Apr 23, 2013 Wedding People & Planners
Saif and Tanim’s Shaadi was a colorful and fun-filled extravaganza planned to precision by Dubai’s ace Wedding Planner Rimjhim Bhagchandani
The celebrations commenced with a fun night of performances at the Mehendi function in Sheraton Creek Diera. Bright and fun colors all around the ballroom, a stunning Sabyasachi outfit worn by Tarnim and loads of adrenaline pumping performances by both sides of the families made for a perfect mehendi evening.
The wedding venue was Madinat Jumeirah on Jumeirah beach. The setting was the Joharah ballroom of Madinat Jumeirah, the stage was over 50 feet wide and put together splendidly. A smaller draped stage to one side of the main stage was where the the Nikaah was held. After the Nikaah, Saif and Tarnim entered together lead by an entourage of Dabka dancers. After the evening concluded, rukhsati happened at the pier where the couple boarded a small boat and bid goodbye to the guests.
The Walima was held at The Symphony Ballroom at the Address hotel in downtown Dubai. Says US based Mili Ghosh who photographed all the wedding functions: “Tarnim looked stunning in her bright red Manish Malhotra anarkali and her classic look took me back to the 50s bollywood.” A Tanoora dancer and the ‘drums of the world’ group entertained guests throughout the Walima evening. The long swirling colorful skirts that the Tanoura performer wore made spectacular patterns as he twirled around in circles. ‘Drums of the World’ percussion ensemble is a uniquely dynamic musical collective, it takes the form of a facilitated jazz/fusion ensemble using duns duns, djembes, tablas, doumbeks, clay pots, mouth harp, shekeres, bongos, and other world percussion instruments, that provide exciting vibes.
The evening concluded with a very fun and interactive drumming lesson session between the guests and the performers.
Photographs Courtesy- Mili Ghosh Photography
Apr 5, 2013 Wedding People & Planners
By Jaspreet Soni
The air is mysterious and exciting. The leaves have turned from green to shades of pale gold and the foliage is a riot of colors. We are talking about a scene from a Wedding managed by Jakarta based Wedding Planner Innayat Khubchandani, where autumn’s excitement is recreated amidst the hot summer season. Innayat who ventured into Wedding Planning in 2007, is one of the most sought-after Wedding Planners today. The majority of his clients are NRIs from Indonesia, Hongkong, Manila and Dubai but in the last two years he has managed several Indonesian and Chinese weddings too. We talked to Innayat about the hottest trends and what keeps his creativity flowing.
How did you venture into Wedding Planning? Are any of your family members involved in your business?
No, none of my family members are crazy enough to get into this business. I trained in hospitality and I think it covers all the aspects of wedding planning. My internship in Mumbai with Gurleen M Puri and Sudha Khanna helped me get a background in décor and design. I take a lot of interest in learning about food, alcohol and I think I am good at logistics and people management. So wedding planning feels quite natural.
Tell us a little about your client profile– are the majority NRIs?
80% of my clients have been NRIs but more recently we are doing weddings of India-based families too. The market of South East Asia has just opened up for places like Macau, Bali, Singapore and many families from different parts of India are hosting their destination wedding overseas. We also manage a lot of Indonesian and Chinese weddings, where the scale is not ‘grand’ like an Indian wedding. Whatever be the scale, we like to work on celebrations where we can personalize the event, where it is about the bride, groom and their families, so guests can relate and say ‘Oh this is so him or her’.
What do your clients look for when choosing a locale- country or resort for a Destination Wedding?
Beaches and exotic locations because they lend a very romantic feel to the entire wedding ceremony. When it comes to the hotel, Indian weddings being very grand and having considerable number of guests, the first thing on the clients mind is whether the place has a big ballroom and enough rooms to accommodate everyone.
The outdoor venues also play an important role because there are number of functions and they all can be held at different places within the hotel. In locations like Bali and Thailand, people want their Mandap near the beach, timed with the sunset while the ceremony is going on.
Which themes or settings do you particularly enjoy executing?
