Fairytale couples from Disney such as Jasmine and Aladdin, Simba and Nala, and Cinderella and her Prince Charming have set romance goals for decades now. Little girls who dream of fairytale weddings inspired by the world of Disney are common; however, hosting a wedding at a Disneyland theme park is a rare and landmark event.
Anisha and Varun’s wedding at Disneyland Paris, the first Indian wedding to be hosted there, was indeed a dream come true for the couple, all thanks to Arun Bablani and Rahul Kumar along with the exceptional team of WeddingSutra Favorite – Vivaah Weddings.
We spoke to the Vivaah Weddings team about how they pulled off such amazing celebrations in Disneyland Paris. Here are some excerpts from the interview.
There was music, drama and magic at the first Indian wedding to be hosted at Disneyland Paris. What led you to pick it as the venue for Anisha and Varun’s wedding?
“The decision to host the wedding at Disneyland Paris came into fruition after the couple had shortlisted and narrowed down their search for an extraordinary venue. From historic palaces, exotic locations and some iconic properties around the world, Anisha and Varun felt that no other venue could depict their love story better than the magical world of Disney.”
What was it like orchestrating an Indian wedding in the French capital? What challenges did the team face given the difference in cultures and expectations?
“Although every destination wedding comes with its fair set of challenges such as working with new teams, local vendors who may not understand the culture, language barriers and so forth, working at Disneyland Paris was quite different and involved much more work and effort than any destination we have done weddings at. This was purely because the teams at Disney are true perfectionists and they love to tell a story in the most magical manner and in detail, much like the classics we have all grown up watching. To add to this, we were backed by the professionalism of French personnel, alongside the finesse and magic of Disney which helped us shape one of the best wedding celebrations in a long time.”
Tell us briefly about the various functions and their concepts or unique elements?
“The wedding was conceptualized, planned and managed by us along with the key teams at Disneyland Paris working closely to bring to life the magnificent celebrations. Guests were greeted by Maharaja Goofy at the Welcome Lunch at the Newport Bay Hotel where most of the guests were staying. The first evening began with spectacular illumination and a special effects show which showcased Disney Castle in all its splendor. This was followed by a themed dinner in Aladdin’s Agrabah Café where guests were greeted by the genie himself.”
“The night took a magical turn as the civil ceremony took place right in front of the Disney Castle at the stroke of midnight with a customized Princess Fountain show and a special fairytale entrance for Anisha and Varun. Finally, the afterparty was hosted at The Lucky Nugget which took guests back in time to the Wild Wild West Sheriff Town with some glamorous entertainment acts.”
“The next morning saw all the guests dressed up in ethnic ensembles and prepare for the baraat which was quite a sight with Disney entertainers as part of the procession as well as a special appearance by the famous artist Juggy D who led the baraat with groom Varun in a classic Cadillac. The wedding ceremony was held at the Pier of Newport Bay Hotel overlooking the lake.”
“This evening of the wedding day saw guests being warmly welcomed to the reception and afterparty which was themed ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,’ and aptly so since it was hosted at the Walt Disney Studio 1 which was conceptualized to be an event straight out of Hollywood in the 1950s.”
“With some of our finest Event Directors at work, we carefully curated each event in depth and detail to unfold the magical escapades of Disney. With over 300 guests from all over the world dressed in their finest outfits, Disneyland Paris played host to one of the most magnificent Indian wedding where some of the finest memories were created that the couple and every guest will cherish for a lifetime.”
The presence of Goofy dressed in a dhoti at the baraat was a unique sight! Could you share a few examples of how your team blended Bollywood and Hollywood elements to stage this fairytale wedding?
“Maharaja Goofy was one of the first characters with whom the guests interacted and this set the tone for fun and eventful celebrations over the next few days. The elements of Bollywood to Hollywood transitioned from one event to the other through different entertainment acts, music forms, artists, decor and culinary offerings. The highlight was the groom’s baraat which saw a mix of Disney Parade artists with traditional drums and trained dancers from around the world dancing to Disney choreographed sessions and Punjabi Bhangra music and entertainment led by artist Juggy D.”
If you had to pick a favorite moment from this wedding, what would it be?
“Our favorite moment was when the clock struck 12, at midnight, and the guests were seated right in front of the Disney castle. This was when Varun walked through the castle towards the altar amidst a royal fanfare with some of the finest musicians celebrating his arrival. He stood poised and confident as a young prince waiting for his princess, who then made her way down the Disneyland Paris Main Street in a gorgeous white chariot with her father who walked her down the aisle. Everyone was enchanted by this fairytale experience. After the ring ceremony and the cake cutting, a magnificent fountain show impressed all and made for some of the most memorable moments caught on video.”
The Wedding Makers
Venue: Disneyland Paris, France
Wedding Planner: Vivaah Weddings
Florist: Roni Floral Design
Caterers: Tabla Ilford & Tabla Chingford
Groom’s Turban: The Jodhpur Company
Makeup: Ambreen Make-up Team
Entertainment: Versatile Brass (Band), Imperial Drummers, Jewel Entertainment, Slightly Unusual (Illusionist), Sundar Maharaj (Priest)
DJ: DJ H Music, Funk Asia DJs
Choreography: Absolute Bollywood
Photography: Rashpal Photo
Videography: Salshan Photo & Cinema