Nikki’s Talk in Moscow

December 17th, 2014

Early this year, we got a phone call from Russia.  Someone from the other end wished to speak with Nikki and identified herself as Kate from Wedding Business Summit.  This was regarding a conference they were putting together in Moscow in November and wanted Nikki to be one of the speakers.

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There were three other speakers from the U.S that were invited to be part of this Summit.  Once the agreement was signed and all the obligations were fulfilled, Nikki left Los Angeles on Nov 21st to go to Moscow not knowing what to expect.  Youngsong from Wildflower Linens was her travel companion and also one of the speakers.  They were greeted at the airport by a gentleman that was hired by the Summit.  After checking in the hotel, they decided to freshen up and explore the city.  The weather was cold and it was fun to walk around in layers of clothes. They had an early dinner and decided to call it a night.

The next day they were driven to the venue where the Summit was taking place.  It was buzzing with the activity of enthusiastic planners eager to learn.  Nikki was introduced to the attendees and presented her talk amidst thunderous applause each time décor shots were shown and the background of each shot was explained.

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There were a ton of questions after the talk as well as a panel discussion.

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At the end of the Summit, the speakers were each given a plaque for participation.

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Since the talk was over, they decided to venture to the city with the car and driver that was provided by the Summit.  Sergue, their guide, spoke perfect English and drove them around the city.

The next day, they decided to explore the city during daylight hours.  It had started to snow on Monday morning and the air was crisp and fresh. The first stop was the Kremlin.

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After spending a few hours there, they spotted the Four Seasons Hotel and decided to check it out.

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As luck would have it, the manager at the hotel had worked at Beverly Wilshire and was thrilled to show us around as well as treat us to a decadent afternoon tea.  What a small world!  He also remembered Nikki’s event at the Rodeo Terrace with tents and canopies and a fashion show.  It was great to be indoors sipping the hot tea and chatting with the staff.

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The hotel was officially going to open in three weeks but we fell in love with the Art Deco Interior and took some photos.

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After that it was a few more sights and back to the hotel.

Stay tuned for Nikki and Young’s visit to Cancun next Wednesday! Have an Exquisite day!

Curious Zayn goes to the Zoo

December 10th, 2014

This weekend we took a family trip to the Santa Barbara zoo. We have been bringing Zayn here since he was 8 months old and now that he is almost 3, he is much more aware of all the animals that he reads about  in his books. This is one of the most beautiful, well maintained zoos with the most lush floral and fauna and it is perfect to get there at lunch time and have a picnic on the grassy hill overlooking the beach. I highly recommend a visit to the Santa Barbara zoo!

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Zayn was so excited for the reptile and insect display-Eeeww is right!

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8 foot long snake

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Imitation is flattery :)

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Mama had to participate too

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The giraffes have an unfair advantage of the ocean view

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Gorgeous greenery all around the property

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Zayn’s reaction to the vultures

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The gorilla was not interested in visitors

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Monkeys hangin out

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The porcupine raised its quills right when we got there

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After running around at the zoo, we headed over to the pier to catch the sunset. We lucked out with such a beautiful day!

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Hope you enjoy and have an Exquisite Day!

XOXO

Madiha

Cool as ICE!

December 3rd, 2014

We had the opportunity to attend the inaugural Inner Circle Experience (ICE) this year, a conference held at the St Regis Bal Harbour Resrot in Miami! Sade Awe, the founder of the Bridal Circle, invited 50 influential people in the event planning world to the first Inner Circle Experience and we were so happy to be included!

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The first day we had a meet and greet in the morning with Alexis Maybank, co-founder of Gilt (which we shop on quite often). The day was then full of sessions from social media experts, to strategic visionaries for luxury brands.

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Sade welcoming everyone to the Inner Circle Experience

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 Lunch was served at the J&G Grill where we were able to mingle and get to know the attendees over a delicious meal served family style by the restaurant

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Since the event is called The Inner Circle Experience, Jose Graterol created these sphere structures that were reminiscent of circles-very creative!

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After our afternoon sessions, we had the chance to go up to our rooms, relax, and get ready for the welcome dinner that was in the pool area. It was such a beautiful night with the breeze blowing and the full moon’s reflection over the ocean right in front of us. The St Regis really outdid themselves on the food the entire stay. I loved the little gold faberge egg caviar cups-so thoughtful considering Geza von Habsburg was going to be speaking about the reign of Faberge the next day.

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The next morning day was packed with sessions from Geza von Habsburg, the specialist in Faberge, to Chris Austin who is the VP of Global Luxury for Starwood Properties to Shaun Rowan, Director of Education for Jo Malone London

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Another incredible lunch at the Atlantico Dining Room followed the morning sessions. Loved the linen provided by Nuage Designs!

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The finale night was so fun! After our sessions, we had the opportunity to get pampered and glammed by Blushing Beauty for the evening Fete.

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Photo Credit:Stephanie Cross

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The room looked absolutely spectacular! It was as if we stepped into a modern day Gold and Mirror Gatsby party. As Sade mentioned, it is hard to “WOW” these attendees but we were all blown away! Hats off to Jose Graterol Designs, Redbliss, and Nuage Designs for making it all come together so beautifully.

