Garden Party

November 29th, 2010

This was a Garden Party that we did at a private residence in Los Angeles. The couple wanted a very organic look using earthy tones of greens, browns, and beiges. All of this was created on their lawn including the custom built stage and dance floor that we built a week prior to the event. A beautiful summer evening with delicious food and amazing entertainment!  Enjoy the pictures everyone! -Exquisite Events [caption id="attachment_1011" align="alignleft" width="422" caption="Motown quartet greeting guests from valet"][/caption] [caption id="attachment_1020" align="alignleft" width="220" caption="Custom Cabana made of gauze and moss"][/caption] [caption id="attachment_1023" align="alignleft" width="220" caption="Food Cabanas"][/caption]                       Photography by John Solano Photography

A Decadent Engagement

November 26th, 2010

A beautiful, sultry engagement party held at Crustacean of Beverly Hills. We rented out the entire restaurant and transformed it using reds and aubergines reminiscent of an old-school restaurant in China.

Enjoy!

[gallery link="file" columns="4"] -Exquisite Events

Photography by John Solano Photography

Raj Tents Interviews Nikki Khan

November 24th, 2010

 

An interview with Nikki Khan of Exquisite Events – The low down on Indian Weddings

With Indian weddings becoming a bigger part of the US wedding market, we asked Nikki Khan owner of Exquisite Events and one of the United States premier wedding planners specializing in Indian Weddings to give us some insights.

Raj Tents have worked with Nikki for several years now, providing tenting and décor for her lavish and much-admired events. She is uniquely placed having wide ranging connections and a complete understanding of the intricacies of the culturally rich Indian subcontinent.

Raj Tents
 Why have Indian Weddings come on the radar so much more in the last few years?
 
Nikki Khan
Since there are multi-day events and they are large in numbers, Indian Weddings have caught the attention of the hotels and locations in the West tremendously in the last few years. The fact that a lot of money is spent on the celebrations is another reason to have captured the attention of the industry along with colorful costumes, jewelry, rituals and traditions. Raj Tents
 What is the most challenging part of arranging an Indian Wedding?
 
 Nikki Khan
You have to be very knowledgeable in the customs and traditions. It is also extremely important to be very organized since the events go back to back for at least three days and in some cases for seven days. You also have to play the delicate role of being a “friend and listener??? to so many family members and deal not just with the couple but parents and siblings from both sides. Raj Tents
 Typically, how far out do most Indian families start to plan ahead?
 
 Nikki Khan
For a large wedding, with a few events, it is usually one year ahead of time. This year however, due to economy, I personally saw a shift where the booking was done some times six to four months prior to the wedding. Raj Tents
 Who is normally the decision maker in an Indian Wedding?
 
 Nikki Khan It depends. In my own personal experience, it is usually the father of the bride that is the principal decision maker.
Raj Tents
 How do you balance the need to conform with tradition with the desire of the younger generation to have a wedding that is more modern and relevant to the country they live in?
 
 Nikki Khan
I think the parents and children have come to a mutual understanding where the events leading up to the reception are very traditional in most cases and the compromise is made on the reception night which is very main stream and Western in color, vibe, ambiance etc.
Raj Tents
 
What would you say are the main points that distinguish a traditional Indian Wedding from a western one?
 
 Nikki Khan
Indian Weddings are infused with color. The groom arrives with all pomp and circumstance either on a horse or an elephant. There are at least two big events before the wedding with large number of guests and depending upon the status of the family, the bride’s family showers the groom and his family with very expensive gifts and also gives a large dowry to the bride ( homes, cars, furnishings for the entire house along with clothing and jewelry ). Raj Tents Can you tell us some examples of extravagance that you might find in at an Indian Wedding? Nikki Khan Sometimes the entertainment is flown out from India for each different evening of entertainment, so a female singer accompaniment for the Mehendi, a four person band for the Sangeet, a singer to chant the hymns during the ceremony, a 12 piece band for the reception and a big name DJ for the after party. Indian weddings tend to have premium drinks and elaborate menus. There are also lots of gifts both to the bride and groom and to the groom’s family as well as often very lavish honeymoons. The bride’s trousseau can sometimes be a furnished home and cars. Raj Tents
Where do you see Indian weddings going in the future? 
 
