Feb 11, 2016 Love Actually, Precious Platinum
Our initiative ‘Love Actually’ is a photo series featuring couples who actively seek ideas and inspiration from WeddingSutra. The series celebrates beautiful people in love as they start their lives together: because real love can only begin, never end.
Newlyweds Madhur Kabra and Anisha Jhawar are based in Hauz Khas, Delhi. Madhur works as Country Manager at Impendi Analytics, Delhi. Anisha is a finance advisor at Dell, Gurgaon.
Their first meeting was arranged by their parents. Anisha remembers, “We met at Starbucks and had a great time talking to each other. But we were both so against the idea of an arranged marriage that we decided not to go down that road.” As luck would have it though, they got in touch a few months later. “We just hit it off and started dating,” she laughs, “There was no looking back! We decided to tie the knot in a few months.”
There was a small engagement ceremony with close family members in May 2015. “I think platinum is one of the most beautiful metals for jewellery, especially for wedding rings. We exchanged Platinum diamond rings at our engagement. In fact it is the only piece of jewellery I wear and surprisingly, it’s the same for Madhur too! Very unexpected.”
When asked about their day of love, Anisha continues, “There are a couple of dates we like to reminisce about – the 3rd, when we first spoke and the 18th, when we first met. It seems like a fairly long time ago now, but whenever we think about these milestones we take a few moments to relive the magic of our initial conversations! We had a feeling that it was something special. Now we know it really was.”
Anisha and Madhur wed on the 5th of December 2015 and their wedding celebrations were held over a five day period. “The planning and shopping for the wedding was quite crazy!” Anisha remembers, “The initial days especially were the most stressful as both families were looking at multiple locations – Delhi, Jaipur, Agra, Pushkar, Siliguri – the list goes on. We took almost a month to finalize the venue because we did not want to get married in a typical hotel-like setting. We were considering resorts with open spaces to enjoy the early winter season but with a capacity of about 150 rooms, which most boutique resorts didn’t have.”
The family finally found Heritage Resorts and Spa in Manesar, Gurgaon, which Anisha says “was exactly what we were looking for with its vintage, royal palace feel. The room capacity wasn’t enough and we had to book the Hyatt, nearby. Our functions were split across these two locations.”
This major hurdle passed, everyone “got into the groove and had six months to prep for the wedding,” she says, “Since both of us work, we spent most of our weekends doing wedding work which was fun and tiresome at the same time. The good part was that we were still spending time together. We hired an events company – Aanchal Decorators (http://www.aanchaldecorators.com/) to help us ease the process.”
The line-up of events took the families into consideration, Anisha explains, “Since my family is from Siliguri, we kickstarted the functions there with a Ganesh puja and a ladies’ sangeet night. Madhur’s family had similar functions here in Delhi. After that, my family flew to Delhi for the main events, where the roster looked like this:
3rd Dec - Youngsters/Bachelors for friends – at Zu Tisch, GK1
4th Dec A.M. – Mehendi – Heritage Resorts & Spa – Gurgaon
4th Dec P.M. – Engagement & Sangeet – Hyatt, Gurgaon
5th Dec - Wedding and Reception – Heritage Resorts & Spa – Gurgaon
8th Dec - 2nd Reception – Jaipur
To recover from the wedding festivities, Anisha and Madhur jetted off for a 2 week honeymoon to Australia and New Zealand soon after. “We spent the first 4 days in Australia on the Gold Coast as we wanted to just relax on the beach post the wedding madness. After that we headed to New Zealand, rented a car and drove around the North Island – Auckland, Paihia, Rotorua and Matamata, all breathtakingly beautiful. It was a magical experience!”
If you’re getting married in 2016 and would like to be a part of ‘Love Actually’ write to us (email@example.com) with the link to your FB profiles, wedding date and ‘How you met’ story. Selected couples will be invited for the shoots in Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore and Chennai.
Photographys by Prateek Kashyap
Feb 1, 2016 Bridal Fashion and Beauty
Liven up your lips with these festive shades from Lakmé Absolute Range.
The perfect shade of lipstick that goes with your wedding day lehenga/ saree and suits your skin tone and style is the most essential part of your big-day look. With a little help from real brides, we have narrowed down to 10 pretty options for every bride. The lipstick colors below, inspired from the Lakmé Absolute range, are perfect for brides who want to add a little extra to their already gorgeous smile.
