We’ve heard of numerous lockdown weddings where our bride and groom get creative or their families manage to pull off the intimate wedding of their dreams. But what happens when a wedding planner is all set to tie the knot and then our country goes into a state of lockdown? Today, our groom of the day, Virat is a famous wedding planner and the founder of Meraki Luxury Events who pulled off his fantastic intimate wedding with the love of his life Rachita who happens to be a well-known fashion Stylist and designer. With all the right precautions and that too on the original set wedding date during the Coronavirus outbreak, this duo said, “Jab Miya Biwi Razi, Toh Kya Karega Kazi!”
Rachita and Virat have known each other for a decade now. Rewind to their college days; Rachita says, “The relationship started in our college days. We met through a common friend. Two months later Virat and I started talking to each other on Facebook and since then we’ve never looked back. Our relationship strengthened over time and today it is stronger than ever. Virat is a calm and composed man who has always been ambitious in life. On the other hand, I am very impulsive. We love our space and make it a point to give each other enough.”
Just before the lockdown was implemented, Rachita tells us that Virat proposed her in a very romantic and cheesy way to which 'She Said Yes'. This rooftop proposal involved tons of candles, fairy lights, their polaroid photos and a lit-up ‘marry me’ sign (told ya, it’s a cheesy one!).
Colour coordinating each other this twosome started their nuptial ceremonies with a beautiful Roka ceremony. Both drenched in purple outfits Virat & Rachita looked more than perfect and made a happy couple. Oh! Don't miss out her open hairstyle by Hair By Pratiksha, which is to die for.
Before the lockdown, the couple had found a few dates for their big day but one such date happened in the days of the lockdown. So, on one family dinner, Rachita and Virat’s families were discussing their wedding and just then the whole wedding squad decided to have an intimate lockdown wedding, which turned out to be magical. Rachita says, "Virat & I anyway always wanted a small intimate wedding, with just our close family & well-wishers."
Our bride Rachita here is a sucker for basics so she decided to go with something simple and elegant but with that traditional touch for her wedding. She wore her creative pants and converted a Banarasi fabric into her beautiful wedding lehenga. Her dupatta was simple with zardozi work. As for our groom Virat, he got a white and gold sherwani made for the big day with a baby pink coloured shawl. Oh, the shawl was made out of his mom’s saree and his mojri was also created to match the sherwani! (Talk about creativity, huh?)
So, with the entire wedding planned in just 2 weeks, this was the 1st lockdown wedding that took place at Sofitel Hotel BKC in Mumbai.
With precisely 46 guests, Rachita and Virat tied the knot at a location which holds a special place in both their hearts, which was Sofitel Hotel’s restaurant Jyran. After all, this is the restaurant where this couple went to so often for their dates. Although #RachLeViru was originally gonna be a destination wedding and due to the lockdown they had to shift the location, Rachita says, "We really couldn’t think of a better spot to be married in."
On their extended family, Rachita says, "We had all our extended guests on a zoom call which was fixed to a big screen, so we could see all of them during the wedding ceremony as well."
A lot of precautions and safety measures went into having this intimate wedding like for food preparations, Rachita and Virat decided on having only live counters so that all the food is made in front of the guests.
This couple says, "The biggest challenge was the sanitisation process as it was to be brought on the site, sanitised at the bottom level and kept there overnight, then transported to the 4th floor again sanitised and kept overnight. We also were worried about the rains as there were parts of the venue that were open to the sky."
Also, any guest with a body temperature above 98.7 C was not allowed at the wedding venue. They also provided a fresh set of gloves, masks and sanitizers. For social distancing, Rachita and Virat had only four guests per round table and were requested at all times to maintain a good amount of distance.
Rachita shares, "Virat being a planner was optimistic about the wedding. My brother in law, Virat & his team ensured that we enjoyed every single second of the day. They ensured that all safety precautions were in place & everything was like clockwork."
Giving out tips and suggestions to couples who are planning their intimate wedding soon. Virat from Meraki Luxury Events said, "While planning a lockdown wedding you must remember to inform the guests about what all measures they would need to take during these times. Sending out all instructions of dos and don'ts before the wedding would be very helpful. We ensured that complete sanitisation processes were followed before and during the wedding."
"Virat & I always wanted a small intimate wedding, with just our close family & well-wishers. This has just been perfect for us, we wouldn’t want to redo or change anything! But maybe if Virat wants to surprise me 10 years later on our anniversary with a surprise wedding, I won’t mind that," said the bride.
Rachita also revealed that "I feel like it is the most important day in a girl’s life, so if you are not completely at ease with the situation do not rush. It's best to have your wedding when you feel most at ease."
Wedding Photographer: Photos By Shubhankar; Isrrani Photography | Wedding Venue: Sofitel Hotel BKC | Event Planner & Decor: Meraki Luxury Events | Makeup Artist: Neha Singh Artist | Hairstylist: Swati Daga Artist; Hair By Pratiksha | Bridal Outfit: Self-designed by the bride (Rachita Shah)