 Nikki Khan
Indian destination weddings are a new trend. Couples are putting their foot down and wanting fewer guests at a premium destination rather than 600 or 700 closer to home. The weddings are still elaborate with around 200 guests, but more of the guests are friends of the couple than more distant relatives. There is still a lot of pomp and circumstance with very elaborate menu and multiple events but they are much more intimate as the majority of the guests are couple’s close friends and family. Nikki has been busy putting together a new book that is due for release in the first week of December – “Art of Celebration in Southern California???, where she puts together her hard earned experience to inspire and enchant. Check Nikki’s web site for information on her book and it’s availability.

Reposted from Junebug Weddings Blog…

November 20th, 2010

What Junebug Loves - Mindy Weiss Most Ridiculous Wedding Event Ever 2

Guest Speaker Nikki Khan

Sunday, November 14, 2010 12:23 PM

| 3 comment(s)

Nikki Khan of Exquisite Events, designer of spectacular Indian weddings and events

Wedding coordinator Nikki Khan from Exquisite Events is the premiere designer of authentic Indian weddings in Southern California and she's here today at Mindy's Most Ridiculous Wedding Event Ever 2! Drawing on her heritage and extraordinary eye for beauty, Niki creates one-of-a-kind events that inspire, delight, and exceed expectations. Below are just a few of the images Nikki showed us as she talked about the incredibly personalized weddings she creates with and for her clients. The ceremony area of this Sikh wedding below was inspired by the soft colors of summer. Peach and blush florals were set against aqua linens underneath a gorgeous tent from Raj Tents. The Mandap where the couple was married became their sweetheart table during the reception. (Images by John Solano) Nikki Khan of Exquisite Events, designer of spectacular Indian weddings and events  Below, pictures show the Sangeet, a traditional Indian party hosted by the bride's parents. The bride wanted a Moraccan feel to her event, so Niki incorporated Mediterranean food, a hookah lounge and Moroccan tea stations. The gorgeous lighting by ELS set the stage for the spectacular ambiance. (Images by John Solano) Nikki Khan of Exquisite Events, designer of spectacular Indian weddings and events  Below, the Bhangra dance is performed for the guests with strings of lucky marigolds above and throughout the celebration area. (Images by Megan Stark) Nikki Khan of Exquisite Events, designer of spectacular Indian weddings and events   Below, an ultra modern reception with lush roses and orchds gives a contemporary feel to this wedding. (Images by Megan Stark) Nikki Khan of Exquisite Events, designer of spectacular Indian weddings and events Below, the bright colors of saffron, red, and burgundy are traditional for Indian weddings. (Image by Joy Marie Photography) Nikki Khan of Exquisite Events, designer of spectacular Indian weddings and events
Published Sunday, November 14, 2010 12:23 PM by christy
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Comments

# re: Mindy Weiss' Most Ridiculous Wedding Event Ever 2! Indian Weddings with Nikki Khan from Exquisite Events

Indian weddings are so beautiful! I love the color. I love the movement. I love the fun.  I love the celebrating of both families. And of course I love the groom arriving on a elephant or white horse. Just fabulous!
 
Sunday, November 14, 2010 2:53 PM by Margaret Ivory - Ivory Pearl Bridal Mall

# re: Mindy Weiss' Most Ridiculous Wedding Event Ever 2! Indian Weddings with Nikki Khan from Exquisite Events

Nikki is amazing! So incredibly talented and just an exceptional woman and the images are captured so beautifully. The contemporary rose/orchid arrangements by tic-tock are some of my favorite that I've seen all year and the blanket of roses in the first image (not sure who did it) is gorgeous!
  Friday, November 19, 2010 8:49 PM by corrie

# re: Mindy Weiss' Most Ridiculous Wedding Event Ever 2! Indian Weddings with Nikki Khan from Exquisite Events

Gorgeous!! I love all the colors, costuming, from tradition to modern; I Nikki knows her stuff, and is a true professional specializing  in the unique and exotic!!
  Saturday, November 20, 2010 4:33 PM by Karen Wall Garrison