One stroke of contoured perfection with the Lakmé Absolute Sculpt Studio Hi-Definition Matte Lipstick in Coral Flare shade makes you think spring and provides full coverage so that you can wear it day to night with a rich matte finish.
Makeup Artist- Shruti Sharma (Delhi NCR). Photo Courtesy- Tarun Chawla Photography.
Makeup Artist- Shalini Singh (Delhi).
Pretty in Pinks
It’s hard to go wrong with pink lipsticks. The Lakmé Absolute Creme Lipcolor in Sheer Berry enriched with Vitamin E and Wheat germ oil gives a rich and polished look.
Makeup Artist- Noor Mohammed (Chennai). Photo Courtesy- Zero Gravity Photography.
For brides who like their pinks a bit bold, a single coat of the Lakmé Absolute Sculpt Studio Hi-Definition Matte Lipstick in Pink Me Up shade gives you vibrant pink lips with the right amount of pop.
Makeup Artist- Neha Kamra (Mumbai).Photo Courtesy- Anoop Padalkar Photography.
Red lips are timeless and make an elegant statement. Deep reds like this gorgeous number by Lakmé Absolute Sculpt Studio Hi-Definition Matte Lipstick in Red Rush shade is sure to make heads turn.
Makeup Artist- Singhar by Ayesha (New Jersey). Photo Courtesy- Nadia D. Photography.
The long-wear Lakmé Absolute Sculpt Studio Hi-Definition Matte Lipstick in Red Flames shade gives a radiant sculpted look with full coverage and a matte finish.
Makeup Artist- Farin Jaffri (Ahmedabad).Photo Courtesy- Amit Barot Photography.
Burst of Fuchsia
A vibrant fuchsia lip color is playful yet dramatic and one cannot go wrong with the Lakmé Absolute Sculpt Studio Hi-Definition Matte Lipstick in Pink Glam shade with a dab of gloss to add oomph to the bridal look.
Makeup Artist- Amrit Kaur (Pune). Photo Courtesy- Robin Saini Photography.
A bold juicy orange color is as flattering as a coral. The Lakmé Absolute Sculpt Studio Hi-Definition Matte Lipstick in Tangerine Lush shade looks great on Indian skin tone and the long lasting formula is super moisturizing for that destination wedding.
Makeup Artist- Shruti Sharma (Delhi NCR). Photo Courtesy- Tarun Chawla Photography.
Maroons and plum lip colors give a vintage and elegant bridal look and are perfect for winter weddings. A few swipes of Lakmé Absolute Sculpt Studio Hi-Definition Matte Lipstick in Plum Shell shade will give a bride statement-making lips in minutes.
Makeup Artist- Nalini Dhir (Pune). Photo Courtesy- Shantanu Bedarkar Photography.
The Lakmé Absolute Creme Lipcolor in Plum Glimmer shade is perfect for the dark lip shade lovers and the rich creme formula keeps the lips silky soft and smooth.
Makeup Artist- Amisha Salunkhe Brid (Mumbai). Photo Courtesy- Nivedita Nandi Photography.
Feb 1, 2016 WeddingSutra SOCIAL
Designer duo Falguni and Shane Peacock known for their edgy Indian couture hosted alongwith Umesh Jivnani a champagne brunch to celebrate the new year and showcase a sneak peek of their new summer bridal collection.
The location for this glamorous do’ was the newest luxury living address in town- Rustomjee Elements, a 5 acre residential apartment that is poised to become a landmark in the premium locality of Juhu. The promoters of this apartment complex that is expected to be complete in 2017, have positioned the 3, 4 and 5 BHK apartments as brilliantly planned spaces that will set a new benchmark in design, luxury and style.
The guest list was a nice mix of the well-heeled from Bandra/ Juhu and South Mumbai, and while everyone checked out the show apartment of Rustomjee Elements, conversations centered around life in South Mumbai and the new buzz in glamorous Juhu.
Here are some snapshots from the afternoon, captured by ace lensman Dev Purbiya who quips this was indeed a setting with a difference- models in chic bridal couture along with Mumbai’s most stylish who together added a special vibe to this fashionable address.
