South Asian Weddings

Indian vendors in the New England area- RI, MA, CT?

Hey everyone!  We are getting married in Newport, RI next summer and was wondering if anyone had any suggestions about vendors in the New England area?  There are not too many Indians in the area and was hoping to avoid a huge travel fee if we bring vendors from NY/NJ.  Any suggestions or recommendations?  We just started planning so we don't have anyone but the venue booked.  Thanks so much!

Re: Indian vendors in the New England area- RI, MA, CT?

  • mkjasanimkjasani member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    We are using Prasang Decorators for our Mandap... Anshuman Gosalia is really fantastic - we are using him and really like him.http://www.prasangdecors.com/index.htm

    Another mandap vendor is Shoba Shastry at Alankar Decors.  I didn't use her but one of my friends did  http://www.alankardecors.com/home.html I spoke with her a couple times... I think she is THE person in the Boston / MA area for years but now Prasang is coming up...

    For florists we are using Winston (regular florist)

    Priest - Dr. Jayant Sane - he is really good - he did my cousin's wedding 6 years ago in Maine and my friend's wedding in the fall.  He also does interfaith weddings (I am Jain, my fiance is Jewish)  And his English is very good - which was important to us both.

    Let me know if you need any additional information.  Good luck and congratulaitons!
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • edited December 2011
    *mkjasani*- Thanks so much for your recommendations!  Who are you using for mendhi and what about someone to help you get ready, hair and makeup?  Also, what about DJ?  My fiance and his family are Indian but very non-traditional so we are really going for a fusion type wedding.  We are looking for a DJ who is experienced with Indian music, but not too desi and has a large selection of non Indian music.  Any recommendations?  Thanks so much

    P.S. We are almost definitely going with Prasang decors as well- they are fabulous!
  • mbuhpathimbuhpathi member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I know our photographer works equally between Boston and Chicago. They do a lot of indian weddings. I searched Newport on their blog and it looks like they do Oceancliff although I don't know if it is a neighborhood or a venue. Their name is Heather Parker. one of the sangeets was just posted in their mailing list. http://tinyurl.com/sangeetpix
    image
  • edited December 2011
    we used Heather Parker too.
  • mkjasanimkjasani member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Hi RSMEHTA - so glad to hear you are going with Prasang... we really liked him and are happy to see someone who isn't the 'big player' in the market getting more business.  Our wedding is Sun so will let you know how it goes - but we are sure it will be fantastic.

    Photographer - we are using Leslie Dumke in CT - she has done many of my fiance's friend's weddings.  And we love her.  i don't think she has done a lot of indian weddings; however on the day of she is partnering with an Indian American photog from CT (she just told me 2 weeks ago) at no additional cost to us.  To ensure she gets the right shots, etc.  http://www.lesliedumkestudio.com/

    Mehendi - I am using Smita's Designs... I am going to be honest - I sent the deposit in March and then last week and the prior week had several stressful days getting her to confirm the times in an email.  She did my friend's wedding though and it looked great.  I am pretty type-A so like to have that confirmation via an executed contract or at the very least written in an email.  So that is definitely a challenge.  http://smitas.com/

    For DJ - we are using Entertainment Specialists - Mike Amado.  Not sure about the Indian music component - we are not big into Indian music but I am just giving him an ipod with songs on it.  http://www.entertainmentspecialists.com/mambodb/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=85

    Good luck!!!  Also feel free to PM me with any addtional questions.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • mkjasanimkjasani member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Almost forgot - hair & make-up... Luz Beauty (Luiz Filho).  LOVED my h&m trial.  He actually asked if I was going to have those red and white dots of forehead and jewelry in the hair (not having either - but he knew all about it and all the considerations).  http://luzbeauty.com/
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • edited December 2011
    hey rsmehta, im also getting married in newport, rhode island .... next may and i am having the same issues with finding everything being that i live in new york and it would be very expensive to take everything from new york ... where in newport are you getting married .... im getting married at Castle Hill
  • edited December 2011

    Hey tesha!  So great to find another Newport bride doing the Indian wedding!  I absolutely love Castle Hill!  We are considering doing an event there on Friday night before our wedding.  We are getting married next June at the Hyatt on Goat Island.  I totally understand how hard it is to plan from a distance as I live in Texas.  Fortunately my parents live in RI and my mom is helping a lot, but it would be so much easier if I lived closer!  Have you decided on any of your vendors yet?  We have only booked the priest and decorator.  My biggest concern is finding a good DJ- this is both important to my fiance and I and havent heard much about the DJ's in the northeast...