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Stunning florals by Jose Graterol Designs!

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Gorgeous mirrored menus created by the talented Christine Traulich of Redbliss Design-such a great memento!

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Photo Credit: Stephanie Cross

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Rock With U Entertainment managed to keep all of us on our feet the entire night! They were an incredible band and so unique…really looking forward to working with them

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Such a great experience meeting new friends and seeing old ones! Can’t wait for the Inner Circle Experience 2015 in Puerto Rico!

Photography Credit: Allan Zepeda

Photography Credit: Kismis Ink Photography

Thank you Stephanie Cross for some amazing shots on the Fete evening!

Destination Wedding at the St Regis Monarch Beach Hotel in California

November 26th, 2014

Lynda and Marc are from Texas and decided they wanted to have a destination wedding in California on the beach. They chose the gorgeous St Regis Monarch Beach Hotel which was perfect for all of their out of town guests who stayed at both the St Regis and the neighboring Ritz Carlton Hotel.

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The couple wanted to honor both cultures and religions so we held a Hindu ceremony on the grand lawn under the existing gazebo and then we turned it around an hour later for the Catholic ceremony.

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It turned out to be such a gorgeous day and after the Catholic ceremony we had doves released which just made it magical.

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Following the Catholic ceremony we had a violinist escort all the guests to the Club 19 lawn which is where the couple made their Grand Entrance and had their first dance.

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For photo purposes they wanted to have their first dance outside with the ocean in the background and the sun setting and it was perfect!

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We then escorted the guests into the dining area where the hotel set up the most incredible buffet with stations of seafood, sushi,  pastas, and dosas to name a few.

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There were henna artists and an incredible entertainment group who danced to bollywood songs and got the dance floor started.

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At the end of the evening the couple was sent off by all their guests with sparklers.

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It was such a great day filled with so much love from all of their friends and family who flew in for the wedding.

Have an Exquisite Day and we will see you next Wednesday!

Romantic Rooftop Reception (Part 3 of 3)

November 19th, 2014

Nishita and Mike are a fun-loving couple and the chemistry between them was very evident.  It was a great testament to both of their personalities as all their friends were there to truly honor their day and party with them.

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They had decided early on in the planning stages to hold their reception at London Hotel’s Rooftop and later moving their guests to the ballroom for the after party. Rooftop had a very sexy vibe and hotel guests kept coming up to check out the space and pay generous compliments.

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Our bride made her grand entrance in a custom creation and the dashing groom looked utterly handsome in Tom Ford.

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Their first dance was enchanting and family and guests joined them on the floor.

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Half way through the party Nishita changed in to her short dress and looked absolutely stunning.

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The guests moved down to the ballroom where the party lasted until the wee hours of the morning.  We have formed great fondness for this couple and know this will be an everlasting friendship.  Another great party for another great friend!

Testimonial from Nishita and Mike:

Nikki and Madiha you brought our vision to life and it was beyond our expectations.  Everything was simply perfect and all our friends and family enjoyed the festivities immensely.  Your staff was pleasant and respectful and handled all details beautifully.  Madiha is our friend for life now.

Have an Exquisite day and we will see you next Wednesday!

 

Photography credit: Lin & Jirsa Photography & Cinematography | Orange County & Los Angeles

Ceremony in Color! (2 of 3)

November 11th, 2014

Hi!

Nishita and Mike’s ceremony was so beautiful! It was held on the Hampton Court at the London Hotel in Hollywood. We decided to go with bright colors using fucshia and tangerine for the Mandap. The flowers from Hidden Garden were stunning and complemented the color scheme so well and since it was a bright, sunny day, it fit the theme perfectly.

All the guests gathered in the lobby of the hotel for the baraat. It was one of the most festive processions we experienced and we managed to shut down the London Hotel valet drive for the duration of the baraat ceremony where the groom led the procession on a white horse.

After the baraat, we led the guests up to the third floor for the ceremony. It happened to be one of the warmest days that day but luckily by the time the ceremony started, the sun had gone behind the buildings and the breeze was blowing. The live band was the perfect touch to bring the bride and groom out.

Nishita and Mike made such a stunning couple. Wishing them a lifetime of happiness!

Enjoy and have an Exquisite Wednesday!

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Mustache Mehndi (Part 1 of 3)

November 5th, 2014

Nishita and Mike held a Welcome Dinner/Mehndi at the Nirvana in Beverly Hills for all their family and friends. What a fun group of people!

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All their friends were dressed in traditional Indian attire and enjoyed getting their mehndi applied…so much so that there was a mustache theme for all of the guys.

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Our bride looked so beautiful wearing her custom creation.

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Beautiful colors filled the room from all of the gorgeous saris and colorful jewelry that the ladies were wearing.

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This was an incredibly festive party and from these pictures, you can capture the essence from the evening. Everyone was having such a great time.  Laughter and smiles filled the room all evening.

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Have an Exquisite day and we will see you next Wednesday for Part 2 of Mike and Nishita’s story!

