Surfing through his Facebook wall, little did Gaurav know that the pretty girl with the million-dollar smile in his friend’s photo would end up being his soulmate. After two and a half years of blissful courtship, Pooja and Gaurav tied the knot in a mesmerizing riverfront ceremony, every moment of which was captured in beautiful frames by WeddingSutra Favorite – Shutterdown. The charming festivities were planned and executed by WeddingSutra Favorite – VLW Global. The couple shares details from their wedding below.
How they met
Gaurav was smitten by Pooja when he saw her in a mutual friend’s holiday photo on Facebook. However, love stories rarely are as simple as shown in the movies. It took a lot of cajoling from him to convince his friend to introduce him to Pooja at a party, and even more time for Pooja to agree to go out with him. Pooja shares, “Nice guys aren’t always easy to find, and it took a bit of nudging from Richa, my friend for me to agree to meet him. But to my surprise, one drive led to another, one date to another, and before we knew it, we were head over heels for each other. Although it wasn’t on first sight, but it definitely was love!”
Gaurav shares, “I always found the concept of a formal proposal too mainstream. Our families met organically and set our wedding planning in motion, and Pooja was well into a trip with her friends when I decided to surprise her with a ring. When she landed in Istanbul for the last part of her trip, she stepped out to see me standing with flowers, a ring and a placard that said “Will you marry me?”I could see it in her eyes at that moment that she was completely swept off her feet. She however, matched it by surprising me with her own proposal during our pre-wedding shoot in Sri Lanka”.
Gaurav adds, “We were very clear from the beginning that we wanted a destination wedding, specifically in India to allow for ease of logistics for our older family members. We did an extensive search, first in Mahabalipuram and then Goa, but never seemed to like anything.
We had almost given up hope of finding the ideal location when we discovered the brand-new DoubleTree by Hilton, Panjim. With logistical comfort, riverfront venues and 160 rooms, it fit our requirements perfectly and we hired out the whole hotel for a truly personal experience.”
The couple entrusted VLW Global to plan and execute their gorgeous wedding to perfection. The most precious moments of the festivities were captured in breathtaking details by Shutterdown. Itchha Talreja Designs custom-crafted their wedding invites, while Priya Todarwal and Sarita Gurav were responsible for the bride’s stunning makeup and gorgeous hairstyles respectively.
The festivities kicked off with a welcome party which had all the pomp and vibrancy of a Mexican fiesta. Funky photo ops, cheerful decor and lively games of giant Jenga and beer pong, set the tone for the pool party, which was accompanied by fresh cocktails and light finger food. The groom sported a quirky printed suit and shorts by Sameer Patel which paired perfectly with the bride’s breezy one shoulder gown by Swapnil Shinde.
Aptly named ‘Sangeet and Scotch’, the cocktail function was a classy black-tie affair with a formal ball and dazzling performances. The bride wore a shimmering ice blue lehenga by Anushree Reddy while the groom looked dapper in a suave tuxedo by Troy Costa.
With rustic glam decor of romantic lights, flowers and LED props, the cocktail reception was a night of enjoyment, the perfect way to wind up the celebrations. The bride stunned in a couture gown by Swapnil Shinde, Badgley Mischka heels and diamond jewelry while the groom looked dapper in a three-piece suit by Sameer Patel.
Advice for couples
The couple share, “It’s important to be on the same page with each other and clearly voice concerns if any, regarding the destination or venue and concepts or themes and then plan together, as this is the beginning of your new journey.”
The Wedding Makers
Venue: DoubleTree by Hilton Goa – Panaji
Wedding Planner: VLW Global
Groom’s Outfits: Sameer Patel (Welcome Party), Troy Costa (Sangeet), Anita Dongre (Wedding), Sameer Patel (Reception)
Groom’s Shoes: Adidas – Gazelle (Welcome Party), Dsquared2 (Sangeet and Scotch), Shutiq (Wedding), Tres Mode (Reception)
Bride’s Outfits: Swapnil Shinde (Welcome Party, Reception), Anushree Reddy (Sangeet), Anita Dongre (Wedding)
Bride’s Shoes: Gucci (Welcome party), Eridani (Sangeet), Gossip (Wedding), Badgley Mischka (Reception)
Makeup artist: Priya Todarwal
Hair Stylist: Sarita Gurav
Wedding Invite: Itchha Talreja Designs
Entertainment: DJ Manoj Punjabi, DJ Gautam Laungani, Tarang Singhal
Photography & Videography: Shutterdown