A woman who sued a Carmel Valley ranch claiming it ruined her daughter's "dream wedding" lost her case last week.
Ladan Lynn Nazarian of Burlingame said Stonepine Estate failed to prepare for rain at the October 2010 wedding. The estate said it repeatedly tried to get her to order a tent.
Monterey County Superior Court Judge Tom Wills sided with the estate.
"It was as much of a slam dunk win for Stonepine as you can imagine," Stonepine's Monterey attorney, Michael Masuda, said.
Nazarian asked the $80,000 paid for the wedding be refunded, $100,000 in unspecified damages and $150,000 in emotional distress. She got nothing.
"I'm extremely disappointed the court could not see through the lies," Nazarian said, adding that she thought it was Stonepine Estate's owner who did not want the tent and rejected her attempts to get one. Nazarian said she "begged them" to get a tent four to five days before the wedding.
Nazarian had claimed in her suit that the wedding was ruined when 250 people had to be crammed into a greenhouse and guests were served cold food.
The truth, according Masuda and Stonepine owner Gordon Hentschel, was much different.
Stonepine told Nazarian a month before the wedding it thought she should order a tent, but she declined because she did not want the extra cost, Masuda said.
Then, three or four days before the wedding, weather reports started looking "sketchy" and Stonepine asked again, to no avail, he said.
Finally, on the day before the wedding, with weather reports indicating it may rain, they again asked Nazarian, but she refused.
"They can't force her to get a tent," Masuda said.
Nazarian acknowledged the estate had one email which said she did not want a tent but that it was only after Stonepine's event planner assured her it would not rain.
Masuda said Stonepine had "numerous emails" from Nazarian saying she did not want a tent.
When it rained, Stonepine moved the party into a building they use for so-called country weddings.
Masuda said the estate could have just told them to have the wedding in the rain — instead Stonepine's staff "worked really hard and was willing to put on the wedding, and dinner and reception."
Hentschel said he's probably been asked about the lawsuit more than 200 times the past two years but was unsure if it affected his business.
"That's the only negative we've ever had," he said of stories about the lawsuit. "Yes, it probably took a toll, but we'll never know how much."
Hentschel said his celebrity guests never complained about their stays.
Andre Agassi and Brooke Shields were married there in 1997 and Bill Gates, Clint Eastwood, The Rolling Stones, Jim Carey and former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger have stayed at the estate.
Phillip Molnar can be reached at 646-4487 or firstname.lastname@example.org