Falguni and Shane Peacock with Anchal Kumar.
Shane Peacock and Percy Chowdhry of Rustomjee with models in Falguni & Shane Peacock summer bridal collection.
Rashmi Nigam and Meghna Shah, Anchal Kumar, Kiran and Sunil Datwani of Gehna.
(top) Krishika Lulla and Falguni Peacock, (bottom) Aarti and Kailash Surendranath.
Falguni and Shane Peacock with Suzanne and Percy Chowdhry of Rustomjee.
Location- Rustomjee Elements, Opp The Club, Upper Juhu
Event Design- Umesh Jivnani
Catering- Moveable Feast (deGustibus)
Media & Public Relations- Meghna Shah (Tandem)
Photos Courtesy- Dev Purbiya
Jan 30, 2016 Travel & Honeymoon
Blessed with spectacular mountain, desert and coastal scenery, Oman is a brilliant destination for romantic stays. Bearing little comparison to its neighboring countries, Oman is all about luxury hotels, spa treatments and snorkeling along the coast, medieval forts, camping in the desert, and sailing the oceans.In this series of posts, we will pick the finest hotels in Oman that deserve a visit on your honeymoon/ romantic getaway.
Alila Jabal Akhdar, Al–Dakhiliyah, Oman
Jabal Akhdar, meaning “The Green Mountain” in Arabic, is part of the Al Hajar mountain range, one of Oman’s most spectacular regions. Perched here 2,000 metres above sea level, Alila Jabal Akhdar overlooks a dramatic gorge, surrounded by awe-inspiring views of the Al Hajar Mountains. This Oman resort is the perfect base for exploring the region’s magnificent landscape of rugged, untouched beauty while experiencing the height of sumptuous comfort.
The resort’s 86 beautifully appointed suites and villas are located within the main hotel building or arranged in individual clusters of four to six suites, generously spaced out around the clifftop to maximise privacy and uninterrupted views over the mountains and down into the gorges. Earthy tones of wood and stone are accented with rugs and furnishings in bold yet warm hues, while the leaves of the juniper tree, hand-painted on a wall in every suite by a local artist, bring an element of nature indoors.
The resort’s all-day dining restaurant, the Juniper Restaurant, serves a variety of local and international dishes, which you can enjoy whilst looking out over the fantastic views. The Rose Lounge offers refreshing beverages, signature cocktails and light bites throughout the day.
Book the Jabal Terrace suites located on the first floor with vast wooden outdoor deck where you can fully appreciate the majesty and mystery of this incredible destination, and hold hands under the vast night sky, enjoying sunsets and stargazing.
Don’t forget to experience couples treatments at the Spa Alila where locally grown herbs and essential oils are used in the signature treatments, an almost edible menu of scrubs, wraps and masks featuring coffee, ginger, cinnamon and lemongrass.
Jan 25, 2016 WeddingSutra SOCIAL
The JW Marriott Mumbai Sahar played host to one of the grandest fashion soirees of the season. This was a special show indeed- veteran designer Vikram Phadnis completed 25 very glorious and memorable years in the fashion industry, and present at the glittering evening were several of Vikram’s A-list bollywood clients, the most prominent faces from Mumbai’s social circuit. Phadnis presented his journey with his latest collection ‘Adhvan’ showcasing his beautiful creations both Indian and contemporary. The showstopper was Bollywood mesgastar Amitabh Bachchan who walked the ramp in a Maroon Kurta and a Maroon Salwar. Jaya Bachchan and daughter Shweta Bachchan Nanda were there to cheer for Big B. The other celebrities present at the evening included SRK’s wife Gauri Khan, actors Boman Irani, Sooraj Pancholi, Juhi Chawla, Genelia D’souza, Neha Dhupia, Neelam Kothari Soni, Athiya Shetty and Malaika Arora Khan. Here are some of the beautiful moments from the starry evening captured by Parag Gopale of The Moment.
Manasi Scott, Parthip Thyagarajan (WeddingSutra.com), Kadambari Sabharwal (JW Marriott), Kalyani Karandikar (Red Box Productions)
Suniel Shetty, Suchitra Pillai and Rahul Khanna.
Genelia and Riteish Deshmukh. Shaan and Sharmilla Khanna.
