Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan, hadn’t ever witnessed an Indian wedding. That is, until #RomaForLife took the port city over for four larger-than-life days of celebration.
Maithili Sagar and Rohit Gupta tied the knot in September 2018 with a spectacular wedding in Baku, a gorgeous destination where Europe and Asia meet.
The city which follows the Caspian Sea coastline, hosted guests from India, Dubai, Canada and the USA for a spectacular celebration of the #RomaForLife union.
The destination wedding was a fitting affair for the couple, both Canadian citizens of Indian origin, living in the USA.
Baku, The Wedding Destination
Wedding planners, Chapter 2 Events, spent over 8 months scouting locations from their Delhi home-base, for the perfect venues all the way in Azerbaijan.
The city itself was chosen for its charming architecture, bustling culture and iconic landmarks including the medieval walled old town, the Palace of the Shirvanshahs and its three pointed skyscrapers with LED screens, the Flame Towers.
Worldly Wedding Vendors
With throwing a big-fat Indian Wedding in mind, the wedding planners meticulously planned for this destination wedding to be one for the books.
Kunal Laungani of Chapter 2 Events remarks,
Each and every vendor was handpicked after careful due diligence to ensure a magical wedding experience for wedding guests and for people of Baku. 12 chefs from India flew to Baku; the DJ was called from Canada, Performers from India, Pakistan, Dubai and Canada. The experience surpassed all our expectations, leaving all guests mesmerized with the magic of Azerbaijan.
Rohit, Maithili and the Fairmont
To compliment the unique choice of destination, both the wedding planners and families decided on the Fairmont Hotel to host the elaborate celebrations.
The European cultural feel coupled with the hospitality made the venue an irresistible option of luxury and decadence.
Transforming the Hotel for the Indian Wedding
The “je aan nu” (Punjabi welcome) took place in the Jazz Club in the Fairmont.
The popular club was transformed into a colorful ‘pind,’ giving the guests a warm, homely welcome.
To accomplish this, the welcome featured dhol walas, pagdi walas, a truck bar, and quirky signs in Punjabi to create the perfect ambience.
Plus, to top it off, guests were welcomed with a special performance by the family’s favourite duo- Hari and Sukhmani.
And before they knew it, guests were having such a great time that the 4am ending just called for the party to move to the 24hr lounge where the drinks kept pouring and the music kept playing!
Baku’s Mehndi Mehfil
Without missing a beat, the wedding celebrations continued with the Mehendi Bazaar and the Mehfil.
The unique bazaar (Indian shop) set up showed off beautiful peacock feather fans, bangles and juttis, all wrapped up in a pink theme.
Local henna artists also adorned the guests with the cultural art to complete their traditional attires.
Simultaneously, the Mehfil event also raged on- albeit with a different vibe. Pakistani Sufi artists, Shafqat Ali and his entourage hosted guests in a laid back atmosphere with the classic combo of sheesha and cigars.
Bollywood Dreams in Azerbaijan
The third celebration in the #RomaForLife wedding was the Sangeet Night.
In a glamorous fashion, Maithili and Rohit treated their guests to fun surprises like a Vogue photobooth (where their faces were actually printed on a magazine cover), neon signs with witty messages like ‘save water, drink champagne’ and a glitter bar!
Not surprisingly, the party went strong until 5am thanks to the Bollywood sensation, Hardy Sandhu, memorable details like designated makeup artists in the washrooms for touch ups and a late night buffet to keep the guests’ stomachs full as they sipped on bubbly from the 24hr bar.
A City Trotting Baraat
To begin the big day, an Indian flag was proudly propped up outside of the towers!
With that symbolic gesture, the baaratis took over the Philarmonic Park where they were joined by local dancers and drummers to get the celebrations going.
The crowd enthusiastically made their way over to the Four Seasons Hotel, where the wedding spectacle just continued to become even more exciting.
Finally, at their destination, the mandap was a beautiful mix of classic western and traditional Indian. The wedding program featured a detailed explanation of the events for guests to follow along and it concluded with the newly wed couple departing in a gorgeous vintage car with a touch of modernity with the couple’s hashtag spelled out in a floral arrangement.
Wrapping Up the Destination Wedding
As they say, all good things must come to an end.
But, not before the couple and their guests enjoyed one final wedding event– ‘A Night in Baku, the Reception.’
Paying ode to the beautiful country that hosted them, the wedding party was a full immersion into Azer culture.
Chapter 2 Events puts it well,
Over 2000 kilos of real fruits were used in the decoration for the Azer garden themed event. There were trees erected in the venue with real branches and fresh fruits. The venue smelled of a beautiful orchard. The pre-fuction areas showcased Azeri tradional Artists, from caligraphers to carpet weavers, and the stage events showcased the thrilling Azeri performances. The pilav dance (yes literally with a plate of Pulao) to the real fire dancing spectacle we had it all. The guests were at the edge of their seats.
The reception evening concluded with an elegant sit down dinner, speeches from the families and yet another party that ended only when the sun began to rise the very next morning.