Isn’t this photograph one of the most dramatic wedding portraits you’ve ever seen? Well if you’ve ever thought of getting married amid a breathtakingly beautiful primeval landscape ie. *the desert*, and you choose the oh so talented Dima Vazinovich as your wedding photographer, then that’s the kind of shot you’ll end up with!
Today’s gorgeous couple, Liran and Etay, chose the Beresheet hotel, a destination spa hotel in Israel’s Negev desert, as their wedding venue as they wanted somewhere where they could relax and enjoy quality time with their guests over the course of a few days, and additionally somewhere that reflected their modest and serene personalities.
WHY WE DECIDED TO HAVE OUR WEDDING IN THE DESERT
Liran, the Bride: Well before Etay popped the question we started talking about having a destination wedding and getting married somewhere abroad. The idea was that our guests wouldnÊ»t feel like theyÊ»re at a wedding but like theyÊ»re on a little holiday (weddings go so fast we wanted to enjoy time with our loved ones over the course of at least a couple of days and hang out at ease as much as possible).
Having gotten engaged and established an idea of guest count we realised that we needed to find a venue in Israel. Last year we enjoyed our stay at Beresheet Spa Hotel in Mitspe Ramon so much that we decided that this would be the best place for us: peaceful, calming, romantic and the exact sense of beauty that we were looking for.
The journey to Beresheet is about three hours from Tel Aviv and we didn’t want our guests to be stressed in any way about arriving to the venue on time or having to pay for fuel so we arranged for a minibus to take everyone from Tel Aviv. On every seat we arranged little lunch boxes with juice, sandwiches and cookies.
GIFTS FOR GUESTS IN THEIR ROOMS
We invited our guests to arrive early. We wanted them to rest and enjoy their time at the beautiful hotel. In the room we left them gifts inspired by the desert: a plant with a note that said ‘With love, Liran and Etay’, a bag with dates (the fruit) and a schedule for the two days.
The best part of the wedding for me was the chuppah. It was so touching and exciting. It was very important for me to have a ceremony that was relaxed and emotional. At previous weddings I’ve attended I’ve always glanced at the face of the groom when he covers the bride with her veil. Personally I loved it during our ceremony when Etay covered me with my veil and kissed me again over the veil. That was very sweet.
In terms of the chuppah canopy itself we constructed it out of tuile and added LED lights to give it some sparkle. We knew we wanted it to look out towards the absolutely stunning view of the crater, and the scenery was simply breathtaking.
We came down the aisle to Kenny G’s Forever in Love and when Etay smashed the glass, we had Juno’s All I Want Is You play.
OUR SPECIAL RABBI
Rabbi David Harrison was just perfect for us. We talked to him prior to our wedding about what was important to us, and he ‘got us’ right away. He talked about the beautiful location and about us as a couple without being too “heavy” or religious. I wanted to bless Etay and to put his ring on his finger too, and the Rabbi was absolutely fine with that. I found that part of the ceremony particularly emotional.
Music is very important to us both. When we were at my cousin’s wedding we enjoyed the music so much that Etay asked the DJ for his number (and bear in mind he *never* does things like that!). He was DJ Nadav Agami from Zebra Music and he rocked! He knew exactly how to get the party going!
TZACHI + DIMA, OUR WONDERFUL PHOTOGRAPHERS
As I’m in the “wedding” business (for the past 4 years I’ve worked in Hila Gaon’s bridal fashion boutique) I see lots of pictures sent in by brides. One day I saw something really different by Tzachi Asher, a video motion photographer. It was the most beautiful and unique thing IÊ»ve ever seen and he was the first person I called when we knew our wedding date so heÊ»d save it too!
When we met with Tzachi, he asked if we had a still photographer and showed us a few portfolios. Dima Vazinovich was the only one who had a different point of view ie. not the clichà©d “hold his tie, place your leg over his thigh” etc. which I hate! But something real and very artistic. Dima and Tzachi work great together – they’re fun and have good energies – and we were thrilled with our choice
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HAIR + MAKE UP
My hair stylist, Sharon Levi, has been our family hairdresser for years. He asked me what I wanted and we tried a few hair styles. On the day of the wedding he did my mum, my sister, Etay’s mom and sister’s hair — he was just terrific!
My make up artist, Naomi Dallal, worked with the Hila Gaon studio (the bridal boutique whom I work for) on a past collection. I loved her personality and how professional she was.
MY FAVOURITE PART
Etay and I really had time to enjoy the wedding as we arrived at Beresheet the day before and spent some time alone just the two of us at the hotel. Then on the day of the wedding and the day after we loved spending quality time with all our friends and family around the hotel and at the swimming pool.
I think the best part of all was when we went back to our room on our wedding night and Etay said to me, “You know, I think it was an amazing wedding, I really had fun and I love you”. That was the best sentence of the day… after all the planning, organising, getting ready, the pictures, eating, dancing etc. it was like taking a deep breath and having your HUSBAND next to you, feeling good!
ADVICE TO OTHER BRIDES
Work with people that you genuinely feel you can depend on, and don’t stress if something isn’t exactly like you envisaged it. Stamp your personality on your chosen venue and on to every detail about your day. Every wedding has a different vibe and energies – make it your own! On the day itself, take your time. And relax.
LIRAN + ETAY’S LITTLE WHITE BOOK
Venue + catering — Beresheet Hotel, Mitspe Ramon
Still photographer — Dima Vazinovich
Video motion photographer — Tzachi Asher
Bride’s dress — Hila Gaon
DJ — Nadav Agami, Zebra Music
Hair — Sharon Levi
Make up — Naomi Dallal
This wedding manages to simultaneously have an air of serenity and tons of zestful energy about it. I love the desert setting and the care and attention that Liran and Etay showered on their guests. Some great advice from the bride there too. Thank you Liran and Etay for sharing your wonderful wedding day with us, and to the fabulous Dima Vazinovich for alerting me to this super-smashing wedding!
Has anyone else ever attended a wedding in the desert before? Let me know if you have and what you think of this wedding!