Queenie Singh Sethia, Suchitra Pillai, Manasi Scott, Sapna Pabbi and Mugdha Godse.
Vikram Phadnis and Amitabh Bachchan.
Neelam Soni, Gauri Khan and Malaika Arora Khan.
The Event Makers
Venue and Catering- JW Marriott Sahar, Mumbai
Event Management- Wizcraft
Event Design & Production- Aditya Karandikar, Kalyani Karandikar (Red Box Productions)
Event Decor- Sagar B Morjaria, Vishal Morjaria (National Decorators)
Event Choreographer- Vahbiz Mehta
Makeup & Hairstyling- Ambika Pillai & Team
Media & Public Relations- Aashish Hiramanek (Tandem Communication)
Jan 22, 2016 Travel & Honeymoon
Thailand is home to a million of tourists because of its enticing attractions and of course its exotic and tropical weather! However, Thailand is usually not a couple’s first choice for a romantic destination – A Travel Duet is here to contradict this statement.
Thailand comes as a perfect “romantic” destination, catering to all your fantasies – gorgeous landscapes, extravagant resorts, splendid experiences to bring out the adventurer in you, mouth-watering food for your taste buds – You think of it and you get it!
Once you are convinced enough, you would have to search for the “perfect accommodation”. Don’t worry! A Travel Duet is here to help you! The resorts below are hand-picked by them and they highly recommend you to consider these:
The Penthouse Iniala, Phuket
Have you ever heard of a “White Leather” bed suspended from the ceiling or a bathing area in a form of an oasis? Iniala’s Penthouse boasts a bed which creates a dramatic sense of opulence and cradles you while you cuddle with your spouse. The Penthouse also features an infinity hot tub, the bathing area made as to appear like an oasis in Sahara. This spectacular futuristic vision will leave you astounded and captivated at the same time!
Four Seasons, Chiang Mai
If living on a working rice farm set sounds thrilling, you must visit Four Seasons! The property comes to life at night when hundreds of candles, lamps and flares cast their majestical glow – an ideal atmosphere for the romantics! Apart from their spectacular infrastructure, the Cooking School and Spa gives Four Seasons that extra oomph.
Banyan Tree, Phuket
Wallow in an extra-ordinary dining experience with your partner in Banyan Tree’s Sanya Rak dinner cruise which allows you to dig in a delectable menu while gliding over the calm waters of the lagoon. Dinner of the Senses is the ultimate private dining facility where you will be served on a floating pontoon in a tranquil lake’s centre.
Angsana Laguna, Phuket
Angsana features a wide range of activities and facilities which will never leave you unoccupied – only if you wish to be so. Give in to your taste buds and try the different dining experiences offered by the property – You must try the Bodega & Grill where you and your loved one indulge in a fabulous feast under a pillared porch lit by romantic yellow lights!
Soneva Kiri, Koh Kood
Soneva Kiri’s estate is so huge that you would require an electric buggy to explore it. Visit the Observatory hidden in the trees or get cozy with your love in this giant outdoor movie theatre at night! Treat your senses to the resort’s gourmet dining in a treepod, where you will be hoisted gently high up into the tropical foliage of Koh Kood’s ancient rainforest. If you are a choco-holic, do not miss out on the So Chocoholic, a room filled with different varieties of chocolate – in all shapes and forms! Set about on a boat to an open-air lantern lit eatery, The Benz, amidst the mangroves on a scenic river!
The “Beyond Enchanting” Keemala offers a mesmerizing setting for couples to commemorate their love in captivating surroundings and elegance at any juncture of romance. Indulge in each other by burrowing away in their tropical hideaways and with a sumptuous in-villa menu, private pool and spa services on hand, there’s no reason to leave!
We hope now you have enough reasons to plan a trip to Thailand! What if we tell you that you could participate in A Travel Duet’s Thailand contest and win gifts worth Rs. 20 lakhs during your stay in Thailand?
Book your Thailand trip with A Travel Duet NOW and stand a chance to win the following:
First Prize Winner (Gifts worth Rs. 12 lakhs) - A complimentary video film of their own which will be shot while on their trip, 3 nights stay at Soneva Kiri Koh Kood, 3 nights stay at Four Seasons Chiang Mai, 3 nights stay at Keemala Phuket, and Complimentary Escapades Hot Air Balloon Ride, Phang Nga Bay Heli Ride, Khao Sok Jungle Safari, Romantic Sunset Sailing and Couple Spa.