Trends change every year. Three years ago, people were into neon effects and pop arts. This year, I am trying to play with colors and focus more on 4D than 3D. For e.g. if we are doing a winter theme, we want the guests to actually experience it with simple things like getting in more air conditioners and making it extra cold or for the autumn, we burn some special oils to create that aura of falling leaves. We are basically trying to work on all senses rather than just the eyes and ears. But among all these, pool parties have been my favorite because they have lot of scope for fun. We have a team that does the art works, organizes games, so the ice is broken between the girl’s and the boy’s side.
I like receptions as well where we take the traditional Indian sangeet and flip it over to create a very Western reception so the challenge of switching over is fun.
Thailand has been the biggest success when it comes to Destination Weddings. Which resorts in Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Macau will be most sought-after in 2013 and 2014?
The Westin in Langkawi, The Galaxy in Macau, Ayana, Conrad and The Westin in Bali, Le Meridian in HuaHin are some great venues. They not only have ample rooms, outdoor venues and big ballrooms but they also understand the special requirements of an Indian wedding.
How do you seek Inspiration & Ideas for your wedding work?
A lot of ideas and inspiration come from my wife. She has a very keen eye. Whenever we travel or visit new places she mostly gets the nerve right. Also, I get a lot of inspiration from food as I am a trained chef as well. I relax and come back rejuvenated to work by travelling to Europe- there is so much creative air there!
Sameer Gurjer and Madhuri Vijaykumar got married at the Taj West End, Bangalore. The duo work and live in Mumbai, while Madhuri and Sameer’s parents live in Bangalore. The city’s landmark 125 year old hotel has always been the favorite hotel of both families so they were sure it had to be the venue for the big day. Moreover, they were looking for a central venue in the city and the lush Prince of Wales Lawns of Taj West End seemed the perfect choice.
Madhuri and Sameer
The wedding celebrations commenced with a Mehendi at Atria Hotel, and a Sangeet at the same venue. Hriday Daswani, the Wedding Planner tells us more: “The highlight of the Sangeet was the performance by Mumbai based flamer Ami Shroff who gave an outstanding performance with her bar stunts and flaming performances. Later, DJ Jasmeet rocked the night”
The morning wedding and evening reception were both held at Taj West End. The décor for the morning wedding was simple as the acres of landscaped gardens tell their own tale. Colors yellow and marigold, and temple copper bells added the little element of beauty. The wedding was held as per Maharashtrian traditions (Sameer is Maharashtrian and Madhuri is Tamilian) and the food was a mix of Maharashtrian and Tamilian delicacies. The ‘Thank you’ gifts were products from Koppa Estates, the plantation run by Sameer’s family- tea, coffee, cardamom, black pepper and honey. Pasted on the honey bottles were stickers with the text ‘Honey, our love is meant to be’.
The Wedding held as per Maharashtrian traditions
Over 800 guests attended the evening reception, and the heritage lawns looked even more elegant by night with marigolds, candles and glass decor, while the ladies glittered in shimmering sarees and rich Kanjeevarams. The food was a mix of Asian, North Indian and South Indian delicacies. Says Hriday: “Interestingly, I met Sameer and Madhuri in person just two days before the wedding; they were a relaxed couple, who told their parents to go ahead and take all the decisions on the wedding. And when D-day came both the bride and groom were pleasantly surprised with their parents picks, and happy with all our efforts.”
The evening Reception at the Prince of Wales Lawns
The Wedding Planners
Venues- Hotel Atria and Taj West End
Sangeet Performances- Flamer Ami Shroff and DJ Jasmeet
Photographer- Priyanka Daga
Wedding Film and Video- Creative Couple
Wedding Planners- Viwaha Dreamz, Mumbai
Sukanya Rangaraj, an editor with a prominent luxury and fashion magazine, and Atman Shah, a fourth generation businessman met in high school and their love culminated into a wedding that was a grand South Indian and Gujarati affair. A host of prominent persons from industry, politics and media and their family’s large circle of friends attended the week long celebration held across different venues in South Mumbai.
The celebrations commenced with a Black Tie theme Cocktail at Tote on the Turf. Quips Sukanya, who wore a Monisha Jaising white and gold number, “We’ve been deemed the very ‘proper’ couple, and we subscribe to all things chic. So naturally, this had to be the first event—a night under a blanket of dazzling stars unfolded and the party rocked.”