  • edited December 2011
    hey rsmetha, i know it is great to find someelse planning their wedding there ... I haven't really done much yet ive just been looking at vendors and trying to come up with a great vision ... my finance and i are still trying to work on our guest list ... my wedding is may 20 .... so its great maybe we will keep communcating and share ideas ... i didnt go to the hyatt but i heard its beautiful ... i went next door to belle mer but my finance really loved castle hill ... r u having a 2 day wedding and how is food being prepared. who have you booked for decor ... and i know the DJ situation i have to go and listen to a few before i decide ... btw r u having a mandap and where r u getting it from ...
  • edited December 2011
    Hi Tesha!  I haven't really done much either.  We have been engaged for a long time so I feel like I should have been doing more all this time, but it's hard living so far away and not having time to go back to RI!  We are still working on the guest list too- what a pain in the ass!  I think the plan is that we will have a small mendhi at my house on Thursday night for just my close family and a few friends, we are still deciding about Friday night- his family initially said they were going to host an event but now they are not sure what they want to do.  I suppose if they don't have something on Fri night, then my parents will do something.  All of our guests are out of town, so they will need something to do on Friday.  If his parents don't have something in Newport on Friday (either Castle Hill or Regatta Place), then our side will likely have something close to home in Warwick since Newport is so expensive.  Where are you from originally- from RI?  For food, the Hyatt actually made an exception for us an contracted with Kabob n' Curry (an Indian restaurant in Providence) so they will be preparing our food.  I've had their food before and it's not the best, but its decent- its hard to find decent Indian food in RI!  I think our food selection will be more fusion though- some Indian, some American.  For decorations, we are using Prasang decors- they are located near Lowell, MA and are fantastic!  There's really only 2 options for decor in our area- Prasang and Shoba Shastry at Alankar Decors.  The owners at Prasang are family friends and have a great selection, so made the choice for that easy for me.  We are having an outdoor ceremony overlooking the water (I would imagine you are doing the same?) so our mandap will be very simple and open so we can see the view.  We havent booked much else, but I will def let you know what I decide.  What is the plan for you?  Are you having something the night before and what are you doing for food?
  • edited December 2011
    hey .... yes i am having an outdoor wedding as well but im having i small indian wedding only 75 people .... Castle Hill is providing the food for our wedding but i will have an American reception with an indian feel ... thats great that you have gotten your mandap ... do you mine telling me how much a mandap costs generally ... i have to start booking all these things and I really havent done much because its just I that is planning the wedding and i live in new york ... i dont know anyone is rhode island ... so Im doing it all blindly .... my vision is to have a traditional indian ceremony and a very american reception because my finance is christain
  • edited December 2011
    hey rsmehta ... im now choosing invites did you do that as yet ....
  • edited December 2011
    Hi tesha...we have not looked into invitations yet..my mom and I are going to India in January so I think we will get them there.  We have, however, just decided on our save-the-dates.  We decided to order Newport, RI postcards (the photo is of the Newport Harbor) and we had then customized to say our names and date of the wedding.  We plan to write a personal msg on each postcard telling everyone about the wedding.  In terms of a mandap, I am not sure about the cost.  I think it depends on how much you want to do.  The mandap company we are using are family friends, so they have not told us cost yet.  They are fantastic though.  Are planning on getting your mendhi done?  I heard a few names, but have not looked into anyone in particular yet.  How did you chose Newport as a venue since you are not from there?  If you need any help or have any questions about the area, feel free to ask.  I used to live in RI and have several friends who have gotten married there...
  • edited December 2011
    thanks alot Rsmehta that means alot ... i ordered approx 10 samples from indianweddingcards.com .... i always wanted an outdooor wedding in mayb a garden and i finance wanted a wedding with the ocean back drop ... we had first looked in CT but then there was nothing interesting so i decided to look at rhode island and we boith loved castle hill becuase it had a combo of what we wanted .... my mendhi ill get done in new york before i go to rhode island .... i have to figure out where has great cakes in newport, hair and make up and i need a dj .... do you think mandap companies have books its hard for me to travel too long these different places .... what are your wedding colours? and where r you getting ur wedding outfit from ?
  • edited December 2011
    Castle Hill is beautiful!  I'm excited that you picked it as your location- you are going to love it!  The website for the mfandap place we are using are prasangdecors.com but honestly it is hard to tell from the website all the things that they have.  I know prasangdecors can pretty much do anything that you want so I am assuming most places can too.  We are looking for a fairly simple outdoor mandap so we get most of the ocean view- mostly flowers with an open backdrop so you.see the water.  I'm not 100% sure about the colors yet, but maybe ocean blue vs. hot pink?  No clue yet, lots of decisions to make still...I am getting my wedding outfit from India, but have not even started looking at designs yet.  What did you decide about your outfits? 
  • edited December 2011
