Happy Friday, Filmy lovers! We're diving right into the fun today with a stunning Indian wedding celebration at the Hyatt Regency Jersey City on the Hudson, perfectly planned and designed by Ring to Aisle Events! A&A Photo & Video shot and edited this same-day sensation, which features blushing Indian bride, Rena, and the Raja of her dreams, Neil. This cinematic gem is filled to the brim with unforgettable highlights, including pre-wedding details from the mehndi party where Arva Henna Artist worked her henna magic, and outdoor ceremony shots that showcase some seriously phenomenal decor by Elegant Affairs! It doesn't stop there though, Rena is flawless from start to finish, thanks to her team of hair and makeup artists, which included bridal fave, Kanwal Batool, on her big day. The bride of the hour rocked some major Maharani style, thanks to the fashionable frocks she picked up from designer Rohit Verma, and we are in love with the glittering gold reception lengha that dazzled on the dance floor! Talented dancing troupe, AATMA Performing Arts, also entertained partygoers at this sizzling celebration of love, and you can revel in it all by pressing play!
Maharani Rena, on how she met the Raja of her dreams, Neil:
"Neil and I met in the heart of NYC at a brunch. The funniest part was that I wasn’t even going to go that particular day but I my friends had forced me. And I am so glad that they did! I will take pride in saying I made the first move, I had spotted Neil standing by the bar and I immediately asked my friend if she thought that guy was cute. Before I could even get out my next sentence, my friend approached him and within minutes she knew Neil and I would have a lot in common. I went over and Neil and I hit it off right away. In fact, I knew Neil was definitely smitten in that first meeting because he asked me to accompany him to wait in line at the coat check for his “jacket” (which by the way there was never a jacket, he just needed an excuse to keep talking to me). That night, I went back home but Neil and I continued to text message each other and we both knew at that point that there was no way that could be our only meeting. Throughout the next several weeks in both NY and CT, we met several times and each time we were able to strengthen our newly formed relationship. I think the moment I could clearly say “I think he is the one” was our first New Years Eve together. I still remember our toast at dinner that night, “To new beginnings…”. I knew that after that night, I would never look back again and the only thing I saw from there on out was our future together."
On her Raja's unforgettable marriage proposal:
"The proposal day started with a surprise trip to NYC. I thought we were going to NYC for a day out in the city just with the two of us. But when we arrived, we checked in to our hotel for the night called Ink 48, the same hotel with a rooftop lounge (called Press Lounge) where he took my family once. The room itself has skyline views of Manhattan. Next, he took me for a spa date with champagne. Then, we had lunch at an Italian restaurant called Trattoria, and we were seated by a window with perfect view of the Empire State Building. Afterwards, he took me to MAC makeup so I could have my makeup done, as I was under the impression that I was getting ready for a nice evening out (he even told me that we had a photographer that would be taking our pictures on the rooftop lounge – it was actually listed on the hotel website as a package deal!). While I was getting my makeup done, he had the hotel set the room up with some bottles of champagne and the photographer was all ready for us. As we were getting ready to go upstairs to the lounge, a concierge man came knocking on the door with a special delivery for me. It was a covered tray, and once I opened the tray, I saw a brand new MacBook waiting for me. I was so surprised and I started to cry. Neil knew I had my laptop stolen two years ago and never had it replaced. As I opened the laptop, a slideshow was already set up on the screen with all of our pictures from the first day we started dating, and the last slide said, “there was only one more important question to ask to make this complete” at which point he proposed to me in the room, with the photographer, and a background view of the skyline. I of course said yes and this was such a beautiful moment where we both felt complete. To top it all off, he told me there was one more surprise under the pillow. It was a Michael Kors purse with tickets to Austin, TX, to celebrate, followed by a flight to New Orleans to celebrate the proposal with all of his family and friends.
After lots of tears of happiness, we went upstairs to the lounge to take pictures only for me to be surprised AGAIN by all of my closest friends at the rooftop of Press Lounge in NYC. There was a bottle of champagne waiting for us; we celebrated both in the Lounge and later in the room with everyone. Later that night as Neil and I went to dinner at my favorite restaurant, my brother, sister-in-law, and parents were there to surprise me. We enjoyed a special dinner with my family and then finally made our way back out to celebrate with friends at the end of the night. It was truly the perfect proposal!"
On her wedding style:
"Like most bride's will say- it's all about the dress. Before picking themes for the wedding, I first picked my dress and then based other decisions off of that. Since my wedding lengha had these beautiful peacocks in stones all across the bottom, I used the peacocks for a central theme for both the Sangeet and the Wedding Ceremony. For the Sangeet, I used the peacock's colors to really bring a royal vibrant look to the hall. And for the ceremony, I always envisioned a lavender chiffon mandap with the NYC skyline in the background. Since our love story was based around the NYC, our venue really brought back all of our memories and had a special significance to us."
On what she enjoyed most about planning her dream Indian wedding:
"What I enjoyed most about the process of planning our dream Indian wedding was all of our families coming together as one. The month before the wedding, I really saw every single family member from both sides help to make this wedding a dream come true. In these moments, you really see how much love and support exists in a family and those are memories I will never forget."
On shopping for her dream wedding lenghas:
"When my mom and I went shopping in India, I knew my wedding dress the moment I saw it. Despite that, I still shopped for another 4 weeks all over Delhi and Mumbai, but still ended up with the first dress I tried on at designer Rohit Verma in Mumbai. He personally sat with me and customized the wedding lengha to be exactly what I wanted. After seeing what a phenomenal job he was doing with my wedding lengha and the vision he had for the reception, he custom designed the wedding reception gown. He wanted to make something very different and I trusted his vision. The dresses came out more beautiful than I ever imagined!"
On her most memorable wedding moment:
"The most magical moment from the wedding was walking down the aisle and Neil and I seeing each other for the first time dressed as bride and groom at our ceremony. We never let each other know what we were wearing and it was very important to me that Neil see's me for the first time that day walking down the aisle in front of our all of our families and friends. I will never forget the look on his face when he saw me all dressed up as his 'dulhan' and that feeling is priceless. That was one of the best decisions from our wedding and I am glad we did all of our photos together after the ceremony."
On her hair and makeup:
"Unlike many other bride's I have talked to, I went with a new artist every day. I wanted a variety of looks for this wedding and I knew each artist had their own unique touch. For the Sangeet, my hair and makeup was done by Leje Malik. I saw her work online and through Youtube, and I loved it immediately! For the wedding ceremony, I worked with Kanwal Batool. I have heard such amazing things about her work and I needed someone who knew how to drape the lengha in a special way and she made me feel very comfortable. For the reception, I worked with Blushing Bride's Artistry. Brennan and her team also worked on my close family throughout the functions and their work is AMAZING. They are all MAC makeup artists who are very confident and know how to make you smile and beautify you at the same time!"
On the role that family and friends played:
"Something that was unique in our wedding were the hotel room keys we had designed for the Hyatt Regency. We had custom room keys made with our photos imprinted on the keys and this was a special touch to make our family and friends remember the date. Our family and friends helped with the gift bags and each gift bag had New York inspired items inside such as Melissa's Cupcakes, NY style chips, and NYC chocolates. Our families assisted us in putting these items together to have these cute bags for everyone at check in."
We're just getting started, dolls! Stick with me all day for more wedding fun!