Nejal and Dharmit, The Oitavos, Portugal
This bride with her groom sat on the same swing her parents used in their sangeet 29 years ago.
Introduced by a mutual friend, Nejal and Dharmit’s love story began with a casual conversation online which then quickly led to the pair planning their first date. But as fate would have it, both of them couldn’t make it. However, they still managed to find their way to each other with a hilarious first date. An ode to their strong ties with nature, their wedding took place at The Oitavos, which is a serene and scenic coastal property in Portugal.
How They Met
Nejal and Dharmit were both living in London when they came across each other’s profiles online. With a mutual friend, who also happens to be Nejal’s best friend, the duo quickly started chatting casually online and made plans for their first date. But fate had something else on the cards as both of them broke their legs – Dharmit in an accident, and Nejal while she was surfing on holiday! But with sheer determination, both of them still managed to make their way to each other as an injured Dharmit went to receive Nejal who was also in crutches at the airport. A hilarious first date ensued where they both wondered who would carry Nejal’s trolley bag!
Keeping in mind their strong affinity for nature, the couple were looking for a venue that incorporated nature seamlessly into their wedding. They found their match at The Oitavos, a luxurious property located in the middle of a golf course that gives one a magnificent view of lush landscapes and the Atlantic Ocean. The unmatched view paired with the hotel’s fabled hospitality made it the perfect pick for Nejal and Dharmit. Also, the statue at the entrance of the hotel which displays femininity in its purest form was the cherry on top as it reflected the duo’s beliefs about purity and nature. For their reception, the couple chose the glamorous Sud Lisboa which is known for its hospitality and splendid views of the Tejo River.
For wedding planning, the couple gathered a team of efficient and skilled vendors so that their wedding would go ahead without a glitch. Photographer Aguiam Wedding Photography ensured that each shot captured the essence of the landmark event, while videographers VIP Wedding Films ensured not a single emotional moment was lost. Making sure Nejal looked her best was hair and makeup artist Tom Perdiago. Wedding Invitation designers Kup Eventos captured the couple’s personalities with their elegant designs. On the decor front, Decorelle impressed all with vibrant floral arrangements. Orchestrating the wedding and leading the way ahead was Lisbon Wedding Planner who made every effort to give the couple a wedding they’d always dreamed of. An impressed Nejal shares, “The Lisbon Wedding Planner team were extremely dedicated and understood exactly what we were looking for. With their creative insights and constant efforts, they made our vision come true and I will be grateful to them forever!”
A poolside event timed with the sunset, the decor for the engagement ceremony was dominated by roses – the ultimate symbol of love. The color palette comprised soft pastel tones, and the engagement mandap had an unfinished arch that signified that the couple wasn’t complete yet. Adding a nostalgic twist to the event were the chairs which reminded the bride of her childhood in Luanda, Angola. Keeping the decor in mind, the bride chose a printed red and white lehenga, while the groom donned a mint green floral bandhgala.
Following an ‘Enchanted Forest’ theme, vivid flowers were used to create a mystical vibe at the sangeet venue. The highlight of the occasion, however, was the swing in which Nejal and Dharmit lounged, the same swing that was used at the bride’s parents’ sangeet 29 years ago. The dance floor print was a replica of the bride’s sangeet invitation design.
Taking the traditional route, the decor for this auspicious ceremony was filled with a mixture of red flowers in varying hues and green foliage. However, there were subtle hints of gold in the decor too in the form of candle holders that were placed on the tables. Nejal glowed in a green and golden embroidered lehenga that she paired with simple gold jewelry. Dharmit also went for a bold green embroidered bandhgala for the occasion to match his bride.
For their haldi ceremony, the duo opted for an all-yellow decor palette but chose to give it a peppy twist with pops of pink. Held under a canopy of pink and yellow drapes under the warm Portuguese sun, the haldi witnessed everyone playfully smearing the couple with turmeric paste. Also, the specially crafted 250 yellow chairs around the main canopy ensured no one missed out on the proceedings. Echoing the hues of the greenery surrounding them, Nejal wore a pastel green and white ombre lehenga that she paired with a baby’s breath wreath on her head. The groom, however, kept it simple in a pristine white kurta.
The mehndi function followed a magical yet romantic theme where pampas grass were used generously to create a dreamy atmosphere as women got henna patterns applied on their palms.
For their big day, the duo showcased their affinity for nature with a mandap that had a rustic look to it. Crafted with wood, bright yellow blooms, and lush green foliage, the mandap mirrored the surroundings which were replete with tall trees. Even the guest’s seats were carved out of wood to go with the theme. Nejal chose to make her own entrance independently and walked down the uneven path towards the mandap which signified ‘that no path in life is straight.’ Displaying her elegant and breezy style, Nejal chose a white lehenga with floral motifs that she paired with understated gold jewelry. On the other hand, Dharmit went for a bold look with his merlot turban and shawl which he paired with a white and gold sherwani.
Amping up the glamor stakes, the reception was a luxurious event that was resplendent with gorgeous floral decor. Orchids symbolizing fertility and love were generously used to herald the welcome of a new chapter in Nejal and Dharmit’s lives. As the newlyweds took to the dance floor, Nejal was the showstopper in her white gown, and Dharmit looked dapper in his tuxedo.
Advice For Couples
Nejal shares, “Plan everything and make sure you’ve got every detail right. But remember to simply let go and enjoy yourselves once the festivities start!”
The Wedding Makers
Venues: The Oitavos (Engagement, Sangeet, Mandhwa, Haldi, Mehndi, Wedding), Sud Lisboa (Reception)
Wedding Planner: Lisbon Wedding Planner
Caterers: Details Event Planning, Renata Ibanes
Groom’s Outfits: Arvindbhai Khatri Sons (Sagai, Mehndi), Nero Couture & Bespoke (Sangeet, Wedding)
Bride’s Outfits: Anita Dongre (Sagai), Shyamal & Bhumika (Wedding)
Makeup & Hair: Tom Perdigao
Wedding Invitations: Kup Eventos
Photography: Aguiam Wedding Photography
Videography: VIP Wedding Films