Nithya and Naveen, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
A vibrant wedding in the bustling city of Kuala Lumpur celebrated the union of two cultures
For Singapore-based medical professionals Nithya and Naveen, sparks flew over the food table at a work convention! Before long they were head over heels in love and picked the gorgeous city of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to host their wedding with both Malayalee and Sindhi rituals. Bride Nithya shares some highlights of the festivities here.
How They Met
“Naveen and I met in Glasgow University, Scotland, at a boring medical conference. While everyone else was engrossed in the events, we were looking for food! Despite our instant connection, he took his own sweet time to ask me out on a date, but once he did, it was pure magic!”
Both hailing from Singapore, Nithya and Naveen wanted a destination wedding that was held not too far from home. They also did not want to be hindered by weather conditions. After considering a few places, they zeroed in on Kuala Lampur, a bustling city with a wide variety of indoor and outdoor options.
Nithya shares, “We kicked off our wedding festivities with a traditional Sindhi prayer ceremony. Naveen and I were not allowed to see each other so we had two separate prayer ceremonies. In an interesting custom, Naveen had to have his outfit ripped apart illustrating the end of his old life and the start of the new one with me!”
“We wanted to greet our guests with a warm Malaysian welcome that included views of the iconic Petronas Towers. While traditional Malay dancers gave them a taste of the culture, the night concluded with everyone dancing to Bollywood tunes! Guests were encouraged to wear glamorous dresses or traditional Batik printed shirts.”
The Rajasthani-themed mehendi ceremony was a riot of colors with beautiful drapes, umbrellas, chandeliers, and flowers. Guests savoured custom cocktails and mocktails and enjoyed the spectacle of traditional dances, mehendi artists, and giant jenga and beer pong games. Hats, bindis and bangles made for some charming wedding souvenirs. The bride glowed like a princess in a floaty floral creation by Mrunalini Rao which she teamed with a fresh flower head crown and bangles. Her henna design was inspired by Glasgow’s skyline (where Nithya and Naveen first met) and Singapore’s skyline (where they both are from)!
“Being avid dancers, we planned many dance performances for the Arabian Nights-inspired sangeet that was held in the ballroom.” In keeping with the theme of ‘A Night in the Oasis,’ the space was bathed in blue and purple lights, with scattered palm trees, rugs and lamps. Belly dancers enchanted the guests as they enjoyed posing next to a photobooth and a Turkish ice cream cart.
The bride chose an ink blue Gaurav Gupta gown for this function, and the groom wore a customized Jodhpuri suit with hand embroidery. Their friends and family performed over seven choreographed dances, each ending with a dance-off. Each guest got a custom-made box of macaroons as a souvenir.
“South Indian weddings mean a really early start of the day! Despite sleeping for barely two hours, I was far too excited to be tired. My tribe wore traditional cream and gold sarees and walked us down the aisle. We went with a green backdrop with scattered marigold flowers that offered a beautiful contrast for our outfits. I chose a hot pink silk saree from Nalli Silks, while Naveen and his groomsmen wore Malayalee Mundus with blush pink shirts.”
The bride stood out in her burgundy Sabyasachi Mukherjee ensembles that stood out against the delicate pastels palette of the mandap, decor, and outfits of the groom and the wedding party, all in hues of ivory and peach. Like the Malayalee function, guests were provided with illustrated cards outlining the rituals and their significance.
The pheras were followed by an evening reception. The guests walked in to the beats of Kompang performers playing traditional Malay drums. The glow of candles and flowers against the backdrop of a starry night created a magical atmosphere.
“We did the traditional ‘yam seng’ toast where everyone raises a glass and yells out ‘yaaaam’ for as long as possible before ending it with a short ‘seng’ to celebrate the new marriage.”
The Malay dancers performed scintillating pieces before everyone came on to the dance floor. In a novel twist, the couple surprised everyone by booking a fashion illustrator who sketched every guest’s outfit – and those sketches made for very unique wedding favors.
Advice for Couples
“Remember to enjoy yourself on your big day. Look around, absorb all the love, and cherish every moment!”
The Wedding Makers
Venues: Flock at W Kuala Lumpur (Welcome Dinner) and EQ Kuala Lumpur
Wedding Planner and Decor: Pathway Events, Desi Events
Bride’s Outfits: Soch (Ghari Pooja), Adriana Papell (Welcome Dinner), Mrunalini Rao (Mehendi), Gaurav Gupta (Sangeet), Nalli Silks (Malayalee Wedding), Sabyasachi Mukherjee (Pheras), Payal Kheyal (Reception)
Groom’s Outfits: Sabyasachi Mukherjee (Pheras)
Hair and Makeup artists: Blush Beauty Beyond and Sunny MUA
Mehndi Artist: Nakhreze Mehndi
Invites: Moor Designs
Entertainment: DJ Milan (DJ), Bally Dhillon (Emcee), Malaysian Apna Punjab Bhangra (Mehendi and Sangeet), Bollywood Dance Academy (Mehendi and Sangeet)
Choreography: Neha Joshi
Photography and Videography: Trees on the Moon