Second Prize Winner (Gifts worth Rs. 7.5 lakhs) - 3 nights stay at Iniala Phuket and 3 nights stay at Banyan Tree Phuket.
Third Prize Winner (Gifts worth Rs. 50 Thousand) - 3 nights stay at Angsana Phuket.
For more information, you can visit the contest page.
Get in touch with A Travel Duet’s expert Honeymoon Handcrafters at firstname.lastname@example.org
Jan 21, 2016 Taj Hotels Resorts Palaces, Travel & Honeymoon
We love Goa and Kerala for a romantic getaway… if you could just getaway from every other couple in the country with the exact same idea!
So we made a list of 5 Alternative Romantic Getaways from the Taj Hotels that are just as beautiful and far from the madding crowds.
Vivanta By Taj Madikeri, Coorg
Perched up in a verdant hill range at an altitude of 4000 feet, the hotel is nestled within a 180 acre living rainforest that conceals delightful surprises. Vivanta By Taj revels in eco-friendly design and material that meld nature and luxury, evident across all 63 cottages, suites, villas and rooms. Each well appointed dwelling space has a wide-angled forest view. Our favourites include the Luxury Bliss Villas, spread over 3,300 sq ft with an indoor pool and retractable sunroof.
Couples can choose from a range of activities – pitching a tent, going bird watching, pottery, slush sports of even zip lining and high-rope courses. If you’d rather keep the tempo down, the team at the hotel will help you discover romantic locations where you can dine from a menu created with love.
Taj Baghvan, Pench National Park
The Pench National Park is a distinctive honeymoon destination. The Taj Baghvan – Safari Lodge is perfect for the adventurous couple. Located on the banks of a stream, surrounded by deep forests on the edge of the sprawling Pench National Park, you will soon find yourself listening out for the distinctive call of the eagle or any of the 300 species that resides within the park. Grab a pair of binoculars and venture out with skilled naturalists or just enjoy a lazy afternoon at the lodge.
The Lodge has individual bungalows that feature large courtyards, shady private sit-outs, outdoor showers and lovely roof-top sleep-outs known as machaans.
The lodge has a range of mouthwatering culinary experiences and great dining locations. Choose from the deck overlooking the nullah (dry riverbed), a favoured route of the Pench tigers, or have your meal brought to your machaan so you can dine in the privacy of your own suite. Picnics can also be made for an outing to Khoka Lake.
Taj Mahua Kothi, Bandhavgarh
The Taj Mahua Kothi is another spectacular safari lodge near the breathtaking Bandhavgarh National Park. Mahua Kothi is the perfect opportunity to combine the rustic, safari experience with gentle luxury. Sprawled over 40 acres, the accommodation and facilities blend unobtrusively into the natural growth of the forest.
Dining in Mahua Kothi is an experience on its own: fresh local ingredients, homemade accompaniments, fruit and vegetables grown on site, heritage recipes, traditional dining customs and quaint village traditions make for unforgettable mealtimes.
Couples can unwind and pamper themselves with hand-blended, all-natural products from the Jiva Spa, relax with a game of marbles or chaupad or indulge in an in-room ayurvedic massage.
Vivanta by Taj – Dal View, Srinagar
High up on Kralsanri Hill with a panoramic view of magical Dal Lake, surrounded by the majesty of the Zabarwan Mountains, Vivanta By Taj – Dal View is the perfect secluded honeymoon escape. It is a modern, contemporary space that glows warmly with the hospitality of Kashmir. 1730m above sea level and spread across 6 acres, the resort hosts 82 gracious rooms and suites most of which feature private sit outs with magnificent views of the lake and the mountains.
The subtle, delicate, complex flavours of the region are presented with the excellence the restaurants at Vivanta By Taj are renowned for. With a view of the lake, enjoy imaginative cuisine in the indoors or outdoors – flavour, aroma, texture, the sounds of live cooking, the artistic presentation – all in perfect harmony. The team at the hotel can also arrange a private dinner table on the lawns or by the infinity pool under the moonlight.
