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Sonika Advani, who holds a Master’s degree in Marketing became a wedding planner totally by accident. However, creating stunning tailor-made bespoke weddings for her clients and giving them a memory to cherish forever has become her passion today.

“After finishing my course in UK, I came to Mumbai and was looking for jobs, when a friend offered me to work at his company as a freelancer, which I did and then I enjoyed it so much that I decided to carry on in this field and started off on my own after a few years,” says Sonika, who runs a professional wedding consulting and management company called S&S – Events and Weddings, along with her partner Shilpa Rohera.

We picked Sonika’s brain about everything wedding planning related to get you some handy tips. Read on to get some gyan from the expert…

What is the secret of planning a great wedding?
Well, I think the first thing you need to keep in mind is to enjoy doing what you do. There are ups and downs but all you need to do is move on. The most important thing is to come up with innovative ideas, which have not been done before.

What is a big no-no when planning for a wedding?
Never lose control of your mind!

What according to you are the top wedding trends for 2016?
Having an international destination wedding, international artists, elegant décor, more entertainment, charter planes and unique gifts.

How can one have a fancy yet budget wedding?
By reducing their guest list.

If you could choose anywhere in the world, what according to you is the best destination wedding location?
Goa & Thailand.

What are the most popular and exotic honeymoon destinations?
Europe is the most popular honeymoon destination that most couples opt for and South Africa is where one should head to if you are looking for an exotic honeymoon destination.

If someone wants a destination wedding, however, can’t afford it, is there any alternative that you can suggest?
Yes, we try and work with budgeted hotels and try to fit it in the client’s budget for other destinations.

Everyone these days seem to say they want a personalized wedding. How can you help them do something unique?
We brainstorm with the clients, make use of the internet and come up with different ideas right from their stationery to entertainment, décor, food, etc.

What mistakes should one avoid during planning for a wedding?
Prepare yourself for damage control and have a backup plan A, B, and C at all times.

The most spectacular wedding you have ever done was?
One of the most spectacular weddings we did was for one of our clients Kunal Parekh, which had taken place in Park Hyatt, Goa. We took 6 – 7 months to plan this wedding and executed it with a team of 25 people managing their entire hospitality right from the first guest who arrived until the last guest who left. We had managed the entire entertainment including Sonu Nigam and his troupe. Post the wedding we spent 4 more days with the client and his friends just to extend our hospitalit



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