    hey .... great minds think alike i am almost thinking of pink i saw a mandap on a website that i love .... i want the same as you an open backdrop after all u are paying mostly for the view of the ocean so why cover it up? http://www.citysaheli.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/Image_2_Global_Photography.jpg 
     i love the concept of this mandap and this is what i'm really aiming for i would like the fabric to be pink and mayb like orange or dark yellow flowers ... more like marigold. i love this wedding leghenga, http://www.homeindia.com/brides/lehenga-choli/gorgeous-lehenga-choli-p-ghsat0807.html , im just nervous about ordering from an online company although u do custom pieces .... i would love to have bright pink penoies with mayb tulips as my centrepieces ... i'm still choosing wedding cards can you believe it .... i would love to heard your ides as well .... thanks for being a great support its good to have someone who is having the same experience as i am in newport .
  • edited December 2011
    Hi tesha...yes, we do think alike!  I love your selection for a mandap as it is almost exactly what I want!   Here is the link to the mandaps that gave me inspiration (scroll down because there are 2):
    http://www.maharaniweddings.com/maharani/mandaps/
    I am also thinkining pink/magenta drapes with lots of flowers, probably white and yellow flowers.  Our reception will be indoors so I think I am going to use blue for that so it gives it the ocean feel.  Our reception will be mostly American as well, except for my outfit.  I love your lengha!  It is gorgoeous and probably similar to what I will chose!  I think I will find something similar to that, but I may try to match it to the pink of the drapes instead of red?  Not sure about that one yet.  I think you would be fine ordering online as long as you do it early enough so that you can exchange if you don't like it.  I know a lot of people who have done that.  My sister-in-law did it for her bridemaids and their outfits looked great!  It's probably the better idea rather than going to Edison or Jackson Heights and picking something you don't love.  I'm not sure if you mentioned this, but are you guys having an event the night before?  We were initially thinking about it, but now it's become a big mess trying to plan between his parents and my parents that I am thinking abut just cancelling it!  I'm worried it will be too expensive in Newport, however all of our guests are out of town so it would be nice to do something for them.  Also where are your guests staying?  At castle Hill or another hotel?  We have a room block at the Hyatt but the room rates are $300 plus tax, which I know most people cannot afford.  We are trying to find alternates, especially since my family is expected to pay for hotel rooms for our entire immediate family....
    In terms of invitations, I haven't really thought about what I am looking for yet.  I am hoping I will just find something in India!  We are still working on the save-the-dates..Are you planning on doing save the dates? 
  • edited December 2011
    hey rsmehta... thats a great mandap I actually saw that one and loved it too its so mondern and thats why i like them so much, i am also thinking pink draps with yellow flowers i was actually thinking tulips ... because my reception will still have that outdoor feel i want to keep the pink and yellow theme goin so for a centrepiece i'll probably have penoies and tulips or something like that ... or whatever flowers are cheaper in the season that would still look great ... i haevn't figured that out as yet .... do you know anyone that ordered from homeindia.com ... you made me feel better thatt other people you know ordered online. i am not having something the night before because it will be hard for my finances co workers and my own family to get up there but i am thinking of doing something the nite after. My finance and I were thinking of having jus a gathering at Forty One North.... thats in dowtown newport maybe like five minutes from the Hyatt.... my finances family and I dont really mesh well so doing something is out of the question ... I'm not blocking any room for my wedding because the hyatt and the mariott will be expensive for my family and some of his so i'm doing some research and i think there is a town called middletown which has comfort inn, holiday inn and other hotels it might be a 10 minute drive for ur family to the Hyatt because its like 20 - 25 minutes to Castle Hill. You should look into it, I'm just suggesting places and people canchoose what they're comfortable with. No save the dates for me jus invites i found one i love http://www.indianweddingcard.com/d-2872.html it comes is pink and gold and red and gold but i don't really know what colour to choose pink and gold with go with the theme of my wedding but red and gold seems like a traditional invite. Who are you using for video and photos .... and do you know where you are ordering your flowers from ?
  • edited December 2011
    Hi Tesha!  I don't know anyone who ordered from homeindia.com but I'm sure if they have a return policy, you will be fine.  Have you already gone to edison and jackson heights to see if you liked anything in those areas?  My brother's wife ordered from utsavsarees.com and she was really happy with her choices.  I like your idea of pink and yellow.  The yellow looks really classy, we may go with that too.  I think the yellow looks really stunning outside and my fiance loves the look too.  I don't know who were are going with for  flowers yet.  I haven't had the chance to research that yet.  When I went home last month, I checked out a fewof the surrounding hotels in the area.  Even though our wedding is at the Hyatt, I doubt many people will stay there because it's so expensive.  I saw a few of the hotels you mentioned in Middletown and they were all decent and way cheaper.  You may also want to consider the Best Western as it is in Newport and much closer than Middletown (however I dont know how far it is from Castle Hill).  I loved your pink and gold invitation.  I think you should go with the pink and gold since its your colors and that invitation iteself looks very traditional.  I love it!  I still have yet to figure out DJ, flowers, photographer...any updates from your end about those?