Usha Kiran Palace, Gwalior
Set amidst nine acres of landscaped lawns, the regal history of this palace is evident in its artistic stone carving and delicate filigree work. The Usha Kiran Palace is the perfect offbeat honeymoon spot! With 40 rooms, suites and villas, you’re spoilt for choice but our favourite is the exclusive Luxury Villas with their private pools and sunbathing areas.
Relive the ancient glory days of Usha Kiran Palace where every single element of this historic royal residence has been restored to perfection. Dine like a king and queen choosing from the finest Indian and international menus. Then unwind at the Jiva Spa where the best in Indian rejuvenation therapies await you – aromatherapy massage, time-honoured Indian treatments, body scrubs and wraps.
Jan 20, 2016 Travel & Honeymoon
Blessed with spectacular mountain, desert and coastal scenery, Oman is a brilliant destination for romantic stays. Oman is all about luxury hotels, spa treatments and snorkeling along the coast, medieval forts, camping in the desert, and sailing the oceans. In this series of posts, we pick the finest hotels in Oman that deserve a visit on your honeymoon/ romantic getaway.
Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort and Spa
This 124-acre resort comprising three hotels— Al Waha (the oasis), Al Bandar (the town), and Al Husn (the castle)—is exquisitely located between the Gulf of Oman and the mountains, a 15-minute drive from Old Muscat. The most exclusive retreat is Al Husn – a den of 5 star indulgence that reflects Arabian enchantment and has a private beach.
Photo Courtesy- Shades
The 180 rooms and suites at Al Husn hotel all have direct views of the turquoise sea. They are spacious and luxurious, with decor inspired by royal Arabian palaces, accented by authentic Omani artworks. Deluxe Rooms feature a furnished terrace or balcony overlooking the courtyard and pool area. If you enjoy waking up to a view of the sea, choose a Deluxe Seaview Room or even a spectacular One Bedroom Suite.
This perfect retreat for a romantic Arabian escape, with extensive facilities on your doorstep is fiercely private. Spend lazy days by the tranquil infinity pool or on the private beach with its commanding views – accessible only by guests staying at Al Husn.
Choose to enjoy Moroccan cuisine at Shahrazad or international dishes at Sultanah — both of which are located on site at Al Husn. There are also several restaurants to choose from Al Waha, Al Bandar and the Al Mazaar souq, located elsewhere on the property
CHI, the Spa at Shangri-La, is the most extensive and well-appointed private spa in Oman, with twelve treatment villas that create a sanctuary of personal rejuvenation and relaxation.
Highly recommend indulging in romantic evening cocktails at Capri Court right on the palm lined beach while taking in the resplendent beach and garden views and tasting contemporary Italian signature dishes.
Jan 19, 2016 The Wedding Makers, Wedding Planning
Sudha Maheshwari, The founder of India’s first wedding-gift registry, For My Shaadi, picks her favourite gifts for the wedding season.
For My Shaadi is India’s first comprehensive online wedding gift registry. The catalogue features an exclusive range of premium products and experiences. Brides and grooms-to-be can set up their registry at www.formyshaadi.com, create a wishlist and invite their friends (via a simple excel upload of email ids) to buy them a present they really want. We take care of the rest and deliver all the gifts in one shot to the couple, on the date of their choice!
My Top picks:
Bar accessories from Magppie Home Accessories: Perfect for young couples planning a new life and are looking forward to entertaining their friends at their new pad!
Mother-of-pearl cheese platter from Elvy lifestyle: Subtle and stylish crockery for the next soireé at your new home.
A short getaway holiday package to Sula Vineyards: Redeemable in the couple’s first year of marriage, this fun and relaxing experience is a memorable mini-honeymoon for couples in need of a break from their hectic schedules.
Exquisite stoles from Jammu Style: Wrap yourself in a masterpiece from their rich cashmere stole collection currently retailing at select outlets in the US.
Vouchers to our partner list of salons and spas including L‘occitane, Truefitt and Hill, Worship Salon, Gentlemen’s Tonic and Levo for some much needed post-wedding pampering.
*The first five brides to create their exclusive gift registry and invite five of their guests to the registry stand to win a stole worth Rs 5,000 from Jammu Style. Create your gift registery on : www.formyshaadi.com