep scrolling to witness more beautiful images from Khaleelah and Tony’s San Francisco City Hall wedding ceremony.
San Francisco City Hall is a historic landmark and a national wedding destination. If you want the elegance and opulence of a royal wedding without white horses and a castle drawbridge, this is the place. San Francisco City Hall, aka “The People’s Palace,” gets its name for stunning staircases, sky-high ceilings and enormous, ornate windows. I had so much fun taking Khaleelah and Tony’s wedding portraits at this incredible four-story wedding venue.
Khaleelah’s favorite moment from the day was looking into her husband’s eyes while saying “I do” and working with Alicia.
“My wedding went better and smoother than I ever expected and Alicia had a lot to do with my special day,” says Khaleelah.
One-Hour Weddings – For $1,000, couples receive private use of either the Mayor’s Balcony or a Fourth-Floor Gallery for one-hour on a weekday. Rental cost includes an hour of access for up to 100 guests. Chairs are available for an additional rental fee.
Two-Hour Weddings – Exchange vows on the Grand Staircase of the Rotunda on Saturday for $5,000. This package accommodates up to 200 guests.
Evening Weddings – Say “I do” under the golden dome! Host your cocktail hour and reception in the North Light Court, or dance the night away in the Rotunda. San Francisco City Hall is available for evening weddings on weekdays and weekends starting at $10,000.
Click here for more information on how to plan and book your San Francisco City Hall wedding.
On Thursday, Jan. 14, 1954 Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio were famously wed at San Francisco City Hall at approximately 1:48 p.m. The global icon and the American baseball player had a rocky relationship and divorced in October, just nine months after marrying. In my opinion, beautiful bride Khaleelah looked just as stunning as Marilyn Monroe! Khaleelah and Tony’s marriage will have a much happier ending than Monroe and DiMaggio’s legendary heartbreak.
The bride and groom had a clear vision for their special day, even though they chose city hall over a traditional wedding venue. San Francisco City Hall was beautiful. Khaleelah had dreamt of the day since she was 14-years-old. Their wedding color palette included three gorgeous shades of purple (lavender, purple and wisteria), ivory and silver. The palette created a simple yet elegant look that set a romantic tone.
After Khaleelah and Tony’s San Francisco City Hall wedding ceremony, the party feasted at a Brazilian steakhouse. The newlyweds sat at the head of a long dinner table covered with flowers, candles, decor and glasses of champagne on ice.
Mr. and Mrs. Monroe’s two-tiered wedding cake featured a waterfall of purple and silver flowers with a touch of baby’s breath. Khaleelah and Tony’s San Francisco City Hall wedding day was perfect. It was exactly what they wanted, from start to finish.
“It’s safe to say that I did not have a traditional wedding but I definitely had a night to remember and it was perfect for us,” says Khaleelah.
For more elopement and/or microwedding ceremony inspiration, click here. Amanda Kastner and Justin Ippoliti chose Geyserville Inn as their wine country elopement wedding destination.
Photographer // Alicia Parks Photography
Venue // San Francisco City Hall