Ready for a double dose of Maharani magic? We've got it! This fabulous fusion wedding from Palermo Photo showcases two sensational ceremonies (which means TWO gorgeous outfits!) and the beauty begins with a lovely outdoor portrait sesh in picturesque Pennsylvania. With a lush green backdrop, our lovebirds flash their beaming smiles for the camera and soon enough it's time to head inside to wed under a shimmering gold and purple mandap. Divine Celebrations & Events ensures that both the Hindu and Christian events are designed to perfection and when the reception gets underway, Planet DJ Productions turns up the Bollywood beats. What an unforgettable soiree! If you want more style, dolls, just follow me to the gallery!
From the bride: "I didn’t think Ronak was going to be able to surprise me. After 5 years of dating, I was accustomed to thinking getting engaged was right around the corner. So when he pulled off a surprise engagement at my favorite winery, I was beyond ecstatic.
On August 2, 2012, Ronak and I left our home to attend a University of Virginia Alumni happy hour. In the middle of the hour-long drive, I fell asleep. Luck was on Ronak’s side. I wasn’t awake to notice that we passed the exit and were driving on winding country roads. I woke up as we were approaching the winery. Ronak was really calm and told me we weren’t going to UVA, we were going to have a picnic. Veritas, the winery, is in a gorgeous location nestled among grapevines and with beautiful mountain scenery.
We found a secluded spot with two chairs under a tree. Ronak was visibly more nervous but stayed cool and told me we were going to play a game. I love games! Ronak had printed out pictures of special occasions from every year we had been dating. I had to tell him what year the picture had taken place and what we were doing. It was a beautiful walk down memory lane of all the amazing moments we had shared together. The last picture was a picture of my engagement ring. He pulled it out of his pocket, got down on one knee, and proposed. Lots of happy tears and champagne were flowing after this moment. Ronak had packed a picnic and even brought me flowers!
The day could not have been more perfect. The one thing that made it even more special was that Ronak proposed on my parent’s wedding anniversary!
Ronak and I started wedding planning and both shared the vision of the day being the most fun day of our lives. We also agreed that we were okay with veering from tradition in order to blend our different cultural backgrounds.
Ronak chose the color gold to represent his Indian culture and I chose my favorite color purple. Being from two different religions, we knew we wanted a unique wedding venue, instead of a church. Our ceremony took place at the Heinz History Center and our reception was at the Tropical Garden at Phipps Conservatory. The tropical garden is an India garden, which made it the perfect choice.
The wedding day consisted of two ceremonies, a Hindu ceremony followed by a Christian ceremony. Ronak followed Indian tradition and arrived on a horse, with dancing, and a lot of curious spectators. We exchanged flower garlands and were married under a purple and gold mandap. Guests showered us with rice as a blessing after the ceremony.
Between the ceremonies, our guests were able to tour the museum, enjoy snacks, or get a henna design on their hand. The henna artist represented the Indian culture.
The Christian ceremony started with a string quartet playing contemporary music. I loved the idea of a traditional string quartet, but playing modern music. I started my walk down the aisle by myself, with the instrumental version of 'Yellow' by Coldplay in the background. Ronak met me halfway and we finished the walk together. The ceremony was very personal as our officiant told our love story. The vows we exchanged were written by us.
It was important that I honored my dad’s memory on my wedding day. I had a table with a poem, candle, and flowers. The poem read 'Those we love don’t go away, they walk beside us every day… unseen, unheard, but always near, still loved, still missed, and very dear.' My florist created beautiful bouquets. I loved mine because it was wrapped with my dad’s necktie. I thought about him as I gripped the bouquet the whole way down the aisle.
The reception was exactly how we envisioned. An explosion of purple and an amazing dance party. Guests dined on Italian and Indian fare before diving into the cookie table. Personalized details were sprinkled throughout the venue. We had a bangle bar as wedding favors. Guests were asked to sign a map by choosing their favorite place they think we should visit. The dance floor was filled with feet the entire night. We ended the evening with late night snacks from our favorite, Chick-fil-A.
From start to finish, our day was memorable and a complete reflection of Ronak and I. We had the most fun and beautiful day of our lives. Mission accomplished!"
Happy weekend, Maharanis! See you on Monday!