Sanjay & Eisha's Wedding in Rayong, Thailand
From an intimate proposal to getting married three times, Eisha and Sanjay ensured they had an intoxicating and memorable wedding in Rayong, Thailand!
How we met (Bride’s version):
Sanjay owns a Tech firm in USA while I (Eisha) work at an event company in Dubai. Both of us moved to India recently – him for a short while and me to explore the event industry. Oddly enough we had a lot of common friends in Dubai (his parents live there), yet we never bumped into each other. A very close friend of mine, who moved to Mumbai just a few weeks before I did, introduced the two of us at a bar in Mumbai. We hit it off immediately and with my love for food (hence the name Ladoo) and many dinner dates later, with just a couple of months into seeing each other, he popped the question in Dubai .
The proposal: He planned a beautiful dinner at the Segreto in Madinat Jumeirah. The restaurant was kind enough to get onto this plan and arranged a beautiful romantic setting in a secluded area of the restaurant facing the water. My brother, who is also a filmmaker, was on this too and had planted hidden cameras at the set up area, with his photographer on stand-by watching us, just so that the moments were captured right when he pops the question.
Oblivious to all of this, I was taken on a small ‘Abra’ to the restaurant, thinking this is one of our ritual date nights. Upon entering though, I noticed the staff smiling more than usual (when i asked Sanjay why are they being super sweet, he’d drop in a complement to change the topic). When I saw a beautiful set up in front of me, I continued wondering why he would pull such a extraordinary date. A bottle of champagne down and some delicious food (my weakness), the manager came to our table and gave me a wooden box. The top of the first box had the date and location of our first date engraved on it; inside the box lay another box and another and another, all with iconic and special memories in each, with the last box (ring sized wooden box) mentioning the date 13th June 2016. When I opened the box, it read “Will you marry me?” And there he was, on one knee, telling me he loved me and wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. Post the engagement, we got our marriage registered at the same bar we first met, on the very same table with a bunch of 50 close friends and family as witness on 9th Aug 2016 – Bar Stock Exchange, Bandra.
Wedding Planning & Decor:
Since Sanjay and I got married “in court” earlier, living together while planning the wedding really helped. Of course, it was stressful what with the nonstop back and forth, but luckily Sanjay and I had the same taste in terms of what we wanted, so we’d come around. In terms of our family being part of this process, we asked them to take a backseat and just show up in Bangkok and enjoy us getting married. They were more than happy to do so.
Feelings on the Big Day:
I was very excited yet quite nervous on the first wedding day (Christian wedding). I remember just going through my vows constantly with my friends while getting my make-up done simultaneously. I was sooo excited to see all my friends and family, since they had just arrived that morning. On the day of the Pheras, I was just a little nervous and a tiny bit hungover. But more than anything else, I was super excited for my own Baraat!
As weird as it sounds, I hate shopping! Hence, my shopping was quite quick, as I knew what I wanted to look like at every event. I shopped for all the functions by myself in about 2-3 days in Mumbai itself. I bought the white wedding outfit from Dubai with my mom and my maid of honor and for the Pheras I shopped from Mumbai with my mom.
Schedule of events and outfits worn on each function:
White wedding – Eisha: Sophia Tolli Gown from The Bridal Showroom, Dubai; Jewelry: Bafleh Jewellery, Dubai; Sanjay: Telon, Mumbai
Pajama Party – Sanjay and Eisha: Custom-made by Eisha
Mehendi – Eisha: Manish Arora, Mumbai; Floral Jewelry: Srishti Floral Art, Mumbai; Sanjay: Custom made by Eisha
Sangeet – Eisha: Manish Malhotra, Mumbai; Jewelry: Mehta Emporium, Mumbai; Sanjay: Vagad’s, Mumbai
Wedding – Eisha: Sabyasachi, Mumbai; Jewelry: Mehta Emporium, Mumbai; Sanjay: Manyavar, Mumbai
Reception – Eisha: Rohit Verma, Mumbai; Jewelry: Siroya Jewellers, Dubai; Sanjay: Manyavar, Mumbai
Not one, not two, but three weddings !
9 Aug 2016 – Court Marriage
Sanjay and I decided to make it legal and decided to get married at the first place we met – The Bar Stock Exchange in Bandra, Mumbai. We convinced the lawyer to come with the papers to the bar, invited around 40 of our close friends, signed the papers at the very same table and partied until they kicked us out at closing. It was absolutely perfect, no heavy lehenga and sequence piercing through your skin or sherwani baking your body in the heat. Just love!
