“I will never forget Neil’s proposal,” says Julie Hackler, “not because it was over-the-top but because the way he proposed is just like him: very understated and selfless. It happened on his birthday, but I really got the great gift.” As Julie tells it, the evening was a romantic one in a bustling Charlotte restaurant a few cities away from where Julie and Neil had dated as University of North Carolina students. “We had a fabulous table tucked away in the corner—there was a jazz band playing, intimate ambiance,” Julie recalls. “Neil sat across from me, slipped a card across the table, and told me to open it. It said, ‘I love you, and what I want more than anything for my birthday is you....Look up.’ When I did, he had a box that looked like a ring could be inside.” She guessed right and answered the gift with an emphatic, “Yes!” Born and raised in Myrtle Beach, Julie wanted to follow the tradition set by her parents and sister and marry at the First Methodist Church there, then hold a reception at The Dunes Golf and Beach Club. But she also knew she wanted to inject her own sense of style into the traditional location—a fresh take on modern romance, she says. “And I hoped to take our guests to a ‘new’ place even though the majority had been there hundreds of times,” Julie added. Kristin Newman of Kristin Newman Designs worked with Heather Barrie of gathering event + design to revamp the location into “Manhattan-style fab” per Julie’s vision. The result? A monochromatic marvel that wowed guests first with an outdoor cocktail hour overlooking the ocean, then with a seated dinner inside a transformed ballroom. As the couple twirled about the dance floor to the tunes of Atlanta Sound Band, the verdict was unanimous: The night couldn’t have been any more sublime.