The Mehendi was an intimate affair at Sukanya’s residence in Worli. Says Anway P Bhoite, the Wedding Planner: “The temple inspired decor was replete with several bright lines of yellow marigolds suspended from a tall height, antique Ganesha idols and urlis and clusters of poetically burning diyas.” The predominantly ‘ladies’ event turned into a colourful evening of henna and dance as they swayed to a live Punjabi dhol. This was followed by lip smacking chaat and of course the deep hue of ornate mehendi on everyone’s hands.
The sunset Sangeet at Jade Garden was nothing short of a music and dance extravaganza. Lyrical, mirthful and full of joie de vivre, the couple’s family and best friends put up a Bollywood-theme dance show as an ode to the couple. Songs that best described their love, moments of laughter and memories to cherish—each act portrayed a spectrum of emotions. The entertainment didn’t end there. A band of live musicians rendered various musical hits as the amber February sun set in the background. Adding an element of surprise were traditional Garba dancers who got the crowd swaying to folk tunes. Sukanya wore a sequined Anand Kabra yellow and antique green lehenga and Atman wore a beige silk Rajesh Pratap sherwani with a brooch from Tarun Tahiliani to complement his bride’s touch of green.
The Wedding was a traditional soiree at Taj Vivanta. Signifying the best in spirit of both Tamil Iyengar and Gujarati Vaishnav ceremonies, it was a perfect blend of both rituals as the couple exchanged vows in true Vedic style. The décor too by Anway, reflected a regal and uber traditional sensibility.
The Reception at the Royal Western India Turf Club saw a winter wonderland theme where Anway P Bhoite designed a predominantly white set, embellished with crystals and fantasy props. The mood of the evening was regal and pristine. The bride wore a Bhairavi Jaikishan gold applique lehenga, Victorian style diamond jewellery from Anmol Jewellers and the groom wore a classic Dolce & Gabbana suit.
Wedding Planner – Anway P Bhoite (www.linkedin.com/in/anway)
Candid Art Photography – Ryan Martis.
Photographs Courtesy – Chintu Thakkar and Sundaram Vishwanath with team.
Feb 8, 2013 Wedding People & Planners
The year 2000, just after we launched WeddingSutra, we met Venkat Narayan then a junior college student who was interning with his uncle, Shiva Subramanian a popular wedding caterer. Venkat was clear he wanted to pursue a career in Event Management. “In India, events and food go hand in hand”, is what his uncle would often say, so Venkat knew the best learning opportunity was to work in his uncle’s catering business.
Fast forward to January 2013. We received a call from Venkat, he told that that post MBA he joined an MNC and he quit his job there last year, to start his new venture ‘Weddings Inc’. We were equally happy when Venkat told us, “My first wedding is at Radisson Blue Resort & Spa, Alibaug; WeddingSutra has meant a lot to me, I’ve spent the last six months visiting your website everyday to learn about news and trends from the world of weddings, it will mean a lot if you come for the wedding.”
Photograph Courtesy Mithilesh Choubey
It was a pleasant drive to coastal town Alibaug on the evening of January 23rd; Alibaug now also known as the weekend home for the rich and famous, has lots of luxurious villas and sea-facing bunglows. Till Radisson commenced operations, there were no five star hotels but a few villas offered their spaces for intimate soirees. Now, the Radisson property is emerging as a popular choice for those looking for a Destination Wedding venue close to Mumbai. And with over 150 rooms, and banquet and outdoor spaces, it’s perfect for a big wedding too.
Photograph Courtesy Aniket Mazumdar
It was the marriage of Nikita, daughter of a Bangalore businessman with Mumbai based Chartered Accountant Bharat Lunia. The families had booked the entire resort for their 400 guests. While the wedding was a traditional affair sans too much bling or wow elements, the property we felt was stunning.
We asked Venkat how much he missed his structured, corporate job. “Very rarely”, was his quick reply, “I much prefer the fun and challenges associated with Band, Baaja and Baraat.” On his future plans he elaborated: “I’m looking forward to doing more Destination Weddings this year and next, Goa and Rajasthan to begin with, and maybe Thailand.” The learning about different communities is fascinating too, he says. I’m from a South Indian family, and most clients in our catering business were South Indian. Now I get to meet Marwaris, Gujaratis, Sindhi and Punjabi clients, each of them have a very different brief, different inspirations.” That’s what makes the Shaadi business truly unique too– one industry, with so much difference in spending, across cities and communities.
