As we’ve mentioned in our blogs a few times before, Indian wedding weekends are a tour de force in the event industry. Dazzling color, contagious energy, and massive crowds are all characteristics of these exciting weekends, and it takes a big time venue to host the big time event. The Santa Clara Marriott in, well, Santa Clara, is just such a venue.
With 26 (!) event rooms and almost 27,000 feet (!!) of total event space, this behemoth of a venue towering over Silicon Valley can host up to 1,000 people (!!!). Or for a small Indian wedding, just 500. Jokes. What’s better? The wedding and reception can be indoor or outdoor, depending on your taste.
We shot Lana and Ankit’s multicultural wedding at the Santa Clara Marriott last year. It was a full on Indian ceremony and reception, but we say multicultural because, as you’ll notice - Lana’s not Indian. One of our favorite things about California is the melting pot of cultures and the beautiful synergy that comes when two individuals from two completely different backgrounds come together to become one. Often times, that means weddings/receptions where both cultures are on full display, each showcasing their various traditions as the families lay the groundwork for a lifetime of learning by learning to honor one another’s cultures on the bride and groom’s big day. But sometimes, like with Lana and Ankit, the couple chooses to completely adopt the traditions of the one, and those days can be just as beautiful.
The staff at the Santa Clara Marriott did an excellent job of turning the outdoor patio into a colorful festival environment while Ankit’s family did an excellent job of turning Lana into an Indian princess. Henna is a tradition in Indian weddings, and Lana’s hands and feet were covered with the beautiful markings. The couple dawned traditional Indian wedding garb and we captured intimate moments of them in different locations around the hotel. An extra nice aspect of having such a large and diverse space as the Santa Clara Marriott is that the couple was able to change into multiple different outfits and shoot in multiple locations that provided a variety of different looks without ever having to leave the venue. Lana transitioned from an elegant blue-green colored saree into a stunning red and gold wedding dress that made her look like a visiting queen. Meanwhile, Ankit transitioned into a gold based sherwani that solidified the two as a royal couple. We were able to snag some stunning first look photos before Ankit headed out to lead his baraat back into the hotel for the ceremony. In keeping with the theme of Lana adopting Indian cultural traditions, her father was waiting to greet and hug Ankit in a sherwani of his own.
Inside, the Santa Clara Marriott wedding/event staff once again did an incredible job with decorating for tradition, assembling a beautiful mandap, or wedding altar for the ceremony. After the two exchanged vows, we did yet another wardrobe change and this time, it was Ankit’s turn to change cultures. He threw on a dashing tux as Lana chose a purple and gold saree, and we headed outside for some more couple photos, our favorite being this somber greyscale under the arches.
Soon after, we headed inside to one of the venue’s massive ballrooms to join the dozens of family and friends gathered to celebrate the happy couple.
Are you looking for a venue with the size, flexibility and professional staff needed to pull off a large wedding weekend? We highly recommend the Santa Clara Marriott.