50th Birthday Bash

November 20th, 2010

This was such a wonderful couple to work with! The wife approached us to plan her husband's 50th birthday party and had a clear vision of what she wanted-masculine yet elegant and fun. The color scheme that came to mind was gray/silver, deep red, and black and with his wife's collaboration, we created exactly what they envisioned. The ballroom was draped in beautiful silver chifon for the 100 guests to feel more intimate in the room. To add interest, we used all square tables with custom linen to fit and a high gloss gray dancefloor.  This was definitely the masculine and elegant party the clients were looking for. Enjoy  -Exquisite Events                                             Photography by Megan Stark Photography

A Silver Anniversary – The SLS Hotel

November 12th, 2010

A Silver Anniversary – The SLS Hotel When Harmala and Gurjeet first met 25 years ago at the home of  Harmala’s sister, the connection was instant and vibrant. The two  were married on September 15th, 1985 in Delhi, India and this year,  they celebrate their Silver Anniversary. Twenty-five years is a great  milestone and the couple could think of no way to spend it more  meaningful than to share their joy and love with their family and  friends. When faced with the planning of such a special event, Harmala knew  she wanted not only the most creative artist in the field, but also  someone who could represent 25 years spent together in an entertaining, elegant event. Harmala felt she had found that someone when she first met Nikki Khan of Exquisite Events at an event Nikki designed at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Nikki came recommended to Harmala and Gurjeet by several of their loved ones who had entrusted Nikki with their most precious moments and life events.  Her attention to detail and exemplary taste have earned her a fine reputation in the special events industry, where she specializes in Indian celebrations. Harmala approached Nikki about her upcoming Silver Anniversary celebration, knowing she had a vision for her event that was contemporary and cutting edge, which would incorporate silver elements and shimmer with the elegance that Exquisite Events is known for. Nikki came to the SLS Hotel and, immediately, both ladies fell in love with it. Created by acclaimed New Design master Phillipe Starck, the SLS sits at the crossroads of Los Angeles and Beverly Hills and features some of the most striking elements expressed among luxury and boutique hotels. The vast ballroom Starck designed features beautiful Venetian mirrors. It was upon first seeing those mirrors that Nikki’s vision for Harmala’s Silver celebration truly began to form.

 