Showcase at The Grand Del Mar Hotel in San Diego

October 29th, 2014

Paige, from The Grand Del Mar (which happens to be our favorite hotel in San Diego), approached us a few months ago to help get a list of Indian vendors based in LA and surrounding areas to showcase the hotel.  Of course, leave it to Paige and Charles to go all out.  It was a beautiful setting fit for Maharajas and Maharanis.

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Raj Tents did a superb job as always installing beautiful and colorful pergola tents all over the lawn.

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The built-in gazebo structure on the lawn is the perfect backdrop for a baraat and receptions and looked stunning with the draping and gorgeous flowers by Kathy Wright.

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Our own DJ, Ajay, from Special Occasions, filled the air with lovely background music.  Food stations were laid out beautifully and artfully all over the lawn and guests enjoyed the delectable ambiance and delicious food along with live entertainment provided by Sabrina Fox.

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You can see Madiha being very brave with the snake around her neck.

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All in all, it was a beautiful afternoon and nothing short of that can be expected from Paige and Charles of The Grand Del Mar.

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Here is more information about The Grand Del Mar in San Diego, taken from their website:

Basking in San Diego’s endless sunshine, The Grand Del Mar welcomes guests to a warm Mediterranean estate, replete with signature charm and Southern California style. Impeccable service delivers every Five-Star indulgence, including a championship Tom Fazio golf course, Five-Star spa, and exquisite dining.

Unrivaled by San Diego hotels, The Grand Del Mar shines as TripAdvisor’s #1 Hotel in the United States (#11 Luxury Hotel worldwide), California’s #1 Resort in Travel + Leisure’s “World’s Best Awards,” and is lauded by Forbes Travel Guide as one of only ten triple Five-Star resorts in the world.

Have an Exquisite Day and we will see you next Wednesday!

Homage to Oscar de La Renta

October 22nd, 2014

Our hearts are saddened to lose an artist, visionary, and fabulous creator. This week we pay homage to Oscar de la Renta. Nikki and Madiha have always been huges fan of Oscar.  News of his illness and passing came as a shock to them as it must have to many others.  They especially admired his classic and elegant gowns on the runway, his ready-to-wear lines, and of course his bridal collections. His work was seen countless times on the red carpet and in films, and has been an inspiration to fashion enthusiasts since he began his work in the 1960s. We hope you’ll enjoy this quick capture of his work and famous quotes throughout the decades…

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“I’ve lived every day to the fullest, and I’ve had a marvelous time. I’ve tried to be nice to the people I care about, and ignore the ones I don’t. I enjoy what I’ve done.”


From Biography.com

A Fashion Legend

While de la Renta expanded his lines and took them in a new direction in the 1990s, his pieces remained feminine and flattering. By the late ’90s and early 2000s, his work became the preferred wear of American first ladies. He dressed first lady Nancy Reagan in the 1980s, and then provided the gowns for inaugural events for both Hillary Clinton in 1997 and Laura Bush in 2005.

Besides his passion for haute couture, de la Renta has been a tireless patron of the arts. At one time or another, he has served on the boards of The Metropolitan Opera, Carnegie Hall and Channel Thirteen/WNET. He also supports several cultural institutions, including New Yorkers for Children, the Americas Society and the Spanish Institute.

In 2002, de la Renta added his name to a whole new business venture: furniture. His 100 pieces for Century Furniture featured dining tables, upholstered chairs and couches. In 2004, despite the risk of lessening the value of his brand as a whole, he added a less expensive line of clothing called O Oscar. He said he wanted to attract new customers whom he could not reach before.

De la Renta had been diagnosed with cancer during the first decade of the 2000s. He died on October 20, 2014 at the age of 82 in Kent, Connecticut.

 

 

1982

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“Walk like you have three men walking behind you.”

 

1991

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1995

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“Fashion is about dressing according to what’s fashionable. Style is more about being yourself.”

 

2000

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2007

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“I design clothes for women to wear. I am not interested in shock tactics. I just want to make beautiful clothes.”

2009

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“The qualities I most admire in women are confidence and kindness.”

 

2012

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“Fashion is about the present and the immediate future. I think in terms of now.”

 

2014

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And of course, the wedding dresses…

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“Being well dressed hasn’t much to do with having good clothes. It’s a question of good balance and good common sense.”

 

2006

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 Sex in the City Movie 2008

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Huma Abedin 2010

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Amal Clooney 2014

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“Any girl from any walk of life dreams of that special dress, and I try to make that dream a reality for her.”

 

We hope you’ll remember with us the inspiration and fashion genius of Oscar de la Renta.

Have an Exquisite and Fashion-filled day, and we’ll see you next Wednesday!

Wedding Features!

October 15th, 2014

Hi Everyone,

We are so excited to have our weddings featured in the September issue of Harper’s Bazaar Bride,  Wedding Style, and  Hello! Pakistan. Putting together a wedding is a labor of love and we are humbled and honored to have our work recognized!

Have an Exquisite Wednesday!

XO

Nikki and Madiha

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