Roshni and Dhruv, Taj Mahal Palace Hotel, Mumbai
From a cinematic proposal to cutting a three-tiered pizza, instead of a cake, at their sangeet, Dhruv and Roshni's Mumbai wedding celebrations had many unique touches.
They met in the 7th standard and over time, Dhruv and Roshni fell in love. They may be complete opposites when it comes to their personalities, but both knew that they wanted their wedding celebrations to be a memorable yet personal affair.
Here, bride Roshni shares highlights of their wedding functions, planned by Shaadi Squad and held at the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel and Vivanta by Taj – President in Mumbai.
How We Met
“I am a chartered accountant and Dhruv is a businessman in the steel industry. We’ve been best friends since childhood, and our story began when we were in the 7th grade! Initially, we disliked each other but moved on to exchanging our email addresses a year later. Thanks to chatting endlessly on Microsoft Messenger and phone calls that lasted all night, we forged a strong bond. After three years of being pursued, and a dinner date in December 2007, I realized what Dhruv and I shared was much more than friendship, and we started dating. It was not easy to maintain a long-distance relationship as he was in Ohio, US, attending business school, while I was studying for my CA exams. However, even distance could not tear us apart! Finally, after eight years of being together, we got engaged on 18th March this year at a grand ceremony at Hyatt Regency, Mumbai.”
“We are both movie buffs and till date go watch at least one movie each week. So Dhruv decided the proposal must revolve around our movie dates. He booked Lighthouse, a private theatre, and made a plan with our friends for a private screening of our friend’s movie (or so I was told). He called me at the last minute to say he’s delayed. We all went to the theatre where trailers of upcoming films started playing. Suddenly the screen showed Dhruv working out, eating pizza and I was shocked. I finally realized what was happening! The movie continued to show him at my house asking my Dad and Chachu for my hand and calling me to say he is delayed for the screening. The action cut to him getting ready with the ring and opening the door to the theatre. The movie then stopped, and Dhruv walked into the theatre, reached me and went down on his knee. Our sisters and my school friends entered behind him, so clearly everyone knew about it except me! It was completely unexpected and a very precious memory for me. I was overwhelmed! We then popped champagne and cut a cake to celebrate this new milestone in our lives.”
“Since we had a long courtship and had over a year between our engagement and wedding, we had the liberty of time to look at a lot of venues across Mumbai. The minute we entered the ballroom at the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel, Mumbai, we knew there was no better place to get married. The grandeur of the heritage property, the sea facing view overlooking the iconic Gateway of India and the excellent hospitality made us instantly realize this was the perfect fit for us.”
Kirtan and Mehndi
The celebrations began with an ‘Art of Living’ Kirtan hosted by the bride’s family in the afternoon at the Vivanta by Taj – President followed by lunch. This was followed by a mehndi function where there was a surprise dance performance by the bride’s best friends and a ‘dhol’ (ethnic Punjabi drum) player without which a Punjabi function is incomplete. Roshni shares, “I got my mehndi applied at home the previous day along with my close family members. We arranged for customized scarf giveaways in a handmade pink bag with floral handles and gota for the bridesmaids. A lotus candle wrapped in a red potli (cloth bag) with kaleeras was the kirtan giveaway.”
“The evening started off with the ‘Bhaat Ceremony,’ a traditional Marwari custom welcoming the groom’s mother’s maternal family. A folk singer entertained us with her melodious voice, and the entire family danced joyfully to celebrate the wedding. The giveaways for this event were in custom-made blue boxes which had the #KubiRosh embossed on them.
“The decor for our sangeet had an upbeat blue and purple theme. Dhruv is a Marwari but a hardcore non-vegetarian, and I’m a Punjabi but vegetarian! All these years pizza has been our common ground and favorite food and so instead of cutting a normal wedding cake, we cut a three-tiered pizza which was specially brought in from Trattoria eatery at Vivanta, complete with a bride and groom cake topper! The event kicked off with performances by the parents, siblings, and friends. This was choreographed with upbeat songs, and the finale was our couple performance where we stayed away from the typical slow romantic mushy songs. The night continued with Akhil Sachdeva (of ‘Humsafar’ from ‘Badri ki Dulhaniya’ fame) performing with his band Nasha. He kept the crowd captivated with his popular ‘Hamsafar’ track, and got me and my family to tear up when he sang ‘Laado’. He then picked up the pace with recent hits. Dhruv even took to the mike himself. DJ Sumedh took over, and everyone danced until 6 am.”
The morning started with the haldi and chuda ceremony of the bride at Vivanta by Taj – President. This event had an all-yellow theme for the dress code which was perfect to set the mood for the haldi. This followed with the chuda ceremony and tying of the kaleeras which are a very important part of Punjabi weddings. It was a delight lining up the unmarried girls and trying to break the kaleera on them! At the same time, the groom had his haldi at the Taj Mahal Palace. It was a fun event with dhols and high energy even after the last night of partying!”
The groom looked dapper entering on a Jeep while the ‘baraat’ (groom’s procession) danced away along the Gateway of India. The customized blue turbans for the baraat made the boys stand out. The bride entered under a ‘phoolon ki chaadar’ (floral canopy) with her brothers. The bride’s family wore color-coordinated mint green outfits. The pheras took place at sundown in the beautiful ballroom with an elegant mandap that was decorated with peach and white flowers and matching floral candle stand as centerpieces. These complemented the gold pillars and chandeliers in the room. The Art of Living singers sang in the background which added serenity to the ambiance and the entire high-tea wedding ceremony and exchange of vows was a beautiful affair.
“For the reception, we decided we did not want a traditional reception with a stage and instead chose to walk around and greet all our guests. Post dinner, DJ AJ took to the console and an after-party started that went on until the wee hours of the morning. We also used a big set up of our #KubiRosh as a photo-op in the reception.”
Advice for Couples
“One key advice I have for couples planning the wedding is to delegate! We all have a vision of our wedding and get over-involved in various small details and end up over-worked and stressed. Share your idea and vision with close family or friends and your wedding planners and let them shortlist vendors and options from which you can select the best to reduce your time and effort. Another thing, enjoy your wedding, put your foot down to ensure the event is planned to keep the couple in mind, their likes and dislikes and comfort. Only trying to please guests or mundanely trying to be chic and follow all possible wedding trends just takes away from the celebration.”
Venues: Taj Mahal Palace Hotel, Vivanta by Taj – President (Mumbai)
Wedding Planner: Shaadi Squad (Mumbai)
Decor: DreamzKraft (Mumbai)
Bartenders: The Wedding Bartenders (TWB) (Mumbai)
Bridal Makeup: Monisha Tolani for Sangeet (Mumbai), Pakkhi Pahuja for Wedding (Mumbai)
Bridal Hair Stylist: Ritika Kadam (Mumbai)
Mehndi Artist: Jyoti Chheda (Mumbai)
Choreographer: Studio in the House by Vibha Luhadia (Mumbai)
Photographer: Israni Photography by Megha Israni (Mumbai)