Vibrant Indian Island Wedding {Jamaica}

January 22, 2017 - by Preeti

Are you ready for an Indian wedding on the gorgeous island of Jamaica?! From vibrant pinks, reds, and purples, to the breezy beach ceremony, this is a wedding not to miss.

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Nisha tells us all about their Hindu wedding!

Initially we had no idea where we were going to hold our wedding. We wanted something rather intimate as well as an unforgettable experience so we chose Ocho Rios, Jamaica as our destination. For many of our guests, it was their first time visiting the island so we wanted to ensure that our wedding reflected and delivered as much of the Caribbean culture as possible. The island vibes and over all feel of our wedding was a reflection of us and our personalities.

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This immediately gave us a sense of what we wanted to incorporate into the details and overall aspects of our wedding

We wanted to allow our guests the time to enjoy non-wedding events such as swimming with the dolphins, deep sea fishing and taking the opportunity to explore the charm that Jamaica has to offer. For this reason, we had three events span over three days. Some saw this as an opportunity for adventurous excursions, while others simply enjoyed relaxing on the beach or poolside with a Rum Punch in hand.

The Wedding Highlight of Nisha & Akash from EpiqueCinema.

What was the inspiration for your wedding?

The inspiration for our wedding came from our personalities and love for the culture. Akash is an outgoing, adventurous, free spirited, and fun loving person. As for me, my love of traveling to the islands has always been a part of me. My mom was born and raised in Jamaica as my grandparents migrated there from India many years ago. Because of this I have always had a lot of island influence in my family; from the food to the music I really appreciate the culture of the Caribbean.

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Since we wanted our guests to feel relaxed, instead of rushed and constantly shifting between events, we held a moonlit dinner and hired entertainment which included a fire dancer, contortionist and magician to keep our guests full of energy and amusement. Along with this idea came a "Jamaican me Crazy" pool party the afternoon of the reception. We had water guns and drinks flowing while everyone laughed and enjoyed the cool water and swim up bar.

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What was the hardest part about wedding planning?

The most challenging aspect of wedding planning was not physically being there for decision making. Although we traveled to Jamaica six months prior to the wedding, it was difficult to pick out simple things such as fabrics, the size of center pieces, different shades of linens etc.

In addition, some vendors from the Caribbean have a different sense of time and urgency than what we have in the states and therefore take longer to respond. Sometimes I had to wait over a week for an answer to the simplest question. Also, when working in other currencies its imperative to be mindful of pricing and negotiating. Since we were not locals, some vendors had extremely large markups on items we knew cost less. We were sure to negotiate where possible.

Did you do any DIY (do it yourself) or special projects/things at the wedding?

As you can imagine, DIY isn't as practical for a destination wedding since everything has to be brought in from your original departure city. However, we were still able to create some items, that I envisioned such as rafia fans, The solid fans were purchased and the satin ribbons were wrapped around the handles in alternating fuchsia and orange to match our mandap colors.

My closest family, who helped tremendously, also glued on flowers to enhance the tropical ambiance. Our guests utilized these during the Bharat and ceremony for the beaming sun. To the right of our mandap, we had a coconut station along with light snacks and refreshments.

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In addition, we also created numbers for each table and name tags for the reception seating. It was an antique key with gold ribbon and name tags. We created signs at the bars with customized bride and groom cocktails. For our welcome bags, we wrote a personalized note thanking each guest for their presence and included an itinerary along with items such as shot glasses, beer coozies, Jamaican hot sauce, personalized logo sunglasses, a luggage tag, and personalized tattoos.

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What was your favorite part of the wedding?

There were so many breathtaking and surreal moments in our wedding that we were overjoyed with at each event. Seeing our families come together and the smiles on everyone's' faces as they all danced was one of our favorite parts of the wedding.

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The reception personally was my absolute favorite because it was black tie formal and the incredible speeches left us both teary eyed. Our favorite moment was our first dance together as husband and wife. We chose UB40's famous song, "I can't help falling in love with you."

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What 3 words of advice do you have for future brides/grooms-to-be?

SOAK IT IN - Soak in all the small details of the wedding planning process because it will be over in the blink of an eye. Its a time in your life you wont ever do again so just enjoy the little moments and try not to stress too much.

Tell us about those gorgeous outfits and the baraat!

Having very modern taste, Akash & I chose to go with less traditional customs for our wedding. Instead of a Bharat where the groom comes in on a horse, we wanted to combine the entrance with the glistening turquoise ocean. We rented a huge catamaran boat where he made his arrival. Our dhol player and all of his closest friends accompanied him as he made his way to the mandap in a grand entrance.

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While getting ready for the ceremony, two of Akash’s friends came to the bridal suite to deliver a basket. I was astonished to find such, small yet unforgettable pieces of our five years together compiled into such a meaningful way. Included was a handwritten letter that made me instantly cry tears of joy.

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For my mehndi, I wanted something memorable that incorporated our love story. The top starts out with how we met in California, leading to our insanely fun times at UltraFest in Florida, shifting to his proposal and my move to Texas, and ending with our tropical wedding in Jamaica. I worked with my mehndi artist beforehand on what I had envisioned.

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Opting out of classic red, my wedding ceremony wardrobe consisted of a deep fuchsia lengha with subtle hints of orange to mirror the sunset hues. The blouse was a soft gold adorned with three layers of crystal studded chains draping the shoulders. I entered our ceremony atop on a golden dholi carried by my closest cousins. Akash wore a rich cream sherwani with matching fuchsia and orange dupatta and pagri.

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Akash's idea for the reception was rich and royal, with black tie formal attire. We chose sapphire and navy blues with strong gold tones. I wore a long floral embroidered and sequined gown that I designed with inspiration from my favorite designers. For the back of the gown I envisioned a chandelier inspired back which was handmade with custom beading.

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He wore a slim fit Ted Baker Tuxedo with custom stitching of our wedding date & initials inside the jacket pocket.

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Thank you so much for sharing this grand and gorgeous beach wedding!

{Wedding Vendors}

Photography: Courtney Chen // Planning: L3Event Services with Eram // Photography 2: Bella Lumi // Videography: Epique Cinema // MakeUp & Hair: Blushing Bride Artistry ( Brennan & Rochelle) // Decor: Chic Events Jamaica // Dhol Player: Jupji Singh, DBI Entertainment //

Venue- Moon Palace Jamaica Grande // Mehndi Artist- Hemas Art of Henna

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