VENUES WITH BOTH INDOOR AND OUTDOOR SPACES ARE PREFERRED IN THE RAIN
From the finest five-star hotels to beautiful wedding banquet halls – the city has a lot of interesting venues. But for monsoon wed dings, guests prefer venues with a mix of indoor and outdoor areas. Balpreet Singh Chadha, executive chef at a city five -star hotel, says, “We offer a covered and air-conditioned hall for when it’s raining and an open area for when it’s not, so that one can enjoy the best of both worlds.” Sumeet SuriGM of a luxury star hotel, says, “People adore mon soon weddings and are captivated by options of open locations because of the cool windy weather, beautiful naturally decorated landscaped lawns and pools. The current trend in weddings is a mix of an indoor -outdoor themed venue with grandiose setups for individual functions. Since it is monsoon season, patrons spend more on waterproof marquees or tents to get shelter from rain. Flowers brighten up the venues in the gloomy weather. However, the ultimate focus is still on food and beverages, with expert chefs designing menus tailored for the season.”
BIRYANI-CHAAP OUT, CONTINENTAL FARE IN
Rongon Neogi from a catering service says, “Ilish is a hot favourite this wedding season, espe cially ilish bhaape and paturi. People are avoiding chicken and some are taking it just for starters like kebabs or tandoori. Mutton too is in great demand for both Indian and continental dishes. The pandemic has made most people health conscious, so they are now turning to continental spreads as it uses less oil than other cuisines.” To give guests a true-blue monsoon wedding experience, there’s kulhad chai, a variety of fritters and chaats on the menu along with live coun ters of dimsums and soups, shawarma stations, nihari kulchas, falafel platters and kebabs! Hot desserts like jalebi, baked mihidana and rabri are monsoon favourites. S Ramani from another catering service says, “For Bengalis, hilsa is a must this season. Big prawns are also being added to the menu for those who can afford it. Besides continental delicacies, people are also going for fusion food. The trend of biryani and chaap at weddings seems to be dying.”
BRIDES DECK UP IN PASTEL LEHENGAS, FLOWER JEWELLERY
During her wedding lehenga shopping recently, bride-to-be Aditi Kanoria noticed that pastel lehen gas with traditional embroidery are trending this season. Since the humidity is high in monsoon, breathable and comfortable materials, such as pure georgette, cotton silk, organic cotton and chanderi, are recommended. Avoid wearing dense textiles like velvet and silk since they can hurt your skin. Waterproof makeup is a must. Monsoon weddings make you sweat a lot, so keep the makeup minimum. “A bride-to-be is traditionally decked up in floral jewellery for the mehendi ceremony. I prefer flow er jewellery created with multicoloured flowers,” says Aditi. Keerty Daga, who deals in flower acces sories, says, “People love flower jewellery. Besides the wedding, a bride can use these in other functions too, like Teej. Pastel jewellery is the most popular now. Pink and green for mehendi and yel low for haldi. A basic bangle costs between Rs 100- Rs200, while a complete set, including a maang tikk a, a baju bandh, a nath, a hath phool, an anklet and more, comes at around Rs 3,000
DECORATION IDEAS FOR A MAGICAL MONSOON WEDDING
Flowers have always played an integral part of wedding decorations. And the latest trend blowing everyone away is the suspended floral arrangement. From lavish arrangements of tropical flowers to rajnigandha strings decorated in the traditional way – monsoon weddings have options galore when it comes to flowers. Pastel drapes are in much demand as they go well with the mood and aesthetics of monsoon weddings. Colourful paper fans are an excellent option for decorating the ceilings. For an added pop of colour, vibrantly embroi dered umbrellas are being used to accentuate outdoor spaces. Also, fairy lights are quite sought after. Heavy decor during the monsoon is a no-no.
DRAMATIC THEMES RULE IN MONSOON
Weddings in the rainy season involve experimenting with various col ours like pink, yellow and turquoise to make the setup more joyful and complement the season’s romantic mood. Fresh flowers and umbrellas add the finishing touches. Pratik Agarwal, an event organiser from Kolkata, says, “The Pichhwai theme is in vogue this season. It has carefully hand-painted motifs that give the whole affair character and a touch of tradition. It is a fantastic choice for Myra ceremonies, where we use a sophisticated colour pal ette with flowers and a classic backdrop. Besides Pichhwai, the traditional red and gold theme is still ruling charts. Lotus and Rajwada are among the other popular themes.”
STAR-STUDDED WEDDINGS WITH CELEBS
Several high-profile families are now inviting celebrities to add a grand touch to their wedding cele brations. From Bollywood singers like Sonu Nigam and Badshah to actors like Ranveer Singh, who was the star performer at a Kolkata wedding – celebs are invited to make the event memorable with their special perfor mances and pres ence. Charges for inviting a singer like Sonu Nigam or Badshah are upwards of `50 lakh.
PICK THE BUDGET FOR YOUR WEDDING
Pre-wedding shoot packages start at Rs 1 lakh and the location fees start at Rs35,000 per day For upscale and high-profile weddings, there are five-star hotels that cost between Rs 2,800 to Rs 3,500 per guest Some of the best open-air venues, including Eco Park in Rajarhat, are more affordable at Rs 900 per guest Some big hotels’ sister concerns offer reasonable ballrooms at around Rs 1,000 per guest
*Prices are approximate and include food plus venue charges