Behind the Scenes with Bride Club ME {Rio’s monthly round up}

Behind the Scenes with Bride Club ME 

Wow, wow, wow!!!! March was a whopper of a month for the wedding industry and for me personally. I’ve travelled across the UAE to attend wedding fairs, visited Rome (I can’t wait to tell you all about that, I think I’ve fallen in love all over again) and travelled to the UK to celebrate my mummy’s 60th birthday.

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I’ve finally made progress with my home-office make-over, introduced some amazing new vendors to our BCME vendor club directory, attended the BRIDE Show Dubai and hosted our third Engage Academy workshop for wedding entrepreneurs. I’m still on a high from everything that’s been going on, but I won’t lie….a day at the spa is shouting out my name! Below, I talk you through the past month behind the scenes at BCME.

Rome & UK

Early last month, the hubby and I flew back to the UK to celebrate my gorgeous mummy’s 60th birthday! I can’t get over how amazing she looks at 60! I can only hope I follow in her footsteps, he-he. For her birthday treat, I whisked her away to Rome for three days. I’d been saving for months to give her the best time possible and it was worth every penny! Can I just say OMG!? I am head over heels in love with Rome. In fact, I’ll let you into a little secret – when we landed and when I saw the first ancient ruin, I cried! I was so overwhelmed; it’s an incredibly beautiful city, steeped in history. 

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We stayed in a boutique hotel close to the Pantheon, and spent time shopping, touring the Vatican and Colosseum, eating delicious Italian cuisine and galeto and admiring all the gorgeous Italian men….shhhhh! Don’t tell the hubby!

Rome_travels

Now completely obsessed with Rome, I fully intend to return and write a post dedicated to weddings and honeymoons in the city. I also plan to see more of Italy too, as it’s been on my bucket list forever. I’ve had a connection with Italy in my soul since I was a little girl and can’t explain why – I’ve just always yearned to go and now I have, yay! And the fact that I married an Italian just adds to my obsession. He-he!

Home Decor

My home-office wall gallery is finally finished! It’s been on my agenda for months now, and I have only just managed to find the time to complete it! My fellow wedding lovely, Liz over at JvR Photography, will be popping along to pap my home office when it’s all complete – just the curtains and finishing touches left to do now. 

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Among our BCME vendors, it’s no secret that I’ve been working on an exciting project for the past year, due to launch later this year. For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved home decor and DIY projects, so let’s just say my next website will appeal to you love birds setting up your marital homes. Watch this space for teasers coming soon.

The Engage Academy Product Styling Workshop

Last month, The Engage Academy (BCME’s sister company for wedding entrepreneurs) hosted an intimate product styling workshop with multi-talented award-winning wedding blogger and wedding industry stylist Louise Beukes, from Blovedblog.

The Engage Academy Workshop

Between Louise and I and all our fabulous sponsors, we filled the room with beautiful trinkets, props, flowers and items, which the attendees used during the workshop. To view all the pretty pictures and read more about the event, click here.

The Waldorf Astoria Wedding Fair

Some of you may remember my anniversary review of the Waldorf Astoria posted last year on BCME. Well, I was back at the gorgeous venue again, this time as a media partner for their first exclusive wedding fair. Held in the famed Peacock Alley, a signature lounge found in all Waldorf Astoria hotels, the unique boutique fair allowed loved-up couples to enjoy some quality time discussing their upcoming nuptials with industry experts and the venue’s dedicated events staff.

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Upon arrival, I was greeted with sparkly juice and yummy canapés, and was personally shown around the fair by the PR team. I met some familiar faces, including the Pink Pepper Photography team, who were showcasing their wedding photography services and wedding concierge company Aghareed. The fair was indeed exquisite, elegantly put together and a joy to attend! I’m looking forward to the next one already.

JA Resorts & Hotels Showcase Event

A few weeks ago, the hubby and I attended a private event hosted by the JA Resorts & Hotels team at the stunning Al Sahra resort in Dubai. I remember visiting the venue years ago when my mum and Nan arrived in Dubai for the first time. I took them to see a live show in the desert and it was incredible.

