I’m not really an island girl, but Bali stole my heart.
Our clients Ben & Sherry live in Hong Kong and wanted a destination wedding, and Bali was their locale of choice. Ben is the brother of one of my former clients. I was so delighted to get the call from his fiancé Sherry as I love doing multiple events for the same family. Always so fun to reconnect with the family and the guests.
I met with Ben and Sherry while they were visiting CA for the holidays….and was presented with two big challenges…
Challenge #1: Although Bali was the destination of choice, Sherry didn’t want anything too colorful, too Balinese, or pretty much anything tropical at all!
Challenge #2: Sherry is severely allergic to the sun. Like…breaks-out-in-intense-rashes allergic.
Hmmmm… ok. No problem. A non-Balinese wedding in Bali….(in the shade)!
As you know, I love design challenges…so we took this one on full force. We had only a short time to plan this wedding, and could only do 1 site visit. Mindy and I were scheduled for a 3-day site visit (that would be 3 actual work days + 22 hours of flying each way!). The plan was to do some rapid planning, sourcing, and designing in those three days and then meet with Ben and Sherry in Hong Kong on our way back from Bali and present the entire design to them. Yikes. No pressure what-so-ever!(Shopping in Denpasar for floral vessels. Photo by Aaron Delesie)
Ben & Sherry had selected the amazingly beautiful Amanusa Resort for their wedding celebration, and had selected a hip restaurant in Jimbaran as their rehearsal dinner location. So the locations were done – we just needed to view the locations and design each event for them.
So…off we went to Bali! Within only a few hours of landing and shopping in the local markets, Mindy and I knew instantly that Capiz was destined to come to the wedding. When we work on destination weddings, our first priority is to figure out what is indigenous to the area, and more importantly what the local artisans can produce for us. The capiz products from Bali are stunning and we knew using capiz as a décor foundation would give Sherry that romantic (and non-tropical) feeling she was after.(Photos by Aaron Delesie)
Our design included custom capiz chargers, all capiz vessels for Mindy’s florals, and the pièce de résistance…. a giant capiz wall as the backdrop for Sherry and Ben’s nuptials. We also incidentally later found a source to make church pews for us for the ceremony. So…the finished design included…church pews, the capiz backdrop, and capiz chandeliers flanking the “altar”. Unbelievable!
Within our short 3 days, Mindy and I had mapped out the entire design, figured out our sources, and were ready to head over to Hong Kong.
One thing was unsettling to us though…it was a tad heartbreaking for us to do an event in Bali without doing something traditionally “Balinese”. We absolutely loved our wedding day design and we knew Sherry and Ben would love it too. But…we didn’t love the idea of having everyone fly over to Bali and go to a restaurant for the rehearsal dinner.
As we flew from Bali to Hong Kong to meet with Sherry and Ben – Mindy and I prepped and designed an entire traditional Indonesian BBQ as a potential rehearsal dinner option for them. While in Bali – we spent a whole day in downtown Denpasar at the gorgeous, gorgeous markets and found the most extraordinary produce, florals, pottery, and vessels for a traditional Balinese rehearsal dinner. Our only challenge now was to convince Sherry and Ben that this would be so much more enjoyable and memorable for their guests than just going to a restaurant. We were armed with the most extraordinary photos from downtown Denpasar…so we were certain we could convince them.
And…SUCCESS!! Sherry and Ben loved the idea and gave us the green-light to pull the plug on the restaurant rehearsal dinner and move it over to the beach for a BBQ. Sherry was perfectly content to have a traditional Balinese BBQ as their rehearsal dinner since we were giving her a beautifully romantic and ethereal (and non-tropical) wedding. Mindy and I could not have been happier! And…don’t worry…I set the timing of the event to start just a few minutes before sunset…so Sherry was perfectly fine to be out on the beach for this event!
The wedding and the rehearsal dinner were unbelievably gorgeous! And we are so grateful to Sherry and Ben for letting us do our thing. They had a tremendous amount of faith in us and we knew we wouldn’t let them down! Check out Aaron Delesie’s photos in my gallery under “Breaktaking Bali” and “Indonesian BBQ”. Both the wedding and the rehearsal dinner were featured in Town & Country Weddings, which you can view in my press gallery. The spread looks fabulous.(Video about Balinese rain stoppers)
And…as an added bonus of our Balinese adventure… Warmana – the Reiki master at the resort singled me out (perhaps I had a little too much “energy” as I was buzzing around at this event??) and gave me private Reiki lessons. As an event planner – Reiki is invaluable. Warmana ended up initiating me in First Degree Reiki, which is a huge honor. He has initiated 700 people worldwide, and I am number 701.Namaste.
(Photos by Aaron Delesie)