With 12 hotels spread across the Chicago metro area, Marriott also offers a wide variety of facilities to accommodate wedding receptions – both in large indoor ballrooms and outside on beautifully landscaped grounds. Each hotel can negotiate discounted room rates for out-of-town wedding guests with blocks of 10 or more guest rooms booked, and a complimentary room for the bride and groom on their wedding night.
The groom emerges from a sleek, black limousine, his generation’s preferred ride to a modern Hindu wedding. It’s a far different mode of transportation from the horse his father rode to greet his bride at his own nuptials, and even more removed from the elephant that carried his grandfather before him. The bride, resplendent in her beaded silk sari and the Mehndi applied to her palms, waits to greet him. Their families, joined together by customs and traditions that have endured across centuries, continents and yes, modern invention, gather under an elaborately decorated Mandap. The ceremony begins.
If this scene sounds typical of a wedding that might play out from Mumbai to Delhi to Jaipur, it’s also a common event that takes place quite regularly at any of 12 Chicago area Marriott or Renaissance hotels.
While it’s the dream of many couples to begin their married lives with a traditional celebration such as this in India, the reality is that busy lives, professional responsibilities, a widely spread network of family and friends and economic uncertainty often bring wedding planning closer to home. Yet that doesn’t mean that the important traditions and customs that define an Indian wedding, some which have been in place for almost 5,000 years, should be sacrificed. Even weddings destined to be influenced by modern western values can maintain a distinctly Indian feel. The trick is finding a wedding venue that understands these values, appreciates the cultural nuances, and can bring them to life in a way that is both authentic and memorable.
Marriott’s Chicagoland hotels have long embraced the importance of celebrating multicultural traditions and are experts at personalizing weddings and other social events by incorporating appropriate customs and cuisine. Each hotel has a Certified Wedding Planner on its event staff that can help the bride and groom and their families plan the event from start to finish. And each Certified Wedding Planner has completed specially designed course work that covers a variety of wedding protocols and etiquette, as well as culinary and decorating trends. From scheduling the ceremonial events to recommending the perfect vendor to supply the Mandap, Marriott’s Certified Wedding Planners are instrumental in making sure every aspect of the Indian wedding is perfect.
When Neil and Anura Cheryan Shah began planning their nuptials in 2007, they were thoroughly impressed with how prepared the Lincolnshire Marriott Resort was to accommodate all of their special needs and requests, and the hotel’s ability to accommodate a large contingent of out-of-town guests.
“We met with the sales department at the Lincolnshire Marriott Resort and knew instantly that it was the ideal location. The staff was very knowledgeable about the cultural and religious requirements of hosting an Indian wedding such as managing the logistics of the Barat and setting up the Mandap (they even knew the correct terminology!). In fact, the staff was so wonderful that we did not even have to hire a separate wedding planner,” said Anura Shah.
Marriott’s catering teams, too, appreciate the intricacies of the customary Indian wedding meal. From freshly made Lassi, to expertly prepared Tandoori, home-baked Naan and an assortment of sweet desserts, the hotels’ executive chefs can custom design a menu with selections that are plentiful, freshly prepared, elegantly presented and meet every religious or dietary need. To ensure culinary authenticity, all of the hotels have preferred vendors that are experts in South Asian cuisine and can be called upon to provide additional catering. Once the couple has chosen a hotel and signed a contract, the chef will offer a menu tasting to ensure that the catering choices will work within the designated budget while making that all-important impression.
With 12 hotels spread across the Chicago metro area, Marriott also offers a wide variety of facilities to accommodate wedding receptions — both in large indoor ballrooms and outside on beautifully landscaped grounds. Each hotel can negotiate discounted room rates for out-of-town wedding guests with blocks of 10 or more guest rooms booked, and a complimentary room for the bride and groom on their wedding night. Members of Marriott Rewards®, Marriott’s renowned loyalty program, can also earn points toward free vacations for their weddings held at Marriott.
For more information about Marriott weddings and Chicago Marriott hotels, visit MarriottIndianWedding.com.