Ketki and Akshay, Jai Mahal Palace, Jaipur
Ketki and Akshay's grand wedding celebrations were spread over four beautiful hotels in Jaipur, which came alive with stunning themes, standout decor and regal accents.
From a royal Rajasthan theme to a fairytale setting, Ketki and Akshay’s lavish destination wedding in Jaipur was all about creating a big impact by paying attention to the smallest of details. Here, bride Ketki shares highlights of her wedding.
How We Met
“Akshay works at Goldman Sachs as an investment analyst, and I am a professional makeup artist. It is strange but we were in the same college for four years in Pune but never met. It was Akshay’s friend who suggested I was the perfect match for him. A few meetings later, Akshay fell for me but I avoided getting into a relationship then because I was off to London for my post graduation studies. Akshay knew I was the girl for him and proposed to me three weeks before my trip to London – and the rest is history!”
“We always wanted a royal wedding and picked Jaipur for our destination wedding . We made sure that each wedding venue had a rich history and heritage feel associated to it. For our engagement, we chose the Le Meridien hotel. The mehndi was organized at the Hari Mahal Palace, a boutique heritage hotel, where Akshay and his entourage stayed. For the cocktail and sangeet, we chose Clarks Amer for its luxurious ambience, and finally, settled on the Jai Mahal Palace for our royal wedding. We specifically wanted the Fountain Lawns at Jai Mahal Palace because of ITS royal palace backdrop, which looked even more beautiful with our grand wedding decor.”
“We had numerous meetings and calls with Arshad Hussain, our Jaipur-based planner, to discuss the decor for each function. He exceeded our expectations with his creativity and attention to detail. Every guest at our wedding was raving about the decor and arrangements.”
“We planned the decor and themes for each function in advance and had many meetings with our wedding planner to make sure everything was executed effectively. For the engagement, we chose the theme of ‘Love’ and went with a pleasant pink color scheme throughout. We had romantic white carriages, fountains and rose petals adorning the venue. We also had pretty bicycles decorated with colorful flowers, a ladder of ‘LOVE’ and a big Eiffel Tower as props to add to the romantic ambience. A photo booth was created for our guests with a larger-than-life portrait of ours from our pre-wedding shoot framed in a massive, vintage frame as the backdrop. I got all my outfits from New Delhi, as I love rich, heavy and intricate work. I wore a navy blue raw silk lehenga with golden handwork. Akshay chose an equally stunning royal blue Jodhpuri suit with hand-woven zardozi work and paired it with khaki raw silk trousers.”
“We had an authentic Rajasthani theme for mehndi event, and chose neon pink and green as our color scheme for the event. Since it was organised on the lawns, we got a beautiful canopy erected and decorated under which our guests could sit and relax. We had folk dancers, musicians, lacquer bangle makers, gota patti floral jewellery favors, a fortune-teller, mehndi ladies and puppet shows to entertain our guests. We also installed a big ‘cage of love’ which was a massive decorated structure where couples and families could click beautiful pictures together. I designed my own outfit which comprised a gorgeous red raw silk crop top with floral embroidery, and a bright pink silk and net skirt with the same floral work. I paired this with a messy braid studded with flowers. Akshay wore a green Pathani suit to go with the mehndi theme and a velvet sleeveless vest.”
“We chose to have lots of chandeliers, crystals, and candles for our glitzy sangeet, and went with a royal blue and silver white color scheme for the evening. The entire venue and each table had floral arrangements of white roses, lilies, and orchids in tune with our theme. Stunning seats of honor were created for us in the form of silver thrones adorned by white roses and crystals with fairy lights and huge lanterns on the side. For our guests, we had chairs with royal blue drapes and fragrant jasmine flower garlands to add a scented vibe. We went with an LED stage to match the explosive dance performances and also shared a short video of our love story on it! I chose a champagne gold lehenga channeling my inner diva, and matching accessories such as golden ‘kamar patta’ (waist band), ring, bangles, anklets, and a ‘passa’ (forehead ornament). Akshay wore an indo-western suit with Patiala bottoms that complemented my attire perfectly.
“The theme for our wedding was regal red. The wedding mandap had a massive ornate chandelier in the center, rich silk drapes decorated with flowers and was flanked by white floral peacocks. The entire garden of the palace was filled with beautiful floral arrangements. I was escorted by my brothers under a beautiful ‘phoolon ki chaddar’ (floral sheet/canopy) made out of jasmine blooms as it is my favorite flower. The wedding stage had an enormous seat for us, resembling a throne. On each of its sides we had colossal ‘suryas’ (sun motifs) and lanterns to give a royal look. After looking at hundreds of designs I found my perfect wedding lehenga at Asiana Couture. I wore a crimson red velvet lehenga with delicate hand work of kasab and zardozi all over. Akshay wore an elegant rose gold zardozi sherwani with matching mojris.”
“Jewellery was very important to me as I wanted to make sure that everything I curated and selected matched my ensembles well. For the engagement, I wore gold jewellery from TBZ Jewelers in Pune. For the wedding, I wore an authentic diamond and polki choker with matching polki earrings. To be honest, selecting different ‘maang tikkas’ (forehead ornament) , and ‘passas’ , ‘kamar pattas’, bangles, ‘hath phools’ (hand ornaments), rings, ‘choodas’ (set of red and white wedding bangles), and ‘kaleeras’ (dangling wrist ornaments) to match each outfit was a tedious task but thoroughly worth it!
“We chose Saba Poonawala of Labelle Salon because she was an old friend and is an amazing makeup artist. Each of my wedding looks – from the engagement to the wedding – was flawlessly crafted by her.”
“Hiring the perfect wedding photographer is very important and a thoroughly difficult decision for any couple. We went through numerous photographers across India before finalizing Deepanshi Kapoor of Happyframes . Her team is very professional and of course, the photography was amazing!”
Tips for to-be-wed couples?
“Your wedding is the most important day of your life, so plan everything meticulously months in advance. Do not skip on hiring a wedding planner especially if you plan on having a destination wedding like we did. There are a million arrangements that need to be made, right from hotel and taxi bookings for guests, taxis, wedding favors,gifts, menus, venues, decor, entertainment… so having a reputed wedding planner is a must. Thanks to Arshad Hussain’s efficiency and creativity, our entire wedding celebrations were executed like a fairytale. Also, take care of your health and don’t let the planning stress get to you. Most importantly, enjoy the experience of being pampered like a queen and do the same for your bridesmaids on their wedding.”
The Wedding Makers
Wedding Locations: Le Meridien, Jaipur (Engagement), Hari Mahal Palace, Jaipur (Mehndi), Clarks Amer (Cocktails and Sangeet), Taj Jai Mahal Palace, Jaipur (Wedding)
Wedding Planner: Arshad Hussain, Nexzen, Jaipur
Bridal Trousseau: Asiana Couture
Bridal Jewellery: TBZ Jeweler, Pune
Mehndi Artist: Saba Poonawala (Labelle Salon)