One of the best perks of our job is that we get to travel to some of the most beautiful destinations where couples celebrate their love. And last month we were in Hamilton Island, Australia’s favorite Honeymoon & Wedding Destination; and Hayman Islands, Australia’s most awarded luxury nature-resort located on the Great Barrier Reef.
After our stay at the Reef View Hotel in Hamilton Island, we set off to Hayman Islands on a luxury yacht from Hamilton Island Airport and it was there that we were fortunate to meet Australian Cricketing icon Matthew Hayden. On the yacht we got talking and soon the conversation flowed easily. His down-to-earth nature made us comfortable and it was heartening to hear his excitement when talking about India and Indian food. “Mumbai is one of my favorite cities in the world, and I always look forward to a meal at Indigo restaurant”, quipped the opening batsman once known for his aggressive style on-field. Last time he was in Mumbai on an invitation from Singapore Airlines and Tourism Queensland to talk about the Virgin Australia partnership with Singapore Airlines. “I hope they introduce a direct flight from Mumbai to Brisbane soon. I’m sure many Indians looking for the ultimate tropical holiday would love to explore Queensland and the heart of the Great Barrier Reef.” When we started talking about WeddingSutra our conversation veered towards Destination Weddings. “I love attending Indian Weddings though I haven’t attended a big, destination wedding yet- it’s fascinating to hear about how Indian families are travelling to different places around the world to celebrate the union. In Australia, Destination Weddings are very popular too, over 400 brides and grooms travel to Hamilton Islands to exchange vows, though unlike Indian weddings they are much smaller in scale- with as less as six to sixty guests.”
Matthew Hayden checks out the Photographs on www.weddingsutra.com
Matthew Hayden we soon figured is a big foodie, not only does he love trying different foods, he loves cooking too. And he has authored a book to share the recipes of his favorite dishes like prawn pita pizza, mango and avocado salad, salmon quiche, passion fruit and coconut and Christmas pudding. He says: “Thanks to my cricketing career I have been lucky to travel around the world. Now I like to write and share all that I have learnt with people from different walks of life.” We asked him what he’d love to share with WeddingSutra readers, many of whom are to-be-weds or just weds. “I have an image of being ‘the family man’ and while its nice to hear that, I get very passionate when I talk about ‘all the hard work that goes into a relationship’- not just with your spouse but with all your family members. So when you’re getting into a relationship, and looking forward to being a man or wife, be prepared to work hard on building the relationship. It could mean many things- giving up something you like but which your spouse detests, moving out of the routine and exploring a new activity beyond your comfort zone, and most importantly not expecting the other person to be ‘perfect’.” Hayden quite dislikes the word ‘Perfect Marriage’. “Or perfect wedding too—there is no such thing as a perfect wedding or perfect marriage. Life can never be perfect, and people can sometimes be imperfect. The moment you learn to accept this, you learn to love more.”
We really enjoyed our conversation with Hayden, and now we had reached Hayman. How do we even describe that feeling of reaching the private island that has an iconic status among the people of Australia ‘go-there-once-before-I-die’. We were here, and doubly happy. After all, we were in Hayman with Hayden. There’s so much to tell you about the uber-exclusive Hayman, its comforts amidst the splendid Great Barrier Reef, and our once in a lifetime experience there. Watch this space for more!
Kate Dixon (Tourism Queensland), Matthew Hayden, Michael Sommer (Tourism Queensland) and Parthip Thyagarajan (WeddingSutra.com)
Photos Courtesy: Dev Purbiya