Bride: Niambi Wilder, 32, Communications Officer

Groom: Troy-Lee Winter, 33, Procurement Specialist

The Big Day: May 24, 2014

Wedding Location: Playa Flamingo, Costa Rica

Wedding Style: Beach Elegance

A Change Of Plans
Sometimes one tiny decision can change the course of your entire life. Troy was supposed to leave Washington, D.C. and visit New York City the very same weekend that Niambi was planning to leave her home in New York to visit her college friends in D.C. If Troy had stuck with his original plan they would never have met up that Saturday night at a mutual friend’s party in Maryland. They know now that their love connection was truly meant to be.

Party Over Here
At the party, Troy and Niambi’s friends casually introduced them, but they had no idea at the time that they were playing cupid too. They shook hands, said hello, and then went their separate ways. As the night went on, Niambi and her friends made their way onto the dance floor to make the most of the party, which was a little dead. Little did she know, Troy was checking her out the entire time, waiting for the right opportunity to approach the cute girl in the white pants. When Niambi separated from her friends to get a little fresh air, Troy made his move. He walked up and re-introduced himself.  She was intrigued. “He had this confidence and sincerity about him that captured me, and I was unlike any woman he’d met before,” says Niambi. “From that moment on, we were goners and completely inseparable. We flirted, danced, and talked—yes in the club!—all night. It was like time stood still just for us.”

Neither of them wanted the night to end. After exchanging information, Troy walked Niambi to her car and made her promise to let him know that she got home safely. (Gentleman alert!) “I called him when I got in and we talked for hours,” says the bride. “We never stopped. We sustained a long-distance relationship for a few months – taking turns to visit each other – until I moved back to D.C. for my career, and him. (Wink!)”

Double The Love
Troy’s surprise proposal for Niambi went off without a hitch. He popped the question at a big birthday party for his mom in front of all of their friends and family. Troy brought his mother to the middle of the room and gave a lovely speech wishing her a happy birthday. Next he told her he was going to give her a birthday gift she would only get once and then called Niambi to the middle of the room. “He got down on one knee, pulled out a beautiful ring that was just my style and size, professed his love for me and asked me to marry him,” she tells us. The best part: Knowing the celebration wouldn’t be the same without both of our families present, Troy got Niambi’s parents, only sister, two of her brothers and one of her best friends to travel from Ohio, New York and Atlanta just to be a part of the surprise! “When I saw them, I lost it!” says Niambi. It was an engagement to remember. See their romantic destination wedding and share their love.

Photos: Ilene Squires Photography