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Fast forward a few years and there we were again, walking into one of the most impressive set-ups I’ve seen in a while. We were immediately greeted by various members of the JA Resorts & Hotels management team, who were so sweet and welcoming. The aim of the event was to showcase the venue’s capabilities for hosting events such as weddings, concerts and corporate functions, and we were certainly sold. While guests can’t stay over night, connections with nearby hotels mean there are plenty of accommodation options.

JA_Resorts

It really is a perfect choice, in my personal opinion, for a couple hosting a large wedding who want a desert experience. During the evening I was there, all the guests were treated to the most delicious intercontinental buffet, live entertainment, business card prizes and more. I hope to bring you more on this fabulous venue and other JA properties soon.

The Bride Show Dubai 2015

The UAE’s longest-standing bridal expo BRIDE Dubai took place last week and once again, Bride Club ME, attended as media partners. At the expo, I was accompanied by my photography buddy Swani Gulshan, who captured the images you see below. In among the usual exhibiter stands, BRIDE Dubai also hosted beauty and make-up workshops and sessions with internationally renowned make-up artists such as Bollywood favourite Daniel Bauer. I managed to grab 20 minutes with Daniel for an exclusive interview, which will be hitting the site later this month.

I also rubbed shoulders with my new friends NOZZE VIP from Italy, who were in town representing a variety of top class Italian wedding vendors, I was honoured to have hosted a workshop with the team focused on conducting business within the UAE wedding industry.

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During the show, I met up with some of our valued BCME vendors including online wedding gift registry specialist Mylist.ae, The Bridal Showroom (one of our favourite bridal boutiques), couture wedding gown designer BELJOUR Bridal, and and the events team over at CONRAD Dubai.

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We also bumped into a few new vendors, who will join the BCME vendor club soon, including The Talise Spa at the iconic Burj Al Arab. Talise has launched one of the best bridal beauty and fitness packages I’ve seen in a while and I can’t wait to tell you all about it. The fabulous Vanila Boutique Studio, based in JLT, is also set to become a vendor club member – the boutique will officially launch soon, with a bang, so watch this space.

A boutique I am personally very excited about is Sponsa, based out in Sharjah; Sponsa have just joined the BCME vendor club, having recently launched in the UAE. I have also had the pleasure of visiting their pretty boutique, which I may add, is super gorgeous and classy.

Sponsa_sharjah

I personally enjoyed the on-stage talks hosted by Sheerin Mitwalli with Virgin Radio’s Priti Malik and fashion buyer, Clare Seffeen. All three ladies, like myself, got married in Dubai and offered tips and tricks to other brides in attendance. We featured Priti Malik’s proposal a while back on BCME and I’m please to report that we will also be featuring her gorgeous wedding very soon too, so stay tuned!

The Best of BCME Features

It’s a fast-paced life living in Dubai and while we are sure many of you regularly log on to Bride Club ME, in this section I will highlight my personal favourite posts over the past month, just in case you missed any.

  Luscious Lipsticks for Lovely Wedding LipsOur beauty expert Natasha of Glossy Make Up tackles the issue of finding the perfect lip colour for your special day.

  A Sophisticated White Wedding In Dubai: With some fun touches thrown in for good measure, this timeless Dubai wedding from Goldfish Photography & Video will make you smile.

  Diary of a Real Bride: Our gorgeous real bride B discusses the wedding location dilemmas that many of us expats face when choosing whether to get married at home or abroad.

  Romance & Weddings at Saadiyat Beach Club: Last month, the hubby and I celebrated Valentines Day in style at Abu Dhabis breathtakingly beautiful Saadiyat Beach Club.

  Wedding Venue: We officially welcome the Dusit Thani Abu Dhabi into the BCME vendor club.

♡  Get to Know the Wedding Pro: We interview the lovely Kholoud Asha, lifestyle events manager at the Dubai Polo & Equestrian Club.

  Lady in Red: This stunning pre-wedding shoot at Bab Al Shams, submitted by UAE-based photographer Joem Aldea, left me breathless.

I’m pretty sure I haven’t included everything I’ve been up to, but the above just about covers the highlights and I hope you enjoy browsing the best of last month’s features.

I’ll be back in May with more behind-the-scenes gossip and updates. Wishing you all the best for your wedding planning journeys.

Ciao for now

Rhiannon Downie-Hurst
Behind the Scenes with Bride Club ME {Rio’s monthly round up}, 4.5 out of 5 based on 2 ratings
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