Planning an Indian Wedding: Castleton Goes International

You haven’t heard? Castleton Farms is headed to India! As you read this, our Executive Director, Darla Walker, is jet-setting across the world with our bride Heena and photographer Ben Finch to prep for the big day. While over there, Darla and Heena will shop for the wedding sarees, jewelry, invitations and more, and back home, we’re going to be documenting every bit of it. While they’re all en route, we wanted to introduce Heena + Ronak to you all!

International Indian wedding planning

Indian wedding photography_Bill Waldorf

 

their storyThe two met at a graduation party at the end of their Junior year in college, and Heena claims she knew there was something special about him when she saw him walk through the door (swoon!). Little did they know, at that moment, where life would bring them! A few days after, Heena was leaving Atlanta for the summer so Ronak asked her to grab coffee at the ever-so-eclectic Java Monkey, and the rest is history. Heena commented, “It’s a good thing that I liked him enough to go on a date with him because I’m not the biggest fan of coffee!”

 

Indian wedding engagement_Ben Finch Photo

 

how he askedOne of the couple’s favorite places is Savannah, Georgia. The fact that 3 out of 6 of their anniversaries have been spent in the charming, historic town made it the perfect proposal location. Ronak had mapped out every detail of the day, which would end with him on one knee, at their favorite place in Savannah–the fountain in the middle of Forsyth Park, asking the girl he adores to spend forever with him. But life happens, and the day didn’t go as Ronak had planned. Every time he thought about proposing throughout the day, something went wrong. The day ended back at the town home where they were staying, and Ronak decided then that the time was right. He asked. Heena was taken by surprise. She said yes, of course, and here we are today!

 

Indian wedding engagement_Ben Finch Photo

castleton brideHeena had previously been to an Indian wedding at Castleton and fell in love with our property. When the time rolled around for her to choose a wedding venue, she considered Castleton because of the outdoor venue options. In India, over 90% of couples get married outside. While there are endless outdoor venues to choose from in America, the couple had difficulty finding an outdoor venue that could accommodate such a large guest count. Indian families consider everyone they meet part of their family, which explains their 500+ person guest counts. Heena + Ronak also mentioned choosing Castleton because of Darla and the built-in event planning that comes with every experience. Unlike American weddings, Indian weddings consist of multiple events occurring over a 3-day time period (at least!), so having an event planner to keep track of each detail and hold people accountable was a huge deal breaker for these two.


All of that being said, we are SO excited to have the opportunity to experience India with Heena, Ronak, Ben, and the whole family. Join us on this adventure and find some entertainment in our daily Facebook vlogs, Instagram inspiration photos, blog posts describing the details and importance of planning an Indian wedding, and one of our favorite parts – Pappu’s passage! That’s right. The little friend you see below is joining our journey. We’ll be posting photos of Pappu wherever we go, and it’s up to YOU to guess where he is. Darla will be bringing back some fun souvenirs for each winner! Be sure to follow us with the hashtags #PappusPassage, #WhereInTheWorldIsPappu and #IndiaExperiencesCastleton.

authentic patchwork Indian elephant

Choosing Castleton Farms: Darla Walker

Darla Walker with bride and groom at Halloween wedding

And first runner up of why you should choose Castleton Farms as your wedding venue….our very own, Darla Walker. When she reads this, I won’t be her favorite intern anymore because she is humble and wants absolutely no accolades, but the truth is, Castleton Farms could not be the most sought after venue in the South without her.  She is everything that a wedding planner should be.  She wears many hats and wears them well. I would like to think of her as a fairy godmother. She takes your vision of a fairy tale wedding,waves her magic wand and makes everything come true, just like that! *poof* How does she do it? In my opinion, she has been given a God-given talent. Talent, coupled with experience, style, negotiation and project management is a win-win in the wedding planning industry. Lucky for our Castleton Brides, her talents are at your disposal. She takes the stress, the negotiations, the budget restraints, project execution and carries it on her shoulders until the end, while doing all this, she has the wonderful ability to keep a clear head and still get excited about all the tiny details. This enables our brides to have fun during this process. After all, your wedding is supposed to be fun! You’re not supposed to worry!  This is where Darla steps in. From the beginning, until the end, she is with you every step of the way. After the initial Castleton experience, she begins her magic. She converts your vision into reality. This includes supervising vendor negotiations, managing vendors, managing guests, and handling all other wedding details, no matter how unimportant they may seem. She helps you save money, manages your timeline, while trouble shooting any unforeseen mishaps. Not only does she handle these important tasks, but she is a sounding board for decisions, a mediator, a therapist, a stress reducer and a resource of knowledge that is invaluable in this industry! Her awards and her testimonies speak for themselves. When you choose Castleton, Darla is the wedding topper on your cake, she genuinely loves our brides and follows them for many years after their big day. When you become a Castleton Bride, you become part of the Castleton family, and of course Darla, will always be your fairy godmother!

Darla Walker with bride and groom

Darla Walker with bride and groom

Darla Walker and bride at rehearsal dinner

Julie Roberts Photography