  • edited December 2011
    hey rsmehta thanks for your input I love the pink and yellow but my finance likes the red and gold invite so still deciding ... but for flowers the only place i have contacted was stoneblossom because they have done alot of weddings at castle hill and they have done indian weddings too ... i have sent the pciture of the mandap to the prasang decors and to stoneblossom to see if theyre vendors that they can recommend also but the lady at stoneblossom said they could make my mandap if the price is right i'll probably use them for the mandap and the flowers that would be such a great relief .... i love alot of details, so for a photographer i want someone to love that as well i really havent been looking that much although i should start but its hard to find one for a good price .... are you having a videograhper, I want one but i just wan someone to video my entranace and ceremony but i dont think anyone will wan to do that for 2 hours ... there packages are normally 8 hours .... i have no idea what i will do for a DJ ..... any updates .... what colours do you think you and your finance will be wearing ... my finance wants to wear red too.
  • edited December 2011
    Hi tesha...I think we will probably have a videographer because why not, it only happens once.  No idea who I will use yet though.  No updates on the DJ front  yet.  I want someone who is comfortable playing Indian music because even though we will have a mix, I dont want it to sound awkward if they are not familiar with the music.  I have heard good things about DJ Yogi in the Boston area but have not contacted him yet.  I think I would like to wear hot pink/dark pink, white, and gold for the ceremony outfit.  I know traditionally you should wear red, but I think I want more fusion colors and it will match the mandap.  I am not sure what my fiance will wear yet.  He is Indian, but not very traditional and is not comfortable wearing Indian clothes yet, so we may find fusion for him too.  He wants the groomsmen to wear suits so we compromised on off-white/beige suits with matching scarves Indian style to the bridesmaids.  I'm not sure about the reception outfit yet- something shiny!  Have you decided on your reception outfit?  That;s great that they may be able to make your mandap for you.  That will save a lot of time and hopefully money!  Do you have a priest yet?  Are you going to have someone help get you ready the day-of?  I'm not sure what to do about that because I have no idea how to wear a sari and I know my mom and everyone else will be busy getting ready themselves.  I think we will have to hire someone to help me with this, just not sure who...any ideas?
  • edited December 2011
    hey rsmehta ... thats great that you guys are doing a fusion .... we will have a traditional ceremony and then a very modern reception but i have no idea what outfit i will wear as yet ..... the hair and makeup thing i havent figured out as yet but i'm guessing it has to be someone in rhode island  i wan my hair up for the ceremony but then i wan it down for the reception so i need to figure that out asap ...... yea i figured the floral company would be cheaper but im not sure the guy emailed me this morning and said that it would be 3000 just for the mandap without chairs, kund or anything else i though that was a bit expensive .... i got incontact with the guy you are using i will try to meet with him within the next month and figure things out see what works out best ... im guessing my bridesmaids will help me get ready it shouldnt be diffcult at all well im not actually havent bridemaids .... yes i have a priest already hes coming from new york ... youre wearing a sari ... im wearing a lehenga im afaird to wear a sari im scared that someone steps on it and it gets undone. do you know what you have in mind for a centrepiece im still tryin to work on that ... no ideas for a reception .... i need to figure out so much i know i have time but it doesnt seem like alot .... what have you heard about the other mandap decorator shobha ....
  • edited December 2011
    Hey tesha...sorry for the delayed response, have been busy with work.  I have no ideas about the centerpieces yet.   I have a big exam coming up so think I should probably put wedding planning to the side until its over- its so distracting!  I haven't heard much about Shobha from Alankar designs..I know they have a pretty big business and pretty well known though.  I haven't seen their stuff though since I knew I was going to go with prasang...Let me know if you decide to go check out prasang..I'm not sure if I mentioned this but the owner's daughter of prasang is my best friend so if you do decide to check it out, i'll let them know you are coming and to show you the best stuff!  I think both are probably able to do what you are looking for.  In terms of cost, I have no idea which one is better.  Any other updates from your end?  I'm trying to figure out DJ and photography so far but havent come up with much...
  • edited December 2011
    hey rsmehta ... thats ok your work comes first ... you still have a while to think about wedding plans, I am going to visit prasang on the 14th of this month, I have to call and setup an appointment ... that would be great if you can inform them .... the guy i spoke to seems like a wonderful guy and someone I would love to work with, my finance and I will be driving from nyc although i prefer to fly ... no major updates as yet I'm hoping when i go to his place maybe I will find Ideas for a centrepiece or something i could use in my centrepiece ... I was thinking of having someone play a sitar and tabla during my cocktail hour and when my finance and I walk in the mandap but I'm not sure as yet ....  Will update you on anything new but I have to find a great photographer ....
  • edited December 2011
    hey girls!