Both Sanjay and I believe in minimalistic and classic decor and each function was designed keeping that in mind. With a ratio of 20% oldies and 80% youngsters, the events were planned accordingly. He gave me full liberty for choosing the decor, look, feel, etc; his only condition was no function should take place before 12 noon, not even the wedding Puja This really helped not just us, as the bride and groom, but even the guests and hence, everyone had the energy to party until breakfast was served.
It is said that the bride should retire soon to get a good night’s sleep so she can look fresh the next morning, but if you don’t party until you drop at your own wedding, then where will you? Sure you can at other people’s weddings too, but I have FOMO issues!
30 Jan – Christian wedding
We chose to get married on the beach while the sun set. The decor that I had envisioned for this was filled with whites and pinks, giving it a breezy and dreamy feel. The entrance to the beach had two wooden doors with our initials on it and light floral decor. The altar was a twigged arc with white and pink flowers and the aisle had our name and the date printed on it.
The bridesmaids wore pink and the groomsmen donned blue suits. Our friends and family, along with the bridesmaids and groomsmen, danced down the aisle to the beats of Uptown Funk by Bruno Mars. I was walked down the aisle by my brother to the tunes of A Thousand Years by Christina Perri.
We wrote our own vows promising not just to be there for each other, but to even share the last slice of pizza and we were soon pronounced Man and Wife while the sun set behind us.
The ceremony was followed by dinner at the lawn, where we insisted on a dance floor under fairy lights. A couple of friends played an acoustic guitar while I sang “Can’t help falling in love with you” for Sanjay, which faded into our first dance (You and I – John Legend).
We then moved on to the youngsters night at SYNC, which was a Pajama themed night. Guests were given customised eye masks at the entrance, while the projectors in the club played black and white Charlie Chaplin movies There were abundant shots waiting at the bar, as we all know that first nights are crazy! Let’s just sum the night up with: the maid of honor broke her wrist, the bride’s brother broke his front tooth, one bridesmaid had a concussion, one puked her dinner and one guy forgot where his room was and was found sleeping in the corridor by the DJ in the morning!
The theme for the entire wedding was “The Bride calls the SHOTS”, hence every function had shots pre-lined up at the bar and catered for three different spirit drinkers at all times.
31 Jan – Mehendi
After a long night/ morning of drinking, we thought what better cure for the hangover than a pool party!?
We chose the island view pool, as our setting for the Mehendi was filled with bright pink gazebos facing the sea. The guests were treated with foot massages and some hangover cure spirits, while many relaxed in the pool. The Mehendi ceremony was held in the center gazebo.
31 Jan – Sangeet
The decor of the Sangeet was a mix of blues, purples and gold. I really wanted an island bar at the center, so that no one has to sprint across the ballroom for drinks, or even have an excuse NOT to have a shot. The island bar had rows of shots always lined up 360 degrees.
Post all the performances, DJ Nitesh hit the deck and we pretty much had a repeat of the first night minus the injuries (the injured were all bandaged and back to party with absolutely the same dedication as the first night).
1 Feb – Wedding
The day started with our respective Pujas and Haldi ceremony. Having attended multiple weddings in the past (known as a serial wedding attender), it was for the first time I discovered that the bride has to wear the groom’s old t-shirt and that would be torn too by friends and family.
Pakkhi, my makeup artist, who had been dealing with my hangover face, kept doing a brilliant job at every function and with two days of pure debauchery, she absolutely aced my look for the Pheras.
Sanjay didn’t want to come on a horse but wanted to be a part of his baraat and dance along every now and then, so he decided to lead the procession on a buggy.
I always wanted a baraat myself – I never understood why we can’t dance to the mandap and have to act all shy, when inside we are so damn excited. So, when I walked down all decked up, there was a buggy waiting for me with dhol walas and the DJ truck, with all my friends dancing around it and waiting for me join in. If inally got my own baraat!
The mandap was probably my favorite set up from the whole wedding; it was selected by my dad and executed perfectly by Nipunika. The beautiful ramp over the pool with features on them led up to the mandap, while the bells chimed as the wind blew – it was surreal!
We read the 7 vows ourselves in English, while our friends and family witnessed Sanjay and I getting married for the third time!
