Ravi & Anita's Wedding in Pattaya, Thailand
Ravi and Anita's story highlights how two people found true love in an arranged marriage setting, and celebrated it with much grandeur in Pattaya, Thailand.
How we met:
We met through a common aunt who got us introduced. Seemed harmless at first, but little did we know what a few messages can do! There was an instant spark and messaging turned into daily Skype sessions. After a few months, our first meeting took place in a restaurant with both sets of families and, despite having known each other for a few months, we both were quite nervous.
Overall, the wedding planning process was relatively stress-free for us and it’s hard to imagine that was the case back then, now that we look back and consider the number of things that happened! Planning was divided between the families and they took care of most of the heavy lifting. We got involved when required: arranging the dozens of outfits, herding our friends’ excitement, invitations and guest transport (not the most glamorous part!). There were a couple of bumps along the way and trying to convince parents to a few of the crazy ideas we had was not easy; however, it all turned out really well in the end. A talented family friend agreed to do the video/photography, a hotelier uncle took care of all the events planning/hotel arrangements and both the dads orchestrated the whole thing like a pair of conductors. Once our friends arrived at the venue, the fire really started. Everyone who attended our wedding made those few days incredibly fun and memorable, allowing us to dance the night away, more so because we knew everything was pretty much under control.
Feelings on the Big Day:
It was absolutely amazing. An incredible concoction of emotions with highs and lows throughout, while we were trying to steal each other away for some alone time. The day started with a series of early ceremonies (Ghari Poojas, Saat Son, etc, etc!), all of which were extremely traditional and wonderfully organised but siloed to the bride’s and groom’s families. So we went along with it, wondering how long it’d be till we see each other again. It was all worth it in the end, though. As the first half of the day concluded, the second half led us to our beautiful beach wedding and an all-night Reception. It’s a bitter sweet feeling to be marrying the person you want to spend the rest of your life with, but at the same time it felt like it wasn’t going to be easy leaving home, family and friends (bride’s feelings).
From the bride: The shopping was the most stressful part of the wedding for me! Being a simple person, I have never been the kinds to be too excited about shopping, something my friends always laughed at me about. However, I was certain about the looks I wanted for each of my events, and how they would vary from each other. My sister and friends helped a lot, braving the heat in Mumbai all day, going from one store to another till I could finally look at an outfit and say “This is it!” His shopping, on the other hand, was relatively easier! His clothes were custom designed by Masculine in Mumbai, wherein he chose the fabrics and a few details. To make things interesting, we decided to surprise each other with our outfit colors/choices and luckily, it coordinated perfectly. I guess that’s the connection we were talking about which I can’t describe in words.
All of us wanted a destination that was easy to reach and, of course, enter with minimal visa issues. Cost was surely a factor, but we were focusing on the hospitality, availability of cuisine and paradise setting the most! Hence, we chose the beautiful property at Centara Grand Mirage Beach Resort in Pattaya, Thailand.
Performers and Performances:
While we witnessed some local Thai performances on the first night, our families and friends put on a great show on the second night (Sangeet), for which they had been rehearsing for weeks over Skype and other social networking mediums. My (bride’s) friends put on a special performance and I performed on a sweet surprise number for the groom.
Few words on the photographer, videographer, hair/make-up artist, and DJ:
We would like to thank Viewfindr films for coming on-board at the last minute and for being absolutely amazing. Throughout the wedding, they made us do some crazy things to get the perfect shots, not to mention jumping into the pool with our outfits on. They managed to produce a trailer of highlights from the past few days and played it on the final night, leaving everyone wanting for more.
Advice for to-be-weds:
Make sure you have fun and don’t stress. It’s over before you know it, so enjoy every minute. It will be tiring, but for some reason you won’t feel it as the emotions push you through.
Photographer/Videographer: Viewfindr films
Make-up Artist/Hair Stylist: Anjali from Ablaze
Bartender: Flaming Trio
Venue: Centara Grand Mirage Beach Resort, Pattaya, Thailand