A Silver Anniversary – The Design Details

November 11th, 2010

Mirrored tabletops and clean, modern lines would begin to tell the story and Nikki immediately called Luxe Event Rentals to set up an appointment and show Harmala what she had in mind. It was of principal importance to Nikki that her design complement and not compete with Starck’s masterful execution and so the lines she brought into the space would be long and clean, elegant and strong. Rectangular mirrored tables lined with Ghost Chairs would run parallel to the length of the room, flanking the dance floor and leading to the stage where the band was going to perform and head table by the entrance which the couple would share with their two daughters, Praneet and Noor. Nikki wanted something shining and brilliant to set the stage in front of the feted couple and their daughters and so designed a tight, silver-grey chiffon drape, triple-pleated with a front layer of Swarovski crystals as the stage backdrop. With basic furniture elements of her design in place, Nikki called upon expert floral designer Eddie Zaratsian of tic-tock Couture Florals to express the design concept in floral arrangements and add new dimensions to the room. Using thousands of black magic roses, Eddie created multiple tablescapes complementing the modern décor and adding a richness and lush texture to the room. In one look, Zaratsian used tall fluted black glass vases, placing spheres of black magic roses and a cascade of soft, white phaelanopsis orchid atop each. Interspersed between them were low and lush arrangements, black cubed containers tight with black magic roses. In another, a long and low, rectangular boxes, mirroring the lines of the table was filled with the deep-hued roses and surrounded by glowing votive candles. With the floral elements decided on, Nikki selected very simple glass chargers for the tabletops and beautiful platinum, double-sided satin napkin from luxury linen house, Wildflower Linens; whose founder, Young-Song Martin is a former fashion designer who now creates custom linens and accessories for the most prestigious and exclusive events in the nation.  For Harmala and Gurjeet’s Silver Anniversary celebration, a Van Cleef and Arpels inspired napkin ring was selected from among Young-Song’s designs to add a subtle bling. As each aspect of the design and décor was finalized, the time arrived to call Vivian at paper girl, inc. to create the invitation that would begin to tell the story of the event and create the guests’ very first impression of delights to come.  When I spoke with paper girl herself, Vivian Ip, I could hear her smile on the other end of the phone when I mentioned the silver anniversary soiree. Inspired by a custom design she did for Cris Angel, Vivian used charcoal and silver ink to create ornate lettering and a damask pattern on Star Dream Quartz paper before mounting it to a die-cut envelope and overlaid with beveled plexi-glass. When the day of the event arrived, Harmala and her daughters spent the day in the SLS Spa while Gurjeet relaxed upstairs. The ladies enjoyed some of the SLS’ most luxurious services before having their hair and makeup done at Ciel Spa and Salon in the SLS. When Harmala and Gurjeet’s guests arrived at the SLS Hotel on September 25th, they exited their cars at the valet and walked a silver-platinum runner emblazoned with a grand 25 through garden terrace’s private entrance. The two daughters stood at the door greeting each guest personally, ushering them to a cocktail hour where they enjoyed tray-passed h’ors d’oeuvres from Jose Andres’ The Bazaar. A James Beard Award-winning chef, Andres not only designed the menu at The Bazaar but also for all catering and in-room dining at the SLS Hotel. Andres is most widely recognized for his introduction of Spanish cuisine and tapas to the United States. For the cocktail hour menu, Harmala and Gurjeet selected items that were light and flavorful. As guests said hello to one another and the happy couple made their way around, perfectly dressed hotel staff carried hand trays of endive with orange segments and shaved almonds, thinly sliced jicama with guacamole, peeled cherry tomato skewered with a pipette full of mozzarella, marinated salmon roe served in a cone with dill cheese and mini mushroom and cheddar cheese steaks served on airbread. A trio featuring guitar, saxophone and keyboard provided a mellow, engaging soundtrack to the cocktail festivities.

Photography by Megan Stark Photography

A Silver Anniversary – The Poem & The Party

November 10th, 2010

At the close of the cocktail hour, guests were invited to the SLS Hotel's beautiful Albert Ballroom to welcome the couple to their Silver Anniversary celebration. Once their family and friends had taken their seats, a hush came over the room as Harmala and Gurjeet made their grand entrance, stepping straight into their first dance.

One of their great joys in preparing for this even was taking dance lessons  together and when Seal’s “Kiss From A Rose??? filled the room, all eyes were on  them just as though it were their wedding day. They moved around the floor to  the song they had chosen, the steps they had practiced and, to watch them, one  would have thought they had been doing it forever. As the strains of the song  wound down, the couple joined their daughters Praneet and Noor at the head  table. In the months leading up to this special night, their daughters had come  together to think of a way to express their love and admiration for their parents  in front of their friends and family. They decided this love story was worthy of a  poem and spent hours together, writing the piece they would share with the guests:

It all started 25 years ago

In sector 16, little did they know

That the person they were about to meet

Would make their lives complete

 

A hip Delhi girl with long black hair

Met a young sardar (sikh) boy with great flare

Sat sri akal (hello) she said she in a quiet voice

Sat sri akal (hello) he said back, like he had a choice?

 

“He’s a DOCTOR from AMERICA??? her family said

His family spoke of her green eyes and fair skin instead

There were no better rishtas (proposals) the two could get

At that was it, the wedding was set

 

Baby wed Bobby on September the fifteenth of '85

To Washington DC Dulles Airport they did arrive

Oily and tasty mathai (indian sweets) was what they were sent off with

But now it was time to trade in a ladoo (indian sweet) for an apple from granny smith

Sure now in DC the Obamas runs the town

But back then the Kalkats really knew how to break it down

 

Michigan brought the EXTREME cold and Praneet

The first born, being a warm treat

Dad started working hard day and night

Coming home to see baby Praneet and Mom was his delight

 

 