    www.princeproduction.com
    Prince Production does amazing videography

    uplighting- dream lights entertainment ( they have a link on princeproductions website)

    for any other brides looking for Mandaps/Stage Decor  I recommend
    Mandap King www.mandapking.com and stylish events 

    They are all based out of CT
  • edited December 2011
    Thanks for the info!  They all have great websites..it's so hard to make a decision, especially when you are planning from so far away!

    Tesha- I told my friend that you are coming this weekend.  She lives in NY so I don't think you will meet her, but you will meet her dad, which is likely the person you already spoke with.  Her mom is in India stocking up on things for their business.  Let me know how it goes!  Hopefully you will find exactly what you are looking for!  I think they should be able to work with you for what you are looking for.  They are doing the outdoor mandap for me and it seems to be similar to the look you want.  I just don't know about prices compared to other people since we didn't really talk about that the last time i visited and i wasn't exactly sure what I was looking for then.  Goodluck and I hope you find what you want!
  • edited December 2011
    hey rsmehta ... good to hear from you ... thanks for passing the message i really appreciate it. I have been looking at photograhers too, they seem very expensive in RI but i'm not sure ..... do you know where u are getting a photographer from? ..... and a dj ? ... or who is doing your hair and makeup
  • edited December 2011
    Hey tesha..For hair, I am using Sam C...I read a lot about her on the RI board and it seems like a lot of people recommend her.  She is incredibly reasonably priced (she does hair as a pasttime and not as a profession).  I will have a trial with her next spring after I get my outfits and see how I like it.  I haven't booked a makeup person yet but I heard Jennie K is great and shes based out of Newport- havent gotten around to calling yet.  Photographer I'm not sure yet- my mom is looking into this.  When you meet with Anshuman uncle this weekend, ask him for his vendor selection.  He told me DJ Yogi out of Boston is really good but I have never heard his stuff.  Also, I cant remember who he told me for photography but the person he recommended did his daughter's reception and the pics were beautiful.  Hope that helps!
  • edited December 2011
    Hey rsmehta .... yea i will be seeing him on saturday i'm vry excited ... i am taking a picture of the mandap that i showed you and hope that he can recreate it .... i'm sure he will ... he sounds like a great guy ... i will alos be seein a photographer called binita patel ... i saw her wprk and though that it was amazing i want someone that has an idea of indian weddings and pays attention to detail ... i will also be seeing her .... her packagesare a little expensive they start at 3500 ... but i think photographers in newport are more expensive i might me wrong ... when i mean with her i can let you know how it goes ... i'll do some homework for the both of us .... i read reviews on dj yogi they werent very great .... but i heard of dj om ... i will ask for a vendor list from both vendors and compare some prices .... can you send me in info for your make up and hair vendors ... thanks
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