A Thunder Storm Wedding in Dubai | {Part One: Venue, Attire & Ceremony}

A Thunder Storm Wedding in Dubai 

Hello readers, it’s Rio here, founder of www.brideclubme.com. Today I am going to talk you through my wedding to the love of my life, Adam, which took place on November 22nd at the beautiful Desert Palm Resort, Dubai.

We planned our wedding well in advance, and spent our budget carefully, since we were paying for the wedding ourselves. Out of all the days in the desert, it decided to rain and thunder on our wedding day. Initially our wedding ceremony and dinner were all due to take place in a completely different location at the Desert Palm, surrounded by polo fields and cascading pink flowers.

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Above left: The weather forecast on our wedding day – Above right: Oliver, the Desert Palm Retreat events manager, drenched during the morning downpour.

Due to the rain, myself, the venue and Clare Ebbs (our on the day coordinator) made the executive decision to shift the entire wedding closer to the hotel. It was a decision we had to make with a heavy heart, as the original location was just so stunningly beautiful and we did forfeit some amazing photo opportunities. But the comfort of our guests took priority.

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Above: The original location we chose for our wedding

It was a decision that proved to be a good one. Although, the set-up did have to be dismantled at one point due to a downpour in the morning, everything else on the day went without a hitch. It truly was the most magical and beautiful day, the thunderstorm simply added to the electric atmosphere and energy during the wedding.

Our wedding was full of laughter and tears captured beautifully by Goldfish Photography. I know I am biased, but it really was one of the best days of my entire life, and according to some of our guests, it was the best ‘event’ they had attended. I am posting the wedding in three parts. Part one, is all about the attire, cocktail hour and ceremony, part two will be about the dinner, family, bride & groom pictures and the after party. Part three will focus purely on the wedding set-up and my wedding DIY.

Below, I am delighted to share Part one (photography by Goldfish Photography & Video) with all with my wonderful readers.

The Wedding|Part One

The Venue…

Adam and I knew we wanted to have our wedding blessing outside, we also knew we did not want a beach wedding, so we set about searching for our ideal venue in Dubai. After visiting several potential venues, we confirmed the Desert Palm Dubai. The reason we chose the Desert Palm, is because of its unique and lush green landscape, we are both British and it reminded us of home, with an arabesque touch.

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Dubai_wedding

The horses, the fresh feel, the pink Bougainvillea flowers and everything about the venue appealed to us. We also loved that it felt private and we would not have people walking around in their speedo’s gawping at us during our vows. The staff at the Desert Palm were extremely accommodating and attentive to our requests. I can honestly the venue was perfect and the staff were wonderful.

Bridal Attire/Getting Ready…

As I was having my make-up and hair done by the lovely twins, Dee and Dal, of Make-up by Dee and Dal, the heavens opened up and started to rain. Dee reassured me, as she could sense I was a little worried. In the end, I just let all my concerns go and embraced whatever the day would bring. The inspiration behind my hair and make-up was ‘50’s glamour’ and I was really happy with the results.

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My wedding dress was a satin, diamond white, fit and flare Maggie Sottero gown, purchased in a sale at the Bridal Room, Jumeirah. To be honest, my wedding gown ended up being very different to the dress I had imagined in my head. I had tried on over 20 gowns in Dubai, but none of them felt or looked right on me.

I had almost given up hope, when I stepped outside the box to try something different. The Maggie gown fit perfectly, felt sumptuous and made me feel like a bride. The double bonus was that the dress was in the sale and came in under my set budget.

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Like many expat brides in this region, I had a separate legal ceremony too with just a few witnesses and my fiancé. So, since I saved some money on my BIG day gown, I commissioned Barbaranne from Moirai Style to design me a blush pink, boho style dress for my legal ceremony. I was delighted with the final dress and would highly recommend Barbaranne to any other brides in the region looking for a tailor-made gown.

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For our November blessing, I knew I did not want simple cream or white shoes, I’m a vibrant person and I love colour, in particular hot pink (can you tell? He-he). My dress was quite simple and understated, so I thought I could get away with some show-stopper shoes. In the end I chose a pair of gorgeous Manolo Blahnik kitten heels. I wanted to avoid things looking tacky and over the top, but I think the combination worked well.

