Monday, February 01, 2010

Couple: Star wedding planner Tutera got cold feet

NEW YORK – A newlywed couple say celebrity party planner David Tutera jilted them by dropping out of their lavish Singapore nuptials about 10 days before the ceremony — a claim that Tutera disputed Monday.

The couple's allegations were made Friday in a lawsuit filed by molecular biologist Melissa Chin and information technology consultant Steve Choi.

The two, who ultimately married as planned in August, said Tutera left them scrambling to pull off the six-figure affair.

They said they paid Tutera at least $265,000 and even had a breed of orchid designed in his honor. In return, the reality show host promised to help "in creating their special and magical day," according to the lawsuit filed in a Manhattan court.

But after travel arrangements hit a minor snag, the couple said, Tutera not only didn't show but also canceled or didn't fulfill orders for items including the bride's bouquet.

A Tutera spokeswoman said the couple missed a final payment, and he was told not to come because the wedding fund had run dry.

"Tutera did as advised" and looks forward to resolving the dispute in court, said the spokeswoman, Eda Kalkay.

The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages, saying the Massachusetts couple "suffered severe emotional distress wondering what items were going to be delivered for their wedding."

The New York-based Tutera hosts "My Fair Wedding" on the WE TV network. His clients have included Star Jones.

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