The Reception’s decor theme was gold and white (as Sindhi as it gets). We didn’t want a stage, so we kept a long family table, a dance floor, the shots bar of course, and a few tables.
The night began with us cutting the cake with the traditional ‘talvar’, followed by speeches from our family and friends. The night was hosted by Nitin Mirani.
Our planner Nipunika gave us a bunch of hotels to choose from and Rayong Marriott was one of them. We flew down to Thailand for a week and stayed at all the places (Rayong being first); nothing stood close to the vision we had for our wedding than Rayong Marriott. Suyash and Jay were very warm and walked us through the whole property with patience, keeping our likes and dislikes in mind and helping us envision our wedding (unlike the other hotels). The rooms were spacious and beautiful, the view was spectacular and every ocean view room had a gorgeous view (which saved us alot of hassle in room allocation). I loved the building style hotel, simply because it’d be easier for guests to commute between the functions and their rooms in their heavy outfits.
The food was an absolute seller for us; I couldn’t find one dish that was not up to the mark. Not a single guest had any complaint, and everyone absolutely raved about the food. Vegetarians are usually hard to please and with our guest list having a 60:40 ratio of veg to non-veg, the food was simply amazing!
The Marriott team were a dream to work with and every venue that was chosen for all the functions was gorgeous.
Performers and Performances:
We decided to combine the boys and girls’ side into one script, so his family and friends from USA, Dubai and India were coordinating with mine from Dubai and India via Skype, wherein they decided to tell our story with a twist via a musical journey. Because of my love for Salman, they stuck to alot of Salman Khan songs, which included my favorite old school songs.
The Sangeet was hosted by our close friends Ankur Parikh, Nitin Mirani and Parikshit Balochi. I’ve always had more guy friends than girls, so I decided not to do a typical shy all-girls performance; instead, I danced with my guy friends on ‘Kala Chashma’.
While Sanjay and I have had multiple arguments on how I’d like to do a dance with him but how he refuses since he has two left feet, he decided to do a surprise performance on ‘O O Jaane Jaana’ (because of my obsessive love for Salman Khan) and man, was it adorable!?!
Few words on the photographer, videographer, hair/make-up artist and DJ:
Our DJ, Nitesh, from Dubai was an absolute party starter! The 3 day celebrations never ended before breakfast thanks to him! He simply killed it every single night.
Pakkhi, my make-up artist, was an absolute joy to work with. She ensured she made me look like a dream at every function despite my super hungover face.
Art, my hair dresser, was a magician! He was very patient and did a beautiful job.
We didn’t hire special bartenders for the wedding, so the Marriott bartenders took over and they were so much better than any of the hired guys you see at other weddings. The taste of all the shots was on point and their service was amazing.
Advice for to-be-weds (one or two sentences):
Make sure you brief the planner when you get to the venue on exactly what you are expecting, so you don’t have to worry.
And lastly, have a ton of fun! I made sure I had a memory with every single guest at the wedding. It’s your day, so forget about how you have to get ready or how you’ll have to wake up early blah blah blah. Luckily you have people giving you all that attention and they will take care of you for absolutely everything.
Photography/Videography: Uttam Videos (Bangkok)
Wedding Planner: Elan Events by Nipunika (Bangkok)
Make-up Artist: Pakkhi Pahuja (Team Vanity Mumbai)
Hair Stylist: Art (Bangkok)
DJ: DJ Nitesh (Dubai)
Bartender: JW Marriott Rayong
Caterer: JW Marriott Rayong
Venue: Rayong Marriott Resort & Spa
Outfits: White Wedding: Groom – Telon (Mumbai), Bride – Sophia Tolli Gown (The Bridal Showroom Dubai) | Pajama Party: Groom – Custom made by Eisha, Bride – Custom made by Eisha | Mehndi: Groom – Custom made by Eisha, Bride – Manish Arora (Mumbai) | Sangeet: Groom – Vaagad (Mumbai), Bride – Manish Malhotra (Mumbai) | Pheras: Groom – Manyavar (Mumbai), Bride – Sabyasachi (Mumbai) | Reception: Groom – Manyavar (Mumbai), Bride – Rohit Verma (Mumbai)
Jewelry: White Wedding: Bafleh Jewellers (Dubai) | Mehndi: Floral Art by Christi (Mumbai) | Sangeet: Mehta Emporium (Mumbai) | Pheras: Mehta Emporium (Mumbai) | Reception: Siroya Jewellers (Dubai)