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The bridesmaids and their dresses…

I had a maid of honour, matron of honour and two bridesmaids (two of whom were pregnant). All of my girls have been there for me during pivotal and hard stages in my life, and I loved having them by my side. As a thank you, I presented each of  them with gift boxes and handmade cards, which they loved. My mum and Adams mum, also received a special gift box too.

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Choosing the Bridesmaids dresses proved rather difficult at first, since two of my bridesmaids were based in the UK and two here in Dubai. I was concerned about everything coordinating. I was also quite indecisive when it came to colours at the beginning, although I pretty much knew the style I wanted.

I chose Barbaranne, designer and founder of Moirai Style to design and create my BM dresses, she helped fine tune my ideas and finally come to a conclusion in regards to the colour.

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Each of my four bridesmaids wore bespoke dresses, the material was kept the same for consistency, but they each had a differently designed top to suit their individual styles.

To unify the look they all wore gorgeous pink shoes from New Look and chose their own accessories.  I asked all my girls before confirming the design if they were happy with the length and style and all were delighted with their gorgeous new dresses.

The groom and grooms men attire…

Adam and his boys all got ready back at our flat, whilst us girls got dressed and prepared at the wedding venue. Whilst the boys did not have the luxury of being in the hotel, they certainly enjoyed their limo ride up to the wedding venue.

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Much like my bridesmaids, Adam and I had to coordinate with two grooms men back in the UK for their attire. In the end we asked them all to purchase a pair of flat lined black trousers, white double cuff shirt, black belt and black tie up shoes. We had special camel cufflinks made by Mr Beaujangles Dubai, for each groomsmen as a gift, which they loved. I brought them all a pair of hot pink socks, which funnily enough, they all loved too, lol.

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Hanger

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As for their waistcoats, I was fortunate enough to have won a competition with Collars and Cuffs Dubai, who tailored all of the grooms men waistcoats in addition to Adam’s two piece tuxedo. I thought all the boys looked extremely dapper in their outfits. Adam’s bow tie and the Groomsmen ties were all made by Barbaranne at Moirai Style, using the same material my bridesmaid’s dresses were made of.

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The Ceremony…

As the heavens had opened while I was getting ready, I was a little worried as to what to expect when I reached the ceremony area. My bridesmaids, parents and myself made the short walk from my hotel room to the ceremony area and entered via the bar leading onto the terrace.

I heard the music cue (Songbird by Eva Cassidy) and the flood gates opened. I could not stop crying, it was a very emotional moment for me, especially since my parents are divorced too and I had them both by my side for the first time in years.  I chose to have my mother give me away, as well as my father, as she was the one who had raised me as a single parent in the 80’s and 90’s, she deserved the moment more then anyone.

The evening before, one of my bridesmaids father had died, and I was also thinking of her also as the song played. She stuck with me during the wedding and refused to leave, despite what had happened.

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As I made my entrance, and walked towards my husband, I forgot everything else around me. I saw the tears in his eyes and the way he looked at me, and everything in that moment was perfect. The air felt fresh and the energy was powerful.

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During the ceremony, Adam and I said our own personal vows and our rings were presented to us by our beloved mothers, who each presented a reading by their favourite poets.

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The Cocktail Hour…

After the blessing ceremony, came our cocktail hour. While Adam and I went off to have our photos taken, guests enjoyed signature cocktails, canapes, live music by Ciaran Fox, and caricature portraits by Matt Ryder Caricature.

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We also had a dedicated shisha area, which we thought would be a nice touch for our international guests.

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Instead of opting for a traditional guest book, I decided to have a finger print tree. A finger print tree can make for a great memento from your wedding that you can keep, display at home and treasure.

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We displayed our finger print tree alongside a vintage white table, decorated with my DIY bottles, polaroid snaps of Adam and I, and heel stoppers for our female guests.

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After Adam and I had our pictures taken, I took to the microphone with Ciaran Fox to serenade my gorgeous husband, we sang Something Stupid’ by Frank and Nancy Sinatra, and I noticed a tear in Adams eye. I am a singer, so I was happy to be able to share this special moment with my man.

