From the grandest palaces in India to the most exotic locations overseas, HELLO! brings you its top picks to plan destination weddings…
They don’t call Kerala ‘God’s Own Country’ for nothing. The spot is truly breathtaking for myriad reasons, not least of all because of its serene backwaters, pristine beaches and unfiltered beauty and charm. The food, rich in tradition, that this state boasts is yet another highlight that blows your senses away, making it the perfect place to become husband and wife, if you’re looking anywhere down south.
HELLO! Recommends: The Zuri Kumarakom, Kerala Resort & Spa and Taj Bekal Resort & Spa
How does one add more colour to an Indian wedding? By hosting it in this Moroccan city! This exotic paradise with its unique offering and vibrance allows couples to take things up a notch and truly make it a day neither they nor their guests will ever forget. Picture shenanigans complete with camel riding, ATVing and playing with falcons. Hiring a local wedding planner can help infuse elements of Moroccan culture into the events, for which the bride and groom have plenty of luxurious venues to choose from.
HELLO! Recommends: Royal Mansour Marrakech and Mandarin Oriental, Marrakech
Koh Samui, Thailand
When it comes to Thailand, there’s little to complain about. Perfect landscapes, scrumptious food, great weather and, best of all, a pick of wedding destinations. From an overwater villa to the green setting of a jungle, or even a luxury resort — though we’d recommend a private beach wedding at Koh Samui. Located off the eastern coast in the Gulf of Thailand and best known for its clear blue waters and pristine beaches, Koh Samui has the perfect settings in opulent hotels for that idyllic wedding you always dreamed of. Tip: have a small team on ground to get past the language barrier that will undoubtedly arise otherwise.
HELLO! Recommends: Four Seasons Resort, Koh Samui and InterContinental Koh Samui Resort
With its snow-clad mountains and lush green valleys, Shimla is as picturesque as it is romantic. With this choice of destination, the whole wedding party and guests get to travel to a beautiful location and make incredible memories. The altitude is a huge plus because it means it’s nice and cool even during the sweltering months. Not only can you get a jaw-dropping backdrop for all your photo-ops (another definite plus!), you’ll find unparalleled rustic charm at every corner, truly making it the perfect location to tie the knot.
HELLO! Recommends: Wildflower Hall, An Oberoi Resort and Woodville Palace Hotel.
This Swiss destination spells understated elegance. Imagine saying your ‘I dos’ before a snow-capped Matterhorn, with little to no noise around besides the cheers of your close circle. The alpine peaks and dramatic landscapes would do away with the need for much décor and allow the focus to remain on what’s required: the celebration of two hearts and families coming together — exactly what the recent wedding of fashion influencer Sonam Babani underscored. Plan ahead for logistics since electric cars, horse sleighs and carriages are the only allowed means of transportation.
HELLO! Recommends: Relais & Chateaux Schönegg and BEAUSiTE Zermatt
Straddling two continents, there’s so much more to Istanbul than the Bosphorus and its beaches. Steeped in history, culture and incredible scenery, Istanbul is just close enough to have all your close family and friends present for your special day, yet grand enough to make for a one-of-a-kind experience. To up the ante, the wedding party can move around by boat when needed, instead of battling the challenging traffic. Topping it all off are the myriads of luxurious hotels and palaces with spectacular views that can be transformed into gorgeous settings for your nuptials.
HELLO! Recommends: Çıragan Palace Kempinski and Adile Sultan Palace
One of the most romantic cities in India, Udaipur has been a hot wedding destination for aeons. The City of Lakes, built along a series of gentle hills and narrow, winding streets, gives way to stunning marble palaces, hibiscus- laden gardens, sparkling fountains and pavilions, all taking you back in time to an age of unparalleled grandeur. A finer setting for the first days of the rest of your life, we’re yet to find!
HELLO! Recommends: Oberoi Udaivilas and The Leela Palace Udaipur
For a dreamy beach wedding with plenty of sunshine, seashells, coconut trees and cocktails, Goa’s always the right choice. Known for its charm and festive flexibility, it’s the place where you can have it all — from a laid-back vibe to a more posh affair. Seeing as it’s the coolest beach party spot in the country, the Sunshine State offers something for everyone!
HELLO! Recommends: Alila Diwa Goa and ITC Grand Goa
The Blue City, known for its charm, rich history, imposing forts and beautiful desertscapes, has become synonymous with destination weddings that beg for scale and grandeur. If a big, fat Indian wedding in its truest shape and form is the need of the day, Jodhpur is the place to carry it out because it’s here that you’ll find spectacular hospitality that will allow your every dream to be turned into reality — and then some!
HELLO! Recommends: Umaid Bhawan and Ajit Bhawan
Lake Como, Italy
A luxury destination unlike any other, Lake Como offers opulence that’s not as overt yet evident. It’s the kind of traditional, historical luxury that’s aristocratic, minus the flamboyant cars and high-end stores. Nevertheless, this Italian hotspot is unique in its own way. From picturesque villas to entirely exclusive, grand hotels — all with the most breathtaking views— it’s the most romantic setting one can imagine for their big day. Bollywood sweethearts Deepika Padukone and Ranveer Singh would agree.
HELLO! Recommends: Villa del Balbianello and Hotel Belvedere Bellagio
This story has been adapted for the website from a story that was originally published in HELLO! India’s October 2022 issue. Get your hands on the latest issue right here!