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Michael Tamer ’80 & Heather Tamer Rowley ’84

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A Labor of Love

When Christine, the daughter of Michael Tamer and Annette Zotti LaHoda ’80, announced her engagement, her entrepreneurial dad decided to throw the wedding of his daughter’s dreams—and to fulfill one of his own.

“People tell me that business is not personal, and I tell them that great business is always personal,” Michael said. “Here was an opportunity to give the coolest gift you could ever give to your daughter, and it turned into a great business opportunity as well.”

Michael is alluding to the construction of the Piazza in the Village, a family-owned-and-run wedding facility in Colleyville, Texas, that opened in January 2009. Christine Tamer and Jonathan Bassham were the first couple to be married there in a wedding that was featured on WE television network’s Platinum Weddings.

Michael runs the facility with his sister Heather Tamer Rowley ’84. Michael, owner of Tamer Partners Corp., is the sales and financial person; Heather takes care of wedding coordination, billing, and marketing. Their spouses also play critical business roles.

The Piazza’s uniqueness lies in its inclusiveness, Heather said. This 15,000-square-foot facility boasts a 300-person chapel, a 4,000-square-foot ballroom, a bell tower with bells timed to ring when vows are taken, a bride’s room outfitted with a big-screen television to watch guests arriving, and a groom’s room stocked with an X-Box 360 and an I-Pod docking station.

The Piazza also offers live Web broadcasts of weddings.

“It’s a very upscale venue,” said Heather. “We’ve already booked over 200 events.”

In fact, the brother/sister duo booked 30 weddings before the $4 million facility was even finished. Heather is now booking weddings well into 2011. Their success has prompted the pair to consider opening a second facility.

“It was a monstrous risk in a down time economically,” Michael said. “We’re really pleased so far. It was a well thought out entrepreneurial venture wrapped in the purest of intentions. It was a labor of love.”

For more information, go to http://www.piazzainthevillage.com.

—Marybeth Reilly-McGreen

3 comments to “Michael Tamer ’80 & Heather Tamer Rowley ’84”

  1. Marsha Watro comments:

    We’re all so proud of you! This is a great accomplishment and the best part is that you both love what you are doing and can share your success directly with your family.
    Congratulations!,
    (Cousin) Marsha Watro

    --Posted: January 13th, 2010 at 9:57 am
  2. Stephanie Harris-Kuiper comments:

    I enjoy watching Platinum Weddings because of the fabulous decorations ideas However, I generally find the brides and grooms pretentious. However, when Plantinum Weddings aired tonight, I truly believe Christine Tamer is in love with her mate. There was something very pure and genuine about Christine. She did not appear enchantred with the momentaty thrill of the fairytale wedding (big ring puffy gown trailing veil, etc)
    Christine sincerely projected excitement from being in love. I don’t know her or her family but I wish them well and may they live in God’s loving embrace.

    --Posted: February 7th, 2010 at 11:21 pm
  3. Kate comments:

    Every bride-to-be should include the viewing of Christine & Jonathan’s wedding and the preparations leading up to their very special day. I’ve seen many platinum weddings that are so over-the-top in their tacky presentations. They appear to be nothing more than a contest where the winner is the couple who can spend the most money in the most outrageous and noticeable manner. Christine’s gown was so elegant and tasteful in its simplicity. It allowed her natural beauty to shine through rather than being overpowered by so many gowns that overwhelm the bride so that the focus is on the dress, not the couple being married. Having been raised in a wealthy family, we had an unlimited budget but our main focus was on our guests enjoying themselves, sharing our special day with the people who mean so much to us. Fifteen years later, we still have people remark on our wedding and what a good time they had. It was obvious that Christine & Jonathan achieved the same. Thanks for sharing such a special moment with us.

    --Posted: December 17th, 2011 at 6:04 am

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