This is an out-of sequence post – I’ll be doing a few of those to document 2019 travels before the advent of this blog.
We were honored to be invited to the wedding of Frannie Cormier, daughter of our good friends Art and Linda Cormier. Our mutual friends Terry and Julie Wright were also invited, so we decided to travel together for a Westlake weekend.
The events centered around the Westlake Village Inn and the attached Stonehaus restaurant. I’d been to the Stonehaus previously on business travel, and knew it was a stellar little place.
It certainly didn’t disappoint, with beauty, great wine and food, and a strange bohemian-yuppie vibe. My kind of place.
The wedding was held at the Triunfo Creek vineyard, a great venue halfway over the hills between Westlake and Malibu. Triunfo was damaged a bit during last year’s tragic fires, but unlike many other homes and businesses it survived and has mostly repaired. It turned out to be a great choice.
The day before the wedding we took a drive across the hills to Malibu and witnessed firsthand the devastation of the Woolsey Fire. Even after a rainy spring and some regrowth, the damage was everywhere. Hundreds of homes burned to the foundation, hills and canyons laid bare – it was pretty humbling to see, six months after the event. Mile after mile of burned hillsides and canyons. I didn’t get any pictures because I was driving very carefully through twisty, windy roads, so you’ll have to take my word for it. You can also see for yourself in this article from The Atlantic.
During our drive to and from Malibu we also witnessed a sports car rally of some sort, both parked in Malibu and racing across those same twisty hill roads. It was pretty cool watching six-figure classic and modern sports cars blow by us. Ferraris, Lamborghinis, McLarens, Vettes, Porsches, Cobra-replicas, M-series Beemers…you name it. Pretty much every car I’ll never own.
Once we got to Malibu we saw some of the rally cars parked and were able to get some pictures.
All told, our across-the-hills-and-back excursion to Malibu was enjoyable and educational.
The actual wedding turned out to be a memorable event. Beautiful setting, great food and drink, a clearly-in-love couple, and lots of interesting wedding guests Here we are all gussied up for the wedding.
And here are my excellent table and traveling partners. We had a fun and memorable evening meal under the stars.
One more shot of our table including yours truly (thanks Terry).
And of course at the center of it all were the happy couple and their families. The ceremony and subsequent introductions, toasts and celebrations were fun, inspirational and altogether enjoyable. The wedding organizers and “sponsors” (the parents who paid for it all) did a fabulous job making all the guests feel special.
And speaking of special, here’s the Father-Daughter dance, done stylishly by Art and Frannie. I remember this moment from Emily’s wedding, and I’m sure Art has this moment burned into his brain.
We left Westlake the following morning none the worse for wear and tear, in plenty of time to beat the LA traffic. Thus ended our short but enjoyable trip to Westlake with the Wrights, the Cormiers and all their guests.