We moved to Pasadena where mom gave birth

TO THE BEST THING THAT HAPPENED TO EARTH

Little Noor was born and the family was complete

A family of four and happiness, how sweet

 

“Foothill??? became the new word on the street

Dad joined his now practice and got busy on his feet

We started school at FCDS

With matching lunch boxes and dress

 

We arrived to Claremont in 1999

This time greeted with rattle snakes, bears and trees of pine

With routine weekend trips to Fashion Island and Laguna Beach

Dad loved the waves and fashion mom would preach

 

Time has past and Mom and Dad have really done their best

As we both went to college and left an empty nest

You have been our best friends then and now

A relationship so strong, wow.

 

So this is a poem to not only thank but appreciate

A marriage so beautiful it had to be fate.

The poem was such a moving moment for everyone who was there that, in the end, it took a moment for guests to react when the band invited everyone to dance. But no one hesitated for too long, because in just a minute the dance floor was full with all the guests joining the beaming pair.   For Harmala and Gurjeet, one of the most enjoyable aspects of planning this event was assembling this playlist for their guests and laughing together over the memories they share with some of the songs. Nine-piece band Rossi Music played the selection of songs they created just for this night; songs, mostly from the 80’s, that would get their guests moving and set a fun and celebratory tone. When the buffets opened, guests were treated to an array of internationally inspired dishes. For starters, guests were able to enjoy black bean soup served with bowls of guacamole, corn nuts and tortilla strips, tomato and boconcini salad with a pesto and balsamic reduction, cous cous salad and diced apples with shaved fennel salad, manchego cheese, walnuts and cava dressing. For dinner, wine was served tableside and, for entrees, guests were able to select from Striped Bass Veracruz, roasted Jidori chicken breast with pearl onion and vinsanto sauce, house made 3 cheese ravioli with seasonal mixed mushrooms and morel mushroom sauce topped with fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grilled Asparagus with romesco sauce and Olive oil poached fingerling potatoes vegetable jus with micro herbs. Dessert offered an assortment of sweets: chocolate tart with cardamon, blueberry and lavender, assorted petite cookies, bon bons and chocolate wafers. When ten o’clock arrived and it was time to cut the cake, guests gathered with the happy couple for this bite, twenty-five years in the making.  For her cake, Harmala knew exactly what she was looking for and brought her vision for three smooth, pearly tiers of fondant over white velvet cake with a damask-inspired pattern of platinum beaded hearts and crowned with a shimmering 25 to Rosebud Cakes where Cory Pohlman was all too happy to indulge her! Charged with decorating this fabulous dessert, Cory piped buttercream in a brocade pattern, and touched it with edible silver to give an effect of embedded rhinestones. The cake table was a gorgeous creation all its own. Nikki designed the beautiful display, dressing it in a matte satin underlay with silver paillette overlay creating a gorgeous custom cake stand using Kathy Jo Peterson’s Raise The Cake and then surrounding the cake with glowing votives.

After the cake cutting, Rossi Music stepped from the stage and turned entertainment over to DJ Ajay Manaktala who played Indian music and kept the guests dancing until 1am. Though this Silver reception was nothing like the one at Harmala and Gurjeet’s first wedding, the sense of excitement, romance and joy was as present if not more so, as this happy couple celebrated their love with friends and family. Their secret to making it this far? “Communicate. Listen. Communicate.???

Photography by Megan Stark Photography

25th Anniversary at SLS Hotel – The Movie

November 9th, 2010

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LY4w9IaABeQ

Uncensored

November 7th, 2010

Uncensored! is THE conference for event planner who are serious about doubling their income, solving the challenges of finding (and keeping) the right clients, and becoming inspired with ideas and systems from some of the best in the industry. Uncensored! will help you build your business and increase your bottom line by revealing all the trade secrets! Nikki and Madiha spoke at the conference on November 2010 at the Palomar Hotel in Westwood.  We presented as part of the panel lead by Mary Dann. Our panelists included Colette and Kaitlin Lopez from La Fete Weddings. Great Fun!  and so informative!  Thank you Marley Macher, CEO of The Party Goddess, for including us in this special day!!

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