We are so excited to bring you an insight into the enchanting wedding celebration of Khooshali & Rahul. This lovely couple met about eight years ago through mutual friends in medical school. What initially seemed to be a lecture on the cardiac cycle soon turned into two hearts finding each other. The engagement period was much longer and more eventful than the couple had initially planned due to the pandemic; however, their dream wedding was well worth the long wait and was even better than they could have ever imagined! They chose the incredible Sheraton Station Square as their venue to achieve this. And, of course, a dream wedding cannot succeed without an excellent planning team such as Detales Custom Events and a phenomenal decoration crew like Partyland Sajawat. Their inspiration was a garden theme and extravagant florals, so the ceremony decor was inspired by a "Mogul Garden Marriage." And we must say that it looks spectacular! The mandap was a mesmerizing floral mandap that highlighted the wedding party colors of royal red, playful coral and peach, and rich maroon, with hints of orange. The bride's breathing-taking entrance further embodied the Mogul theme with her incredible outfit and makeup from Makeup With Ramsha. We want to take a moment to admire the fabulous Mehndi designed by Kadambri Patil. Hands down, this henna artist created a unique design, adding an extra touch of traditional flair to an already head-turning ensemble! After the solemn and emotional ceremony, the event transitioned into a reception party that had a great atmosphere. All the guests enjoyed the evening and danced to the rhythm of the talented Elevated Vibez DJ and Maria Duque, who put everyone on their feet. It was the perfect way to bring the wedding celebration to an end! Visit today's gallery if you don't want to miss any detail of this marvelous wedding thoroughly orchestrated by Jorge Santiago LLC. We have compiled the best of the best for your enjoyment!
How did you meet your Groom and when did you know he was "the one"?
Khooshali Shah and Rahul Damania met about eight years ago through mutual friends in medical school. What initially seemed to be a lecture on the cardiac cycle soon turned into two hearts finding each other as they had an almost instantaneous connection with each other. They began dating about one year after meeting in August 2015.
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Four years later, in March of 2019, came the ultimate surprise proposal planned by Rahul. Khooshali was spending what she thought was a low-key Saturday afternoon with her family at the Cleveland Museum of Art- one of the couple’s favorite hang-out spots. As she was exploring the scenic outdoor gardens, there was Rahul, waiting for her and ready to propose with an elaborate display of rose petals and canvas photos of the two of them in a true artist fashion.
After the proposal, he planned a surprise proposal party at a nearby modern Indian fusion restaurant where they would be greeted by fifty of their closest friends & family. It was all a complete surprise and a whirlwind of joy! The proposal, the party, and all the celebrations to follow.
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The engagement period turned out to be much longer and more eventful than the couple had initially planned. They had their dream wedding all planned and ready to go for May of 2020 when just 45 days before the big day, the world shut down from the COVID-19 pandemic. As two physicians, completely shocked and heartbroken by the uncertainty of the pandemic, they knew what they had to do- and that was to postpone the dream wedding they had so meticulously planned. “It was the right thing to do,” the couple recalls. The couple ended up pushing back their dream wedding for over two years and had a total of 3 different wedding dates. “We wanted to prioritize the safety of our loved ones without compromising on our vision for our dream wedding… so we waited.”
Was there a really special moment in your wedding that constantly replays in your mind?
The Sangeet was by far our favorite event. We loved the decor, the colors, and the energy from our loved ones throughout all of the performances.
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The couple finally married in July of 2022 at Sheraton Station Square in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The venue holds a special place in their hearts as it was the location of their first date, and there coincidentally happened to be an Indian wedding taking place there at the time.
Ever since that first date, the couple always joked about one day getting married there, and after an unexpectedly long wait, it actually happened!
Their dream wedding turned out to be well worth the long wait and was even better than they could have ever imagined! The couple prides their relationship on being vibrant, fun-loving, and family-oriented, and that is exactly the vision that they had for their wedding.
