Michael Tamer ’80 & Heather Tamer Rowley ’84


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