Feb 4, 2013 Wedding People & Planners
When Varun Vakil, the scion of a prominent business family and his fiancé Ragini Pratap were planning their Mehendi celebration, they were searching for very unique give-aways. They visited ‘Filigree’ at Lower Parel, that offers creative and personalised gifts. Filigree and Stone.Wire.Love run by Sarthak Shah and his jewellery designer wife Reema is popular among Mumbai’s well-heeled looking for colorful & personalised gifts or fun & fashionable give-aways.
Neha Seth of Var Vadhu checks out the Jewellery by Stone.Wire.Love
At Varun and Ragini’s Mehendi at Tote on the Turf, the highlight was a live jewellery counter known as the ‘Moving Jewelry Box’- a box with assorted beads, wires and components to make jewelry; a person moved with the box and designed jewellery for guests on-the-spot. “Most guests treasure something that is custom-made as per their tastes and choices, and our offering be it for accessories or jewellery fits in very well there”, explains Sarthak Shah. Adds Wedding Planner Neha Seth Arora, who planned one of Varun and Ragini’s wedding functions: “Filigree is a must-visit for those searching for unique ideas to personalise their celebrations- be it accessories with colored stones that match the wedding invite, or give-aways to suit individual color choices. Cutlery and home accessories with made-to-match colors are much sought-after too.”
Home Accessories by Filigree
Neha Seth Arora shares her favourites from Filigree and Stone.wire.love
- 1. German Silver Batwas
- 2. Personalised key chains inscribed with the guests names
- 3. Cheese and salad sets
- 4. Dressy napkin rings
- 5. Candle and tea light holders
- 6. Tray clips
- 7. Bar accessories
- 8. Cuff bracelets
- 9. Finger rings
- 10. Hair accessories
For more information contact
Filigree Home Accessories, Mathuradas Mill Compound
Cell No: +91 98206 16484
Oct 26, 2012 Wedding People & Planners
Everyone is talking about the Big Indian Wedding and how with it everything is getting bigger. The wedding invite has got fatter too, and while boxed invitations are all-popular, so are wow gifts that accompany the invite. Bruijn- a luxury brand from Dubai is now a hot spot for sourcing wow gifts among the well-heeled in Mumbai and Delhi. Brujin stocks pure Belgian chocolates, roasted nuts, sugar & chocolate almonds, dates, baklava, and other confectioneries and a spokesperson for Bruijn tells us that while the clients bill has got a little bigger, their boxes have become smaller: “This season clients are looking for a little of everything, for the sweet tooth, and healthier alternatives, in small & stylish boxes. We’ve just completed an order for 1000 boxes- with orange peel date, almond date, silver coated almonds and chocolates.”
Invitations by Ravish Kapoor accompanied with natural handmade fig with nuts bar.
Box invite by Ravish Kapoor with sugar coated almonds.
Bruijn showrooms are at Peddar Road (next to Vama) and Ambience Mall, Vasant Kunj, New Delhi.
Sep 6, 2012 Wedding People & Planners
Ahmedabad based Saurabh Agarwal runs Red Events, one of India’s most successful Wedding Management companies. Agarwal’s clients include India’s super-rich who opt for a big, fat wedding in their home-town or a wow destination wedding in India or abroad. Little wonder, whenever we call Saurabh, he is travelling, either for a celebration organised by Red Events in Amby Valley, Goa or Rajasthan, Thailand, Singapore or Mauritius. Or he’s on a trip to explore a new wedding destination. After all, everyone interested in a slice of the wedding pie, be they a Tourism Board, International Luxury Resort or a wedding specialist know, that if they wish to reach out to the super-rich Indian planning a wedding, Saurabh Agarwal is the man they should meet.
Wedding at Manek Chowk, Udaipur
Recently Red Events bagged two prizes at the EEMAX Awards 2012 in the Best Wedding Category. The award night was part of EEMAGINE 2012, the annual convention of Event and Entertainment Management Association of India (EEMA), dedicated to honoring exemplary work in the Events and Experiential Marketing space in India. The Awards saw entries from over 50 event management companies and Red Events took home prizes for the Hira Group scions wedding in Raipur and the Parekh-Kothari wedding in Pune.