The first main wedding event was the Sangeet- a traditional Indian celebration where the couple’s family & friends put on dance/song performances for the couple the evening before the marriage ceremony. Khooshali and Rahul are both originally from the same part of India called Gujarat, known for their unique dance style called Garba. The couple wanted to embrace their Gujurati roots while taking a luxurious, modern-chic spin on the event. Their theme for the Sangeet event was “The Grand Garden Garba,” as emphasized by their stunning floral stage decor, golden swing set, lantern centerpieces, colorful custom-made paisley dance floor, and live food stations. The couple even had a live caricature artist, live henna artists, and a live dhol player for their guests. It was a high-energy evening filled with vibrant colors, passionate performances, and sheer joy- a perfect kick-off to their long-awaited wedding weekend.
The next morning was Rahul’s Baraat, followed by the Wedding Ceremony. “It was a beautiful day for a wedding. The sun was shining so bright without a single cloud in the sky,” Khooshali recalls.
The Baraat is a well-known favorite tradition of Indian weddings where the groom has a processional with his side of the guests, and they are all welcomed into the marriage venue by the bride’s side. For Rahul’s Baraat, his groomsmen, friends, and family started at the city center of Station Square and took the street by storm with a live mobile DJ, a decorated white horse, and an elegant white carriage. The entire Baraat looked like it was straight out of a Bollywood movie! Once at the Sheraton, the Baraat party was lovingly welcomed by Khooshali’s side.
Sticking with the garden theme and extravagant florals, the ceremony decor was inspired by a “Mogul Garden Marriage.” The mandap was a mesmerizing floral mandap that highlighted the wedding party colors of royal red, playful coral and peach, and rich maroon with hints of orange. The entrance to the mandap was emphasized with a raised aisle way and a beautiful, dramatic golden gate interlaced with florals and vines and two moss elephants decorated with ombre florals matching the mandap and bridal party colors. “We wanted our ceremony decor to embody our relationship, which has always been full of color and life,” Khooshali shares. The Mogul theme was further embodied by the bride’s breathing-taking entrance. She was carried in on an all-floral Dholi by her brother and cousins- an entrance was truly fit for royalty! What made her entrance even more special, was that the song she entered was a pre-recorded song sung by Rahul. “This was a romantic and intimidate detail of our wedding day that we wanted to keep as our secret.” Rahul shares.
Music has always been a passion for Rahul, as one of his favorite hobbies is singing and performing at events. The couple wanted to highlight this passion by having an element of live music at each of their wedding events. The Sangeet had a live dhol player that joined the family performances, the ceremony had a live flutist playing classical Indian music, the cocktail hour had a live tabla player to play Bollywood fusion music, and the reception had a live dhol player to keep the party going all night long.
Following the ceremony and traditional Gujarati lunch, the couple had planned a fun surprise for all of their guests. Ever since their first date, one of the things the couple loved the most about their venue was the fact that it was the ideal combination of natural beauty and urban wonder, as it was right on the river with a beautiful view of the city skyline. They wanted to incorporate this into their wedding weekend and thought the best way to do this would be with their grand exit after the ceremony— the Bidaai. The Bidaai is a customary event of Indian weddings when the newlyweds leave the marriage venue and signifies the bride’s farewell as she enters the new chapter of married life. The couple rented a mini yacht for their grand exit and had it decorated with elegant florals to coincide with their garden-themed decor. They gathered all of their 400 guests on the dock of the river and sent their goodbyes with lots of love, hugs, and even a few tears. “It was truly such a blissful part of the weekend, seeing both families come together and lovingly send us off with heartfelt blessings,” Khooshali recalls.
Next came the grand finale of the entire wedding weekend— the reception. The luxurious reception was designed to look and make you feel as though you stepped foot into a “Royal Garden Gala” with its ceiling-height floral and moss wall stage decor, custom-wrapped dance floor with the couple’s signature K&R wedding logo, 5-foot-tall elegant tree table centerpieces, and custom floral uplighting around the ballroom. The couple celebrated finally being a married couple with over 400 of their closest family and friends in style. “ I am so glad we waited and that we were able to safely celebrate with all of our loved ones from near and far. Our wedding turned out better than we could have ever imagined!” Khooshali shares. It was indeed a magical event intertwined with love and elegance- the perfect ending to the couple’s fairytale wedding story.
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