Name: Sonali Bahri & Edward Surgeon
Wedding: The western wedding was held on March 31, 2011 at Al Qasr, Madinat Jumeirah. The Indian wedding was on April 2, 2011 at Al Sahra Desert Resort.
Reception: April 2, 2011 at Al Sahra Desert Resort.
While Sonali and Edward were Dubai residents, their family was spread all over the world. Hence they decided to have a fusion wedding for the 150-odd guests who flew down from the UK, Australia, India, USA, Singapore and Pakistan. The idea was to celebrate both cultures and they decided to have events on the beach, on a boat and in the middle of the desert! The western wedding was followed by the sangeet and mehndi party. On April 1, a day before the Indian ceremony, they had a boat party for youngsters.
The couple gifted custom-made boxes filled with premium chocolates as part of the invitation. During the wedding, they had gifts to complement the events. For example, guests got wooden fans during the western ceremony, held at the beach in the afternoon! At the sangeet and mehndi, girls were given pouches filled with anklets, bindis and bangles while boys received brightly coloured scarves.
Wedding Dress Designer
Sonali’s gorgeous western wedding gown was by Gauri & Nainika. For the sangeet, she wore a lehenga from Study By Janak while her Indian Wedding outfit was from Frontier, New Delhi. Edward’s Western suit was from Kenzo and the sangeet and Indian wedding outfit was from Study By Janak in India.
Taaryan by Sameer Bhatnager in India.
Bride’s Hair And Make-Up
Kam Bhamra from London.
Sonali’s wedding ring was from Cartier, both the wedding bands were from Cara in Gold & Diamond Park. Her mangalsutra was from Taaryan by Sameer Bhatnager.
Each ceremony of the wedding was special. The colour scheme for the western wedding was off white and dusky pink. Sonali’s brother, gave her away while Reverend Stevens performed the ceremony for which they had written their own vows. The sangeet party was lot of fun with singing, dancing and music. After all guests danced, Sonali and Edward finished the proceedings by bogeying to Desi Girl from Dostana! For the Indian wedding, the couple arrived by limousine. One of Ed’s friends, applied kajal under his eyes before he stepped on to his horse! When Sonali arrived, there was a palki – a palanquin where the bride is carried in by her brothers into the mandap – waiting for her. The garland-exchanging ceremony, seven rounds of fire ritual and the joota chuppai (hiding the groom’s shoes) ritual took place amidst a lot of cheering and hooting. After which it was time for photos in the desert background and speeches.
The reception party was equally fun though Sonali is emotional about the end where they had the doli – symbolising the bride leaving her parents’ house for good.
Ugly Duckling did a fab job with the photos while the video was done by Rupert Chesman.
From the head chef at Al Qasr. The couple also ordered a custom-made wedding topper from China which was a replica of the photos of the bride and the groom!
The bride and groom's favourite memory
Edward’s favourite memory was seeing Sonali walking down the aisle in a dress that only she could pull off. “She looked stunning and it was a surreal realisation that I was going to be happy for the rest of my life,” he says.
Sonali recalls Edward looking really handsome in his Indian wear and his family embracing Indian culture. “I also cherished spending quality time with my friends and family. They are always there for me and make me laugh,” she says.