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Dubai_wedding

**Log in on Saturday the 1st February for Part two of this feature**

 

 Rio’s Little Pink Book (Suppliers used)

Wedding Venue and Catering: Desert Palm Retreat, Dubai // On The Day Coordinator: Clare Ebbs from The Perfect Moment, Dubai // Main Photographer: Goldfish Photography & Video // Set-up Photographer: Enchante Studios // Wedding Videographers: Morning Jacket Films // Wedding Dress: Maggie Sottero from The Bridal Room, Dubai // Wedding Hair & Make-up (bride): Makeup by Dee and Dal // Wedding Make-up (bridesmaids): // Celebrant: Toni Bloodworth-Barker // Wedding Flowers: Vintage Bloom // Wedding Invites: Studio Sol Stationery, Dubai // On the day stationery: (name tags, table numbers, favor bag tags, seating plan): Creative Box // Other Paper Signage: Maha Ibrahim // Bridesmaids dresses: Moirai Style // Groom & Grooms Men Suit and Waist Coats: Collars and Cuffs // Grooms Men Cufflinks: Mr Beaujangles // Groom & Groomsmen Bowtie/ties: Moirai style // Wedding Cake: SUGARology DJ: DJ Sister Rock // Emcee: Young Roge // Cocktail Hour Singer: Ciaran Fox // Caricature Artist: Matt Ryder Caricature // Michael Jackson impersonator: Mike Jack // Guest Singers: Red N Pink Music // Photo-booth: The Social Booth. Wedding Rings: CARA Jewelers (The Gold and Diamond Park/Dubai) and GLAMOUR Jewelers (The Gold and Diamond Park/Dubai). Wedding Furniture rentals: Catertainment // Wedding Décor bits and bobs (White vintage tables, hanging lanterns, tea favors): Celebrations Event Management // Wedding favors: Sourced from various locations –  Favor bags from I Gifts JTL, Arabic favors from Dragon Mart, English Tea favors from Celebrations, wooden elephants from Srilanka, supplied by my grandmother, Italian favors supplied by my mother in law.

A Thunder Storm Wedding in Dubai | {Part One: Venue, Attire & Ceremony}, 5.0 out of 5 based on 6 ratings

Comments

  1. Cathie Heart says:

    Hi Rio, wow your wedding was sensational! You look absolutely stunning in your dress and loving the shoes, everything looks to have been a truly amazing day .. even if there was a thunderstorm! Maybe the gods were recognising the energy between you and Adam and were celebrating too.

    Love, love, love all the photographs and all the perfectly captured memories of your day. Beautiful in every way.

    • Fairy Bride Mother says:

      Thank you for your kind comments Cathie 🙂 xThere is more to come….don’t forget to check out part one and two soon x

  2. Maha Ibrahim says:

    I got so teary eyed reading thi article, such a well written piece from the heart. So excited to read Part 2 and 3 of this beautiful wedding! Congrats to the happy couple 🙂

  3. This was the most beautiful magical wedding, every thing was perfect on on the day it was so moving that the guests were teary eyed and reading this article and pictures captured memories of this very special day. Looking forward to part 1 and 2. <3 <3

  4. Jayce says:

    Dear Fairy Bride Mother,

    Again congratulations to your wedding. Tears falling from my eyes from reading the Part One of your wedding. Your wedding is so gorgeous in all aspects. I felt how happy you and your husband on that day. I remember being worried about your wedding day on my way to my own and prayed that everything will work out on your big day. Well it did. I am so happy for you. I wish you and you husband the best… Will wait again for the part two and three… <3

    Love,

    Jayce

    • Fairy Bride Mother says:

      Hi Jayce – You really are our number one fan! lol….and I think my number one fan :P….Thank you so much for your sweet words and kind thoughts. We cannot wait to see your wedding too, I am sure it was beautiful, just like you x

  5. Claire says:

    Absolutely love the idea of the finger print book, so much better than a book – and asking people to live comments! As after a few drinks, that can get very out of hand!!

  6. Rupal says:

    My oh my oh my! What a beautiful weding – there’s something so raw, emotional and true about the pictures – very touching!! Gorgeous setting, amazing details – truly a wedding fit for a fairy bride mother! Much love to you both! :*

  7. Denise Sadler says:

    Wow!
    You all looked amazing! :))

  8. Ananda Shakespeare says:

    I really enjoyed reading this blog. I think every bride should write one for friends and acquaintances. It was such a lovely insight for me. The funniest bit must have been the pic with the boys in pink socks! The article is packed with great ideas and I know it will be an extremely useful resource for future brides and grooms.

  9. Rachel says:

    I love the idea for the card holder – so simple! I’ve been looking for card holder ideas apart from a normal box or a suitcase and this is great! Where did you get the letters from? Thanks!

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