Having organised over 500 weddings till date, few players in the event management & wedding industry have achieved a scale in operations as Red Events has. Industry observers attribute Agarwal’s success to his depth understanding of what super-rich Indians want at celebrations, and his ability to form long-lasting relationships with big business barons from different towns, who trust only him when its time to plan their son or daughter’s wedding. While most individuals with a creative interest choose to foray into the world of weddings, how did the astute businessman decide to venture into this field over ten years ago. He tells us: “The idea occurred to me in 1998. A friend was getting married, and he was finding it difficult to get a Piano which was required for one of the celebrations. He told me that since I am resourceful I can surely arrange for one- the mere task of procuring the Piano triggered a spark and gave me the vision to tap into the space of wedding management.”
The magnificent Hira Group wedding in Raipur
Parekh-Kothari wedding in Pune
Aug 20, 2012 Wedding People & Planners
By Disha Waghani
Towering tiers, hundreds of flavours in a variety of colors; name it and you shall have it! Wedding cakes, earlier an American concept, have caught everyone’s fancy in India, and an increasing number of brides and grooms, from all communities search for their dream wedding cake. Bunty Mahajan, Chef and owner, Deliciae, Bandra tells us why the cake is a must-have: “A cake is not just a cake it’s a work of art. And the younger generation love tiered cakes as they add to the wow and glamour element at the celebration.”
Cakes by Bunty Mahajan (Deliciae Bandra)
(right) Peacock theme Wedding cake by Ruchika and Nitin Khurana
Deepika Sarin, a Delhi-based Chocolatier, specialises in cupcakes. Steering away from the conventional cakes, Deepika believes that weddings in India are about families and not just the bride and the groom. She explains: “The mother-in-law’s favourite flavour is as important as the brides. Cupcake towers enable the client to choose from as many as 50 flavours and combinations! It gives them the freedom to incorporate everyone’s favourite flavour.” She adds, “Our clients spend lots of time on the details. They want to match their cupcakes to the theme and décor. I did a cupcake tower in orange, green and red for a mehendi ceremony to match the vibrancy and the energy of the festivity. However, for the reception, I stuck to pastels and added lots of edible glitter since the celebration was a glitzy affair”.
Ruchika and Nitin Khurana, one of Delhi’s finest cake makers share their experience, “Clients have asked us to make cakes with their favourite brand logos, poker hands, edible glitter and Swarovski crystals. Musical cakes, those printed with edible photographs, 3D and 4D cakes are all-popular too.”
We all know a cake eventually gets cut, so is the taste, flavour and the quality of food stuff used compromised on to make it visually appealing? Deepika Sarin explains: “all the ingredients I use are internationally procured and are of the best quality. My prices may be a notch higher, but everything from the Danish butter to the chocolate and sprinklers is of the best quality. So there’s no compromise at all.” Alpa Pareira who runs Toujours in Breach Candy, Mumbai asserts the taste is something you can never compromise on and the reason why people are ready to pay her what she charges is because the quality and taste is always a priority along with visual appeal.
Cupcake Towers by Deepika Sarin
Get the cake, and eat it too- all you need to do is get in touch with a master baker.
Aug 20, 2012 Wedding People & Planners
When the Agarwals from Raipur decided to celebrate the golden wedding anniversary of their senior most family members, they were clear about one thing. That the decor for the momentous day would have to be done by Mumbai’s leading wedding management company. The family chose Var Vadhu, the wedding management & decor company to execute the elaborate decor for the morning Varmala and Krishna puja and the glitzy Sangeet, the highlight of which was performances ace musicians Sunali & Roop Kumar Rathod.
The Agarwal family
Neha Seth Arora, CEO of Var Vadhu tells us more: “The venue was VW Canyon Hotel, the first five star hotel of Chhattisgarh state. For the morning function, the theme was very traditional– with Kundan work as the highlight. The look for the evening function was contemporary- with carnations, roses, crystals and a specially designed gold frame. The evening event was truly special for all the 1,000 guests- after all, they were blessed by the happy couple on their golden wedding anniversary day.”
‘Kundan’ was the decor theme for the morning celebrations
Contemporary and modern theme for evening celebrations
Photographs courtesy- www.varvadhu.net