A Majestic Maui WeddingWords by Courtney Kellar
Photos courtesy of Rachel Solomon Photography
Rajdeep and Lael went above and beyond when it came to their wedding away. The couple planned not one event, but two: a Hindu ceremony embracing the groom’s culture and a more traditional, American ceremony. It’s hard to decide which event was more gorgeous – the first with vibrant colors and unique details or the second with classic elegance and a sophisticated reception. Playing backdrop to it all was the couple’s chosen destination: Maui, Hawaii.
“We wanted our wedding to be small and intimate with just our closest friends and family and we thought we could take our wedding as an opportunity to vacation for a week with our closest friends who are spread throughout the country,” reflects the bride. As for the “where,” the answer is quite simple. “We chose Maui because Hawaii is somewhere my husband had traveled to with his family for many years and I, the bride, had never been.”
There was another bonus to this tropical, romantic destination. “It was easier since guests didn’t need a passport,” says Lael. While some guests weren’t able to travel, the couple was understanding and ultimately got the smaller wedding they were after. “Everyone we invited was thrilled about the idea, but some couldn’t make it because of pregnancies or financial restraints. We completely understood.”
Looking back on her planning experience, this bride has nothing but positive memories – largly due to one individual. “My experience was amazing, but that is all due to my amazing wedding planners, Belle Destination Events. They listened and executed by vision to a ‘T.’” The couple also relied on their wedding planner for vendor referrals and day-of coordination.
Thankfully, Mother Nature cooperated and all of the wedding guests made it to Maui with no drama. “We were blessed to have no travel issues what-so-ever,” says Lael. “We allowed guests to stay at whatever resorts fit their budget within about a 15-mile radius from the wedding venue and we rented buses to transport guests to and from both weddings and receptions.”
Rajdeep and Lael really delivered the drama for their W-Day with gorgeous details and sentimental ceremonies. The Hindu event was filled with vibrant colors, cultural traditions like a horse for the groom and gorgeous flowers everywhere you looked. The more traditional wedding was classic with clean whites and a sophisticated reception setting.
In a way, the couple got their cake and ate it too. Not only did they get the intimate wedding experience they wanted, but they saved money in the process. “I believe it was less expensive because we didn’t invite as many people [since it wasn’t] local and therefore food, rentals and drink costs were lower,” says the bride.
There were other added benefits to hosting a destination wedding. “Everyone I know who has had a large wedding spends the entire time making the rounds with attendees and hasn’t had time to actually enjoy the reception. With 40 guests, that wasn’t an issue and we actually got to enjoy our intimate wedding.”
These wedding away aficionados have some sage advice for other couples planning a destination wedding. “Realize that things are going to go wrong and it’s not a big deal. No weddings are perfect. Enjoy the day because your will want to relive it over and over and again…”
Vendors: Photography: Rachel Solomon Photography, Wedding Planner: Belle Destination Events, Ceremony/Reception Sites: Gannon’s Restaurant and Private Residence, Cake: Maui Executive Catering, Hair: Dan Sanchez Salon, Gown Designer: Custom Michael Costello, Groom’s Clothing Designer: Tom Ford
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